Revisiting the idea of “Creative Influences” – pt 001 – “Knowledge of the world you live in/on…”

The following questions and activities were delivered as part of an Intro To Games Design session with Year 1 Games students. The purpose of the session was to highlight the value of knowledge beyond their core subject area to their creative process. This session also reinforced some of the none Art oriented skills and cognitive processing of value to their on going RPG concept and  character design project.

The session began:

What can you tell me about the image below?

Ship Beakers 002…image sourced from > News Article

Discussion with group… group led, hypotheses discussed and countered, group consensus arrived at…

So what IS happening here?

Actual reasons/situation discussed, bringing up questions – historical, economic, social, geographic etc. – which continued with discussion of the images and links below.

Hard, dangerous work…

Shipbreaking in LondonThe Queen, heeled over on the shore of the Thames.

…for a little more on this subject and the history try >HERE<

Why do I need to know this stuff anyway?

Well, how else would I have come across images like this, or this?

…or more in line with your interests perhaps.

Blackbird Interactive - Ship BreakersImage property of Blackbird Interactive… (see link below)

So what are looking at here (above)? – It clearly looks like some of the earlier imagery, but is it real?

What is it for?



In a related discussion…

What can you tell me about the phrase Cyber-punk?

…author and critic David Brin:

“…a closer look [at cyberpunk authors] reveals that they nearly always portray future societies in which governments have become wimpy and pathetic …Popular science fiction tales by Gibson, Williams, Cadigan and others do depict Orwellian accumulations of power in the next century, but nearly always clutched in the secretive hands of a wealthy or corporate elite.[19]”

What do I mean by Orwellian?

Further group discussion… (see link above for a defining quote)

Okay so why am I asking all these questions?

Further group discussion …the influence of specific and/or “rare” knowledge on the makers of popular culture and entertainment media… The larger the pool of knowledge outside your core subject area the more unique your combinations of influences might be… and so the more individual your final ideas/concepts.

The more individual or variations of and the more diverse the types of colour, shape, form of Lego brick we have on our play table, the more unique variations of models we can potentially make.

Ten people with only three Lego bricks each are going to make very similar choices on the way the combine them.

Initial Survey Results on Reading and Cultural Activity amongst Art School Students – G Sleighthome 2013

0 0 Survey Graphic FINAL FINAL xSo how to remedy this?

Well we can start to reassess our design process, our intrinsic values regarding what is important or useful as a designer/creative… Do we know much about how creativity works… Well/ there are lots of ideas.

A visual look at theories and potential pathways toward dissecting the creative process looking at the links between Creativity, Evolutionary Empathy and Deep Reading. – G Sleightholme

One Last Visualjpg

By all means take a look at the infographics above; but needless to say there are probably some simpler explanations or at east more appropriate points of discussion (than the one I was looking at for my Masters projects above) that we could explore right now in the session…

One such re-assignment of value might be to revisit our previous discussion on William Gibson and the Building a personal Micro-culture


Maria Popova on Combinatorial Creativity

…in the meantime lets test some of that inherent, pre-existing knowledge. And see if we might have some gaps that might help us in the reassignment of some of those values.


Firstly… Who are we looking at here? Alexander…? Alexander who? Of where?

Open discussion to the class and then move into the Activity.

Here we roll out a timeline of earths history… and got the students to select pre-made cutouts of events and people from history and place them on the time line in collaboration with their colleagues/peers.


+ Related mini brief…

Who Do You Know?

~ by hesir on March 26, 2014.

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