Ladies Who Create

In this inspiring episode of 'Ladies who Create,' co-hosts Jess Rosenberg and Liz Meyer interview the dynamic duo behind Goodside Studio: Jessica Strelioff and Danielle LaRoy. They discuss their individual journeys in the creative industry, from working at giants like Dropbox and Asana to forging their pathway by founding Goodside. Sharing insights into their collaborative work ethos, the challenges (and successes) of client interactions, and their approach to brand-building, they also delve into the role and potential of AI in the creative process. Aside from professional insights, the conversation touches upon the importance of sharing knowledge, the power of manifesting one's intentions, and maintaining a karmic loop of positivity within the creative community. This episode is a treasure trove of wisdom for anyone looking to make their mark in the design world or seeking inspiration to venture into creative entrepreneurship.

Creators & Guests

Jessica Rosenberg
Co-host of Ladies who Create, Creative Director, Mom
Liz Meyer
Creative Director, Owner of the design studio Datalands, mom
Danielle LaRoy
Creative Director and co-founder of Goodside Studio
Jessica Strelioff
Creative Director and co-founder of Goodside Studio

What is Ladies Who Create?

A podcast highlighting extraordinary women in the design and creative industry. Hosted by Jess Rosenberg and Liz Meyer.

Jessica Rosenberg: Hello, welcome
back to ladies who create a show

where we'll be interviewing the
incredibly inspiring women who are

trailblazing the design and creative


I'm your co host Jess Rosenberg and

I'm a creative director
currently working in the

tech industry.

Liz Meyer: And I'm your
other co host, Liz Meyer,

a creative director and one
half of the Datalands duo.

And in this episode, we're joined
by the talented ladies who make

up the agency, taking the design
world by storm, Goodside, Jessica

Strelioff and Danielle LaRoy.

Jessica Rosenberg: After years
working in house and agency side,

Danielle and Jessica teamed up
to create a new kind of studio.

One part visual, one part verbal, brought
together to build full of life brands

that make the world a bit brighter.

Welcome, Jessica and Danielle.

Thanks so much for taking
the time to join us.

We're super excited to have you.

Danielle LaRoy: Thanks for having us.

Jessica Strelioff: We're
so happy to be here.

Jessica Rosenberg: I know we have
a few questions planned and maybe

we can start with pre Goodside,
what your individual journeys up to

co founding Goodside looked like.

You both had really impressive
careers before founding the studio

together, so I would love to hear just
a little bit more about your paths

that you both took and the paths that
led you to where you currently are.

Danielle LaRoy: Yeah, we had, um,
well, we had pretty parallel paths,

which is kind of nice because it gave
Jess and I a shared foundation of,

sort of how we think about brands and
how we think about the work we do.

I uh, right out of school
went and worked at Dropbox.

Um, So it's like back in its
kind of stick figure era.

So way, way back in the day.

I was on their marketing team, loved
it, sort of followed the creative

work that was happening on to the
agency side, and right around 2017,

um, joined a hybrid interactive brand
studio called Upperquad, that's where

Jess and I met, um, and worked there
as a strategist for a couple years.

Um, The time at Dropbox, I think, kind
of taught me how to like, from the

inside scale a brand and then working
on the agency side, I discovered

how brands are actually built.

Um, Jess and I worked together then
for a couple of years before she

left and uh, went independent and I
pretty quickly after that followed.

Um, And we worked together independently
for a couple of years, sort of

trying all different kinds of models
and then found a Goodside about.

Almost a year ago today.

Jessica Strelioff: And um, while
Danielle was at Dropbox, I was at Asana.

So we had sort of a shared, uh,

startup hypergrowth stage startup.


So I was there hopefully to
rebrand there internally.


That was like my first sort of.

in house experience of leading
a rebrand, which was really

really exciting and fun to see.

Um, before that I had experience
working in house at Yahoo.

So I was doing like product design and
like right out of school before that

I was uh, working at a studio called
Farm Design, which is a really small

brand studio in Pasadena, California,
which is close to where I grew up.

Um, so that was my
first job out of school.

And that was actually a really great
experience because I was doing like all

the things that you think you're going
to do when you go to design school, like.

I was like designing coffee
packaging and restaurant branding and

editorial layouts and all this stuff.

And that was really, really awesome.

Um, and during that time I was
also working really closely

with the founder of the studio.

And so that was a really nice sort of
like business side, deep dive of you

know, how to run a creative business.

Um, so that was really nice, but
yeah, Danielle and I um, you know,

we both had that shared in house
experience, which was really helpful.

And then when we met at
Upper Quad, it was like.

Oh my gosh, we just like,
speak the same language.

We get each other you know, like,
we have those sort of colleagues

where you meet up and you're just
like, oh, yeah, immediately clicking

like, you immediately you know, work
wife and all that fun stuff, so.

Uh, was really awesome.

Jessica Rosenberg: Yeah.

Those relationships are so
special and really stay with

you for the rest of your life.

So since both leaving in house world full
time, other full time jobs, how did you

two start working together on your own?

What did that look like?

Jessica Strelioff: I basically bribed
Danielle to work with me on as many

projects as I could until until I
convinced her to go independent.

Um, kind of Joking, but kind of serious.

So I probably, a year or two before you
went completely independent, Danielle.

Um, And I, I had just like,
you know, been, I was a

creative director at Upperquad.

