“ My definition of success is when your profession has transmuted into your purpose. According to me, I am already successful.”
B.A - My name is Brittany Wilson and I am the Creative Director and Lead Graphic Designer of The Idea Girl, a boutique design agency for creative women in business. I am a born and bred Brooklynite, and still residing in the Big Apple. I went to Kingsborough Community College where I received my AAS in Fashion Marketing and went to Brooklyn College for Business Operations and Finance for undergrad.
J.K- What inspired you to develop The Idea Girl?
B.A- This might sound crazy to some, but there will be some who get it. Back in the Winter of 2016, I heard a clear message in the shower one evening and I’m not sure if it was from God/The Universe or one of my ancestors. The voice rung loud and clear, “You need to recreate the Black Wall Street.”. At first, I was like WTF, but then shortly after I subconsciously started researching the history of towns like Tulsa and Rosewood and dove deep into Susu Economics. I received my degree in Marketing and didn’t complete my undergrad in Business Operations and felt as if it were the biggest waste of time. I knew I wanted to have my own business after my epiphany but I couldn’t exactly pinpoint what I’d be doing. Then one day, the name The Idea Girl came to me when I was on my lunch break. I realized that I was the go-to person for ideas, strategies, and most importantly anything that involved aesthetics and felt the name was befitting. The idea of establishing a design business didn’t come to mind till a year later when I designed a flyer for an event series. I am a naturally talented illustrator and sort of diminished my skill by trading in my creative hat for a corporate one after high school. It triggered the same exact pleasure as it did when I was 7 years old, sketching outfits for my dolls during class. That’s when I decided to turn The Idea Girl into a design agency back in the Spring of 2017 and I’ve never looked back. I work with Black women to manifest their wildest ideas into fruition buy them transition from corporate and not-so corporate settings and empowering them into entrepreneurship through brand strategy and design. My profession is my purpose, and my job is to provide opportunities for my sisters by plugging them in with other professionals and teaching them skills I learned that helped The Idea Girl flourish from its humble beginnings.
J.K-What is your key to balancing your work and personal life?
B.A- The key is to schedule and organize the time for both. Before I start work is my personal “me time” for reading, catching up on news, a quick yoga session, a hot shower, and a nice cup of tea. My work schedule is pretty similar to most corporate structures (9-5pm). After about 5-6pm I shut down my laptop and turn off all notifications for emails and messages until the next workday. After 6pm I spend time with my boyfriend, family, and have occasional wine downs with my girlfriends. I have really strict boundaries to keep my work life from interfering with my personal life which I had to learn to instill through experience. Most importantly keep your business and personal life SEPARATE. Business should never be personal and therefore all relationships should be clearly defined and boundaries need to be established. I used to stress over business interactions during my personal time and it was not conducive to my mental health at all whatsoever. Making friends in business isn’t impossible but also keep in mind that there are no friends in business and you must always make the best decision for your company, not your relationship.
J.K-What is a typical day at the TheIdeaGirl office?
B.A- My days can change depending on my work scope, there will be days where I’m designing all day or days when I’m attending conferences or creative directing a photoshoot for a client. Typically on the daily, I work from a co-working space and arrive anytime between 9-10AM. I start my day by checking in with current design clients before answering any emails. My days normally consist of calls with prospects, clients, and my team members. I am very adamant on client management and project management so I spend a great deal of time on the backend of my business. After about 11:30AM, I start designing until the assigned tasks of the day are complete. There will be times when I pull an all-nighter if my creativity levels on 100, but I try to limit those moments as much as possible.
J.K-If you were given the opportunity to execute a project for an elite client, who would it be?
B.A- I would LOVE to design a home goods collection for Target, that’s literally a dream of mine.
J.K- Your style is eclectic and colorful, what inspires your sense of fashion?
B.A- My grandmother definitely influenced my style. She was an Aries, very bold, extra, and over the top and I as her granddaughter emulate her as much as possible. For the remainder of her life, she was confined to a wheelchair due to disease and used that as an opportunity to dress elaborately from head to toe. I even wear her ring, a super gaudy sapphire on the daily. She was unafraid of doing the most and I too do the UTMOST lol. I love anything that looks unordinary, things that make people go “That’s weird, but she made it WERK!”. My style is pretty unconventional, but the way I dress on the outside reflects the way I feel on the inside.
J.K- Please, please tell us, what is your beauty secret?
B.A- Glossier Cleanser, BaseButter Radiate Face Jelly, and The Ordinary serums have done wonders for my skin and are heavy in my rotation. But the key is to be consistent with your skin regimen. It’s one of my favorite forms of self-care! Also try to avoid heavy makeup and foundation if you can, after leaving those behind I finally got the skin I was wishing for!
J.K -What is your advice to young women entrepreneurs that are going into the creative digital industry?
B.A-Instead of searching for resources, become resourceful which will surpass your creativity by tenfold. When I first began designing I couldn’t afford a new laptop or Adobe Suites. For a year I designed on Canva and learned how to make it work by adopting my own design style and focused on visual cohesion without any education on design. I watched Youtube videos to learn new skills and didn’t let Imposter Syndrome hold me back because I didn’t have a design degree, Don’t let a lack of resources keep you from leveling up, level-up by becoming resourceful and making it work with what you have.
J.K- Where do you see The Idea Girl in the next 5 years?
B.A- I see The Idea Girl being one of the top design agencies internationally and me teaching other designers my tricks and tools. I am also working on a few things that will be seen when you see it =).
J.K- Lastly, what is your definition of success?
B.A- My definition of success is when your profession has transmuted into your purpose. According to me, I am already successful.
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