Artist's Story

Marsel Hollie 

Creating Since 2008

As an artist, the one thing I always wanted to invent was a formula for creativity - a solution that would make everybody even more creative. Early on, when I mentioned this vision to other people, many were skeptical that such a formula even existed, but I was stubborn and curious to look.

In my free time, I would read scientific articles related to creativity. I tried to synthesize other peoples’ studies into one simple solution that would explain the source of creativity. At the end of several months, I wrote a very brief paper to share with my friends and classmates. After a lot of criticism, it became painfully clear to me that creativity couldn’t be simplified or taught. And, in the eyes people who read that paper, I felt foolish and naive for claiming to have the single solution to such a complex idea as creativity.  

 

 

A few weeks after this let down I decided to keep moving forward with making art for fun. Meanwhile, I had started my junior year of college. Weeks into the school year, my English teacher assigned us to write an essay of our choosing. Because I still had an interest in artwork, I wanted to write my essay on an easier topic related to art. Specifically, I chose to research the effects that repetition has on a person’s artwork. During the assignment, the teacher made a crucial point that the thesis be specific and clearly expressed. At the time, I didn’t realize the larger purpose it would serve; while my first paper was trying to capture a very broad idea, this second essay forced me to focus on a smaller area of creativity. In retrospect, this also showed me why I had failed months earlier during my first attempt. Most importantly, writing that essay helped me realize that while general creativity has no single solution, there are ways to help us as artists discover more of our creative potential in art.