And so I was like kind of
in meetings all the time.

I was kind of feeling a little bit
burnout creatively and like missed working

you know, hands on, doing the hands on
work um, missed working directly with

like founders of smaller companies.

Uh, We were at Upperquad, we were working
with a lot of like The big companies

in the world, which is really a great
experience, but I really loved working

with smaller early stage companies that
needed a brand built from the ground up.

Um, So I I left to freelance
full time and just like.

with founders.

I had some freelance projects
lined up um, and made the jump

and just started doing it.

I was like, I'll try this for like
three months, see how it goes.

Uh, If I hate it, I can always get
another full time job at an agency or in

house or you know, try something else.

Um, And then I loved it.

Uh, And I loved it so much.

I kept telling Danielle that over and
over again, and then would just like.

I started hiring her for just
like, small little things.

Like, I'm like, hey, they need
like, some brand strategy help.

Like, Can you, can you just like, come on
for a little bit like, behind the scenes?

You don't have to like,
meet with them or anything.

Um, And then that evolved into bigger
and bigger scale collaborations.

Um, And then, Danielle, you left in 2020.

Danielle LaRoy: Yeah,
yeah, I left in 2020.

Basically a couple of years of
just saying, come work with me.

It's amazing.

We get to work directly with founders.

Um, And I think it, you know, once you
had left, I realized how special it is to

work with someone who kind of understands
the strategy side of the world.

I think what's unique about.

Jess and I is like, I work on
the strategy side, obviously,

and she's on the visual side.

And sort of having that shared language
is kind of rare between designers and

strategists or designers and copywriters.

And I think we're both able to speak
that kind of strategy language,

which I just discovered over time
was like, actually quite, quite rare.

And wasn't just.

The, the usual kind of
creative strategist dynamic,

Liz Meyer: now that you've
been working together for a bit

as Goodside, how has it been?

Has it morphed over time?

Have your roles evolved
and grown together?

Jessica Strelioff: Totally.

Yeah, I feel like we're
experimenting constantly.

Every single project that we
take on, we're trying something

just a little bit differently.

Um, And even before we officially formed
Goodside, we had tried working together

at like every different capacity,
which I know Danielle lightly touched

on, but it's like we, Worked, um, you
know, like where I would bring her on.

We worked where she would bring me on.

We work, we bid on projects
together as independent freelancers.

Um, We even like embedded into larger
agencies where we walked, worked

as sort of like a brand duo team.

So we experimented with like
all different ways of working.

And so we went into forming Goodside
with a really great understanding of what

worked well and what didn't work well.

But even with that, like every client and
project and goals and timelines and scope

and everything, it's just so different.

So we're always.

the way that we work quite a bit.

Yeah, which is fun.


liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: Yeah.

Danielle LaRoy: it's

Jessica Strelioff: and fresh.

Liz Meyer: No, that's awesome.

I, I have a similar situation.

I'm in a duo as well and I Every
project is completely new, you meet

these clients and then you build these
relationships with them and you have

to kind of morph who you are depending
on who the client is yeah it's a hard

dynamic when you're like, A two person
team and then every project is a little

different and you're everything has
to change slightly for each client.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: When
you have an agency client versus

an in house client, do you feel
like it's wildly different dynamic?

Jessica Strelioff: Oh, definitely.

We actually just worked with an agency.

Um, And it's much more like we sort
of morph to their working style.

Like more so we don't actually
don't work with agencies.

I would say all that much.

We there's sort of one
that we work quite a bit.

Um, I would say the majority
of our projects are.

Directly with companies or
like sort of in house teams.

Um, But I would say when we are working
with agency clients, it's definitely more

like we morph to their workflow and their
sort of like team dynamic and structure

and how they want to run the process.

And we sort of more come
in as like brand experts.

Um, But everything else is sort of
dictated by, by, them and sort of

their relationship with the client.

So in some ways it's like less stressful
in some ways it's more stressful

because we don't have that, that.

Really tight dynamic with the client
and like trust with the client.

Um, But yeah, I don't know anything that

Danielle LaRoy: yeah, we, there
try not to, we try not to morph too

much like who we are at our core.

Um, I think.

You know, One of the tempting things
when we started GoodSide was to

take whatever projects came our way.

And I think, um, what we have been trying
to do and be really conscious of is

like taking projects that actually make
sense for the two of us um, projects

that really prioritize having a strategy
set before getting into visual and

verbal identity, um, I think a lot of
folks, especially in the beginning,

were reaching out as with like visual
only projects or verbal only Projects.



yeah, exactly our websites.

Um, And I think one of the things that
we have continued to try and be conscious

of is like saying yes to only projects
that are really right for us and true

to who we are and who we want to be.

Um, And that has sort of become like a
flywheel, which has been really nice.

So over time we've gotten definitely
Projects that that fit us better.

Um, But in the beginning, it was
definitely hard not to just like sort

of chameleon our way into like saying
yes to every project that we could.

Um, Because that's always tempting

Jessica Rosenberg: totally.

I'm super curious when you get
requests, for the visual rebrands,

how much educating do you both
have to do around your process,

especially around the strategy piece?

Cause that's such a core piece
of that sort of initiative.

Do you find yourselves having to educate
prospective clients on the importance

of that phase and that sort of project?

Danielle LaRoy: always.

Yes Yeah, um, it is so common.


Um, And not yeah, not for any.

