We all know that cross pollination in nature is the delivery of pollen from one plant to another, fertilizing the plant so it can grow and produce food. Plants were made to need help from others. They can not do it all themselves.
We as humans were made to need others too. We are not meant to go it alone. This is especially important when creating things.
You likely know a lot about your particular craft. If you are just learning, you can usually find a group that shares that love. Quilting guilds, art societies, weaving guilds, writers groups all exist to bring together creatives to share ideas and learn from each other. This is like self pollination. Cross pollination is a little different.
Cross Pollination of Ideas
What if you got to know someone who loved a different craft? And what if you shared ideas? We take the approach, ideas, or tools from one form of creative work and transfer to whatever we are doing now. This is a cross pollination of ideas.
Suppose a quilter takes a class with a friend who is a basketweaver. Learning a new way of doing things with a different set of materials is beneficial. Not only is the brain stimulated, but possibly the ideas or even materials can now be incorporated into quilting. Maybe the quilter will try weaving with fabric to make a quilt. Or weaving with fabric to make a basket. This cross pollination of ideas and even materials is great for creativity.
We talked about this a little in the last post. In my own journey, I took the skills of composition learned in art class and changed the materials from paper to fabric and came up with quilted art (see photo). Then the skills I learned in quilting, like the benefits of a rotary cutter, I took into clothing sewing and it helped me to sew more professional looking clothes.
We don’t know the rules of the new thing, so we can break them – to the benefit of creativity. Doing something we are not really good at can help shock us out of our normal way of thinking. We get out of creative ruts. Learning new things is daring.
Creativity is found in the daring.
It’s valuable to experiment in other media and disciplines every once in a while. It gives us fresh eyes with which to look at our own hobby or profession. Sometimes just sitting down and coloring for 15 minutes will open up that right brain and can cause you to be refreshed and have a new mindset.
In the coming weeks, I plan to feature some interesting creative projects I’ve tried that are solely designed to get you to do something creative without investing a lot of time, energy or resources. They are just quick ideas to get you thinking freshly about whatever it is you love doing.
Can you think of the last thing you tried that was new to you? How did it help you in your own craft? Share it with us in the comments below. It will be refreshing to hear!