The thinking process is a little convoluted, but I think, some scientists statements about music to the contrary, technically it begins with artists.
Artists present thoughts that are expressed in the most free medium relative to its communicability to most people. There are many people who don’t understand music-it can depend radically on one’s sense of taste, or how loud the music is played, or whether one hates violins, and this and that thing. But artwork is easily communicated as either something representational or abstract, which carries certain subliminal messages about symbolism and emotion very easily to a large population. Having a perspective on art does not require as much intellectual training as appreciating music-music requires appreciation, whereas artwork merely requires perspective. Therefore, artwork does not require the level of emotional sophistication or commitment that music requires. Understanding some music actually requires playing an instrument, which is not at all as common as is usually assumed. Real talent in art is far more common than real talent in composing or playing instruments.
The general process I have observed for thought is:
Art → Literature → Philosophy → Science
(this also may continue to Polymathy → Magic → Immortality).
Although literature is an important step, I think the next truly significant step is philosophy, where the symbolism of art and literature is formed into knowledge.
So, in my view, the creative process does not begin with philosophers. There is a lot of basic investigation of visual forms-rudimentary investigation of intelligence-and a lot of reading-experience of abstract concepts, which is necessary before doing meaningful things with logic.
And it is true that for some mathematics and representations of mathematics (such as musical harmonies, golden ratios, Fibonacci sequences, and classical beauty) come first, because for certain people the nature of logic is mathematics, but that is not true for everyone.
So it seems in the philosophical path art and literature come first, but in the mathematical path music and certain mathematical logic come first.
However, it can be argued that if we assume philosophy is the source of all fundamental logic (logic being a discipline of philosophy originally), then where mathematics depends on the fundamental it also depends on philosophy, which it has been argued, in turn depends on literature, which depends on art.
So, as far as the fundamental, it seems that art rather than philosophy comes first, and literature may also come earlier than philosophy.
This is easily shown from the depiction of human development, and even aspects of modern education, where children do finger-painting before they do drawing, and drawing before they do writing, and writing before they do critical thinking, and critical thinking before they do mathematics. It is also clear that those who are extremely smart will want knowledge of many languages, which is an aspect of polymathy, and those who want to do very well with languages will want something like magic, and those who truly succeed with magic will become immortals (whether or not this is possible is not entirely clear to me, but it is one of the ultimate goals I have found).