Last month, my boss sent me home with Imagine: How Creativity Works by Jonah Lehrer. It’s a book I’ve had on my reading list, but wasn’t in all that of a hurry to begin. While my reading habits lately include more nonfiction, they’re usually in the way of memoirs or biographies. For some reason, I’ve never been all that jazzed about industry books and tend to really labor through them.
Not the case with this one.
Lehrer breaks creativity, the creative mind and the enabling environments in a wondrous, storytelling way. From Bob Dylan’s songwriting ways (or lack there of) to the way Pixar studios places their bathrooms, Lehrer somehow manages to engage senses and parts of the brain that are dormant while reading.
The chapter about urban living really struck a chord. I never paid much attention to why I feel like I’m more “creative” in Chicago, I just chalked it up to the fact there’s a lot going on…there are a lot of resources to explore…and the people watching is stellar. I never even gave much thought to what all of those components contribute to the way the mind works.
When contemplating a fascinating and engaging read this summer, imagine Lehrer.
“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” –Picasso