We’re Transforming How Creatives Work and Connect, Starting Today

To say that we are living through unprecedented times would be an understatement. As CEO and creative director of alice+olivia, I’ve witnessed the impact of COVID-19 on businesses firsthand. I know alice+olivia will get through this and thrive. I also know others may not be so fortunate. In America alone, over 30 million people have filed for unemployment over the past several weeks—and among those anonymous numbers are countless creatives.

In these uncertain days, I believe the imagination, skill, and ambition of the creative community is more vital than ever. That is why I’m announcing the launch of Creatively, a new job platform designed to connect and help creatives across all disciplines find full-time and freelance work.

Creatively champions and connects the world’s creative community through best-in-class portfolios, collaborative features, and opportunities in a world where remote work will be more part of our lives than ever before. Most importantly: it’s designed by creatives, for creatives, to be a place to showcase work and connect authentically, and for companies and brands to discover amazing talent. 

We know what the creative community needs right now is work—and that’s why we made the decision to fast track the launch of Creatively by several months. Our mission is to champion and help creatives. Our beta app and website launch today. Both are completely free.

Here’s what makes our platform so unique:

Immersive Portfolios: Imagine the most beautiful gallery space, available for free. Creatively’s understated design doesn’t compete with your portfolio of work—it elevates it. The platform supports: photography, film, fashion design, branding, illustration, animation, CGI, app and web design, product development, interiors and architecture, emerging technologies, and much more.

Work Opportunities Around the Globe: Creatively’s driving mission is to build connections and opportunities for the creative community, full-time and freelance. Creatives expand their professional network by showing their work—and connecting with collaborators and brands.

A Platform to Connect and Collaborate: Creatively is an active space, designed for interaction, not just reaction—giving creatives a place to truly connect with peers, collaborators, co-creators and colleagues. Plus, our tools allow creators and companies to give co-creators credit, nurturing a community that recognizes the imagination and skill of its many individual members. 

An Always-Expanding Creative Network: By recognizing and respecting the work of your past collaborators, you expand your network on the platform –– and invite others to join Creatively to claim credit for their best work. 

You’ll find a range of creatives from the world of fashion, marketing, art, media, architecture, design, and entertainment on our beta platform, along with graduates from schools like Parsons, Pratt, SCAAD, and FIT. It is our hope and goal that you will begin to see our many brand partners and companies using Creatively to discover and hire talent for years to come.  

As creatives seek to connect, collaborate, and discover opportunities, we believe Creatively will give them the tools they need to achieve their ambitions. If you’re a creative or if you’ve ever built a creative team, you know the truth is other professional networking sites don’t properly serve the community and don’t allow us to discover talent or see their work easily. I’ve experienced this first hand at alice+olivia and truly hope that Creatively becomes my way of giving back to the larger creative community. 

Creatively isn’t just a platform, we’re a creative collective. And I can’t wait to see what we can achieve—together. 

Creatively yours,

Stacey Bendet


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Introducing the Creatively Class of 2020

We don’t know what the job market will look like in the coming year, but we do know that creatives need every possible advantage right now—especially if they’re just getting started. This week, Creatively is partnering with notable art, architecture, design and film schools to spotlight some of this year’s best and most creative graduates in the inaugural Creatively Class of 2020. Our mission is simple: help them find jobs.

This year’s class is made up of more than 45 incredibly talented graduates. We’re proud to be partnering with Academy of Art University, Bronx Community College, The City College of New York, Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), NYU Tisch School of the Arts, Parsons School of Design, Pratt Institute, The University of Cincinnati College of DAAP, and the Yale School of Architecture.

Throughout the week, we’ll be spotlighting work from the Creatively Class of 2020 on our website and app, as well as on Instagram, so follow along at @hellocreatively. Plus, we’ll be offering an exclusive selection of work available for download here—so you can add a spectacular background to your phone, desktop, or Zoom. (You’re welcome. 😉) 

Here, inspiring leaders from several of our partner schools answer the questions we know graduates (and our entire community) are asking.

We’re living through some of the most uncertain times in the past century—from a global pandemic to an economic recession to a nation in protest. What gives you hope for graduates right now?

“What makes me hopeful is that graduates are realizing the importance of being political. Everything is political (except politics, which are personal).” —Christopher Chan Roberson, NYU Tisch School of the Arts 

“I believe our graduates for the Class 2020 are used to an uphill climb. They are resilient, motivated, and persistent. ” —Yeny Ferreras, Bronx Community College

“Challenging and uncertain times force you to study your intention; graduates right now are being given a time to self-reflect and face their own role in the world, which I believe will yield more passionate and dynamic creative work.” —Claire McKinney, Pratt Institute

How can creativity make an impact during times like these?

