21 May Living creatively
By Unathi Dyani, illustrator and graphic designer
Many have questioned the origin of human existence and searched every corner of their mind to find a reasonable explanation. Some have yielded themselves to the idea of a higher power, a creator, who thought out the universe, nature and mankind and brought it to be. Christianity, as one example, teaches of a being who made mankind in His image and so gave mankind the ability to create as He did. The direct result of this, at least by this example, is the attribute humankind has, which is creativity.
Defined by Merriam Webster as “the ability to create”, creativity seems to sit at the very core of all industries that seem to springboard off of the platform offered by advertising. Advertising, which is defined as “the action of calling something [a product or service] to the attention of the public…”. It brings about engagement between people and businesses in any given industry. Another way of thinking about this is that advertising is the bridge between people and products (or services), and creativity is the vehicle which moves to keep the connection between advertisers and the masses going. The implication here is that creativity, as a vehicle, is a key component in how people connect with things offered to them. If creativity loses momentum or breaks, then the link between people and the products or services is weakened or slowed down at the very least. Resultantly, advertising hinges on the effectiveness and power of creativity, which then suggests that advertising and creativity are interdependent, if not inseparable.
So then, how does one keep the connection between people and products or services going? How does one move the motor of creativity in a near perpetual way?
One can suggest that being brave with creativity, among many other variables, is the starting point of effective advertising. What is meant by brave? It means to “show strength in the face of fear or difficulty” or “having courage”. Courageous ideas are certainly difficult to create because of certain preferences, beliefs and cultures that people hold. It is, however, desirable for advertisers to appeal to more than just their target audiences and to expand the reach of what they offer, so it becomes evident that in order to help advertisers to grow, creativity has to be bold and tenacious. Sometimes this means challenging what could be perceived as dangerous, sensitive or offensive territory and braving through it. After all, the best way to get to new heights is to take strides in the direction of new heights, and not to grow comfortable in where we find ourselves, otherwise we strangle the life out of creativity, and make advertising redundant.
Perhaps creating or being creative is on one of the greatest attributes of humankind. From nothing, we are able to bring into existence ideas that move people in ways imaginable, yet immeasurable at times. The limit is defined by our own parameters, making the power of our imagination nigh unfathomable if we challenge ourselves to break through what we know to be boundaries.