Good reason.

I think truthfully, like the word
strategy is so everything and nothing.

It's kind of hard to to explain what we
mean by strategy because everybody has

their own you know, different definition.

And so that's kind of the first component
is like explaining to clients what we

mean when we say you know, we set the
strategy first and really that's like

establishing your reason for being
your kind of unique point of view

and laying out this like foundation.

Um, And so, yeah, I would say that
like, a lot, maybe most of our

client conversations in our first
new business call are about like,

setting that, that understanding
that shared kind of language of what

is strategy and why does it matter.

Um, And I think once you.

Lay it out as like, you know, we're going
to shape your story and make sure that

when you ask your product team, your
sales team, your you know, engineers,

what is it that we're doing here?

Everybody kind of has a
common understanding and, uh.

You know, vernacular for what
it is that we're doing here.

And then we kind of build on top
of that with visual and verbal

identity that that all to life.

Jessica Strelioff: And I would say
it's rare once we explain that, that

people are like, Oh, we don't need that.

Like, you know, They're like, that's
like, people are like, Oh yeah, we do.

We actually do need that.

But a lot of the times if you know, we
have a form on our website and take form

on our website for people to reach out
um, projects, inquiries, A lot of the

time they don't check that they need
brand positioning or brand title because

don't understand quite what it is.

But once we say that, they're
like, Oh yeah, we definitely

need that and understand.

That's an important part of the

just like a new logo.

So I

Jessica Rosenberg: importance and value of
that, work and that stuff in the process.

Liz Meyer: Yeah, I think like coming
in as experts and just, leading

the charge and figuring out what
the brand is supposed to be doing.

And what, what what are we doing here?

You know, Kind of conversation
that a lot of people aren't having.

Yeah, I think it's really important
when you're rebranding definitely.

So that's, awesome that you, are able
to educate them in that way to explain

like, "Hey, we need to do this."

Danielle LaRoy: Yeah.


When I think back about like back to my
in house days um, that was one of the

things that I didn't really understand
we were sort of missing or was in flux.

There was like, that was very much
I mean, in a hyper growth stage,

there was sort of a lot of different.

Like spaghetti on the wall.

We'll just try try a bunch
of things and see what sticks

as far as positioning goes.

Um, And it does create kind
of like internal friction.

And I didn't really, obviously,
I didn't know that that was a

positioning problem at the time.

Um, But then once we.

Locked into it once there was like an all
hands and we set our strategy and everyone

kind of could get on the same page.

That's when I really that was like my
first experience understanding that like,

oh, wow, positioning and strategy matters
so much both like externally, of course,

but also internally the teams that are you
know, for the team that's working on this.

All together.

Liz Meyer: I had a question, off of your
website, you're speaking about these

dream briefs that you're interested in.

What is this?

Has it been working?


Very curious to know because I would
love to put it out there like some

of the dream things that I'd love to
do, but I feel like too scary way.

Jessica Rosenberg: It's published

on your site, it's amazing.

You're like really manifesting
your, the project you want and which

types, which I think is so cool.

So yeah, I would love to hear more
about how that's going and what

it is too, for those listening.

Jessica Strelioff: mean, I swear it works.

We have had.

To answer your first question like, we
have had projects that are on that list

of Dream Briefs um, just like, come
to us, not necessarily even because

they read that article, but just, I
think we put it out in the world and

we're very clear about what we're
excited about, and we talk a lot about

it, and we share it publicly, um, but
yeah I mean, I think Danielle and I

were just like, brainstorming Dream
projects when we first started Goodside.

We're actually writing, uh, another
dream brief part to post uh, coming

out soon with more, more, project
ideas, but we're just like what

what do we want Goodside to work on?

Like, What are we excited about?

Um, What we want to see in our
portfolio, what companies do

we want to help with branding?

Um, So we sat down and just
like, started creating a list.

Um, And.

Yeah, a lot of people have
reached out to us about that.

Uh, Both like creatives, but also
potential clients were just like,

seem to really be excited about it.

So we're to I think every year,

Jessica Rosenberg: awesome.

So you mentioned that.

Some projects that were on there,
some types of projects, or maybe

even brands or companies that
you're manifesting have come to you.

So there is something about putting
your intentions out into the world

and actually seeing them manifest.


Jessica Strelioff: years ago, but
I swear there's something to it,

putting it out into the um, it
helps you attract what you want.

Jessica Rosenberg: Like
vision boarding too.

Is that part of your process too?

Jessica Strelioff: I have a

Jessica Rosenberg: your dream briefs?

I now,

Liz Meyer: I love it.

Jessica Strelioff: so Yeah,

Liz Meyer: Maybe

Jessica Strelioff: personal but Yeah.

Liz Meyer: Maybe I should try that.

I see every Pinterest idea, every
like, fun, you gotta make your

own luck kind of stuff, and I'm
like, eh, but is it gonna work?

I'll just focus on work,
working it out you know, like,

versus dreaming about things.

So yeah, maybe you this is
my moment to be inspired

Jessica Strelioff: Yeah, I think
like the act of creating is more.

At least how I feel about it is like the
act of creating it is the more important

part because then you're just like able
to articulate more clearly what you

want and really understand that versus

like, I mean,

I don't even really look at the vision
board that's on my desktop that much.

Like it's not that final output,
but it was like the process of

actually sitting down and giving
myself a few hours to create that

and really think about intentionally

you know,

where I want to take my day to day.


