Choose the right word
creative, imaginative, ingenious, inventive, original, resourceful
Everyone likes to think that he or she is creative, which is used to describe the active, exploratory minds possessed by artists, writers, and inventors ( a creative approach to problem-solving). Today, however, creative has become an advertising buzzword ( creative cooking; creative hair-styling) that simply means new or different. Original is more specific and limited in scope. Someone who is original comes up with things that no one else has thought of ( an original approach to constructing a doghouse), or thinks in an independent and creative way ( a highly original filmmaker). Imaginative implies having an active and creative imagination, which often means that the person visualizes things quite differently than the way they appear in the real world ( imaginative illustrations for a children's book). The practical side of imaginative is inventive; the inventive person figures out how to make things work ( an inventive solution to the problem of getting a wheelchair into a van). But where an inventive mind tends to come up with solutions to problems it has posed for itself, a resourceful mind deals successfully with externally imposed problems or limitations ( a resourceful child can amuse herself with simple wooden blocks). Someone who is ingenious is both inventive and resourceful, with a dose of cleverness thrown in ( the ingenious idea of using recycled plastic to create a warm, fleecelike fabric).