Creativity Calisthenics

Creativity For Everyone
At the Columbus Museum of Art, in the Center for Creativity, we believe that everyone has the capacity for Creativity. We believe that creativity is for everyone, can live within anyone and can take any form. But rather than talk about why or how we at the CFC champion and celebrate creativity, I want to take a bit of time to talk about how we (and more importantly how you ) can cultivate creativity. Creativity is a skill, just like drawing or bowling or building card houses…. sure, some people may be naturally talented at it, but everyone can practice and improve. Recently, I asked a few of my colleagues for their recommendations for ‘Creativity Calisthenics:’

Like any exercise, we start with a warm-up…

  • Find inspiration everywhere (look at picture books, take photos around the house, collect natural items in the park)
  • Respect everyone’s ideas, even if they sound crazy or might not make sense
  • Let everyone share their ideas
  • Collaborate on ideas, work as a team
  • Don’t be afraid to make a mess

If you’re brain’s feeling a bit stiff and sore, start with something you know and do something new with it…

  • What else could you do with a common comb? plunger? salad spinner? shoe lace?
  • What does it look like to paint with a spatula? Make a shaving cream sculpture?
  • Get creative with chores you have to do: Work together towards a common goal (what if EVERYONE from baby to dad helps make dinner?)
  • Ask “What else?”
  • Use different items together (what kind of game can you invent with supplies from 5 different games?)

Story-telling: the intermediate workout…

  • Go someplace new and people watch. What could their story be?
  • Start a story during a car ride. Someone starts, and everyone takes turns adding ideas and characters.
  • While eating out, pick a neighboring table and guess what kind of food everyone will order. What makes you say that?
  • Tell stories together- One person can start, and someone else can pick up the tale, campfire-style

Now it’s time to really feel the burn!

  • Have a 10 minute dance party
  • Talk to a friend on the phone in an accent during the entire conversation
  • While cooking dinner, pretend you’re a Food Network host
  • While brushing your teeth, pretend you’re on a commercial selling toothpaste
  • Build a fort together. Everyone has 5 minutes to run around the house and grab materials.

Have you tried any of these ideas? How did it go? How do you practice creativity at home? Leave us a comment and let us know!