“I am not creative.”
Think twice before you make a statement like that, least it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Creativity is essential to get new businesses started, to sustain the best businesses, to bail out businesses that are struggling and to scale up existing businesses. And if you ask me, it’s a quality that can be developed with practice. From applying jugaad in every day situations to planning a surprise party for your best friend – creativity is an inherent part of our collective lives.
So, what stops people from being actively creative and embracing out-of-the-box thinking? A host of mental blocks and often, laziness. ( that is of course, just my humble opinion and you can choose to disagree with it all )
But we are not here today to talk about what stops us from being creative. Rather, I am here with a curated list of quotes that hopefully can inspire you into action. A list of quotes by the most well known creative geniuses to ever have lived, which should help ignite the spark of creativity within you.
And without much further ado, let’s get into it –
1. Every child is an artist; the problem is staying an artist when you grow up.
– Pablo Picasso
2. Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.
– Vincent van Gogh
3. Curiosity about life in all of its aspects, I think, is still the secret of great creative people.
– Leo Burnett
4. You can’t wait for inspiration; you have to go after it with a club.
– Jack London
5. Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine, and at last, you create what you will.
– George Bernard Shaw
6. Creativity is more than just being different. Anybody can plan weird; that’s easy. What’s hard is to be as simple as Bach. Making the simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity.
– Charles Mingus
7. Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity. It’s self―conscious, and anything self―conscious is lousy. You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.
– Ray Bradbury
8. Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while.
– Steve Jobs
9. Creativity is intelligence having fun.
– Albert Einstein
11. Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns in order to look at things in a different way.
– Edward de Bono
12. Creativity is seeing what everyone else has seen, and thinking what no one else has thought.
– Albert Einstein
13. Creativity doesn’t wait for that perfect moment. It fashions its own perfect moments out of ordinary ones.
– Bruce Garrabrandt
14. If you want creative workers, give them enough time to play.
– John Cleese
15. If you hear a voice within you say, ‘You cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.
– Vincent Van Gogh
16. Creativity comes from a conflict of ideas.
– Donatella Versace
17. Creativity is a drug I cannot live without.
— Cecil B. DeMille
18. Creativity is contagious, pass it on.
— Albert Einstein
19. Creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.
— C.E.M. Joad
21. Creativity takes courage.
― Henri Matisse
22. Around here, however, we don’t look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we’re curious…and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.
― Walt Disney Company
23. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.
― Sylvia Plath
24. To be creative means to be in love with life. You can be creative only if you love life enough that you want to enhance its beauty, you want to bring a little more music to it, a little more poetry to it, a little more dance to it.
25. The chief enemy of creativity is good sense.
― Pablo Picasso
26. You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.
― Maya Angelou
27. A rock pile ceases to be a rock pile the moment a single man contemplates it, bearing within him the image of a cathedral.
― Antoine de Saint―Exupery, The Little Prince
28. The urge to destroy is also a creative urge.
― Mikhail Bakunin
29. Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.
― Scott Adams
31. Graffiti is one of the few tools you have if you have almost nothing. And even if you don’t come up with a picture to cure world poverty you can make someone smile while they’re having a piss.
― Banksy, Banging Your Head Against a Brick Wall
32. People who do a job that claims to be creative have to be alone to recharge their batteries. You can’t live 24 hours a day in the spotlight and remain creative. For people like me, solitude is a victory.
― Karl Lagerfeld
33. Everyone is born creative; everyone is given a box of crayons in kindergarten. Then when you hit puberty, they take the crayons away and replace them with dry, uninspiring books on algebra, history, etc. Being suddenly hit years later with the ‘creative bug’ is just a wee voice telling you, ‘I’d like my crayons back, please.
― Hugh MacLeod, Ignore Everybody: and 39 Other Keys to Creativity
34. The road to creativity passes so close to the madhouse and often detours or ends there.
― Ernest Becker, The Denial of Death
35. Draw the art you want to see, start the business you want to run, play the music you want to hear, write the books you want to read, build the products you want to use – do the work you want to see done.
― Austin Kleon, Steal Like an Artist
36. True alchemy lies in this formula: ‘Your memory and your senses are but the nourishment of your creative impulse.
― Arthur Rimbaud, Illuminations
37. Creative people are often found either disagreeable or intimidating by mediocrities.
― Criss Jami, Killosophy
38. Creativity is an act of defiance.
― Twyla Tharp
39. Dance above the surface of the world. Let your thoughts lift you into creativity that is not hampered by opinion.
― Red Haircrow
41. What keeps life fascinating is the constant creativity of the soul.
― Deepak Chopra, Life After Death: The Burden of Proof
42. When learning is purposeful, creativity blossoms. When creativity blossoms, thinking emanates. When thinking emanates, knowledge is fully lit. When knowledge is lit, economy flourishes.
