Imagination or fantasy refers to a creative ability of humans. Often the term is linked to the realm of the pictorial (memory images, imagination images), but it can also be related to linguistic and logical performances (ideas). In the narrower sense as imagination or imagination is meant by imagination above all the ability to generate ideas and thus an "inner world", especially inner images. The result of this creative power, the individual image of imagination, is also called phantasma. In contemporary usage, the term "phantasy" usually encompasses both the ability and the result of "fantasizing." Sometimes the term is also used pejoratively in the sense of a fiction or a figment of the imagination.

Creativity and fantasy in the sense of imagination are related because both involve thinking that is to some degree removed from reality. However, creativity is even more related to reality than imagination. Imagination can be seen as the ability to go beyond the objective world. Imagination can therefore enhance creativity, although creativity requires more than the ability to go beyond reality. Creativity also requires the criterion of appropriateness or usefulness.