Killing Creativity?

Posted: March 23, 2011 in Uncategorized

In Valley Village, a woman wanted her fence painted. So, she enlisted the help of some Amelia Earhart High art students.

The mural on Barbara Black’s  side fence is art to some, but an eyesore to others. And while art may be subjective, the law isn’t.

According to building and safety codes, the mural on Black’s fence is technically a sign, because of its graffiti-style lettering. In this neighborhood, signs aren’t allowed.

“I think it’s beautiful,” said neighbor Bruce Briggs. “I can see how it could be an eyesore for someone who doesn’t necessarily like that type of art. They actually might have a connection in their mind that graffiti is a bad thing or a sign of…dilapidation in the area.”

Valley Village Neighborhood Council President Tony Braswell says council members have to find a balance between what the neighbors want and what the homeowner wants. And in doing so, they’re sticking to the law — which will require Black to either remove or change the mural by the end of the month.

As for the artists who painted the mural, they say that whatever happens to it, quite frankly, isn’t their problem.

“We’re really dedicated artists, but we have other things we have to do, you know. After we finished it, it wasn’t really our concern,” said art student, Alex Green.


Growing up I always felt like I did not belong and was unsure of myself because I was constantly being told that I was different and had ADD.  I was hyper and every report card said I was hyper – ‘needs to calm down in class, needs to sit quietly, needs to learn self control.  It was tough growing up knowing that I was different, knowing that I was not the same. There was no focus on the fact that I may learn differently and my brain needed a more creative approach to learning.

I think I would have done really well in school if creativity was given the same level of importance as English or math. Society needs free thinkers just as much as English lecturers and data analyst but because creativity is harder to test and measure it isn’t.

Society doesn’t need everyone to understand calculus or how Shakespeare built structure in his sentences.  Society needs people who can solve problems and create for the future of our world.

“We are all creative, but by the time we are three of four years old, someone has knocked the creativity out of us. Some people shut up the kids who start to tell stories. Kids dance in their cribs, but someone will insist they sit still. By the time the creative people are ten or twelve, they want to be like everyone else.”
Maya Angelou

Hello world,

I am trying to organize a trip down to Tijuana to an Orphanage that I have helped build houses at for many years. The orphanage is very cold looking, with no color and feels like a prison. I would like to organize a group of students to spend a weekend down in Tijuana to stay at the orphanage and inspire the children by painting the exterior of the walls bright colors.

I would also like to try to convince my change agent, William M. Habermehl, the Superintendent Of Schools, Orange County to possibly join us on our trip so that he may experience the impact a little creativity can have on children!

Let me know if this is something you would be interested in doing!

Here is a photo of the Orphanage now…Watch the video below and imagine the possibilities!


Gavin Burns

“The roots of a creative society are in basic education. The sheer volume of facts to be digested by the students
of today leaves little time for a deeper interrogation of their moral worth. The result has been a generation of
technicians rather than visionaries, each one taking a career rather than an idea seriously. The answer must
be reform in our educational methods so that students are encouraged to ask about “know-why” as well as
“know-how”. Once the arts are restored to a more central role in educational institutions, there could be a
tremendous unleashing of creative energy in other disciplines too.”


Source: OnArts: Creative New Zealand. Michael D. Higgins, the former Irish Minister for
Arts, Culture and Gaeltacht

Posted: March 9, 2011 in Uncategorized

World Creativity and Innovation Day became World Creativity and Innovation Week in 2005 so people would have more time to access their creativity and make something from it. World Creativity and Innovation Week begins on Leonardo da Vinci’s birthday – April 15 and runs through to World Creativity and Innovation Day April 21.

In schools, factories, businesses, homes, the celebration continues as more and more take advantage of a time to deliberately generate new ideas, use imagination and make new decisions to make a difference.

Centuries of educational training based mainly on left-brained analytical skills such as linear and logical thinking have left many people deficient in essential whole-brain thinking practices including creativity, empathy, and design.

America as a whole has suffered due to an educational system that overemphasizes sequential analysis, logic and memorization. For years, this has led to a lack of successful new companies and innovative products or services in the U.S. economy.

While IQ tests are given to determine a person’s intelligence, the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking is administered to measure one’s creativity or “CQ.”  psychologists  recently analyzed the Torrance scores of 300,000 children and adults and found that American creativity scores have indeed been falling since 1990. The decline is most serious among one of America’s youngest populations: kindergartener through sixth graders.

the U.S. is rushing to embrace standardized curricula and nationalized testing, while the rest of the world is heading in exactly the opposite direction. When a faculty member of a major Chinese university was asked to identify trends in American education, he described our focus on “standardized curriculum, rote memorization, and nationalized testing”. After the question was asked the teacher started laughing out loud and said, “You’re racing toward our old model (of , testing, standardization). But we’re racing toward your model (creativity, innovation), as fast as we can.’ “

Critical Thought

Posted: March 1, 2011 in Uncategorized

Creative thinking fuels innovation. It leads to new ideas, products, services, and jobs. If we fail to integrate creativity into our schools at the state and local levels, the United States will soon find itself unable to compete economically with other nations who do.