The three key factors of creativity

It is difficult to put Gareth Loudon in a category, as his work career is so rich – and in the end, it is all for the better. Gareth is an interdisciplinary engineer, a member of the Institution of Engineering and Technology and Professor of creativity at the Cardiff School of Art and Design. Over the years, his research led him to explore anthropology and psychology – among others. The interweaving of these different fields – apparently far apart – inspired his new approach to creativity. He called it LCD.

A three-pronged approach: Listen + Connect + Do

Here are the three ingredients of creativity, which we must apply to our environment and ourselves. “The approach Listen, connect and do is not linear, it evolves in an iterative cycle based on these three principles, always interconnected” says Gareth Loudon.

Listening knows how to monitor, to look at what’s around us: objects, people, behaviors, details, differences. We must take an “open attention” posture or open up to all discoveries, with a genuine interest. If empathy is key, being attentive also applies to oneself: knowing how to perceive and take on board our own emotions, needs, problems. Connecting means embracing a collaborative spirit, while remaining attentive to oneself. Lastly, getting into action means experimenting, testing, learning, failing, refining. In short, moving forward.

Motivation & creativity

For Gareth Loudon it is difficult to be creative without a purpose, an intention or a motivation that drive the creativity process. It is the unavoidable starting point. He adds: “Motivation must be self-initiated. It must come from the persons themselves, not from outside. Being paid or supported in any way does not lead to beautiful creations, while enthusiasts and believers succeed. That’s the common thread between those who are successful – whatever the context or the subject. People with a conviction go all the way.

Gareth Loudon takes the opportunity to deliver a blow to preconceived ideas: “We are all creative. We all have it.” The context, the physical and psychological conditions of each of us are conducive – or not – to creativity.” What is the best? “Playing games, because when we play we feel secure, free to explore. There are no stakes, no objectives to reach, just the player’s motivation”. He concludes: “Motivation and well-being go hand in hand. They feed, nourish and support each other“.