Wednesday, June 6, 2012

5 Points for Creativity from 3 Star Chefs

Can one learn creativity? The chefs Michel and his son Sébastien Bras offer us lessons in the film "Step Up to the Plate" ("Entre les Bras, la cuisine en héritage") by Paul Lacoste. The film depicts their artistry in creating food, for which their restaurant Bras was awarded 3 Michelin stars. They teach us the following ideas, in alphabetical order:

1. Adaptibility: When Sébastien creates a dish for their restaurant in Japan, Michel realizes that its elements would have to be changed for French diners. Be flexible.

2. Inspiration: One could be inspired by anything. Sébastien remembers food his grandmother served when he was a child and incorporated a combination in a recipe.

3. Iteration: The Bras try again and again until they find the correct solution. This pertains to the beautiful placement of food on a plate or recipes.

4. Questioning: Always ask why. Michel Bras questions Sébastien after he shows Michel a new dish. Perhaps we could move this item to another part of the plate? Or could you add a little more of a seasoning? Persist until one achieves the best.

5. Reflection: In the film, both chefs run in the beautiful countryside. Their exercise gives them an opportunity to escape, relax and think.  The intense world of creativity requires a break. When one is away from one's work, one could return with a fresh outlook.

These are five points for creativity, which apply to any artistic profession or pursuit.