Human Creativity

Schools of Thought & Theories


Incubation is a temporary break from creative problem solving which can help to think more logically and to also result in insight.
The concept behind this is to make the creator think less direct about the situation and open their mind to more potential involvement to help expand their cognitive direction on the thought process they have been currently adapted to.

An example of this is; if you were in the process of creation and you were starting to strain your brain on the mentality of ideas, taking a break from that takes more stress off of yourself whilst also thinking more broadly on the situation you are currently involved in.
The creative approach heads towards more on exploring your ideas, rather than trying to find an instant solution. Thinking outside of the box is a well known term provided for this theory.

Creative Cognition Approach

The “Geneplore” model (proposed by Finke et al in 1992) explores the idea in which creativity takes place in two phases: a generative phase, where the person mentally builds up representations (known as pre-inventive structures), and an exploratory phase where the built mental structures are used to come up with creative thoughts and ideas. - Svilen Milev,
An example of this is when a person goes to imagine an idea before creating, they usually think of previous creations that they have seen before, therefore their mind has a past of mental relations of what their work should be based off.
This comes from a sense of relation to other creative concepts. Otherwise if a person was blindfolded and put pen to paper to draw random lines over the page, it would be completely new, because they haven’t thought about what they are going to create, so it’s highly unlikely they are basing their work off another’s previous existing piece.

Creativity and Everyday Imaginative Thought

In everyday thought, people spontaneously imagine alternate ideas to reality, usually thinking along the lines of “if only…” or “what if…”.
This is known as counterfactual thinking which is an example of everyday creative processes to an extent. Knowing what is real and imagining a new possibility is just a minor step in a person’s creative thinking process.

These rational thoughts are linked to way the person’s cognitive processes operate, meaning that their creative process is only limited to their own methods of thinking and how they explore new ideas.
It’s simply the way people think and in the matter of how they use their imagination.

Personal Examples of Theories

Incubation - When I am working on a creative piece and I start to strain myself on ideas, I usually take a break from the project and work on another project or listen to new music then come back to the situation within the next hour or so, with a clear head and full motivation.
Creative Cognition Approach - When I start on a new project, I automatically think of examples related to my project that I have seen in the past, this gives me a settled thought on what to firstly base my idea off of. From there it's just a matter of how much the original generative idea evolves.
Creativity and Everyday Imaginative Thought - One of my thought processes I go through every day, is when I see creative work displayed in public areas (e.g. billboards, logo's, truck brand designs) and I wonder to myself what thought went in to come up with the idea, and how it was then made and with what tools.

These processes influence myself in to my own work by thinking more broadly on the thought of "What if..." or "How about..." when it comes to new ideas to excite myself to devote towards my current project. My influence also comes from other's work I have previously seen, and what aspects I admire about their work and how I can replicate that to a level and then modify it to my own liking.