Why Do We Equate Creative Genius with Precocity?

Why Do We Equate Creative Genius with Precocity?

Creativity is art. Yet it must be practiced like a skill. Any creative person with artistic tendencies sharpens his/her innate creativity only by practice. While we all know some great prodigies who have shown exceptional talent from a young age, there are some late bloomers who have reinstated the fact that being creative has nothing to do with age. Author JK Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter book at 34, Director Ang Lee directed his first English feature film at 41, and even Beethoven composed his best works in the last 15 years of his life. Mark Twain wrote Adventures of Huckleberry Finn at 49 while Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe came out when he was 58.
However, this doesn’t mean that just anybody can get creative and become the next Picasso overnight.

What sparks creativity?

A person can pursue creative arts only if their heart so desires, and if their mind is bent towards the creative. While it is a skill that can be learned and improved, it’s not a forced skill that can be taught in a certain way. Only when the heart and mind are in perfect symphony, a person takes the road to creative expression.
Painting, writing, music, dance and performing arts, are all creative outlets that help people express themselves. A person may just be a literature enthusiast, living in oblivion of his/her linguistic tendencies. But any incident of extreme joy, grief, excitement, shock or realisation can spark their creativity, turn them into a poet and lead them on the path to self-discovery.

As Director Ang Lee puts it, “I was really shy and quiet. I couldn’t express myself, but things just kept coming into me, and it took all my life to spill it out. But then suddenly, I was turning upside-down. And some of it didn’t come out until I was 45 or 50.” He won his first Oscar at the age of 51 for the movie ‘Brokeback Mountain.’
Even author JK Rowling was struggling emotionally and financially after her divorce and living on public assistance with her 2 children, when she was 30. According to her, it took hitting this low in life, to refocus her energies on what she was truly good at.

Therefore, you cannot fathom the depths of creativity that a person possesses based on age. For any artist, the world is a canvas, and his mind the brush to paint the world with!