Entries by a MOOC participant
The simple act of copying can increase your creativity.
We all have a different perspective in the way we view the world around us that is a result of our unique experiences. When we practice creativity by copying, we pay closer attention to detail and we tend to notice things that we don’t typically see. By slowing down and observing our surroundings we cultivate an awareness of our selves and our relationship to our environment.
“You experience a sort of “velocitization”, like when you come off the interstate into town or a neighborhood. Instead of everything blurring past, you suddenly find yourself able to see into the windows and observe the culture of the restaurant below the sign…” (Matthew Craig @choochupacabra)
Copying opens the door to our innate creative ability. We learn how to recreate simply by doing. By practicing seven foundational elements of copying, we begin the process of excavating our personal creativity.
1. Replicate. Individuals put their own spin on copying. No two results will be the same. That is the beautify of creative expression.
2. Imitate. Through imitation, you notice how something is made or the way that things are assembled. You notice how someone speaks and the gestures they use to communicate an idea. You begin to look at the parts and not just the whole. Imitating makes you more aware of the artistic process.
3. Impersonate. In order to impersonate we must embody the feelings, emotions and movements of the other person or thing. In order to really imitate, we must allow ourselves to let go. “We have to get the thinking out of our heads and into our hands.”
4. Remember. Activating our memory and recreating moments from the past can serve to teach us about the way that we view the world. Have you ever recounted an event with someone who was there and you both had different versions of the same story?
5. Observe. When we engage in simple observation, we are ‘listening’ with all of our senses. We suspend our inclination to classify, sort, analyze and judge.
6. Filter. Recognizing that we view the world through our own rose colored glasses provides us with another key to unlocking our personal creativity. We begin to see our point of view more clearly, we tune into music that calls our name, we take time to smell the roses.
7. Reflect. Copying gets a bad rap. Copying is not stealing. It is not plagiarism. Copying is a fundamental way that we learn. When we begin to take what we have learned and add our own personal touch, style and flair, the experience is richer. By the simple act of copying, we practice creativity. We gain awareness of ourselves, we become empowered and we are inspired to create more!
“We do not learn from experience…we learn from reflecting on it.” John Dewey
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