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The making of Que Es El Amor Music Video and the “illusion” of love

The making of Que Es El Amor Music Video and the “illusion” of love

Posted on 11 July 2013 by Patricia Gras

Years ago, after a relationship was over, I had a broken heart. I was fortunate enough to realize blame wasn’t going to get me anywhere. My significant other had not really done anything wrong. It was over. After the seven stages of grief which are listed below.

http://www.recover-from-grief.com/7-stages-of-grief.html (link to this list)

1. SHOCK & DENIAL-

2. PAIN & GUILT-

3. ANGER & BARGAINING-

4. “DEPRESSION”, REFLECTION, LONELINESS-

5. THE UPWARD TURN-

6. RECONSTRUCTION & WORKING THROUGH-

7. ACCEPTANCE & HOPE-

I accepted that in my case no one was to blame. We were different. We didn’t want the same things. We had different values. We didn’t even like the same things. Physical attraction was not enough to hold us together.

I think most writers do their best work when they suffer. This is no surprise. Your feelings are raw. You become vulnerable and if you handle it right, you learn humility and with that you become a better writer.

I wrote this a few weeks after I saw an Argentine movie and one of the lines was “How can I shine a light on the dark side of my soul.” It was then I realized I needed to “shine a light on the dark side of my heart.” I had to learn to forgive and so love again, so I could do it better next time. Recognize that all the expectations, those incredibly strong, profound feelings, the intense attraction, and the illusion of love are extremely powerful and few human can let go of the heart and emotions to assess the situation intellectually. We are caught in a storm of emotions.

I clearly recognized that love is an illusion sometimes. We think a romantic relationship is going to be great because of all those powerful feelings we have and in the end, it turns out different. We become enamored, at least I did with the illusion of love and what it COULD mean, not what it really is. So this song is about release.

Are we to blame the other because they no longer love us? Think about it. I found a better path. I blamed the illusion. I took responsibility for my own pain. I released the heartache and I celebrated the great experiences I had while the illusion lasted. “What is love but a poem of lost illusions?” We put romantic love on a pedestal, the higher the illusion or pedestal, the greater the fall, but blaming our significant other simply because they stopped feeling the way we want them to feel is just unrealistic. People change. We change. Life changes us. All that is permanent is change. I do believe some relationships work, but we all know both people are changing together and the romantic love I am talking about transforms itself into something else. Something I believe less passionate but more real. It lets go of the illusion and opens a door to a more mature, steady, long-term kind of love, the one we all really want but struggle to find.

I produced this with my production interns and edited it with a former Houston Public Television colleague, Gary Nilsen. We shot it with two small HD consumer cameras the (Vixia HF M31)
The young actors are going to college and so are the interns except one who works as a writer. I didn’t play the guitar in the recording, the master Steve Delgado and Maria francisca Gonzalez did, but I will play the guitar during my next concert September 21st at the Artery in Houston to raise money for breast cancer survivors.

I have lived in many countries and cities in the US, but Houston is my home. I was born here. I miss the ocean and the mountains, but there are two things I love about Houston, its trees and flowers. They are the true stars in this video. I believe our city is often unappreciated. Part of that has to do with our own lack of awareness about what surrounds us. We take it for granted. Houston has some of the most stunning, beautiful, and ancient trees I have ever seen. As for the flowers, they are everywhere, but we often don’t notice them because we are rushing, so I hope this video will make you more aware so you can notice them more. I think it will make you happier and that’s no illusion!

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williams

The Making of a Peaceful Warrior:My Name is Jody Williams

Posted on 11 April 2013 by Patricia Gras

Two years ago, I was working on a television show about the increasing violence against women around the world for Houston PBS. For years, I had been trying to interview Jody Williams, the 1997 Nobel Peace Laureate who had led the international campaign to ban land mines. As a Professor at the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of Houston, she conducts lectures here twice a year.

