Alicia Keys Blogs For iVillage: “Creativity Without Limitations Is the Most Freeing Thing in the World”
The most incredible thing about creativity is that it is all around us. It’s in the simplest things — the way a cloud formation inspires the eye, the beauty of a homemade meal, the crayon painting of a child, the dreams dreamt in a long hot bath. It’s always knocking on our door. And whether we choose it or not, we all have an opportunity to be creative in our lives.
As an artist, I have found that creativity without limitations is the most freeing thing in the world. Creativity for the sake of making something, no matter what it ends up being — good or bad — is a piece of straight-up freedom for me! As of late, I’ve really found some of the best creativity in collaboration. When I’m working together with somebody else, I’m moved to think of things I may have never thought of before or go in directions I may never have traveled. Working together with others and being supportive and aware of all art forms in life is such an exciting feeling.
I’ve learned to channel creativity in my work and daily life by being open-minded to all the endless possibilities and different perspectives around me every day. I have found that inspiration comes in all shapes and sizes, and even if you’re not going out there and looking for it, there’s something to take away from every moment we engage. A child marveling at the moon, the magnificent detail that goes into a painting at a museum, graffiti on the street, a black-and-white photograph, or an inspiring quote in a book — creativity is waiting to be uncovered at all times. It’s never too late to be creative, but it’s something that must be nurtured in order to grow.
I believe that anything artistic leads to art. It’s when we unleash our inner creativity that we can be extraordinary in ways we never imagined. To be open to the world around you is to be open to the world inside yourself. And when we tap into that place, we set our hearts on fire!
When I was little, I loved the piano so much because it was shiny and mysterious, but I never knew how lucky I was to have a place to channel my creative energy — a place to learn and unlock myself, a true outlet to go to instead of keeping things bottled up inside of me. And that is the power of creativity. Simple creativity. A journal entry, a moment to daydream, an arts-and-crafts project with the kids, a funny jam session making up a silly song … let it out! Set yourself free! You are a beautiful creative being and the world is brighter when you let it out! Now let’s go listen to the world around us and allow ourselves to be inspired at any moment.