Procrastination kills creativity or is essential to it?

I am going to try and answer this question from the point of view of someone who studied and works within a creative industry, so please bare with me.

I have always been a procrastinator.  If something can be left to another time, I will sure as hell be leaving it until later.  This is often looked upon as lazy, and a negative trait in general. However… any creative person will tell you that thinking about a project, is just as important as doing it.  Not all of the best ideas originate from EUREKA moments.  They come from people giving themselves time to think.


Of course there are occasions where you have a deadline that needs to be adhered to and as a creative person I find these occasions extremely annoying yet necessary in equal measure. Without a deadline, stuff just wouldn’t get done with me.  While studying for my degree in photography some of my best projects (much to my tutors annoyance) were last minute ideas. Last minute late nights editing images were a regular thing. When forced to make time to think, you start prioritising thinking time which results in thinking outside of the box.  By working like this it also took away the temptation to change track halfway through a project.  Again, this has positives and negatives.  Positives being that you don’t invest time and resources into a project which will in the end have been a waste, but the negative for this method is that you have to go with an idea even if you lose interest in it.  Losing interest in a project half way through will show in the final piece sadly and you will kick yourself for not prioritising better.

I realise that I have been waffling here, so apologies.  In conclusion I believe that procrastination both kills creativity but can also be essential to it.  It all depends on the person and how they work best.  I have learned to embrace this aspect of my personality even if it does drive others a little crazy.



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