When I finally got a hold of her, she was surprised I had not reached her before. I thought she had avoided my requests because of her celebrity status. I was wrong. She was one of the most kind, authentic, and humble people I had ever met.

I have interviewed admirable people in my lifetime, Desmond Tutu, Jimmy Carter, Dominique De Menil, Alice Walker, met Nelson Mandela, the Dalai Lama, and other lesser-known human rights activists, but Williams truly surprised me. Like all of them, she is dedicated and fearless, but when you are around her, you feel like she could be your next-door neighbor who you can trust with your children. She has no airs whatsoever. She is not afraid to speak her mind, nor does she mince her words. To me She is a modern day grassroots peaceful warrior. What you see is what you get.

When her book “My Name is Jody Williams: A Vermont Girls Winding Path to the Nobel Peace Prize came out, I quickly got a copy and I was not disappointed. I got to meet Williams at a more personal level in January of 2012. I was invited to be part of her delegation of the
Nobel Women’s Initiative (which she leads with all the women laureates) and Just Associates (JASS) on a fact-finding mission. The goal was to hear from women confronting violence in Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala. We were to investigate the impact of the war on drugs and increased mining operations on the lives of women.

According to the report released in June of 2012 on that mission.
“The delegation found that violence against women is reaching crisis dimensions in Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala. In the last decade, femicides have risen by alarming rates – as much as 257% in Honduras. Indigenous women and women human rights defenders are particularly vulnerable to attacks, which include rape, torture, murder, and forced disappearances.”

On that trip, Williams was focused, passionate, quietly driven to get answers and empowering the women we heard. Most had suffered atrocious violence. I believed she helped them find their own voice, with her compassion, knowledge and assurance something would be done.

I didn’t know much about her personal life until I read the book. She was raised in Vermont with a very close and modest Catholic family and early on, discovered her own activist soul by chance.
The turning point came when she was handed a flyer about the Salvadoran war and the US role in it.
The following years, she spent time in Central America for different causes, generally helping the forgotten victims of violence and war.

In her memoir, and with great candor she shares her family’s ordeal with her mentally ill brother, a failed marriage with her high school sweetheart, her frustration with the US Governments’ role in the Vietnam and Central American conflicts and her ultimate as she sees it, “average America girl” response through social justice activism.

In a very easy to read and conversational style we also learn about her rape by a Salvadoran Death Squad member, her roller coaster love life and how she ended up working to ban landmines.

It happened unexpectedly in 1991, when she met executive director Bobby Muller of the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation who along with Thomas Gebauer of Medico International, a German Humanitarian organization felt “she was the right person to build a political movement to ban landmines. “They just knew I was going to be able to bring together non governmental organizations to put sustained pressure on governments to make them get rid of the weapons forever.”She said and they were right.

The next few years she would dedicate her life, passion and determination to ban landmines, while learning everything she could about international law and surrounding herself with activists around the world with the same goals and perseverance. She was awarded the Nobel Prize along with the International Campaign to Ban Landmines in 1997.

Williams paid a lot of personal prizes for her activism, but she reminds us peace is not something you just imagine, or just talk and sing about. It is something you fight for. To understand peace, she says you must understand the causes of war. “Human security requires directing our resources toward providing for the basic needs of human beings so they are secure in their daily lives.” She reminds us peace is not for the faint of heart.” You have to fight for it! She has certainly proved that in how she has lived her life and how she continues her relentless pursuit of justice wherever she goes.

If you are in New York on April 18th. She speaking about her life at the Paley Center. For more information, here’s the link.

http://www.paleycenter.org/2013-spring-jody-williams

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How To Be Lucky by Matt Kinsella

