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Imitate, then innovate

Haikal Kushahrin
Haikal Kushahrin
1 min read
Immature poets imitate; mature poets steal; bad poets deface what they take, and good poets make it into something better, or at least something different. The good poet welds his theft into a whole of feeling which is unique, utterly different from that from which it was torn. —T. S. Eliot

What's the first thing that pops into your mind when you think of creativity? Is it one where someone sits down on their chair and magically generate ideas out of nowhere? Is it exclusive to the outliers and gifted among us? This image doesn't tell the whole picture, and a healthier way to think of creativity is by imitating others.

According to the musician Brian Eno, great ideas are born out of a group of creative individuals. Think of curators, artists, and thinkers who are a part of an ecology of talent. Instead of a lone genius, creativity is born out of a scenius. When you think of brilliant "lone geniuses", most of them have a group of people they learn and steal from. They pick bits out of each inspiration, add their own touch, and a something creative is made.

If you're having trouble with creating something, look around at what already exists around you. Then, imitate and steal each part of it, and your own version will be something fresh and new.

Haikal Kushahrin

3rd-year medical student. buy me a coffee :)

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