[R07] Quotes on creativity


These are quotes on creativity from famous people which illustrate many of the principles discussed in our tutorials. You might be able to find some recurrent themes being mentioned. Hope you will find them interesting and inspiring.

People are wrong who think my art comes easily to me. I assure you, nobody has devoted so much time and thought to composition as I. There is not a famous master whose music I have not studied over and over.

Mozart

The best way to have a good idea is to have lots of ideas.

Linus Pauling, physicist

It is worth mentioning, for future reference, that the creative power which bubbles so pleasantly in beginning a new book quiets down after a time, and one goes on more steadily. Doubts creep in. Then one becomes resigned. Determination not to give in, and the sense of an impending shape keep one at it more than anything.

Virginia Woolf, writer

It is better to have enough ideas for some of them to be wrong, than to be always right by having no ideas at all.

Edward de Bono, writer

Genius was 1 percent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration.

Thomas Edison, inventor

The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.

Albert Einstein, physicist

The first draft of anything is shit.

Ernest Hemingway

Richard Feynman was fond of giving the following advice on how to be a genius. You have to keep a dozen of your favorite problems constantly present in your mind, although by and large they will lay in a dormant state. Every time you hear or read a new trick or a new result, test it against each of your twelve problems to see whether it helps. Every once in a while there will be a hit, and people will say, "How did he do it? He must be a genius!"

Gian-Carlo Rota, Indiscrete Thoughts

After so many years, I've learned that being creative is a full-time job with its own daily patterns. That's why writers, for example, like to establish routines for themselves. The most productive ones get started early in the morning, when the world is quiet, the phones aren't ringing, and their minds are rested, alert, and not yet polluted by other people's words. They might set a goal for themselves -- write fifteen hundred words, or stay at their desk until noon -- but the real secret is that they do this every day. In other words, they are disciplined. Over time, as the daily routines become second nature, discipline morphs into habit.

It's the same for any creative individual, whether it's a painter finding his way each morning to the easel, or a medical researcher returning daily to the laboratory. The routine is as much a part of the creative process as the lightning bolt of inspiration, maybe more. And this routine is available to everyone.

Creativity is a habit, and the best creativity is a result of good work habits.

Twyla Tharp, choreographer and dancer The Creative Habit

This is the extraordinary thing about creativity: If just you keep your mind resting against the subject in a friendly but persistent way, sooner or later you will get a reward from your unconscious.

John Cleese, comedian
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