How Creative Critique Began - And Where We're Going
Within every problem lies an opportunity.
When our co-founder, Joey Ruse, launched a web design business after graduating from Kennesaw State University in Atlanta, Georgia, he found himself constantly asking friends, family, and even random strangers at coffee shops (back before COVID) for their advice on his creative work in progress.
He found that unless someone had formal training or background in his area of design, their feedback lacked quality, actionable insight that he needed to create better work. Friends and family were biased to tell him his work looked great, and strangers - whether they were designers or not - lacked incentive to engage and provide the quality, actionable feedback he needed.
Joey looked online and found various blogs and forums, which again lacked the incentive structures to engage with feedback requests. He asked his friends from design school if they had any recommendations on communities he could join, but they could only provide empathy for his dilemma. They expressed frustration that after they graduated, they lost the collaborative community that was a pivotal part of their design school experience. Joey felt that if school is meant to prepare you for life after school, then the software used in school should still be accessible after graduation.
So, he set out to create a solution, knowing he would need help.
Teamwork really does make the dream work.
A mutual connection introduced Joey to Eban Bisong who also graduated from Kennesaw State. Eban worked on the technology side of several startups before meeting Joey, and after learning Creative Critique's vision to empower and connect creatives, he came on board and immediately took ownership of the technology side of the startup.
As one of Eban's first decisions, he brought on Duvall Smith, a Georgia State grad and former tech colleague. Duvall led the product development, and they both leveraged their networks to grow the team while Joey built out a pipeline of beta users. In under 4 months, the founding team was able to build and launch a beta of the Creative Critique platform to university design professors.
While Creative Critique's story is still being written, and the team and platform user base are both continuing to grow, Joey, Eban, and Duvall are building their partnership, team, and processes to extend beyond Creative Critique's acquisition and into future entrepreneurial endeavors.
You can learn more about Creative Critique's team and culture here.