Creativity squared: Lindsey Brand makes something out of nothing
According to creativity researchers, there are four sides to creativity. It involves the person (personality, habits, thoughts), the product (the result of creative activity), the process (how you work) and the press (environmental factors, education and other external factors). So we thought let’s follow science to understand your art. Creativity Squared is a feature that aims to create a well-rounded profile of creative people.
Today, Lindsey Brand is a New York-based creative director at GALE.
Lindsey has worked as a creative in many different types of marketing agencies over the past decade. Based on her experience, she has sought to combine her creative, strategy, social, PR and media knowledge into integrated campaigns for brands such as Abbott, Wells, MilkPEP, Coca-Cola and J&J. In 2021, Lindsey was named one of Business Insider’s “Rising Stars of Madison Avenue.”
When she’s not on set, she enjoys other passions like knitting or (again) being with her two-year-old twins Frozen.
Learn more about Lindsey and her creativity here.
The idea that you can make something out of nothing has always fascinated me.
A blank sheet of paper into a portrait of someone you love.
Process flour, eggs and water into delicious noodles.
A sweater made from two sticks and a ball of yarn.
Creating something from nothing requires creativity, which can be a daunting task when you’re looking at a blank canvas and trying to turn it into a masterpiece – but it can also be liberating. A blank canvas is a place to try something new. Sometimes it works out and you get a delicious pasta and sometimes you have to order. But if you don’t at least try, you’ll never know. For me, creativity is the desire to just try it out – no matter what the result may be.
When I was growing up, my father was a high school art teacher, so art was always a part of my life. I remember going to school with him and diving into the art spaces and thinking they were great. you could do anything do everything I embraced art in all forms – drawing cartoons, painting, embellishing anything (it was the 90’s), sewing clothes – I wanted to try everything.
As I entered high school, my interest in trying new things led me to set design, marching band, and finally the advertising class, where I got my first taste of the Adobe programs. It was clear to me that I wanted to pursue a career in advertising.
Exploring new roads will take you down a path you never thought of before. It opens doors to new ways of thinking, living and experiencing life – and allows you to break out of your comfort zone, challenge yourself and discover new passions.
If a creative piece – an ad, a movie, a song, etc. – makes you so completely jealous that you didn’t think about it first or bother to work on it – then it’s a success. When we come across a work that makes us jealous or envious, it’s often because it resonates deeply with us and speaks to something we value or covet in our own creative pursuits. These are the ideas that drive us forward. They allow us to think differently or, more importantly, to feel differently. The ideas that make us want to do better work and propel us to new heights.
You must be in the correct headspace to create. Everyone is different, but for me the best ideas come when I’m just not trying to think at all. There are a few times this really happens to me:
1. Listening: It’s about keeping your ears open for a word or phrase that hits the spot and inspires you. It might be when I’m in a casual conversation with a friend or overhear a conversation on a train that sparks an idea for a briefing.
2. Late at night: After a coffee-drenched day of meetings and time with my nearly two-year-old twins, I call what I call “Lindsey after eight,” the time when I do my best work. Sometimes being tired helps to get out of your head. I love brainstorming when I’m at the level of silliness that only comes with that second whiff of nighttime energy.
3. Immersion: If you are looking for inspiration on a certain topic, it helps to delve into it. Like eating ice cream while brainstorming for an ice cream brand, or playing Roblox while working on a game quest. They put you in the consumer’s mindset and give you a new perspective.
Having lived in New York all my life, I’ve been spoiled for endless opportunities for inspiration and discovery. There’s always something new to see, experience or explore – from Broadway shows and pop-up exhibits to just people-watching. But lately it’s the moments of childlike wonder that really inspire me. Seeing the world through the unbiased eyes of my nearly two-year-old twins has made me look at things that some might think are ordinary. Seeing things through their eyes allows me to look at those moments in new ways. It has taught me to embrace the unknown and approach any experience with an open mind, eager to discover something new.