“Creativity, by definition, is the ability to transcend traditional patterns or rules to create meaningful new ideas. In times like these, when things don’t precisely go our way, new ideas are needed to make positives out of the myriad negatives we are faced with. I always tell my students that hard times call for flexible minds.” —Gerardo Blumenkrantz, The City College of New York

“Ultimately science and medicine will cure us, but art will be what heals us. Through our creative endeavors, we will build bridges and connect with people in ways both profound and spiritual.  What we can’t say with our words, we’ll express with images and music.” —Christopher Chan Roberson, NYU Tisch School of the Arts 

“Fashion is an instrument where we create the reality we want. People want a new reality in the world. One of equality, responsibility and dignity for all. Fashion can reflect that, fashion has to reflect that. And new voices coming up with how these realities can look or how they are constructed, these new voices have an opportunity to be heard.” —Benjamin Ellis, Academy of Art University

How do you think the graduates of 2020 differ from your own graduating class?

“The class of 2020 is stepping out into a different playing field than when I graduated. And that was only four years ago! Our workplaces are different, the ways in which we communicate and share information are different, and our values are different. I think the environment is in some ways more welcoming for fresh ideas because of our changing scenarios.” —Benjamin Ellis, Academy of Art University

“This class was thrown a curveball right at the hardest, final stretch of their last year. Switching from onsite to online in a heartbeat, developing a portfolio and all was a titanic feat that made our students extra resilient. In a few years we will be able to see that resilience turned into creative achievements we are not able to visualize just now.” —Gerardo Blumenkrantz, The City College of New York

“I graduated from college in 1998 […] There are so many great (and free) opportunities to share work right now. It’s very exciting to be an artist in 2020.” —Christopher Chan Roberson, NYU Tisch School of the Arts

What’s your biggest piece of advice for 2020 graduates?

“Building your career is a marathon, not a sprint. Sustain momentum, chip away at your long-term goals, be thoughtful and patient.” —Claire McKinney, Pratt Institute 

“The expression, ‘may you live in interesting times’ is widely cited as a curse. But while these are certainly ‘interesting’ times, any crisis comes with plenty of opportunities for those who see things differently, and our graduates were actually trained to do just that. So my advice would be to apply their creativity not only to their industry of choice but also to their own lives. That’s how they’ll turn negatives into positives and thus seize hidden, golden opportunities.” —Gerardo Blumenkrantz, The City College of New York

“Be yourself, and don’t stop now.” —Benjamin Ellis, Academy of Art University

“Surround yourself with positivity, always be resilient and never stop following your dreams.” —Yeny Ferreras, Bronx Community College

“Do what you love.” —Christopher Chan Roberson, NYU Tisch School of the Arts 

Check out the Class of 2020’s Projects

Questions or feedback? Email us at feedback@creatively.life

Creatively Statement of Principles

At Creatively, our driving mission is to champion creativity and help a global creative workforce find jobs. Creatively is more than a platform, we’re a creative collective, dedicated to nurturing a collaborative community that recognizes the imagination, skill, and value of its many individual members.

We believe creativity is an immensely valuable part of the global economy. 

Creative work across all disciplines is a driving force in global businesses, with the power to entertain, innovate, and generate revenue. And in these unprecedented times, we believe the imagination, ambition, and skill of the creative community is more vital than ever. 

We believe a strong creative community is diverse and inclusive.

As a platform built by creatives for creatives, Creatively recognizes the immense importance of nurturing a community that truly reflects the diversity across the full spectrum of the creative economy. We’re committed to spotlighting work from creatives of all different racial, religious, and ethnic backgrounds on our platform, and in particular BIPOC voices, who are often underserved by the broader creative community. We hope that in supporting these creative voices, we can nurture a collective that reflects the true diversity of our industry and help companies and brands connect with a breadth of diverse talent.

We recognize that any commitment to building an inclusive community starts with us: As the Creatively team grows, we’re committed to ensuring BIPOC representation at all levels of our staff and providing extensive bias training to all employees. Additionally, we plan to establish an advisory committee who will help the Creatively leadership team shape diversity and inclusion policies for both our company and our platform.

We believe collaboration makes the work better—always.

