Creative’s Handbook is our newest series that dives even further into the details behind running a creative business. We’ll be asking fellow creatives to share their expertise on marketing, money, production, self-care, and everything in between.
Kicking off this new series are Jaclyn Dowdle and Kelsey Harp, the women behind production studio, Hatch House.
Tell us a little bit about your backgrounds and how Hatch House came to be.
Kelsey hails from a creative direction and stylist background having freelanced the last few years for various companies and brands like IF Gathering and Catspring Yaupon. Jaclyn’s background is in production, having worked for companies like GSD&M and Noonday Collection. We met on a job together and quickly started dreaming up how we could work more together because of our fast friendship.
Who or what are some of your favorite brands that you find yourself drawn to?
We’re pretty different as far as aesthetics so we’re drawn to pretty polarizing things. Kelsey is more of a minimalist and loves brands with raw textures and earth-toned hues. Brands like Yield Design Co. and Miranda Bennett inspire her. Jaclyn is a maximalist (if that’s even a word) and loves color and patterns. Brands like The Jungalow and Bando inspire her.
What are some things you think small businesses should consider when building their brand?
That your branding isn’t just about visuals – yes it’s fonts, colors and imagery, but it’s also tone, customer service, attitude, and even the voice of how you write your captioning. Your brand is also a living, evolving entity. When you develop it, expect it to change and grow just like you do as a person over the years.
Where do you go for inspiration?
Everywhere! That’s the beautiful thing about this world is that inspiration is everywhere if you’re taking the time to just notice it. Magazines, books, poems, scripture, sometimes just being alone on a plane, in a city, in your living room brings forth all kinds of creative ideas.
“Your brand is a living, evolving entity. When you develop it, expect it to change and grow just like you do as a person over the years.”
What is your best advice for dealing with creative blocks? How do you push through them?
Unfortunately, there’s no one-shot fix for this. It totally varies based on person and project. We’d say press into whatever energizes you. For some people that’s solitude and for others it may be attending a creative conference where you can be amidst a crowd, brainstorm and toss around ideas.
Are there any tools that you recommend creative entrepreneurs use when it comes to branding and visuals?
There’s so many out there, but we use Over, Planoly and Later for some of our social media planning and visuals. It helps streamline a very time intensive part of our business. Plus, having a strong and diverse social media channel is key to having a strong brand presence. Think about it. When you hear of a new brand, where do you go first to check them out? Instagram, right? We know it’s a beat down to have to keep up with it and all the changes to the algorithm, but it’s worth it.
How would you describe Hatch House as a brand in three words?
Resourceful: We often answer questions with, “I have a guy/girl for that…” We’ve worked in various industries so we have a little black book of folks to call upon. We’re also creative thinkers that annoyingly see problems as opportunities. Rest assured, we will go to great lengths to obtain an incredible final product together on time and on budget however and whatever it takes.
Fun: We know productions can be a buzz kill. But what if they were like summer camp where you made memories and friends whilst bringing beautiful ideas to life? We’re a unique balance of complete workaholics and dirty little fun havers. We hope you are too!
Collaborative: We know that any great project is the result of working together to solve hard problems. We’re not convinced that our ideas are always the best ideas. But we’ll fight for what we think is right; at the end of the day, we know the magic happens when we all feel confident in the direction we’re headed.
All photos courtesy of Hatch House.