That was the most helpful Actually,
Grace Walker Part of what inspired

that was Grace Walker shared with me
Life Compass, is that what it's called?

Year Compass?

Have you heard of this?

It's Like a workbook that,


asks you a lot of


really thought provoking questions
at the start of The year, a new year.

And I never done that before.

I was like, I don't know


I'm not really like super into new
year's resolutions necessarily,

but it's a free workbook.


I think it's your compass.

com or something like that.

I filled it out and then that
inspired the vision board.

And it was like a really nice process.


And we did something
similar for Goodside too.

Like Danielle and I, at the beginning
of every year, we'll sit down and


do a company version and also personal one

Jessica Rosenberg: I love



It's free

Jessica Strelioff: It is.


Danielle LaRoy: that manifesting blog
post that we wrote of all of the project

our dream briefs was like a fun exercise
because we got to say okay, what are

the industries that we're interested in?

What are like the types of, I don't
know, folks within those industries

that we would be excited about?


And we haven't


we found that I think
people can see themselves in


the different elements.

So even if clients

you know,

don't fit perfectly into,

you know, the,

the company that we
described being a dream brief


they'll see themselves in


the healthcare piece of the puzzle or


the pet food piece of the puzzle.

And they're like

you know,

we're not doing exactly that,
but here's what we're doing.

Here's our unique point of view.

What do you think?

And are you interested?


Liz Meyer: That's

Danielle LaRoy: think.

Liz Meyer: really cool

Danielle LaRoy: We always talk about that.

It's like one of our green flags is
like when a client comes and they

know who we are or have a reason for
kind of reaching out you know, either.

It's like, we really like your
approach or we love the work you

did for this company previously.

Um, That's always like a major
green flag for us because.

I think those clients us and
and want to work with us.

And likewise, it's you know,
it's always client relationships

are our two way street.

It's not just we don't
just need to like them.

They need to like us to

Jessica Rosenberg: sure.

And I love some of the adjectives
you have on that page too.

It's like you're really specific about
the types of brands, but then you have

rebellious and crafts people and smile.

And so you get a very clear signal
for the type of work you love doing.

So let's say it's a brand that's not
any of the ones you list here, but they

are rebellious and they care about craft
and they're vibing with your mood boards

and the past projects that you've done.

Like that gives a really strong.

as well into the

type of

Jessica Rosenberg: work and
humans that you are curious.

Since you mentioned green flags,
this is a question, but what are some

yellow or like red flags that you've
come across with, potential clients?

If you're comfortable talking about it,

Danielle LaRoy: really, Jess is
really good at sniffing out red flags.

Um, Like she'll hear a comment
and be like, Ooh, I think

they're not,

they're not, ready for this exercise.



she's very good at, she's

kind of like

attuned to the client a way
that I find really impressive.

Jessica Strelioff: I think, I is the
more optimistic of us, and I'm the

more maybe slightly pessimistic, and
so that might be, like, in, but I, I

think I'm, I'm making sure that it's
like the right time for the company.

So, like, Making sure that they
have the right people in place, um,

which typically means that there's
someone that has enough bandwidth to

manage a brand project internally,
even if they're not necessarily the

one that's the final decision maker.

Um, It could be like a marketer that's
making sure that like, Everyone can give

consolidate feedback or like someone
that helps with scheduling and managing

you know, the client side of the team.

So that's like 1 thing we look for.

Um, If anyone has ever like bad
mouthing past experience with

working with creative, that's like
a definite yellow, maybe red flag.

Um, I will ask more questions
before I immediately jump to like.

a red flag with that one um, because
it could have just been, like, not a

right fit, but you're coming out the
gate with like, oh, we had a really bad

experience with like, three creatives
that we worked with in the past.

I'm like, okay, that might be,
like, a more of a you a you

Jessica Rosenberg: Yeah.

Jessica Strelioff: I think if, if they're
really trying to talk us down on pricing,

like I you know, pricing is always a
really collaborative should feel really

collaborative scoping and pricing should
feel like a two way conversation for sure.

But if they're like, really trying to
nickel and dime us and like, it's, it's,

a lot of back and forth and that phase,
it kind of gives that taste in our mouth.


Danielle LaRoy: I think timing
is another one where it's

like, you know,

if we, I think it does come down to like
respect for the craft and our and green

flag is like clients that are willing
to wait, because usually we're booked

up like a month or two in advance.

And so folks that are willing to wait for
us are like, we really appreciate that.

Um, The,

the flip side of that is folks that
are like, can we cut a week here?

Can we cut a week There?


Jessica Strelioff: can't you



Danielle LaRoy: of cutting

Jessica Strelioff: like, we just


Danielle LaRoy: think we get folks
where we're like, okay, what is the

you know,

what is the time pressure here?

And they're just like


we just need to move fast,
in an arbitrary sense.

people just need a logo.

Sometimes that's just all they need.

Maybe they have a whole bunch of VC
pitches coming up and they just need a

logo and they just need a nice little,
like pitch deck and then that's it.

And then later on they need the full
brand it's, but figuring out those.

Those personality types and the, business
types also what stage are they in?

We get that stuff a lot as well.

There's a lot of pre
seed companies that are

Liz Meyer: they think very big
and they want all of the things.

But they don't have their strategy

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: their
brand even settled in their own mind.