How To Be Lucky by Matt Kinsella

Posted on 17 February 2013 by Patricia Gras

For those of us whose parents are immigrants, the American experience is certainly different than from those who have been here for generations, so when I picked up Matt Kinsella’s book “How To Be Lucky” I could relate to something he mentions a few times in his book. “I don’t live to work, I work to live.” I have always believed that to be my philosophy of life. I want to create enough wealth and abundance to live life, not to spend the lot of it creating wealth for someone else to enjoy!
“How to be Lucky. From Teenage Homeless Hostel to Successful Entrepreneur: A Guide to Making Things Happen.” is a must read for those who want to hear simple lessons about creating your own reality, and your own wealth and happiness. A fine work of literature, it is not, but it is a fast, uncomplicated, simple read, especially for those who need a “kick in the pants.” (That’s my quote)
Matt Kinsella may not be a household name in the USA (He is British) but his story rings true to those of us who have covered homeless people with the most incredible stories.
There is nothing new in this book to help you get off your comfort zone and create your own reality, fulfill your own dreams, and as he says, “create your own luck,” but Kinsella has an authentic voice that motivates you to believe With the right attitude and understanding, you can create your own opportunities.
“How true is that? “Determination grows from an idea and enthusiasm.” He says.
Here is some of Matt Kinsella’s advice: “Ask for help when you need it, but do it graciously, confidently and humbly. People want to help if it does not take too much of their time. And don’t forget to do the same for others. Then, do what you have to do. Opportunities are everywhere so don’t discard them. If you have a brain, anything can be learned. See possibilities. Lose the bad friends who only take but don’t give back”
Be yourself and stand up for who you are. Rely on yourself to make things happen for you. Don’t be scared of failure, but don’t be afraid to call it a day when your business fails. Formula structure and routine are like death and poison to creativity, happiness, enjoyment and ultimately success.”
To understand how the author became a millionaire, and learned all the tips he is sharing with readers, you would have to know he was homeless as a teenager, drinking too much with little schooling, surrounding by illegal activity and doing little until one day, he made a choice to change his life, create his own luck, work hard but most importantly work smartly.
Here is what I like the most about his book. He says he now only works 20 hours a week so he can spend time with his family and friends, which he finds, is of most importance. How nice is that? I find the mindset here in the USA is that you have to work hard, hours on end to achieve wealth and prosperity. Kinsella disagrees. You may have to work very hard at least for a while but making money does not always require hard work. Kinsella reminds us, that is what the masses think you have to do. It is human nature. What does he do? He is always looking for opportunities, and then he does his homework. Entrepreneurs, he says don’t do things from inside an office, they get out into the world, talk to as many people as possible and get new ideas to make things happen. Kinsella also has a moral compass. Help other people, don’t steal their ideas and believe in your own capacity to make things happen.
How did Kinsella make his wealth and how does he advise you do? Buying the right kind of property after extensive homework, investing in good ideas, writing a book, alternative work from home options, make something, do what you love. Confucius, Kinsella wrote, said “If you do what you love for a living, you will never do a day’s work in your life. ”

I believe this book may be too simplistic for some, but I find the lessons valuable. I just produced my own CD called “Simplicity.” Why? I believe most of what happens to us in life has to do with what inside the space between our ears, our heart and our souls. We do create our own reality, our own luck. That does not mean we often fail miserably as I have but that is part of the journey. Yesterday I was having a conversation with a dear friend. We have both been on this planet for many decades. We are not old, but I believe vibrant youthful thinking women. She believes there is a lot of age discrimination going on right now. My answer is that may be a reality, but you and I have to create another reality, our own! In my mind I am still young and I believe like Kinsella does, that we will create our own wealth and any obstacle such as discrimination will be irrelevant because “There are ways one can become lucky.” It is not easy, but I agree you have to focus on what matters, on service, on ideas and most importantly on execution. The world is full of ideas, but we are here to make them come true. Kinsella in his simple book shows us how.

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The Impossible: A movie about hope

The Impossible: A movie about hope

Posted on 07 January 2013 by Patricia Gras

For a few months, I have been reading about a movie based on a true story about a Spanish family with three children that survived the Tsunami in 2004. The natural disaster claimed the lives of 240,000 people.

