Solitude and Creativity

By on April 15th, 2020 in Ideas

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A creative brain fosters innovation [Source:  Pixabay ]

A creative brain fosters innovation [Source: Pixabay]

Charles Goulding of R&D Tax Savers looks at the creative bright side of solitude.

It is well recognized that solitude enables concentration and, accordingly, creativity. Exceptional creativity often occurs in solitude. Ester Schaler Buchholz, a psychologist and psychoanalyst, wrote a book called The Call of the Solitude: Alonetime in a World of Attachment. According to Ms. Buchholz not only is solitude a normal and important part of human existence, it is also essential for our best creative work.

The 3D printing industry has always been driven by creativity. Honoré Balzac, the famed and incredibly prolific French novelist and playwright, is known for writing alone and consuming innumerable cups of black coffee in a day. Jonathan Franzen, a contemporary writer, is known for practicing his craft in a solitary environment.

Post-pandemic, we should see a wave of creativity from the leading design centers where the creative class has been subject to involuntary solitude. Some of these major design centers include Milan, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. We have recently authored many articles on creative project topics including 3D printing vases, chandeliers and artisan fabricators

New and improved products and designs that arise from this creative incubation period may be eligible for R&D tax credits.

The Research & Development Tax Credit

Enacted in 1981, the now permanent Federal Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit allows a credit that typically ranges from 4%-7% of eligible spending for new and improved products and processes. Qualified research must meet the following four criteria:

  • Must be technological in nature

  • Must be a component of the taxpayer’s business

  • Must represent R&D in the experimental sense and generally includes all such costs related to the development or improvement of a product or process

  • Must eliminate uncertainty through a process of experimentation that considers one or more alternatives

Eligible costs include US employee wages, cost of supplies consumed in the R&D process, cost of pre-production testing, US contract research expenses, and certain costs associated with developing a patent.

On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed the PATH Act, making the R&D Tax Credit permanent. Beginning in 2016, the R&D credit can be used to offset Alternative Minimum tax for companies with revenue below $50MM and, startup businesses can obtain up to $250,000 per year in payroll tax cash rebates.


Potential benefits from this crisis are far and few between. It will be nice if creativity supported by 3D printing is one of them.

By Charles Goulding

Charles Goulding is the Founder and President of R&D Tax Savers, a New York-based firm dedicated to providing clients with quality R&D tax credits available to them. 3D printing carries business implications for companies working in the industry, for which R&D tax credits may be applicable.

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