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Booze and creativity

Discussion in 'Talking Pictures' started by Roger Hicks, Jul 23, 2017.

  1. Roger Hicks

    Roger Hicks Well-Known Member

    Some reckon they're inseparable. Others reckon they're incompatible. When I started as an assistant in the 1970s, one of my jobs was to keep the wine flowing. Nowadays people seem to drink mineral water. I've always found that I can think more originally with the aid of a drink, and provided I don't get too smashed, it doesn't affect my technical skills adversely -- though I tend not to drink Champagne cocktails while/before working (this is the latest entry on www.rogerandfrances.eu).

    What's your experience?


  2. Geren

    Geren Well-Known Member

    I don't know so much about drinking but I really struggled to write my dissertation as a non-smoker. The last time I had to write something that hefty with that much research and attention to detail I was on a good 10-20 a day. It was HARD going. I'm not entirely blaming my tobacco-free existence on the less than stellar mark I got for it, but it certainly felt like a contributing factor at the time of writing.

    As for alcohol, I would imagine a lot of commercial set ups will have banned it by now - health and safety and all that. For personal stuff, and especially if working with other people, it can help things along marvellously!
  3. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    I used to test read for a UK author. He quit smoking for a few months but was unable to write anything, and basically had to take it back up to meet a deadline. Ah, in fact in the Telegraph obituary, it mentions it.

    Gemmell, who described himself as a psychopathic workaholic, could turn out a book in 20 weeks. He once tried to take a year off to give up smoking, quit - and found he could not write a line. Four months later, he trudged sadly into a newsagents and bought 20 Benson and Hedges. "The writing," he noted, "is now flowing".​

    Nicotine aside though, it's clear that a very large number of very creative people produced some of their most respected works while under the effects of one chemical or another, be that alcohol, marijuana, or others. I understand why governments feel the need to license or ban some of those substances, and there's no denying the genuine harm that comes to people through their use, but there's also no denying the effect it has on opening the mind to more creative ways of thinking.

    I rarely drink anything these days, and when I do, I certainly don't carry a camera with me that costs as much as some family cars.

    That's what my phone is for.
  4. daft_biker

    daft_biker Action Man!

    Aye, this stuff......


    ....the best kind of Fairy Liquid;):D

    Some kinds of Cannabis can be pretty inspiring too with Sativa dominant ones often being referred to as energising (compared to the sleepy Indicas). Better than a happy pill anyway.
    Done_rundleCams likes this.
  5. Learning

    Learning Ethelred the Ill-Named

    I cannot comment on booze; I really have no sense of being drunk or otherwise for what little creative photography that I have achieved. One of by best periods of creativity was certainly helped by canabis. This was in the pre-skunk era. I wouldn't touch the stuff now.
    Well I might, if I knew that I was getting the 'safe' old stuff.
    There was a time when you could go into the bar of the Norfolk Hotel in Nairobi and get semi hi just by being there; of course one had do do one's duty and help to maintain the sweet fugg.
  6. dream_police

    dream_police Well-Known Member

    I just wish there was a camera that was able to photograph what I saw as a youth having partaken in a cups of mushroom coffees!
  7. MJB

    MJB Well-Known Member

    Enough gin makes me the greatest dancer in the world.
    Done_rundleCams and Geren like this.
  8. Geren

    Geren Well-Known Member

    Sufficient quantities of gin render me hilarious. Everyone says so. Well, everyone with me also consuming gin at a similar rate.
  9. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    I don't drink gin, not since that time I couldn't feel my hand.
  10. Roger_Provins

    Roger_Provins Well-Known Member

    I know booze very often makes the imbiber think they can do things better. Like driving for instance.
  11. dream_police

    dream_police Well-Known Member

    I always thought I hated Gin. Turns out it was the tonic water. Horrible stuff. Substitute tonic with ginger, and would you believe it, I like gin.
    It is my wifes birthday tomorrow and I've got her a bottle of Old Tom, one we've not tried before.
  12. MJB

    MJB Well-Known Member

    But I must become the greatest dancer. Why else would people clear the dance floor and stare at me in awe?
    Geren likes this.
  13. MJB

    MJB Well-Known Member

    Try gin & juice; gin with grapefruit, orange and lime juice served over crushed ice in a tall glass.
  14. Andrew Flannigan

    Andrew Flannigan Well-Known Member

    All this talk of creativity has fired me up. So I'm sipping this while reading the thread. I expect inspiration to strike any second now...

    Sony HX90 8GB 01 DSC01062.JPG
  15. daft_biker

    daft_biker Action Man!

    Skunk #1 is old hat now and I've rarely seen it. The usual UK street weed is a selectively bred descendant of it called Cheese which should be stronger. The Americans however have a better selectively bred descendant which I believe Snoop Dog named Green Crack. Their OG is pretty tasty too.

    Some real nice stuff in Spain too....when is the next Spannabis? ;)
  16. RogerMac

    RogerMac Well-Known Member

    I find that even a small amount to drink (especially at lunch timer) just send me into a "40 winks" episode. and it is difficult to be creative when one is unconscious.

    In the days when I was very productive I found that the best therapy for writers block (whatever the coder's equivalent iscalled) was to stop completely and take the dog for a long walk in the woods Often the solution would just pop into my head and I had only to come home and write it dow.
    EightBitTony likes this.
  17. Andrew Flannigan

    Andrew Flannigan Well-Known Member

    I had one of my team complain that he couldn't work out how implement a piece of code. I was busy and feeling the pressure myself so I told him to just type rubbish until he came up with some ideas. Twenty minutes later he came back and said "thanks boss - that worked a treat". :confused:
    RogerMac and EightBitTony like this.
  18. EightBitTony

    EightBitTony Well-Known Member

    When I used to write code for a living, we'd go for 'lunch' on Fridays. Come back, work until 5pm, and then come in on Monday, rip out everything we'd written on Friday afternoon and start again.

    It was eventually more effective to just not write anything on Friday afternoon's at all.
    RogerMac likes this.
  19. RovingMike

    RovingMike Crucifixion's a doddle...

    It has always been considered an essential aid to creativity in the Advertising business. Yes it does liberate the mind.
  20. daft_biker

    daft_biker Action Man!

    After their name was dirt we were told not to be seen going back to work after being to the pub.

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