There were several reasons I wanted to see this movie. I love true stories. As a journalist, I am more of a non fiction gal. I like the truth, raw and real. It is true what they say, the truth shall set you free. Look at how the world has changed because we now have access to information through the web we never had before. We know if someone in the middle of no where gets raped, mutilated or killed. We know which politicians lie (most of them) and why. We know how the world works and who really has the power. We are aware of injustices in our back yard and millions of miles away. Because we know, I believe change happens faster than it ever has.

I have seen just in the past few weeks some major tipping points around the world. Here in the USA, many have said enough is enough. No more semi automatic weapons for whoever wants them! In India, stop the rape of women. We’ve had enough. In Egypt, demonstrators shout, we are done with dictators! I believe all this happened because people now have access to the truth.

The movie is about the true nature of a storm. A real story about a natural disaster this family had no control over. They went to Thailand on vacation and the day after Christmas, a monster tsunami almost took their lives. What I loved about this movie was the message. It was beautifully produced, photographed and acted but for me the most important gift I got from it was hope.

I believe the family that survived and those who helped them are here to teach us a lot of lessons about the human spirit, generosity, family ties and hope.

Was it a miracle this family remained intact? Not one died in the storm. There were a lot of factors that kept at least one member alive. One of the Thai village people carried the mom for hours to get her to a place of safety and then drive her to a hospital. When I say carry, I say walk through the mud in the rubble for hours. The village did what they could for her there. Then at the hospital the villagers insisted she be taken care of before they left. She had so many injuries, she was holding on for dear live so she could see if her children were alive. Once she did, she was about to give up and even said so, when her husband begged her to keep fighting for her life. She spent almost two years in and out of hospitals but in the end she did survive and so did her children.

The movie is based on Maria Belon and her family and she says the movie is very close to the truth, but that it was even worse than what we saw. I can’t imagine. At one point I saw the greatest act of love. Maria and her son Lucas had barely survived and they were trying to climb up a tree before the second wave could come. Instead, Maria insisted they search for the little voice they heard in the rubble. Her son Lucas begged her to let it go so they could save themselves and she answered, what if that child you hear now was your brother or you. Wouldn’t you want to be saved? I say no more.

We have a choice, always. I don’t know how I would act in a situation like that, but I would hope that I would do the right thing, and that ….gives me hope.

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Creativity, The Artist’s way and the End of the year

Creativity, The Artist’s way and the End of the year

Posted on 23 December 2012 by Patricia Gras

This year began with a major change in my life. I left a job I had for 22 years and found myself on a path I had never travelled before. I started my own production company and experimented with more creative tasks such writing a book, engaging in social media, recording a CD and two music videos.

A friend suggested I get The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron and it truly came in handy. As a television producer/host and musician/singer I am torn between my so called “art” and every day reality of creating abundance to pay the bills. Many artists struggle with this but Julia Cameron reminds us in her book, “The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path To Higher Creativity” that artists can harness their creative talent and skills if can only trust their spiritual connection with God.

As a woman of faith, I can relate. When you work in creative fields, there tends to be less economic stability than say medicine, business, engineering, law etc, but in my case, I have to be highly connected to my higher power to trust the process. What is important to me is that I love, adore and be passionate about what I do. I have several degrees that could lead me to a more comfortable, secure, economically stable lifestyle, but I have chosen to do what I love even if at times, it leaves me with a sense of ambiguity about my future. I do know however, that I can and will find that through my art as well, only because I remind myself every day there is higher power watching over me.

This year I had the honor of teaching young inventors in Medellin Colombia at the International Park of Creativity, spearheaded by my friend and celebrated scientist Raul Cuero PhD. For 12 days, 20 teenagers under 16, under the guidance of mentors in different fields, but primarily scientists and Dr. Cuero, learn the creative process and how to invent. Those who stick with it after the camp and begin to work in a laboratory to engage in scientific inventions, get their work funded, patented and commercialized. Since 2007, the Park has patented the work of 8 of these young inventors. Dr. Cuero is trying to do this worldwide.