So yeah, it's very, it's an interesting,
challenge to come across when

you're first in taking a client.

So I commend you on
saying no certain people.


I think it's hard to do.

Jessica Strelioff: It is.

I mean, We we have a forcing
function of we're just small.

We are only two people.



intentionally are creating lifestyles
that are sustainable and not creating

burnout for either of us, ideally.

And so we don't.

Try to overwhelm ourselves with


taking on five, six projects

at a time.

We really try to stick to two or
three, three is like the absolute max.


And so just because of that,
like we really, that's like the

fourth injunction we have to say
no a lot, which sometimes can be


really, heartbreaking because we
have so many incredible people

reaching out where we're to do

all of

all of the projects, but


we just can't sometimes, so we were for
a ton of workout and that's like a huge.

Huge, I think, joy that we get


is like referring work to people
that are a better fit, whether

it's like the company's too early
stage and they just need a sprint


so we refer a lot of work to
people that do more sprint type

work early stage companies,




they need a much larger agency because
they need a ton of handholding and

they need a huge scope of work.

And I'm just like, Hey, we're
not the right fit for us.

We'll work up to that.

So, um,


you know,

people are just available.

Sooner than us for a better fit.

Like we don't do a ton of


we get a lot of inquiries for not a lot,
but like some inquiries for like crypto.



we don't really do crypto brands.

We could, but we just


aren't as interested in that.

And so we'll refer to people.

We know people that are really
interested in that industry.


So yeah, it

kind of

works out well.

Liz Meyer: Yeah.

Actually I have a
question about referrals.

I just recently, this is very weird that
I just recently discovered that referrals

sometimes come with like fees included.

Like just, this is such a strange thing.

I always thought it was like, just
send some work to your friends.

Pay it forward.

Be nice.

But I've realized I've left a lot
of, stuff on the table there just

business wise as like referrals
as building your business and your

network and all of that stuff.

So you have a, like a
referral process in place?

Do you fit the client with
the right person studio?

Jessica Strelioff: We just do
the same as you do, where it's


pay it

Like, um,

We know we, so we've worked with
people that we've actually referred

work to people that do have


a referral fee, like reward, where


they'll give us 10 percent or
a thousand bucks or whatever,

maybe if a project lands.

And that's always



really, nice


but we would refer that

work anyways, like that's just

kind of

like a nice bonus.

Um, uh,

We have actually been on the receiving
end, though, where people have asked us


hey, can, we'll send you this.

project, but we're going to take a
10 or 20 percent cut if it lands.

And we would be fine with that, but it

kind of

was a weird way to


we didn't know


this particular person I'm


talking about very well, but it was

kind of

like a weird, I don't know, it gave me
a weird feeling a little bit where I

was like, I don't know if I really want.

To be asking people to pay me 10
to 20 percent of our project lands.

Like I understand like why some
people do it, but for me, I'm like


I'd rather us just send clients
to the right people that

need the work at the time.



And like, everyone's happy in
the end, like makes us feel good.

It makes them feel good.

It makes the client good
you know, the brands better.

So I don't know.

That's kind of how we look at


Danielle LaRoy: yeah, think we're

um, I mean

back to the yeah, I was just gonna say
back to the like manifesting thing.

I think we are


woo enough that we really do believe that

karma, you know,

it all just comes back around.

And so Yeah, I think we're like, I
get why people have referral fees.

Um, We,

we don't ever plan to have
or take referral fees.


Because we just think,

Jessica Rosenberg: Yeah,

Danielle LaRoy: you refer to the right
folks, also clients remember you well.

that's like a big piece

Jessica Rosenberg: totally.


it might be a little
woo woo, but not really.

I think it's really just
kindness and paying it forward.

And people remember that in all aspects
of how you're kind to folks, whether

you're referring someone for a job or
sending them work it'll come back to you

the end.


Yeah, that's awesome.

some other agency.

They were really happy with the agency,
but then they reached back out to

us later for more work or for, to
refer us to another potential client

Jessica Strelioff: um,

Jessica Rosenberg: just because
they remembered that interaction.

Jessica Strelioff: So, you
know, Works out, works out well

Liz Meyer: I'm not against
referral fees or anything.

I think it's fascinating.

I cannot believe I just
learned that this is a thing.

The way that I've done it, like in
that networking way is I have referred

people to projects or to speak to other
people as like mentors, stuff like that.

And I just find like the gratification
of just seeing something.

Good come out of it or like a new
friendship or just like a beautiful little

design that came out of the, collaboration
is just that's, I don't know, I love that.

So I don't know, No, totally.

was like some sort of referral,
like web ring somewhere, one

of those web 1999 that everyone

was like circular economy.

Jessica Strelioff: You're

in our, you're in our ring.


Liz Meyer: Oh my God, thanks.

That's so nice.

Jessica Strelioff: Um,

Liz Meyer: Awesome.

Danielle LaRoy: we actually I mean, we
did just see a project that came out

of a referral we sent to another agency
because we just couldn't squeeze it in.

it was so fun to see.

The resulting work, because we were
like this was, this was such a good fit.

all like, crushed this project.

Um, And then we reached
out to that agency.

We're like, we should
really like, hang out.

Jessica Strelioff: yeah.

Danielle LaRoy: Yeah,

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: Oh, is that

Liz Meyer: the Smith & Dixon

Danielle LaRoy: nice.

