I love this quote from Guillermo Del Toro on the future of film and entertainment:
Think about the way oral tradition became written word – how what we know about Achilles was written many, many years after it made its way around the world with different names and different types of heroes. That can happen when you allow content to keep propagating itself through different kinds of platforms and engines – when you permit it to be retold with a promiscuous form of mythology.
Hollywood thinks art is like Latin in the Middle Ages – only a few should know it, only a few should speak it. I don't think so…We used to think of stories in a linear way…what the digital approach allows you to do is take a tangential and nonlinear model and use it to expand the world."
Several interesting things about this for me. For starters, the new power in incomplete ideas. As Matthew May says in the introduction to his lovely manifesto on the subject (HT to Johnnie Moore for the link): "Conventional wisdom says that to be successful, an idea must be concrete, complete, and certain. But what if that’s wrong? What if the most elegant, most imaginative, most engaging ideas are none of those things?". Matthew goes on to make a brilliant point about this, that it is the "unusually simple yet thoughtful construction of what is there" that gives the missing piece its surprising power. Rather like Itay Talgam's 'Doing By Not Doing' (if you haven't seen that talk yet, watch it. It's worth it).
And then there's the narrow view of creativity of which Del Toro speaks. A view that assumes it is a fixed trait inherent in special people, or special activities ('creative domains' like arts, design). In his excellent book, The Element (which I'm probably going to be quoting for some time it's that good) Sir Ken Robinson draws a parallel between our view of creativity and our view of intelligence, which we also define far too narrowly. We think we know the answer to the question, 'How intelligent are you?'. But it's entirely the wrong question. We should be asking 'How are you Intelligent?'. Like creativity, intelligence is inherently diverse, dynamic and distinctive.