Michael Epps

Creativity: Everyone Has It

Creativity is not something that has always come easy to me. I was never good with it throughout grade school, and I was never a fan of the art classes we were required to take or any of those subjects. As I decided to enter the field of journalism, I realized that I need to think differently in order to be successful.

It was a specific class, taught by Professor Karl Gude, that helped me reenter the pool of creativity that every single one of us holds in our brains, but commonly covers up. It was called Creative Processes. It’s one of the requirements for the Journalism degree, but many people just slide through it and get it over with. I took the time to really absorb everything that was talked about, and it helped me tremendously.

Years later, as I approach graduation, this has come in handy yet again. It doesn’t help me all the time, because I still struggle quite a bit. But as we took on an assignment to create a 1-minute “elevator pitch” of an idea for a new product, this helped. It’s not just about getting the assignment over with, using the most basic idea to just get through it. It’s really about thinking deep down, past all the basic ideas, and getting to the ones that really matter. The ones that will make an impact on people.

As we thought of our products, I thought about a need that I had that exact day. It was snowing, freezing rain, whatever you want to call it, and my windshield was covered with ice. My car takes forever to heat up, so my windshield has to be scraped off. There’s my idea: a scraper with a heater attached to it, to speed up and ease that miserable task of scraping off your windshield. It’s an idea that would help me tremendously, and could help other people out tremendously as well. It’s not something that was an earth-shattering idea, but it worked. It’s part of opening up your mind and thinking about things that will make an impact on people. That’s what journalism already is, right? Telling people’s stories?

So why don’t we put more effort towards tapping in to our creativity and using it to our advantage. We could come up with some pretty impressive stuff that way. In  my opinion, everyone has it, it just needs to be brushed up from time to time.

4 thoughts on “Creativity: Everyone Has It

  1. Karl Gude’s class was a great way to learn how to think creatively! I agree that it’s still hard to think creatively. I think as we force ourselves to do it more, we only feel LESS creative. Instead, thinking about the day’s problems is a good way to try to find a problem-solving idea. Just like you did!

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  2. I loved Gude’s class as well! Though I believe that creativity is not as confined as we are taught. Having had some experience in creative agencies, my idea of what is needed to be considered “outside the box” may not be creativity to all. Overall creativity needs to work within a context that you set yourself.

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  3. Michael, I like how you mentioned the impact that taking a class on creativity had on you. A lot of times, I think people just struggle to understand how to approach a problem in a creative manner. It’s not lacking creativity, because everyone has the capacity to be creative, it’s just not letting yourself open up to new ideas. I really could have used your heated scraper this past week when my car was frozen solid. While an actual electric scraper may not be completely plausible, there is potential for some kind of ice-melting mechanism that can be added to any scraper to make it more efficient. Your pitch was great and I could definitely tell that you were trying to come up with something that would really be effective for any person. You should take this to the Hatch and see what you can make of it!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I really struggle with being creative. I’ve always thought that I couldn’t be creative and so I never really tried to improve those skills. The exercise we did at the hatch was a bit of a step out of my comfort zone, but once I saw my peers doing so awesome it gave me the confidence I could do it as well. Having a class to take that would not force creativity, but give it the opportunity to flourish would be amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

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