No Sci-Friday this week – instead, let’s enjoy some advice on creativity from David Bowie. Bowie, the Thin White Duke, spent his entire career making innovative music, visuals, and theatrical productions. It’s no wonder then, that he would have some simple advice that works for anyone in the creativity profession – take a look:
Interesting ideas from a complicated person. I say that because although his advice seems reasonable and practical, I’m also aware that Bowie’s drive to be different sometimes took him to dark, weird places I’d never go.
But so what? The main point he’s making – which I’ve been working to embrace for myself – is that art is not about making money, it’s about understanding yourself. Simple as that, get whatever’s inside of you out – colored pencils on a blank sheet of paper, acrylic paint on a blank canvas, or in my case a keyboard and a blank screen. Just start, make something, write something down. Then you share it with others. That feedback loop helps you collect signal about your perceptions, experiences, and perspectives.
And then you do it over again. Creativity is an ongoing process that requires more, but also gives more. One day we’ll all understand what it means but in the meantime, we can be compassionate toward ourselves and each other.
Hope you enjoyed this advice on creativity from David Bowie. I’ve got a novel to write – I know you’ve got your work, too.