I taught a creativity course in communications because the process of producing a television story is indeed a creative process. It requires brainstorming, working as a team, solving problems, interviewing, writing, shooting, editing, and presenting.

What I love about Dr. Cuero’s approach is that he believes these young inventors have to be well rounded in their education and they must also learn with their hands, not so much with theory or books but by DOING. He understands they have to create inventions the can help industry, business and humanity solve problems.

We are here for a very short time in the scheme of things, so being part of this creative process has been utter joy combined with panic at times. I have no regrets for I didn’t come here to innovate, I came here to create and I have to start somewhere!

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Climate Change and Global Warming: Are We Ready?

Posted on 04 November 2012 by Patricia Gras

Tags: global warming
Global Warming
Posted on 29 September 2011 by Ashley Mancha
When do I need to toss out my wool sweaters? While most scientists agree that climate change is particularly due to human activities, it is important for us to remember that scientists are always testing and retesting their hypotheses as the climate changes.
According to the National Academy of Sciences, “there is no doubt that climate will continue to change throughout the 21st century and beyond, but there are still important questions regarding how large and how fast these changes will be, and what effects they will have in different regions.”
Even if not all of us are scientists, we know that the weather is changing. For example, Texas, a state experienced with plenty of rain is now experiencing record breaking weather: droughts, temperatures in the 100s and a breakout of wildfires. The East Coast on the other hand is suffering from too much rain. Recently, Hurricane Irene was the first hurricane to make landfall in New Jersey since 1903. 1903! Well over a century ago!
But let’s go back to Texas. Texas’ governor and running mate for the Republican presidential ticket, Rick Perry, does not believe in global warming. He has made it very clear that we humans are not contributing to global warming. He also thinks that “a substantial number of scientists…have manipulated data so that they will have dollars rolling into their projects.”

Global warming, a scientific phenomenon has become very much a political issue. Ultimately, it will and does affect us all because we live on this planet, breathe the same air and share the same moon and sun.
Here are some basic things you can do to make a difference. Whether you believe global warming is caused by man or not. Something major is happening to our climate and there are things you can do protect the environment. According to Globalwarmingfacts.org here are some things you can do to help:
Change an incandescent light bulb with a compact fluorescent light bulb. CFLs use 60% less energy, which will save about 300 pounds of carbon dioxide a year (and our energy bill!)
Cover your pots while cooking. They save a great amount of energy while preparing your meals
Use the washing machine and dishwasher only when they are full
Recycle. You can save around 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide a year by recycling.
Purchase a plastic water bottle and reuse it. The packaged water bottles we buy at the stores aren’t any good-plus how purified is their water? If we fill up at home, we know our water is clean
Reuse shopping bags. Many places sell bags at a convenient price. You can tote them from store to store. Some places even give you a discount if you use these bags
Even if you don’t believe in global warming, you can benefit from using these tips- that can also save you some money.
If you are interested in this topic. Here are more articles on the subject.

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/aug/22/rick-perry/rick-perry-says-more-and-more-scientists-are-quest/

http://dels-old.nas.edu/dels/rpt_briefs/climate_chawww.pewclimate.org

www.ipcc.ch
www.climatetechnology.gov
nge_2008_final.pdf

http://www.nwf.org/~/media/PDFs/Global%20Warming/Global%20Warming%20State%20Fact%20Sheets/Texas.ashx

http://www.mindingthecampus.com/originals/global-warming-2.jpg

Why we should care

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The Adelante Movement and What It Taught Me (Latism Conference)

The Adelante Movement and What It Taught Me (Latism Conference)

Posted on 28 October 2012 by Patricia Gras

I couldn’t help it. Five years ago, I noticed if you didn’t have a blog, a you tube, facebook and twitter account and you didn’t run around with an Ipad or Ipod you were just not very cool and hip. As a senior producer/host for the local PBS station, I felt I needed to be different and start being hip, groovy and connected! I gave in and had my twenty year old interns help me set up all these accounts and TEACH “grandma” (me) at the time, all they could about social media.

