How to Stand Out as a Creative


Have you ever felt as if you’re in a pool of hundreds, even thousands of creators and you don’t feel like you stand out? I’m here to tell you that you will and give you some tips on how to.

Since I’ve been a creative, I’ve always compared myself to others. There were days that I scrolled on instagram or designspiration for hours wondering if I’d ever be as good as these kickass designers that I followed. I think it’s human to feel these things, and I’d be lying if I told you I don’t still feel them from time to time. But over that time, I’ve learned to talk myself out of these bad habits, mostly. Now, I do think it’s important to have people to look up to, hundreds of Pinterest boards and inspiration for miles. However, it’s very easy to get sucked into the deep dark hole of comparison, not feeling good enough and just overall developing an unhealthy mindset. I’m not saying that these things will never happen because it’s human to feel these things. I’m here to tell you that if you play your cards right, and embrace who you truly are and let that shine through, you will stand out way more than the person you’re forcing yourself to be.

My first and most important piece of advice is to be yourself. I know, that sounds cliche, but you are not a cliche. None of us are. I think that there is something that makes everyone unique, what’s yours?

I think to know yourself is to know your brand. To know your brand is to know your target audience. See what I mean? I’ve recently discovered in the past year that the more self-discovery I’ve done, the better my brand and business has been. The better my brand has been, the more I’ve been able to connect with my target audience and grow my business. Instead of trying to curate the prettiest feed or write tons of content, I decided to just try to be authentic as possible, but also consistent with my online presence (which is something I’m still working on, aren’t we all?).

My first day of my major design class in art school, my professor said something that sticks with me every day. “Your logo is a vessel, it holds every decision you make as a brand”. Take a deep breath and think about that for a moment. It’s so important. Your brand is a visual representation of you and I think that’s worth exploring. Dig deep and think about the things you love and how and why they make you who you are.

So during this journey of self discovery, I challenge you to ask yourself these questions and see where you end up:

  1. What makes you unique?

  2. What do you love about your favorite designers? 

  3. What do you love about yourself?

  4. Who is your target audience and what do you want to say to them?

  5. How could you apply all of these things to your brand? (think colors, patterns, icons, symbols, typography, phrases, etc)

At the end of the day, we’re all just out here trying to figure out how to connect with others and make beautiful and purposeful things. It’s pretty wonderful, isn’t it? Now go out there and be yourself. I promise it won’t fail you.

Holly BaumgartlComment