Very cool.

Jessica Strelioff: Addiction.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: I

Danielle LaRoy: just talked about it.

where it came from.

I was like, I, cause I was,
Twitter today or X, sorry.

was just saying, I was like,

Jessica Strelioff: It's Twitter.

that's like a nice pair.

I know it is.

It's Twitter.

It's forever.

But I was like, cause , I know them
separately and I saw that and I was

like, Oh my gosh, that's so cool that
couldn't tell if it was a collaboration

or a referral and then I read deeper into
it, but I was like, Oh, that's so cool.

I love that.

That's so

Liz Meyer: heartwarming

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: in a way.

Jessica Strelioff: They
did such a That's nice.

that brand.

Uh, it was, It was so fun to see.

Like, And totally different than I
think what we would have come up with.

So it was just like,
that's part of the fun too.

Danielle LaRoy: Totally.

Jessica Rosenberg: One more
question about the work.

And then I'd love to get
into life outside of work.

So I know work life balance is super
important, but when you're getting into a

project at the beginning of the project,
how, what's your process look like?

Where do you find inspiration?

And is it the same or
repeatable each time?

Or is it different?

Danielle LaRoy: Yeah, good question.

Um, It's always a little I mean, it's
always different project to project,

but the process to figure out where
to look for inspiration, I think

is, is, kind of always consistent.

Um, So we pick our projects off with
two weeks of discovery, which is really

where we're kind of like, Doing intake
and and learning as much as we can.

Um, That process always for us includes
interviews, both with the core team

and kind of the stakeholders that will
be there throughout the project, but

then also with the target audience.

So folks that we're actually trying
to speak to, um, and usually in those

conversations will hear something or
they'll draw parallel that we wouldn't

have expected or like there will just
be some nugget of goodness in You know,

sort of hidden in those conversations
that will lead us to a rabbit hole.

Um, And then that'll really
kind of like drive us.

So, you know, One of the like,
a good example is we worked

recently on an architecture brand,
and they said something about.

nature that reminded me
of a poem I had read.

And then I was kind of like, oh, I should
really look back at Mary Oliver's poetry.

And then that became the source of like
inspiration for our typography treatment,

because the way that she actually kind of
typeset her book was really interesting.

And so I sent a picture to Jess
and was like, check this out.

What do you think of this?

And so, um, yeah, I think we always kind
of try to like, listen for those little

nuggets in those conversations, because
those Those then lead you down kind of

random inspiration rabbit holes that
can be really fruitful and interesting.

Jessica Rosenberg: Very

Jessica Strelioff: we define,


core themes or core brand idea

like, we'll,

we'll typically list out maybe 8 to
10 themes that we've heard through

those conversations or through

you know, sort of

that intake process.


And those become oftentimes a
jumping off point for things like.

Visual treatment, brand motifs,

um, sort of

the graphic language that we
shape in addition to the brand

story that we ended up crafting
for them and the brand position.


so yeah


it's, a lot of like upfront
research that inspires that.

And then

you know,

we always.

get inspiration from like
the traditional places too

you know,

we're all like on Pinterest
and arena and brand new and all

the all the places that you go


for visual and verbal eye candy.


we try to as much as possible
look in unexpected places.

First before we're just like going
down the trend rabbit hole of

like, you know,

what's in right now.



Danielle LaRoy: I feel like


Jessica Strelioff: we'll

Danielle LaRoy: books.

Jessica Strelioff: Go ahead.


Danielle LaRoy: Yeah, I feel like
history is always like a really

useful path to go down that sort
of one of our most reliable.

You know, Venues for finding inspiration.

It's like, okay, let's look at the
history of the industry, or where their

name came from, or, you know, um, I
think there's always, there's just

a lot of good stories that happened
way back when and, and we can kind

of like pull those into the present,
and that's always really interesting.

Jessica Rosenberg: Nice.

How about AI?

I know I've seen some tinkering
on your end, Jessica, on Twitter

with some mid journey explorations.

Have you been leaning into AI at
all to help in that ideation phase?

Jessica Strelioff: A little bit.

I maybe not as much in the ideation phase,
but more in like round one presentations

like, you know, a lot of other companies
that we work with are early stage.

And so it's like trying to figure
out the right brand for them,

but also the brand that they can
actually implement from like.

cost perspective and like
resource perspective.

Um, And so like in round one, we'll
show typically two to four options

of a brand direction and we'll lay
out the pros and cons of each one.

And some of those are like, Hey,
you're going to need to hire.

An illustrator or photographer to
implement this work, and that's going

to cost around X, Y, Z, um, and,
or you know, we could go down this

direction, which maybe we could use AI.

There are pros and cons to that.

Um, you know, There's a lot of.

value conversations that are had
around AI with companies right now.

Um, We have some sort of guiding
principles that we use around AI.

Like I will never input an artist's name.

Um, If I'm generating like using the
journey, but I, I still think it pulls.

from artists regardless.

So it's like, yeah, it's trying to
find a balance there when it comes

to like what we feel good about.

Um, Sometimes we'll just show it
as like round one proof of concept

like, hey, here's stuff generated
with AI, but we recommend hiring

this illustrator um, for this work.

Um, And typically that's what the
clients that we work with end up

feeling good about um, or they go
in a direction that doesn't require

sort of that image generation.

Yeah Do you ever get?

