Cultural Creatives and Creative Investment: A New Economic Model of Support

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Why is creativity important in the face of today’s enormous social, ecological, and global crisis? What kind of opportunity is being born through such crises? Do solutions exist that have the potential to transform the planet and create the more beautiful world we dream of?

We live in a world where the monetization of life has reached its extreme; a world where nearly all of the relationships that once existed within community have been replaced with paid services from strangers. The ability to simply pay someone else to fulfill a need has infected our personal interactions by undermining the very nature of kinship – the bonds that are formed through gratitude in an interdependent web of relationships. When we can always pay someone else, the underlying message is, “We don’t really need anyone.” How do we rebuild community from a new foundation – one that recognizes our need of and connection to others?

We all depend on others for the gifts that sustain us, just as much as others require our own individual gifts. All beings in Nature give to support life elsewhere and receive to thrive in their own life. Life is creativity. A creative being that does not create exists in a state of entropy – a kind of death wherein one’s core being is repressed and awaiting expression. Without creating, one misses the opportunity to discover one’s true, authentic individual form of expression as it relates to the whole – and imagination atrophies; imagination crucial for the emergence of the creative solutions needed at this time. Why does productive creativity take a back seat in the majority of lives, allowing non-participative consumption to become the norm?

Cultural Creatives

seven chakrasIf you ask people what stands between them and choosing their creativity (doing what they love), most will include money on the list. As youngsters, many of us knew what we loved to create. Maybe it was music, painting, or writing (a few examples from an infinite list of possibilities). At some point in life we are told the story that there isn’t any money in it – that only the world’s best were paid anything decent and the chances of being one of them were pretty well nil.

We realize then that we need to find something to do to make a living and survive. Something practical, secure, likely to provide enough money to live comfortably, and maybe at one point in the future we will have time to do what we really want. Our creativity gets put on hold, perhaps forgotten, labeled as a hobby, and we turn our focus to the more important task of “getting our life in order”. Maybe we find a job that does allow us to create, but we still feel creatively restricted in some way. {I recognize that this isn’t the case for everyone – you might be one of the people who found opportunity to be supported to create in exactly the way they want}.

We settle for something safe, something that pays the bills. If we are lucky there is opportunity to “move up the ladder”. We devote so much of our creative time in servitude to a role that drains us, deprives us of what we truly need, and then spend our “hard earned” money on consumption, as marketing tells us what product will satisfy our need. Slowly, the illusion of our satiated need grows in our awareness as the hole we thought we were filling only grows and we remember we were not put here to do what we are doing our whole lives. We know that something must change; that we need to start creating something of benefit to ourselves, our community, and our world. Something beautiful. We think, “I have so many ideas! I could quit my job, but what about next month’s bills?” How do we create the support needed to dissolve this barrier and encourage people to choose their heart’s creativity in service to the planet?

A New Kind of Relationship

I am creating a new form of relationship that brings together a gift and a need that will transform the world as we know it. This relationship will free the creative gifts of humanity. It will rebuild our sense of community and help us remember in our hearts that we are always supported. It will eradicate homelessness and unemployment, free our time to do what we love, and allow us to focus on what is truly important to each of us. If embodied and practiced with trust and forgiveness, it will heal our wounds of separation and connect us to the people around us. This new relationship plants the seeds of gratitude, waters creativity with the support of money, and produces fruits that transform lives.

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Creative Investors

Within a new story for the economy of the world, we find it is people that form the tangible support and security from which we thrive. This is the gift of community. It is only because of others that we are here at all. It is this recognition that opens us up to truly sharing what we have to offer – our creative gifts and that which we have in abundance beyond our personal need. We cannot force this sharing, however – it must be allowed to occur through inspiration and a natural desire. The most powerful form of inspiration I have experienced is through the embodiment of that which one wishes to inspire.

Perhaps you are someone who relates to parts of the story above of the Cultural Creative. Maybe you are in a position where the work you do supports you with monetary abundance, and money doesn’t feel like a barrier to being creative or doing what you love. You might be looking to reduce your spending and desire to use your money for something more meaningful than mere consumption and impersonal investment. This is a unique opportunity to transform a stagnating abundance into a fuel for co-creation and the unlocking of latent potential within people. The opportunity is present within the conscious choice to invest in people.

Our predominant economic story views investment as a supporting act that requires a specific monetary return to the investor. It is a conditional, pre-determined contract that says, “I will help you only if I get something in return.” And that something, through the vessel of interest, is most often more money. At its core, investing is a show of trust and confidence in the potential of the investment. It says, “I support you because I believe in what you are doing.” Usually, the investment is in what we call a corporation, and the aim is to produce goods or offer services with the base motive of generating profit to share with investors. What happens to the creative process when the underlying goal is to make money? What about creativity or beautiful work that does not necessarily generate new money?

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Bringing it Together

This is where the core of the story of money as a barrier to doing what we love resides – in our observations that creativity has been left behind in our current economic agreements. Creativity isn’t supported in the same way that a plan to clear cut 100 acres of forest to sell as wooden boards and make X amount of dollars profit is. The results – the return on the investment – isn’t as predictable, calculable, or sometimes even tangible within the realms of pure creativity. As any artist will confirm, the spontaneity of truly inspired creation cannot be written in contract beforehand, nor arise through any force of will.

We look out at the world and see example after example of creative people settling for work they do not enjoy because there isn’t money in simply creating something beautiful, purely for its own sake. I hear time and time again of personal dreams put on hold while one’s creative time feeds the more practical and unfulfilling job that we know will provide enough money to live. But we have a choice as to how we use and story our money. A choice to connect our story of value to the latent creative potential in people. A choice to place our trust and faith in individuals we know and love.

This is the gift of the Creative Investor – someone who supports the creative gifts and future potential of an individual. Each relationship between a Creative Investor and a Cultural Creative will be as unique as the individuals that come together to form the relationship. It is an evolving co-creation in its essence, with both people giving and receiving, trusting and forgiving, and communicating in transparency. The monetary investment of the Creative Investor goes to support the survival and creative costs of the Cultural Creative so that they are able to develop their creativity to the point that it is self-sustaining and supportive for other Cultural Creatives wishing to do the same (i.e. becoming a Creative Investor themselves for others). This support frees the Creative from the stress and need to work for survival, and in turn, transforms their time into creativity. There may or may not be predetermined returns on the investment, but there absolutely will be a return too great to measure with a number. One such return is the establishment of a meaningful and connective friendship between two individuals.

Through this new economic story, the fruits of supported creativity will go forth into the world as gifts, carrying the seeds of a new way of relating to each other. They will transform lives by their freely inspired nature. They will produce the solutions our world so desperately needs. They will bring beauty, play, and celebration back into life. They will serve as the springboard to our creative dreams. They will create the foundation for a world in which everyone is supported and free to do what they love.

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Conjoint Creation

As you help me in my time of need and believe in my creativity, I am in a position to help you as you wish to do the same. This is a new model that I am embodying more each day and it is an idea that will spread with practice and sharing. As more people find the courage and take the step into investing in each other, we find that we all-ways have what we need when we share. This next step is into something completely new. We will stumble and go off track. But when we do it together, we never get lost and our journey becomes a dance as we map this new territory. By investing our faith in other people, we co-create a new story of love and support in a world that has always offered us the same.

If any of this story resonates with you and you wish to connect more, please feel free to email me to open a dialogue. I am looking for Creative Investors who want to form a co-creative relationship of support and I am looking for Cultural Creatives to embody, propagate, and experiment with this new form of investment.

In gratitude,


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