At AVCC, for our "creative" competitions we follow PSA's definition of "creative, extracted from the PSA web-site at https://psa-photo.org/index.php?pid-individual-creative-competition and presented immediatey below.
The PSA definition of Creative is “Altered Reality.” The image may be of any subject matter and must obviously display a change in natural color, form, shape or any combination of these three. All images must be original and may not incorporate elements produced by anyone else. Artwork or computer graphics generated by the entrant may be incorporated if the original photographic content predominates. Images may not be constructed entirely within a computer.
High Dynamic Range (HDR) images without further changes are not considered “Altered Reality.”