The True Cost Of Being Creative – By @CiRCUStrongman

Lee Allen

By Lee Allen


The True Cost Of Being Creative


As an easily excitable young (well, younger!) man I often made the mistake of telling people about all my awesome ideas before I had executed them, a year on I’d bump into the person I’d preached about the idea to and I’d be left making excuses for as to why that idea wasn’t yet Facebook, “it’s money man”, “just been so busy init”, “I’m too much of a perfectionist” – you get the drill!

In hindsight, it wasn’t my lack of enthusiasm that saw my ideas repeatedly grind to a halt, it was more a case of lacking the skill set to do anything with them, as well as my complete lack of ability to prioritise anything.

After a long succession of these embarrassments, I learned that it was best to keep your mouth shut until you have something to show, so instead of talking about ideas, I decided I would start putting them into action. In spite of my nonexistent credit rating, not long after my 22nd birthday I managed to secure finance on a Macbook Pro and one subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud later I was the funniest person in my WhatsApp group (soon descending into the most annoying.)

Finally, I had an outlet for every pun, product idea or business concept I could dream up throughout a day. Every small joke now had the potential to get wildly out of hand and as my skill set developed, I cut my work hours so I could spend more time honing my creative skills; but as my wages got smaller, my ideas grew more ambitious and after stumbling across a converted church run by a man with pictures of animals on his trousers, I started to realise the true cost of being creative…

Since August 2015:

* = Not including printing bill

The Essentials:

Adobe Creative Cloud £200 (Estimated)
Udemy Courses (Illustrator, InDesign, After Effects, Art Direction) £46 SCA Reading list £30 (give or take)
Other Related Reading Material £80 (give or take again)

Scholarship Entries*:

5ft x 3ft Peru Flag £3.50
3ft x 2ft Brazil Flag £2.95
Megaphone £39.99
4 x Vote Move T-Shirts £50.71
Giant Vehicle Magnet £48.19 Domain £6.10
Bribing friends with food & petrol money £60

Royal Blue Paisley Bandana x 2 £2.20
Blue Paisley Tie with Express Shipping £32.99 Total Fiverr Bill £99.13

SCA Interview Day*:

Inflatable Globe £1.55
Pine Wood Display Plinth £2.95 + 0.96 Gold Metallic Spray Paint 300ml £2.98
TY Beanie Baby: Nip the Cat £1.99 + 2.50 Fireman Helmet £1.43 + 2.80
Hose (Hoes) Reel £7.68
Fireman Outfit £28.23

Unfinished App Idea (Breaking My Own Rule Here):

Paid to Programmers £595 Mock Up Designs £250 Domains £20

Being a General Twat:

Total Printing Bill £317
2 x Unsuccessful Chip Shop Award Entries £100
1m Inflatable Paddling Pool £7.25
Mullet Wig £9.99
Personalised High Visibility Jacket £5.00 + 1.00
Red Karate Belt £2.91
Yellow Karate Belt £2.92
Blue Karate Belt £3.53
Mens Waistcoat £3.99 + 3.49
Spacetherm Blanket – Ultra Thin Aerogel Insulation £31.29

Nintendo Wii U Case £1.59
Nintendo 3DS Case x 2 £3.29
XBox Case £1.92
4 x 50 STD (Sexually Transmitted Disease) Themed Business Cards £59.96 Two Piece Priest Outfit £3.29

Jesus Navas Manchester City Air Freshener £2.00 Jesus Navas Manchester City Keyring £2.75 1994-96 Sevilla Umbro Drill Top £17.74
European 2-Pin Charger £2.99

5 x 10FT Green Screen £5.69 Antique Map of Poland £9.91

Total: £2,153.16

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