“Everyone is creative, without exception”

When I saw Dick Ruzzin last January, I posed a question to him about word usage which led to an interesting conversation. As a professional and mentor in his field, he offered to provide me with brief discussions on a series of industry terms.


This first commentary is about creativity.

One of my goals as a professional and hobbyist writer is to convey accurate and concise information. While I may be hopelessly long-winded, I am constantly working to improve my accuracy in communication.

Part of that effort is having a better understanding of words and their appropriate usage. To appropriately use words, one must not only know definitions but also understand dialect. For instance, designer dialect in the auto industry.

On the surface, words such as “design” and “styling” might appear interchangeable. I discerned a distinction but couldn’t explain it to anyone. For too long I presumed the difference was minutia but Mr. Ruzzin clarified. Put simply, design work accounts for constraints, such as engineering requirements, whereas styling does not.

Before I wander too far, I’ll get to the subject word: creativity.

“These four approaches describe all creative effort.”

Choosing his words over the course of many years, parenthetically mentioned as “notes from 1997 to 2014,” Mr. Ruzzin developed his carefully constructed approaches to “creativity.”

He explains that the following four types of creativity describe all creative effort.

To get new ideas, challenge the
basic assumptions.


Visualize the long term ideal solution.

A new combination of elements becomes a new idea.


Improve on what already works.

I’m no designer (or would that be stylist?) but, then again, I’m also not a stranger to creativity. I can recall employing each of those principles over the course of my lifetime. Maybe you can too, or maybe those words will influence your creativity.

Mr. Ruzzin signed off with inspiring words.

“Creativity never ends… more is always possible.”

I hope you enjoyed and were enriched by this guest collaboration and I’d like to thank Mr. Ruzzin for sharing an understanding that took a lot of time and experience to arrive at.