Collaboration and giving credit for creative work is at the heart of the Creatively platform. Our app and website make it easy to add collaborators, grow your network, and celebrate each other’s work. We also encourage and celebrate creatives who make good collaborators, both by lifting up fellow creatives and giving appropriate credit to others. We strongly oppose any creative taking undue credit for collaborative work, or using their position to wrongly influence, intimidate, or threaten less experienced creatives. 

We believe creatives should retain the rights to their own work.

You have sole ownership and copyright to the work you upload on Creatively. Our Terms of Use has a section called “user contributions,” which makes clear you retain ownership of your contributions.You can review it here. While Creatively has rights to use and display these contributions in connection with the app and site, we won’t use any of your contributions in promotional materials or marketing without your permission.

We believe creatives should be compensated fairly for their work.

Creatives may choose to work without pay for any number of reasons— to expand their work experience, for example, or as part of a volunteer or pro bono project. However, Creatively strongly encourages creatives to enter into any agreements, with clients or otherwise, with full awareness of the market value of their work and any potential risks. Further, Creatively encourages any prospective clients or employers to ensure they are compensating creatives fairly for any work they commission — whether it’s original or licensed. Creatively is committed to asking creatives for permission for any existing creative work we use in our own marketing materials and offering an honorarium. We are also committed to paying fair market rates for any original work we commission for campaigns or content.

We are foundationally opposed to the idea of “spec work.”

“Spec work,” or speculative work, is any kind of creative work submitted to prospective clients in an effort to win work. We believe that asking creatives to do speculative work is exploitative and unethical, and ultimately devalues both creative professionals and the industry as a whole. Members of the Creatively community are trained, practicing professionals, and should be fairly paid for their efforts at all times. Creatively is aligned with organizations like the AIGA and RGD, along with various advertising agencies, in strongly discouraging the practice of requesting any creative work to be produced or submitted on a speculative basis in order to be considered for acceptance on a project. Organizations or brands using this platform to engage in this practice may be barred from Creatively, and not permitted to rejoin.

We’re working to ensure Creatively is a safe space for all.

The Creatively app and website are a safe space for creatives to connect authentically, share their work, and discover opportunities around the globe. To nurture this community, we have a zero tolerance policy for harmful content and communication, including but not limited to: graphic violence, abuse or harassment, hate speech, suicide or self-harm, promoting terrorism or violent extremism, sex acts, child sexual exploitation, non-consensual nudity, and any content that threatens or glorifies violence. Additionally, you may not publish other people’s private information without their express permission.

Any account on this platform that violates these policies may be barred from Creatively, and not permitted to rejoin. To flag any content you feel violates these policies, please use the report/block feature on our iOS app or email feedback@creatively.life.

If you have any questions or feedback regarding Creatively’s principles or policies, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at feedback@creatively.life. We would love to hear from you. 

Donald Robertson, also known to his fans on Instagram and beyond as “Drawbertson,” started off an incredible career as a creative director by launching iconic beauty brand MAC, then moving on to stints at Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Cargo, and most recently Esteé Lauder. These days, he’s best known for the quirky, playful paintings and illustrations that he posts on social and his website, and for his dynamic collaborations with brands ranging from Bergdorf Goodman to Smashbox Cosmetics to the Sunset Tower Hotel in West Hollywood. You can check out his latest projects on Creatively here

What is the first creative project you remember?

I would paint on rocks at the beach. Then I would pull my wagon along the beach and sell them to sun tanners. People still have them. I was a sell-out from the start.   

Describe your aesthetic in three words.

Tongue in Chic.

What was the most fulfilling collaboration you’ve worked on?

A Bergdorf Goodman Art Bombing! I worked with all their fave designers and the entire thing ended up gloriously on Beyoncé and on her blog. Google it if you think I’m fibbing! (He’s not.)

What’s one creative project that taught you something fundamental about yourself?

I painted an upside-down Wheaties Box with Colin Kaepernick on it when Nike signed him. Kids went wild for it, but it was expensive and sold quickly. I decided the message was too important so I released it as a free download. My oldest son did a fancy internship that summer and his boss had the Colin print blown up huge and framed in her office! Wow! WOW! It made me realize that artists are powerful truth tellers.

Do you think creativity is something you’re born with, or something you’re taught?

I have taught all my kids to draw and paint. I have five kids. They are all good at it.  None of them practice it. Who knows. 

What’s the last dream you had?

It’s a painting on my site. A giraffe sailing past the Chrysler Building. It’s wonderful. 

One hundred years from now, what do you hope people write about your work?

Not that Donald!

Follow @Drawbertson on Creatively

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