Creativity: Costumes, Challenges, Coloring and Contests!

CREATIVITY DOTAlthough Halloween is over, I’m still marveling at the incredible creativity of so many of the costumes I saw on Saturday (both in real life and on Facebook).

For me, one of the best I saw at the mall (where kids can go from store to store for treats) was a container of popcorn.

A woman had covered her Snugli (baby carrier) in red and white vertical-striped fabric, emblazoned the result with the word “popcorn” and then had fastened real popcorn on her baby’s hat.

I was delighted. Later, I thought, “I wonder if she found that idea on Pinterest?” Sure enough, here it is.

Costumes weren’t that creative when I was a kid. Most of us wore purchased costumes that consisted of a cheap fabric or plastic pullover dress or jumpsuit with the imprint of the character’s outfit, and a plastic mask. As an example, here’s a Casper the Friendly Ghost costume, also found on Pinterest.

My dad did get somewhat creative with some of my costumes, though. The year I wanted to be a baton-twirling majorette, he made me a hat to go with my purchased costume, and decorated my rubber boots. I was so proud of that costume!

Beth as Majorette

There are many other ways to get creative besides the art of costumery, of course. November is a great month for scratching the creative itch, if you happen to be a writer or illustrator, or aspire to be.

For picture book writers and illustrators, there is the fabulous PiBoIdMo — Tara Lazar’s Picture Book Idea Month — in which participants are encouraged to come up with one picture book idea per day throughout the month of November.

There are daily inspiration posts from authors, illustrators, agents and editors, and fabulous prizes, as if 30 brand new ideas weren’t enough incentive. If you haven’t already signed up, you can still do so here.

For those whose writing is of the longer variety, there is NaNoWriMo — National Novel Writing Month — in which participants strive to write at least 50,000 words of a novel over the course of the month of November. (“National” should be taken with a grain of salt. It’s an international opportunity.) Read more and sign up here.

There’s also a young writers version of NaNoWriMo if you have kids who want to write. Find out about it here.

Many people love to get their hands into their creative pursuits, through making art of some sort. One of my friends does wonderful paper quilling. Many are artists — painters, digital artists, others who work in many different media. Akiko White uses cake as her art medium!

Recently, coloring has come to the fore as a way for many people, including those who think they are “not artistic,” to express themselves creatively. If you can wait until December, Teresa Mi Schaefer will be providing coloring pages for kids or adults as a countdown to Christmas.

You’ll be able to find these daily creative opportunities on her dedicated Facebook page, Christmas Coloring Countdown.

If you’d like to experience others’ creativity, look no further than Susanna Leonard Hill’s pretty much world-famous Halloweensie writing contest. There were 145 entrants this year (!) each of whom wrote a Halloween story for kids in 100 words or less. Talk about a challenge! You can find links to the entries at this post on Susanna’s blog.

Susanna will soon be posting the short list for people to ponder. Anyone can cast a vote for their favorite story. There are fantastic prizes for the winners. I’ll add the link to the short list when it becomes available. Edited to add: Here’s the link to the voting post. There are 13 finalists. Well done, ALL who contributed!

If you are kicking yourself that you didn’t try your hand at writing a weensie story for this contest, never fear. Susanna’s Holiday Writing Contest (which is also pretty much world-famous) will be coming up in December. Watch her blog for an announcement.

It’s always fun to try a new creative pursuit. Do you have any creative dreams — things you’d like to try some day? What steps can you take to start yourself on the way to making that dream a reality?

Let your creative self SHINE!

Beth in script for blog

4 thoughts on “Creativity: Costumes, Challenges, Coloring and Contests!”

  1. You were so cute as a majorette. I didn’t see any costumed little ones this year. They don’t come to our neighborhood of empty nesters — who would really give great treats. Great lists of activities for this month — so many to choose from.

    1. Thanks, Pat!

      Yes, empty nesters are apt to give really good treats. Too bad you don’t get any kidlets coming to your door.

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