Tag Archives: Etsy.com

Creativity as the Future of Work

With all the turmoil in the global job markets these days, one question is becoming more and more pressing for me and I suspect to many other people as well: what will the jobs of the future look like? (And concurrently, how can I ensure my employment security?)

The bad news is that, probably in less that 20 years, there won’t be “jobs” as we know them today. Instead, most of the rote, manual labor stuff will be performed by robots although probably overseen by humans for a while.

Where does that leave us? The one arena that robots will never be able to compete with humans is in something that we don’t always value much: Art, in all its many forms – dance, music, painting, sculpture, novels, poetry, song, architecture, design, woodworking – as well as Art applied to almost anything else you can think of – science, mathematics, physics.

In pockets of the developing world, whether by necessity or design,  some people seem to be leapfrogging the whole doomed, industrial-revolution thing altogether. How many of us have purchased beautiful crafts that are hand-made from a country in Latin America, Africa or Asia? We are supporting these creative women and men in their artistic endeavors in very poor societies. But, then we find ourselves needing a lamp and buying some generic product at Home Depot (yes, usually made in China, but which is also starting to see the need to move beyond sole reliance on Industrial Revolution-type economic models)!

I’ve been following a wonderful blog now for a few months focused on handmade goods from all over, and tying that focus into a sustainable living context. Besides being sustainable, environmental, socially responsible, and fashionable, komai-co.com, is also just very cool.

They have recently wrapped up a trip to several countries across two continents with fabulous results:

One thing we might have to get used to here in the “developed” world is that our lead in all sorts of creativity is going to get intensively challenged. That’s okay by me — one strict rule about creativity is that the more the better!

So what is your art? What makes your heart sing?

Thanks for stopping by,

Heather McC

PS. In defense of us developed-world types, there are some signs of hope especially in the Maker Faires, bespoke and crafting movements which are making great progress in moving the generic, mass-produced stuff off to the side. See Etsy.com, etc..!