Preparation - During the preparation step of the creative process model, an individual becomes curious after encountering a problem. Examples of problems can include an artistic challenge or an assignment to write a paper. During this stage, she may perform research, creates goals, organizes thoughts and brainstorm as different ideas formulate. For example, a marketing professional may prepare for a marketing campaign by conducting market research and formulating different advertisement ideas.
Incubation - While the individual begins to process her ideas, he begins to synthesize them using his imagination and begins to construct a creation. Gabora states that during this step, the individual does not actively try a find a solution, but continues to mull over the idea in the back of his head.
Illumination - As ideas begin to mature, the individual has an epiphany regarding how to piece her thoughts together in a manner that makes sense. The moment of illumination can happen unexpectedly. For example, an individual with the task of putting together an office party may have an idea for a theme while driving home from work.
Evaluation - After a solution reveals itself in an epiphany, the individual then evaluates whether the insight is worth the pursuit. He may make changes to his solution so it is clearer. He may consult with peers or supervisors regarding his insights during this step before pursuing it further. If he works with clients, he may seek a client’s input and approval before moving on to the next step.
Implementation - The implementation of an idea or solution in the creative process model is when an individual begins the process of transforming her thoughts into a final product. For example, during this step, a painter may begin outlining shapes on a canvas with charcoal before applying oil paints to the medium. According to Gabora, an individual may begin this step more than once in order to reach the desired outcome.