AI is a tool


I think it's Yeah.

a cool tool, but it's not going to
hopefully replace us anytime soon.

Jessica Rosenberg: I don't know.


I don't think it will.

I don't know.

I'm hopeful about it.

I agree.

I see it as a tool too.

Any favorite

Liz Meyer: the same sort of way like
coming up with references that I

see in my head that I cannot find.

So it's yeah, it's like a rabbit hole
that I get to go down and explore and find

the thing that I'm trying to make that
would take me like three months to make.

But I need to show it in a
presentation within that week.

So it's like you can't and even

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: like,

Liz Meyer: even about

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: like

Liz Meyer: sourcing art at that point.

It's more of like just the
reference of there's something

that I'd like the client to

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: you know,

Liz Meyer: to move towards, but,

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: um,

Liz Meyer: I've never seen it before.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: So.

How do I,

Liz Meyer: How do I, get that onto paper?

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: I mean,

Liz Meyer: Normally what we used
to do is we would sketch things.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: Um,

Liz Meyer: I would sketch them and then
I'd have a 10 minute long lecture on

what I'd sketched and then it would,

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: you know,

Liz Meyer: not go as well
as I would want it to

but you know,

Liz Meyer: I don't know.

I think AI is.

It's an interesting tool.

If you let it be a tool, it's,
I like to think about it.

I took a, class , designing with AI.


liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: did.

Liz Meyer: Yeah.

With Mia.


Just an intro course.

And liked something that she said
that it's like working with an intern.

can help pull ideas out of your,

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: like,

Liz Meyer: brain

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: I guess,

Liz Meyer: and like your notes
and stuff, but it's never

going to do the work for you.

Like you have to lead it.

You have to help it do the work.

So I don't know.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: I, I think,

Liz Meyer: I think it's,

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: uh,

Liz Meyer: yeah

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: if you,

Liz Meyer: if you treat it

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: right,

Liz Meyer: it will treat you right.


We call it intern all time.

Jessica Strelioff: Like,

It totally


Working with an


like, you have to guide them.

kind of

have to know where you want
to take the work, ultimately.


And you help guide it there, and
sometimes a great intern, and sometimes

it needs a lot more hand holding.

sometimes it it comes unexpected.

Things where you're like, Oh, cool.

I wouldn't have actually
necessarily created that solo.




I feel

excited about AI generated imagery.


If it's manipulated further


I think that's where I start
to feel excited about using it

and like final production work.

If we

sort of

generate an AI image, but then manipulate
it quite like taking in Photoshop

or take it into somewhere else and



Manipulate it or layer it or whatever
it may be to make it ownable and

not just something that was like
generated right out of majority of

you know,

straight to the page.

So fun.

Jessica Rosenberg: AI tools aside from mid
journey that you've been tinkering with?

Jessica Strelioff: Visual
Electric um, I like quite a bit.

Um, I think their qual the quality of
their output is much more artistic,

but the control, at least I was
playing around with it a couple weeks

ago, the control level of it isn't
quite as on with Midjourney yet.

Like, If you want it to venture
away from like their preset sort

of filter styles that they have,
it's kind of hard to push Yeah.


Um, So I think, uh, I still find myself
gravitating towards the journey a

little bit more unless I know I want
one of the like the visual electric

sort of like preset filter styles.

Um, what else?

We saw struggle on the Yeah.

Danielle LaRoy: Yeah, we did.

We did see a branding one,
but we don't, we don't use it.

Jessica Strelioff: No, we don't to see.

Danielle LaRoy: it is interesting
to know that it's out there.

Yeah, I struggle on the on the
verbal side to find tools that are

really that useful at this stage.

Um, I think you know, Chat GPT can be can
be useful during like the ideation phase.

I haven't really found a ton of success
getting it to go where I want it to go in

terms of actual like executional output.

But I think what's what's been useful,
like during the process for me has

been sort of during the ideation phase
of, you know, being like, like we were

working on a naming project, or we are
currently working on a naming project

right now, um, where I asked it like.


You know, What are the 10 defining
qualities of make us humans?

And that was kind of an interesting
like, output, then I could kind of

use those as jumping off points.

But as far as saying like, name
this company for me, Oh, yeah.



we see big gaps.



Jessica Rosenberg: not I think
that's, It's not good at, the real

like niche types of like custom
thinking that creatives either

verbal or otherwise need to be doing,

Jessica Strelioff: Yeah, but

Jessica Rosenberg: is Yeah

Jessica Strelioff: like, Reloom um,
the, what is that, Reloom, the, it's

like the Oh, yeah, creating one like,
the mark yeah, and I was like, wow,

this created wireframes, Very cool.

how I would have created wireframes,
but like in 20 minutes instead of


half a awesome.

or a day.

Um, I mean,

We still had to tweak it quite a bit,
but it was like an incredible starting

point and such a huge time save.

So like that was helpful,
but like it wasn't generating

you know,

obviously final design or
content, but it was yeah,

Liz Meyer: it's, yeah, I think it's
like that there is the level of, you

can have something come out of the AI,
but you still have to tweak it, you

still have to work on it, you still have
to know the context about what is it.

What do you need it to do?

And then how do you fix it?

So that it's presentable in your specific
way, like a way that makes it make sense.

And I think that's where there's a
disconnect of the naysayers don't

like it because they think it's.

When a professional is using it,
they're just taking stuff and then

throwing it on like a LinkedIn
or what as like filler content.

