CAWRI and the International Journal of Wellbeing have collaborated to produce a special issue on "creativity and wellbeing", with contributions from academics associated with CAWRI as well as those in our local and international networks. The volume considers the relationship between creativity and wellbeing from a range of disciplinary perspectives, in order to enrich our understanding of that relationship.
The introductory essay, by editors Frederic Kiernan, Jane W. Davidson and Lindsay Oades, sets out some of the key points in the history of creativity and wellbeing research to provide a background to the articles that follow. It also provides an overview of the issue contents.
Two of the articles consider the link between creativity and wellbeing from a theoretical perspective. Nicolas B. Verger and Raffi Duymedjian explore in their article creativity in romantic relationships at the dyadic level, where "dyad" is defined as a prolonged interaction between two individuals. They propose an original theoretical framework for explaining how romantic creativity and wellbeing may be linked, arguing that romantic creativity can take the form of a dyadic process, in which the dynamics of discovery and self-expansion can be explored by one or both members of the dyad, thereby taking the relationship in new and meaningful directions. Frederic Kiernan also examines the link between creativity and wellbeing from a theoretical perspective in his article, by arguing that the history and sociology of emotion and the sociology of creativity can coalesce in a new framework for understanding emotion as creative practice, with this new concept acting as a link between creativity and wellbeing.
Two of the articles consider the link between creativity and wellbeing by examining music-making practices. Andrew Geeves, Samuel Jones, Jane W. Davidson and John Sutton explore in their article the perspective of the performing musician, using the case study of Australian pop/rock band Cloud Control. They argue that the concepts of "performance headspace" and "connection with audience" can serve as explanatory themes for the link between creativity and wellbeing for performing musicians. Taking a different approach, Grace Thompson, Melissa Raine, Susan M. Hayward and Hannah Kilpatrick gather community perspectives in their article to examine how music-making workshops can be made more autism-friendly.
Three of the articles consider the link between creativity and wellbeing specifically for women. Donna Lyon, Shannon Owen, Margaret S. Osborne, Khandis Blake and Bruna Andrades investigate in their article how the combination of creative writing and non-contact boxing can facilitate the recovery journeys of women survivors of childhood sexual abuse towards post-traumatic growth and wellbeing. Lila Moosad and Cathy Vaughan consider in their article the link between creativity and wellbeing for a group of 18 older women who each posed nude as part of a photography project to combat negative stereotypes of women's ageing as a time of decline and loss. Additionally, Mahima Kalla and Margaret Simmons explore in their article how creativity and wellbeing intersect for women sufferers of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, a poorly understood illness that disproportionately affects women.
Broadening the conceptual scope somewhat, Amanda E. Krause, Anya Lloyd-Smith and John Hajek also consider in their article the intersection of creativity and wellbeing for migrant communities in Australia through a study of community language radio, focusing specifically on radio-presenting practices at the station 3ZZZ.
Each of the contributions advances the field of creativity and wellbeing research, while suggesting promising new avenues for further research. We, the editors, thank the authors for their fantastic work and look forward to seeing where these exciting developments in the field will lead.