Four Rivers Media

Graphic Design & Integrated Web Development

Cultural Creatives

Cultural Creatives: Life on the Edge

May 30, 2016 Justin 0 Comments

What is a cultural creative? Someone who creates culture, rather than blindly follows the established route? Yes, this could be a workable definition for the twenty first century. If you see yourself at the cutting edge of our cultural reality, involved in tasks that not only shift the goalposts, somewhat, but also demand constant creativity, then you may feel that you are living on that edge. Here is a Zen koan like poem that was written a long time ago about the essence of this experience:

“Tap-dance and tiptoe.

The edge, the open window;

Cut-glass charisma, every time I fall.”[1]

Cultural Creatives: Life on the Edge

Living on that edge, as the poem indicates, is not always a comfortable existence, quite the contrary. Edges are sharp and, often, involve falls, as in falling over the edge. Which is why the vast majority of people try and live safe and, somewhat, predictable lives. They long for the security of something tangible beneath them, something to hold onto when the storm hits. The price of that security is ‘working for the man’ or selling your soul to a corporate entity, a faceless company of middle managers demanding higher productivity and negotiable integrity.

The cultural creatives refute this safe existence because they won’t sell their souls. The price for this non-conformity is up and down finances, chasing dollars out of laggards, and even, borrowing money with no credit check on occasions. If you are not one of the faceless corporate team players, you are a pioneer living in the wild west on the fringes of our cultural reality. You are not paid for your silence, like the vast majority of the herd. Sometimes you don’t get paid at all. You are carving out new shapes and forms, perhaps in pixels.

Your community, often, does not readily recognise the work that you do. It may take them another half decade to catch up on what is important in the here and now. Meanwhile, the cultural creative is winging it in space, faking it until they make it, and swimming at the deep end. Not drowning, waving, for your attention. Technology is changing how we communicate and do business. It has changed how we communicate and do business. It will continue to do so in ever decreasing wheels of time. Lots of folks have not caught up with the full thrust of that momentum. Many businesses are still operating out of a now obsolete paradigm. Oh Mary, where will it all end?

[1][1] ©R. Hamilton

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