Frankly it is never enough. Although I have been blogging for years and I have accounts on almost everything and I just signed up for google plus, I am still not where I need to be so I attended LATISM (Latinos in social media.) I knew Latinos were the most highly digitally connected group in the United States so I wanted to know why and learn from them.

I went to many sessions, some great, some not so but what really inspired me was the Adelante Movement 3 hour presentation. Why? I needed to hear from multimillionaire Latina women, that to succeed and make money you have to have a heart, have a plan (Nell Merlino), be “a grounded perseverer” (Nely Galan) and a “chingona” (Sandra Cisneros.)

I must admit I liked the Chingona part the best. What I found is what I always find when a bunch of women get together in a room. The sacred feminine can not be stopped!

Fortunately for me, I was forced to be an entrepreneur. That’s right. I lost my job after 22 years even though I feel I did everything I was supposed to do. I worked hard, won more awards than anyone in their history and cared deeply for the station and its co workers. What I found is that life isn’t fair and that everything that I felt I had built with the team was suddenly destroyed by a meteorite in one day.

Today I realize things happen for a reason. Sometimes greatness comes from the lowest moments of our lives. The dark night of the soul is necessary to catapult us to bigger and better things. I realize it is a process. It may take time, but I don’t plan just to work hard. I plan to work smart (as Nelly said.)

The Adelante movement helps Latina women achieve their business goals. We may be the most entrepreneurial but most Latinas don’t make more than 50,000 a year with their business. This is about to change. How? The right type of information, mutual support, mentors and reality checks. Here is what they say in their website

The Adelante Dream

That we work because we want to and not because we have to.
That we are heard by politicians.
That we become experts on The View and Nightline—in the mainstream, as well in as in Spanish media.
That we promote each other and watch each other’s backs.
That we buy from one another to create wealth.
That we each teach our children about the heroes in our community every single day.
That we vote! That we encourage and influence everyone in our families and communities to vote, so that we can move mountains as a group.
That we invest in all things Latino, whether it’s a startup business or a church.
That we no longer be afraid to speak up collectively for those who cannot speak for themselves, especially our children.
That we “get our own chips,” which means starting our own companies and owning our own media.

www.theadelantemovement.com

I have no idea yet how this movement will help me in the long run but here’s some very quick wisdom I got in a few hours. Frustration and anger will only block your capacity for greatness.
Help other women and let them help you. We have to support each other and buy each other’s products period.
Follow your bliss and money will follow is a myth. Figure out how to make money and lots of it with the right kind of information and support. Be a “chingona” women who behave never make history is my motto. Be authentic and for geez sake HAVE A BUSINESS PLAN that makes sense!

I will keep writing about my experience with Adelante because I want to be one of those successful millionaire women that can help OTHER WOMEN reach their dreams. I pray and believe this is a long term commitment and not just a three hour seminar sponsored by Coke. I hope we get lifelong mentors to walk with us on the so called path of life.

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Childhood Development with Dr. Bruce Perry

Childhood Development with Dr. Bruce Perry

Posted on 14 October 2012 by Patricia Gras

Dr. Bruce Perry shares his knowledge about childhood development and why caring for our children shouldn’t be a choice but a mandate.

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TEXAS: We are number ONE! Most uninsured children in the nation

TEXAS: We are number ONE! Most uninsured children in the nation

Posted on 14 October 2012 by Patricia Gras

One of the richest states in the nation ranks last in healthcare for children. Texas is the uninsured capital of the United States. More than 6.3 million Texans – including 1.2 million children – lack health insurance. Let’s see who can we blame. Is anyone talking about this? Does anyone care?

Texas also ranks in the bottom third of states—34th nationally—in a state-by-state study of our children’s well-being, according to the 2010 KIDS COUNT Data Book. The study reveals that Texas has the third highest teen birth rate in the nation, and a child poverty rate well above the rest of the U.S.

