A creative autotheory is one that relies heavily on the theoretical foundations of art and design rather than the practical applications of these subjects. It challenges the status quo, but in a unique way. Designers, artists, and theorists can all learn a lot from this style of writing. Let’s have a look at how to write a creative autotheory.
What is a Creative Autotheory?
It would be easy to just give a broad overview of what a creative autotheory is and then move on to discussing the advantages and disadvantages of this genre. However, differentiating between a creative autotheory and other varieties of non-fiction can be quite challenging. To make this clear, let’s take a quick look at the differences between a creative and non-creative autotheory.
- A non-creative autotheory will usually contain a significant amount of academic jargon and will focus heavily on the historical context of the subject matter.
- a creative autotheory will usually use a lot of examples and metaphors to bring the reader into the world of the author.
- theoretical foundations of art and design will be used to elaborate on the meaning of creative autotheory.
What Makes a Creative Autotheory Special?
Theoretical foundations do not mean that a creative autotheory must be filled with complex mathematics or difficult-to-follow economic statistics. A creative autotheory can and often does contain these elements, but not always. In fact, a good creative autotheory will frequently use examples from everyday life to make the material more accessible and interesting to the reader. It also helps to make the text more engaging and memorable.
What really sets a creative autotheory apart from other kinds of non-fiction is the way in which it is written. As mentioned above, one of the key foundations of a creative autotheory is metaphor, or using examples from everyday life to make a point. Metaphors can be extremely powerful tools when used sparingly and strategically. However, too often they are overused and end up sounding trite or forced. Creative authors will frequently compare their work to some kind of artistic creation, whether this is a painting, a sculpture, or a musical composition. This comparison can then be extended to include the theoretical foundations that underlie these forms of art. A good creative autotheory will frequently use this type of allusion to create an association between the theoretical foundations and the practical application of these ideas in the real world. A great example of this type of writing is the German philosopher, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel’s book, The Philosophy of Fine Art.
Hegel’s work contains many discussions on the nature of art and the role that it plays in a person’s life. He begins by defining art as “the thinking activity of the mind”. The reference to “thinking” in this definition means that art is not just about completing practical tasks such as designing a shirt or a pair of shoes, but also involves contemplating ideas and concepts. This is why Hegel compares art to a philosophy-in-action, as he does in the quote above. The book goes on to discuss the role that art plays in a person’s life, how it affects us individually and how it can influence society for the better. One of the most influential figures in modern philosophy, Hegel’s ideas on the subject of art continue to have profound implications for today’s designers, artists, and theorists. As you might have guessed, his book was originally published in 1837 and it has never been out of print since then.
How To Write A Creative Autotheory
Hegel’s book contains many techniques that you can use to write a creative autotheory, whether you are writing in your spare time or as part of your CV. First, be certain that you have the talent and skill to pull off a creative autotheory. Many would argue that Hegel was not only a great philosopher, but also a superb writer. If you are not confident that you possess these talents, it might be best to stick to a more traditional non-fiction option.
Second, choose your examples wisely. The philosopher above discussed the importance of using everyday examples when writing about art and design. When comparing your work to that of a great artist, sculptor, or composer, choose your examples carefully and make sure that they are significant in some way. If you are writing about fashion, for example, you might want to compare yourselves to designers like Christian Dior or Louis Vuitton, rather than comparing your work to that of a painter or a musician.
Third, find your thesis statement. This is the idea or argument that you are going to develop in the rest of the text. Your thesis should be something that you are passionate about and that is relevant to the topic of your text. Fashion design, for example, could be your thesis subject and your thesis could be something like: “Fashion is an expression of creativity and individuality, which can be used to influence and hopefully improve society as a whole.” The last part of this statement is very open-ended and allows you to cover a lot of ground in your text. Be careful not to write a thesis statement that is too general and can hence be inferred by the reader. A good thesis statement will make your readers want to continue reading and, hopefully, enjoy what you have to say.
The Disadvantages of a Creative Autotheory
As with anything else, there are disadvantages associated with writing a creative autotheory. One of these is that you can appear overly dramatic or even trite at times. Using examples from everyday life can easily turn into hackneyed writing- especially if this is your first book or article in this genre. Another disadvantage is that your work can be misinterpreted due to your use of unfamiliar terminology. To avoid any misunderstandings, you can always include a short glossary of terms at the front of your book or article. A third disadvantage is that your text might be difficult to follow for certain readers. If you are writing for a general audience, these disadvantages might not be an issue, but if you are writing for academics or designers, consider using more accessible language or designing an easier-to-follow map to accompany your text. The final disadvantage is that your text will be perceived as less credible than other kinds of non-fiction due to its creative nature. Because your audience members are actively engaged with your text, you might want to consider including additional sources of information apart from your own opinion. For example, if you are writing about fashion, including a link to an accredited fashion magazine might be a great addition to your text. If you need additional credibility, consider getting published in a high-quality journal or academic book.
Ultimately, a creative autotheory can be a powerful way to make your mark in the world of art and design. Just remember to use these wonderful tools wisely and create something exceptional!