Creative thinking techniques

Today we looked at different creative thinking techniques, we began by looking at the popular brainstorming and mindmapping. These are two thinking techniques that I am familiar with and regularly use when gathering ideas for a new brief.

Like brainstorming and mindmapping a similar technique is lotus blossom, this is a technique that expands on mindmapping by having a topic in the middle then 8 relating topics coming away and developing those topics. If this is done correctly then you should have 64 ideas which link together.

lottus bottom.jpg

The 6 thinking hats, lateral thinking and scamper are all creative thinking techniques that all overlap in some way. The 6 thinking hats is a creative thinking technique that allows you to put your own feelings and opinions to one side. The colour hat you decide depends on the way that you will approach a new task or brief.

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Scamper is a thinking technique which is broken down into 7 different sections. In Graphic communication I feel that this creative thinking technique would be a good technique to use throughout a project as it enables you to come back to your work reflect on it and take expand with the scamper method.

S-substitute

C-combine

A-adapt

M-magnify

R-rearrange/reverse

E-eliminate

P-put to others uses

scamper.jpg

Lateral thinking is a method which deliberately puts you in someone else’s shoes so you look at something in a different way. This style of thinking allows you to ask questions in a non-logical way. This is important when looking at a brief as the target audience may not be the same as you so you need to be able to communicate well to a different target audience.

The checklist is simple but can be a very effective method by writing down a list of ideas, this is a good way for getting as many ideas down as possible and catagorising in the checklist.

The Reframing Matrix is a good technique that you could use as a graphic communicator for example when looking at a business from an outside and seeing how you could re-brand or improve their business or reflecting back upon a previous piece of design work. By having a rectangle and splitting it into 4 boxes you would put your topic in the middle and breaking down your topic into recognising the problem, understanding what needs to be changed, a plan on how to change it, and how successful this has been.

the reframing matrix.gif

Picture Association is a different way of thinking by working backwards. Looking at an image and asking yourself questions, like what is happening in the picture? Why is it happening? How does that communicate a message? etc.

Metaphorical Thinking is different way of thinking by asking questions and including metaphors. Metaphors can create impact which makes the statement more memorable.

Attribute Listing is a way of breaking down an object into individual components and start to think about the individual parts that make up that object. For example having a brief and breaking the brief down to single words or sentences to try and understand it more in depth.

This task has widened my understandings on creative thinking and has educated me with a number of different ways to approach my work. In graphic communications this can be very useful as some days you may lack in creativity but with a range of different creative thinking techniques it allows you to be able to create original and interesting designs.

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