Is it Possible to be Creative and Successful?

I feel like I’ve spent most my life trying to prove I’m not a robot.

When I was growing up, my Dad always told me that it’s important to have original thought and that true creativity is about pushing boundaries and creating new ideas.

He taught me to see things as they are (rather than how we imagined them to be) and then find ways to reinterpret and communicate this as an idea.

I was inclined to rebel against his lifestyle and wanted a more orderly existence.
I chose design as a way to express my creativity within bounds of solving problems to build a career, rather than risk destroying a hobby for the sake of earning money.

I still find I am constantly trying to prove to myself (and unconsciously to him) that I am an individual and not just another robot like everyone else.

There are plenty of examples in history of world famous creative types who died penniless while their art appears frequently in renowned museums and concert halls centuries later (Van Gogh, Toulouse-Lautrec, Mozart, Rembrandt, Vermeer – Even Whitney Houston according to the internet!).

With the advent of ‘social’ media, the communication age and advances of technology these days, we seem to be bombarded by contrasting and contradicting information.

It seems to me that every piece of advice for being successful says that we must do the following things:

  • Automate
  • Systematise
  • Create repeatable actions
  • Use algorithms
  • Adopt AI
  • … and so on

While I know that success is subjective, and so is creativity – it feels like there is a trade off between creativity and following a repeatable process.

On one hand I’m trying to prove I’m not a robot, while at the same time everyone is yelling at me to be more robot.

Photo by Matheus Natan on

by the way; does anyone know if I’m supposed to include the pole which the traffic light is attached to??

… Creative summary

Is it possible to be a creative free thinker who is successful?

Or should I just accept that a good compromise is 80% robot and 20% creative.

I’d love to hear the opinions of some of my fellow creative friends…

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