Twenty-three percent of Texas’ children live below the federal poverty level in 2008, compared to 19% nationally. Poverty is especially debilitating for children, affecting nearly every aspect of their lives in key stages of development, and leaving lasting consequences. Children living in low-income families have a higher risk of dropping out of school, poor adolescent and adult health, poor employment outcomes, and experiencing poverty as adults.

Last night I heard Dr. Jeffrey Starke talk about children and poverty in Houston. He shared how some so called third world countries do better than our state in how they take care of their children.

The society that neglects the most vulnerable can’t succeed in the long run, so how is it that such a rich state allows these shameful stats?

If this bothers you. If you want to do something about it. Contact Children at risk or Results.org
Both organizations are working to combat this problem. Ask yourself what else can I do?

Not all is bad news though,
Texas improved on the percentage of children attending preschool, and the percentage of high schoolers graduating on time. The question is. How healthy were they?

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On Creativity

On Creativity

Posted on 09 September 2012 by Patricia Gras

Many years ago, I met a man who would become a dear friend. His name is Raul Cuero. He was born in Buenaventura, Colombia and his life can be considered an epic, a Greek drama and Herculean triumph. You can watch his story in this video and find out why. He is today the inventor of several patents and director of creativity camps all around the world. He found success through creativity, hard work, focused dedication and a relentless pursuit of wisdom.

Raul was the first person to ever tell me I was creative. I had no idea what that meant. Yes, I was a television producer and yes I loved to sing and play music, but creative? What exactly does that mean? I realized what he meant when I went to teach a seminar on television production in Colombia. He invited me to share my knowledge with 30 young teens who were attending one of his many creativity camps. I realized as I prepared for the course, how production is a creative process and why.

Raul is an inventor. Creativity can be defined as an invention or origination of something new and valuable, whether it is a story or song in my case, or any type of literary or art work, a product, or a solution.

Everyone can be creative, because it has to do with developing something new for ourselves, not the world, in other words, if it is something new for you, something that never existed before for you, or you are doing something in a different way, or developing a new way of looking at something, Then you are being creative.

There is a creative process, but it is not orderly

First of all the creative process in my field usually requires teamwork. Whenever I produced a story, I consulted with several people, especially my crew (shooter and editor.) I also talked to friends, experts and the subject of the story at length. This of course, known as brainstorming is another aspect of creativity. As we brainstorm, I would ask those involved to think out of the box. How can we tell this story differently? How can we notice things we usually don’t? Is there anything intriguing about the person or the story? Also, I believe creativity requires heart. Remember a story is about how you make your audience feel, so you have to engage in real emotions.

Let’s start with some of the steps I had to take to create, in this case, a story. First, I had to work in my craft, come up with a story idea, read about it, research it and pre interview my subjects. Then I spent some time, connecting the dots, finding the missing links, getting rid of unnecessary information.

Then I would have to get really excited about the story. Was it worth doing? Is the subject interesting enough? Do they offer value? Am I in love with the story?

Finally the most important phase of the creative process is execution. The story idea I have been preparing and incubating is finally going to get shot and produced. In the end, the idea or story may not work out, but the process is still the same.

My students went through the creative process of production. They came up with a story idea, brainstormed it, and as a team decided how they were going to shoot it. They found their subject, interviewed them and together they wrote the story and finally edited it.

Many of the kids I taught years ago are now inventors with patents. What they probably don’t know is that I learned way more from them than they probably did from me. Why? because for the first time in my life, I realized I was engaged in a creative process without knowing so. That was my “eureka” moment!

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Patricia Gras (Twitter)

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Must Read Books

  • 100 years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
  • Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman
  • Kite Runner by by Khaled Hosseini
  • Mistress of Spices by Chitra Divakaruni
  • Paula by Isabel Allende
  • The Kingdom Within by John A. Sanford
  • The Middle Passage by James Hollis
  • The Nature of Evil Daryl Koehn
  • The Power of Positive Thinking by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale

Take A Closer Look

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