― A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, Indomitable Spirit
43. Thank goodness I was never sent to school; it would have rubbed off some of the originality.
― Beatrix Potter
44. Anxiety is the handmaiden of creativity
― T.S. Eliot
45. Absurdity and anti—absurdity are the two poles of creative energy.
― Karl Lagerfeld
46. There is no healthier drug than creativity.
― Nayyirah Waheed, Salt
47. Creative activity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.
― Arthur Koestler, Drinkers of Infinity: Essays 1955―1967
48. I can always be distracted by love, but eventually I get horny for my creativity.
― Gilda Radner
49. Routine kills creative thought.
― Scarlett Thomas, PopCo
51. In order to be open to creativity, one must have the capacity for constructive use of solitude. One must overcome the fear of being alone.
― Rollo May
52. Creativity is a continual surprise.
― Ray Bradbury
53. Creativity is as important now in education as literacy and we should treat it with the same status.
― Sir Ken Robinson
54. Creative power is mightier than its possessor.
― C.G. Jung
55. Creativity arises from our ability to see things from many different angles.
― Keri Smith, How to Be an Explorer of the World
56. We nurture our creativity when we release our inner child. Let it run and roam free. It will take you on a brighter journey.
― Serina Hartwell
57. Dive again and again into the river of uncertainty. Create in the dark, only then can you recognize the light.
― Jyrki Vainonen
58. Odd how the creative power at once brings the whole universe to order.
― Virginia Woolf
59. My future starts when I wake up every morning. Every day I find something creative to do with my life.
― Miles Davis
61. Imperfection inspires invention, imagination, creativity. It stimulates. The more I feel imperfect, the more I feel alive.
― Jhumpa Lahiri, In Other Words
62. Creativity is that marvelous capacity to grasp mutually distinct realities and draw a spark from their juxtaposition.
― Max Ernst
63. Creativity can solve almost any problem. The creative act, the defeat of habit by originality, overcomes everything.
― George Lois
64. What if the very reason you were created was to be creative?
― Michelle Dennis Evans
65. Creativity is the brain’s invisible muscle ― that when used and exercised routinely ― becomes better and stronger.
― Ashley Ormon
66. Creativity is a gift. It doesn’t come through if the air is cluttered.
― John Lennon
67. The human spirit lives on creativity and dies in conformity and routine.
― Vilayat Inayat Khan
68. Arrogance kills creativity.
― A.M. Riley
69. Be brave enough to live life creatively. The creative place where no one else has ever been.
― Alan Alda
71. Creativity comes from looking for the unexpected and stepping outside your own experience.
― Masaru Ibuka
72. Creativity – like human life itself, begins in darkness.
― Julia Cameron
73. Don’t try to follow trends. Create them.
― Simon Zingerman, We All Need Heroes
74. There is no doubt that creativity is the most important human resource of all. Without creativity, there would be no progress, and we would be forever repeating the same patterns.
― Edward de Bono
75. Creativity thrives where its roots are crowded.
― Ozzie Zehner, Green Illusions
76. Creativity is one of the highest transmissions of love.
― Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute the Sun
77. Creating a better future, Requires creativity in the present.
― Matthew Goldfinger
78. We have one precious life: do something extraordinary today, even if it’s tiny. A pebble starts the avalanche.
― K.A. Laity
79. Get off the treadmill of consumption, replication, and mediocrity. Begin lifting the weights of creativity, originality, and success.
― Ryan Lilly
81. Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.
― Mary Lou Coo
82. There is no such thing as a new idea. We simply take a lot of old ideas and put them into a sort of mental kaleidoscope.
83. Making the simple complicated is commonplace. Making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity.
― Charles Mingus
84. That’s the great secret of creativity. You treat ideas like cats: you make them follow you. ― Ray Bradbury
85. Create with the heart; build with the mind
― Criss Jami
86. Creativity is the greatest rebellion in existence.
87. Creativity is just connecting things.
88. Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me … Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful … that’s what matters to me.
― Steve Jobs
89. The comfort zone is the great enemy to creativity.” ―Dan Stevens
91. Creativity makes a leap, then looks to see where it is.
― Mason Cooley
92. This simple process of focusing on things that are normally taken for granted is a powerful source of creativity.
― Edward de Bono
93. When we are angry or depressed in our creativity, we have misplaced our power.
―Julia Margaret Cameron
94. Creativity is a natural extension of our enthusiasm.
― Earl Nightingale
95. Creativity is the greatest expression of liberty.
― Bryant H. McGill
96. Creativity is the ability to introduce order into the randomness of nature.
― Eric Hoffer
97. Creativity means to push open the heavy, groaning doorway to life.
― Daisaku Ikeda
98. Clean out a corner of your mind and creativity will instantly fill it.
― Dee Hock
99. If you’re alive, you’re a creative person.
― Elizabeth Gilbert
I’d love to hear which of these quotes resonate stage most with you. Also, feel free to share hacks that help you be more creative. We can all use all the help we can get.