The new creative? Is that really a thing? I am not sure if there is such a thing as a new creative (I believe we are born creatives in some capacity), but I do believe in the creative that is just beginning to find his or her voice in the creative space. Working at SALT, I get to work everyday with creatives that work in the church world as well as the commercial and non profit space and honestly it is a pretty sweet gig. In addition, being in this position has allowed me the opportunity to hear the struggles of the creative, like the loss of ideas or being overwhelmed with deadlines.
That said, I put together a short list, with the help of some of our SALT Community, that will hopefully help guide you to your best practices as a new creative.
Last year at SALT18 we had the privilege of having Matt Redman join us for worship. When asked how he gets inspired or refueled to write songs his first response was Community. There are several ways to find community, it can be as easy as a group inside your church or it could be connecting with others via the many FB groups that bring together creatives from many communities.
Of course, we are biased here, but another great way to meet and create community is to come to SALT Conference. We create environments that will allow you to connect with other people, whether that be during Community Group time or as simple as the colored wristband that identifies your ministry focus. Just in case you aren’t familiar with SALT Conference here is a quick recap video from last year and here is the link to SALT19 happening this fall.
Don’t Be Afraid To Fail.
This can be tough for many people. There is a fear attached with failure and that fear can stifle our creativity. However, every great creative that I have spoken to will tell you…failing means you took a risk, failing means you know what NOT to do next time. Remember, Thomas Edison failed 1,000 times before creating the light bulb. So take some risks, get outside the box and create.
Create Don’t Copy.
This idea was summed up so well by our friend Cole NeSmith at SALT16 “Sameness is the enemy of innovation.” This can be hard when we are overworked and under-staffed. Sometimes it is just easier to copy something we see on Pinterest or another church. Learn how aggregate ideas and then re-imagine those ideas. Inspiration breeds inspiration.
Inspiration In Everything.
Creatives should consistently look for inspiration, but not just in the usual spots. In the case of our SALT16 pop-up store we looked outside a “store” model and found inspiration in some cool museum spaces. Our theme had a very minimalist brand so we looked to the museum model and found some found some museums that had that same vibe and re-imagined it. We even felt inspired to create our “own” art for the store which is how the projection touch wall was created.
Find Your Creative Process.
I have heard from several creatives about this and there seems to be several ways to create a process for you and your team. One way (that we use) is the Creative Meeting. This is an excellent way to bring a select group of people and pull together ideas and themes and then begin to pair down the list of ideas into a cohesive brand and feel. We spoke to 3 different Creative Directors and got their take on how they conduct a creative meeting. If you are a one man team then you should always be aggregating content and filing it away so that you can look back to it for inspiration.
These are just a few ideas that you can hopefully use in your journey as a creative. Of course there are other ideas to consider so if you would like to share what you have learned then please feel free to comment below so that it can be shared with everyone.