The Nature of Creativity

The design professions bestow great esteem on what they perceive to be 'creative' designers. Such designers are those who produce works that are geometrically, structurally or spatially a departure from the norm in response to what they see as problems needing to be addressed. The question is: 'What freedom of action should individual designers have in creating the public realm of cities?' Those observers who regard urban design as a fine art would argue for little or no outside interference into what an individual designer/artist does. The population simply has to live with the consequences in the name of Art. The 'art defence' - that some object or environment is an expressive act of an individual and thus a work of art - has been used to justify many design decisions, from pieces of sculpture to squares to streets, that are detrimental to the enjoyment of the city. Sometimes this has been a purposeful design objective. Making people feel uncomfortable, physically or psychologically, is, however, difficult to justify. Purposefully making poorly functioning places even worse with buildings or public art seems antisocial.

This discussion comes back to that on the rights of individuals and definitions of what is in the public interest with which this book began. The architectural position, if there is a unified point of view, is generally that one has to tolerate bad designs in the name of freedom of action on the part of all architects and their clients. In addition, seeing bad designs enables one to appreciate the good even more. Opinions differ on whether this argument is a strong one or not. In urban design, the quality of individual works - sculptures or building as sculptures -often does not affect the way cities are experienced provided the spaces created on the ground floor of a city, suburb or building complex function well in a multidimensional manner.

The problem arises when property developers and their architects focus on highly individualistic designs as objects in space in the name of art and in the furthering of their own careers. Fiscal conservatives argue that in the long run such competition results in a better world. The case studies fail to support this view. Indeed the whole basis for the existence of urban design is in ensuring that the basic requirements for making good public realms are fulfilled. What is regarded as good is always open to debate but there is now much empirically based theory and many examples, and even detailed case studies that provide the basis for sensible discussions about what should and should not be designed.

True creativity involves not the making of innovative building and urban forms but rather the designing of a problem in a new and more appropriate way and recognizing that specific patterns respond well to the problem. Maybe being able to evaluate designs well is the most important ability to possess in creative problem solving. Maybe it is the ability to see the affordances of innovative patterns.

Homeowners Guide To Landscaping

Homeowners Guide To Landscaping

How would you like to save a ton of money and increase the value of your home by as much as thirty percent! If your homes landscape is designed properly it will be a source of enjoyment for your entire family, it will enhance your community and add to the resale value of your property. Landscape design involves much more than placing trees, shrubs and other plants on the property. It is an art which deals with conscious arrangement or organization of outdoor space for human satisfaction and enjoyment.

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