5 Ways to be more creative (and make better videos)

Thursday, July 24, 2014

The idea that some people are naturally creative is a lie. Creativity is a skill you can cultivate, just like any other. If your audience is yawning and your videos are falling flat, try these 5 tips for creative inspiration.

Creativity can be weird. Sometimes an incredible, innovative idea will hit you like a bolt of lightning. Sometimes just picking up a pencil to plan your next video feels impossible. Here are 5 small changes you can make in your working life that will help you be more creative.

1. Step away from the computer

Curiosity about life in all of its aspects, I think, is still the secret of great creative people.

Leo Burnett

You spend most of your working life glued to your computer. And it's making you boring.

If your ideas feel stagnant and your videos are triggering yawns, step outside of your bubble. Take some time to experiment with a new medium. Go watch a new animation with an exciting art style. Spend time with people who inspire you.

Don't feel guilty about the time you spend away from your desk if it helps you find inspiration.

2. Write your ideas down

Art is not about thinking something up. It is the opposite – getting something down.

– Julia Cameron

Write down every half-baked idea that comes into your mind. Yes, even the rubbish ones. It might only be a hunch at this stage – but it often takes many combined 'hunches' to form one great idea. Your tiny spark of an idea might not be useful now, but combine it with other sparks down the line and you could produce a firework.

The act of writing something down not only helps you to remember things better, it helps you to identify relationships between ideas as well. If you're unsure about how a video will progress or whether a script idea will work, start writing or sketching.

3. Make the best of what you have

Cheap, functional, reliable things unleash the creativity of people who then build stuff that you could not imagine. There’s no way of predicting the Internet based on the first transistor.

– George Whitesides

It's easy to convince yourself that if you only had that expensive gadget or bit of software, your videos would be far more exciting creatively. But having a blowout budget doesn't always equate to good content. If that were the case then massive Hollywood movies would never flop and $50 internet videos would never go viral.

Free your imagination by treating a limited budget as a unique creative challenge. List the resources available to you and see how they can be combined in new ways.

4. Allow yourself to take risks

An essential aspect of creativity is not being afraid to fail.

– Edwin Land

Risk-taking gets a bad press because it sounds... risky. But nobody ever achieved success by hiding under their desk.

Taking risks exposes you to greater opportunities. It shows confidence and helps you stand out. It also forces you to be more creative. When you're out of your comfort zone and forced to look at problems in new ways, you'll surprised at how quickly new ideas will begin to flow.

Whilst it's true that taking risks can end in failure, risk-taking also teaches you not to be afraid of failure. On the path to success, some failure is inevitable. By getting comfortable with risk you will learn how to fail quickly and learn from that experience.

True creative types are just people who aren't afraid to take risks with their content and try new things.

5. Build your confidence

Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.

– Norman Vincent Peale

Often the fear of being judged by our peers is what holds back our creativity. Understanding that creativity is not innate and can be developed is the first step to building confidence in your own ideas. Learn to trust your own instincts and the creative process will become much simpler.

We all try different things to find out what works for us. I hope these 5 starting points help you kickstart new creativity and grow more confident in your ideas.

I can't wait to see the results.

By using
, you agree to
our use of cookies
I agree