The Rubber Band Approach to Developing Creative Thinking in Jewelry Design
We are very lucky to have as one of our peers in jewelry design a professional educator, Dr Karen Meador, whose focus in her last career was mastering how to teach creativity. What a resource we have available to us. She has agreed to work through a creative process in jewelry design for us and offer it here at Magpie Gemstones for all of you. This is the introduction, stay tuned for further instalments. . Szarka
If you are just beginning to make jewelry, you are probably wondering why the topic of creative thinking would be important to you. After all, right now the problem is just how to string those beautiful beads you bought from Magpie Gemstones on to the wire (you hope you bought the right kind) and how to get that pesky clasp to stay on. Yet, trust me, RIGHT NOW is the time to think creatively.
You can look at the marvelous books and magazines on jewelry making, read online articles, watch videos, take classes and talk to sage designers, but in the end, you have to create that piece of jewelry. Yes, YOU have to think creatively. If you don’t that design you make will look just like all the others and will not be your own. You do want it to be special, don’t you?
So, what is creative thinking? I could fill tomes with definitions and quotes from the experts, but suffice it to say that creative thinking in jewelry designs involves designing something you have never seen or made before. That doesn’t mean you aren’t using an element of creative thinking when you change the size, color or gemstone used in a piece you saw. Yet, the amount of creative thinking involved depends on how much you change or whether you are creating completely from your own vision.
At this point I can already hear a few folks saying, “I’m not creative.” Let’s just clear that right up. We can all think creatively! Creative thinking is basically problem solving and we all do that every day. You forgot to bring your credit card to the bead show and have spent hours picking out just what you want. The sales person doesn’t recognize you and won’t let you take the beads and call her with the card number when you get home. What do you do? There are several options and I’ll bet you use creative thinking to figure it out since you really WANT those beads NOW!
For those who feel you are not creative, it is well documented that you can improve your creative thinking through practice. We all have a range of creative thinking that can be developed. While practice might not make you a “high creative”, it can help you stretch to the pinnacle of your creative ability and I promise it will be fun. Let’s use a rubber band for an analogy. Left alone, the rubber band doesn’t stretch until someone forces it to do so. Creative thinking is the same. That ability will just sit there until you find a way to stretch it. After a rubber band has been stretched for a bit, it doesn’t quite return to its original shape. This is how it works in creative thinking. Once we have practiced thinking creatively, that ability is stretched and the next creative task becomes simpler. I don’t know about you, but I’m always eager for a good stretch, especially if it involves jewelry and I don’t have to get on a treadmill. Watch for ways to stretch and improve your creative thinking in upcoming articles.
**Contributing authors are noted in the articles they wrote. All articles are copyright. You can reprint these articles as long as the original author is sited and a link to this website is included. The name Magpie Gemstones must be used as the hypertext.