Good Work for Good People
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but the world is in shambles right now. We need good people working together to make positive change. If your brand’s mission is to the betterment of society and/or authentically seeks to meet the needs of consumers, we want the opportunity to partner with you. Below are our core values. If they resonate with you, let’s chat!
Our mission is to partner with small businesses and nonprofits to deliver thoughtful branding solutions to enable our clients’ success. We help clients build brands by adopting a listen-first approach to client service, focusing on our brands’ target audiences, and delivering authentic communication design.
Our vision is for all clients to (a) build brands with positive brand associations in the hearts of consumers, and (b) build brand loyalty among clients’ consumers, leadership, employees, and communities.
Seek to Understand. We subscribe to a listen-first mentality. We listen first in order to understand everything we can about your goals and objectives about the project, your audience, and who you are as a brand. Only then are we able to make informed decisions and design for impact.
Commitment to Excellence. Our commitment to providing excellent graphic design and branding solutions and service is rooted in our commitment to our clients. We are committed to providing design and branding deliverables that you can be proud of.
Do the Right Thing. Earning and honoring the trust of our clients is of top priority. Therefore, we are committed to doing the right thing for our clients by providing thoughtful, well-informed solutions to help you reach your goals and advance your mission.
Be a Good Human. To us, being a good human means being honest, helpful, fair, and respectful to others. Although experts in our field, we don’t have all the answers. But with open hearts and open minds, we can make a positive difference in the world.
Meet the Team
Okay, admittedly, we’re a small team…for now. (A team of one is still a team, right?) Although we may only have one “officially” on payroll, our network of creative professionals runs broad and deep. From strategic branding through marketing and campaign execution (i.e., actually designing the creative components of a branding or marketing campaign), we have our clients’ needs covered.
Kelly Strine, founder
Eh-Yo! It’s your girl, Kelly. I founded Left-brained Creative in 2019 for the sole purpose of doing good work for good people. After spending more than a decade learning and mastering my craft as an in-house brand manager and designer in both the nonprofit and corporate spaces, I was ready to strike out on my own.*
*Honestly, after climbing the corporate ladder for years and pouring my heart and soul into the brands I worked for and constantly feeling like I needed to justify my worth, I burned out in a spectacular fashion. Thankfully, I had an incredible support system that afforded me the opportunity to recover, heal, and follow my life’s purpose. To my husband, parents, and lifelong friends: Thank you.
Before I get into my credentials (click here to skip to it), a little about myself as a person. Mental health and wellness has been a part of my personal narrative for (literally) as long as I can remember. Watching my mom cope with (and ultimately, thrive in spite of) dissociative identity disorder, formerly known as multiple personality disorder, all through my childhood and adolescence left me with a strong sense of compassion for those struggling with mental illness (myself included).
My mom is my living proof that great pain is often the catalyst for great change. She taught me that with kindness in your heart, you can get through the darkest of nights. My dad taught me that through tenacity and sheer determination, “this too shall pass.” Together, they taught me to (literally and figuratively), “hold what I got”* and the fog will lift.
*”Hold what ‘cha got” is (verbatim) what my dad told teenage-me over and over again while fixing the fences our backyard horses inevitably broke. This phrase became one of many mantras (and bits of wisdom) in the Strine household.
Armed with incredible parents, a strong foundation, and a circle of phenomenal lifelong friends, I went out into the world…and failed. Okay, “failed” isn’t the right word. I learned from the mistakes I made in young adulthood. And ultimately, those mistakes (along with the lessons from my parents) made me the person I am today. Which is one badass-mutha-shut-yo-mouth creative on a mission to do good work for good people.
Kelly (she / her)
Baltimore and D.C. metro areas of Maryland
Industry Titles: Creative director, brand manager, and marketing communications director
Experience: 13+ years working with nonprofits, small businesses, and global corporate brands
Undergraduate Degree: Bachelor of Science in Visual Communication Design from Stevenson University
Graduate Degree: Master of Science in Management with Marketing Specialization from the University of Maryland Global Campus
Favorite Industry Skills: Strategic branding, information design, brand communication strategy, visual communication design, copywriting, and building meaningful relationships with clients
Hobbies: Caring for horses (aka pony therapy), brainstorming with the best man I know (aka my husband), cuddling with the cat (aka Princess Mina), and working together to raise a good human (aka my stepdaughter)
This sweet girl also identifies as a furry, meaning, she enjoys dressing up and interacting with life as different animal characters. In her own words, she says the characters represent different feelings and help her cope with stressful situations. (I swear, this kid is more emotionally intelligent than all of us.)
Fur-Family, support staff
Meet our fur-fam—our cast of supporting characters! We may not speak the same language, but we understand each other. Caring for animals teaches us empathy, compassion, and how to truly listen to others.
Mina, my muse
This princess hustles all day long for snacks and cuddles. She always asks for what she wants…and doesn’t stop asking until she gets it. Mina reminds us that you can’t take care of others if you don’t take care of yourself first.
Rocket, my mount
Despite his name, this guy is super lazy. He doesn’t want to work, just wants pets and cookies. He reminds us that you can’t control others—you can try to encourage them, but ultimately, they’re going to do what they want to do.
Athena, my empath
This girl must’ve gone through hell. She is distrustful of humans and doesn’t let her guard down until you earn her trust. She teaches us that with kindness and consistency, you can win over even the most apprehensive souls.
Join Our Team
If you’re a fellow left-brained creative and want to join our team, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to introduce yourself. Please be sure to include your resume, portfolio, and let us know why you want to join Left-brained Creative. We look forward to hearing from you!