Welcome to the home of Noah Brier. I'm the co-founder of Variance and general internet tinkerer. Most of my writing these days is happening over at Why is this interesting?, a daily email full of interesting stuff. This site has been around since 2004. Feel free to get in touch. Good places to get started are my Framework of the Day posts or my favorite books and podcasts. Get in touch.

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Job/Personal Creativity

[Editor’s Note: This is really just me bitching. Because this is my site, I can do whatever I want. Sometimes that means wasting space with a meaningless rant like the one below. Sorry to waste your time.]

Tonight I had something said to me where it was implied that the work I do at my job is somehow less interesting than the work I do in my personal life. It bothered me quite a bit. While this may be the norm, for people to go to a job where they’re told what to do and they do, that is not me. I used to work for a magazine where I pitched and wrote my own stories. I wrote about the things I was interested in, topics like RSS, blogs in politics and street art as a marketing platform. Try to find the line there between my personal and professional life. For anyone that’s read this blog for any amount of time they’ll recognize that those are just the kind of topics I write about here. That’s because I was doing something I was passionate about.

Sure, I wouldn’t include everything I wrote while at American Demographics in a portfolio, but it’s still work I’m proud of. Since then I’ve moved to a new company, a marketing agency. Does that mean that all the work I do is purely what the client tells me? The answer is most definitely no. I wouldn’t be somewhere like that and I was offended by the implication I would be. I am at a place where I am given the responsibility to come up with ideas that have never been seen before. I do more than just write a few lines of copy, I’m involved in every piece of the puzzle from ideation on.

Not that any of this really matters, and I could have just blown off the comment, but something about it really bothered me. It’s like the artist who holds their nose above everyone else because their work is somehow less pure. It’s absurdity. Limitations are a part of life.

Working within limitations can often be a far better gauge of just how creative a person is than the limitlessness of ‘pure art.’

Sorry, just had to get it off my chest.

October 26, 2005