I love to just use it like sprinkle
some stuff into more of the menial

tasks that I don't feel like.

And I want to write like a paragraph
about for a case study or something.

I'd like an AI to write that
for me because I don't, want to.

But I want to organize visuals and
I want to art direct them, but.

It's just, it's different levels of usage
and being comfortable with them as tools.

I think people probably used to

think that Photoshop was cheating,

Jessica Strelioff: Yeah.


Yeah, it's a different tool

at the end of the day.

I think it's going to help, and it
already is helping creatives get past

that initial like blank page not fear
of blank page, but it'll help you

accelerate to that like initial 25,
30 percent that otherwise is really

hard to get going and time consuming.

Jessica Strelioff: Totally.

And it's fun to see all the, all
the AI tools that are coming out.

Like, We just came across
a song generated one.

I think this was

for Valentine's

Day, they did a,

Danielle LaRoy: Day.

Jessica Strelioff: it was like,

jess-rosenberg_1_03-12-2024_120340: fun.

That's so


Jessica Strelioff: could just, type
in like, you know, write a love

song about Goodside brand studio
and it would like, pop out like,

Liz Meyer: Oh, that's cute.

Jessica Strelioff: actual love song.

I forgot the name.

Do you remember the name, Danielle?

We were having like, way
too much fun with that

A day

Danielle LaRoy: so funny.

Jessica Strelioff: it was really funny.


I mean,

I think we're enjoying just like seeing
all the creativity because a lot of

creativity is actually coming out of


these AI tools too.


just like how people
are actually using AI.


So it's cool.

It's a fun time to be a creative.

Liz Meyer: I think

jess-rosenberg_1_03-12-2024_120340: I
guess that's a good segue into the future.

you thought about or envisioned
what your careers might look like

in the next couple of decades?

AI play a role in there?

Like, how do you envision the design
and creative industries evolving?

Jessica Strelioff: Yeah I mean, I do
think that more and more tools are going

to come out to make our lives easier and
allow us both to focus on what we're most

excited about, which is brand building.

Like, That's what we care the most about.

And like the way that the brand is
built, I think is always going to evolve.

And our level of involvement
is always going to evolve.

I think, especially as we get further
along in our careers like, well, you

know, we've, Discussed being more on
the brand advisor side of the spectrum

versus like doing all the hands on work.

Um, you know, That's probably a few
years out because we still really like

being hands on, but we, we, are going
to start to explore a little bit more

of that with you know, existing clients
sort of staying on as like an advisory.

Brand advisor level, um, I like
always want to be doing brand

building in some form or fashion uh,
but I will also say that I kind of

want to semi retire at some point.

So, like maybe slightly early uh, and
so I think it's probably like, we're

just going to get more selective about
the type of projects that we take on um,

like only say yes to things that we're
really really excited about and really

believe in, which we do anyways, but like.

even, even more so as we
get further along career.

Danielle LaRoy: Yeah, Yeah, I don't
think, um, I mean, I think what's nice

is Jess and I are kind of intentionally
building a really sustainable business

for ourselves and so 10 to 15 years from
now things don't look radically different

at like a high level, high level, Um.

We still really want to be branding
for purpose driven companies.

We you know, love working directly
with founders and we still want to be

collaborating with like as many cool
and interesting other collaborators

as we can, bringing on like animators
and web designers and developers

and, um, friends of the studio.

Like we really get a lot of joy from that.

And so.

I think like, those kind of picture
pillars hopefully shouldn't change even,

even as AI tools come into the picture and
sort of design industry changes around us.

I think we're, we're, hopefully
going to be looking, looking

familiar 10 to 15 years from now.

That's great.

You can manifest it, put it in your next

dream brief.


vision board and,

Danielle LaRoy: I love it.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: homework.

Jessica Strelioff: It's so fun.

Do it, do it.

No, I actually am going.


Jessica Strelioff: I love that.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: so I just
wanted to, since we have spent, some time

now speaking to you, we're so excited.

But everything that.

You both do and are doing in the design
space and I don't know I, speaking for

myself, but I think for everybody, I'm so
grateful that you're sharing your journey

publicly Twitter and, just inspiration to
everyone, just trying to make it happen.


Jessica Strelioff: you.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: want to
thank you for sharing your everything.

On Twitter, it's very helpful.

It's, nice.


Jessica Strelioff: Oh, that's so good

to hear.

That's kind of like been an unexpected
joy of ours, like sharing so publicly.


We've gotten just like a lot of good,
like we met a lot of good people through

Twitter and like sharing our process
and a lot of people reach out like

saying that that we inspire them to go
freelance or to start their own studio or

like whatever it may be and like that's
just been really fulfilling to us and

so we're going to keep doing that for
forever probably maybe not on Twitter

always but but everywhere around the

Danielle LaRoy: We'll see.

Jessica Strelioff: the interwebs you

sounds good.


we have 30 seconds off, but any tips

or advice for folks looking to be more
active on social and getting themselves

out there and promoting themselves?

Jessica Strelioff: The more you
do it, the less scary it is.

Like, The more you do it, the less A
tweet is precious feeling, um, you're

probably going to look back at some
tweets and feel embarrassed about

something that you tweeted a year ago,
like I know I have, but whatever, like

just, just share your work uh, share
your thoughts, share what you would

think you would want to read, um, we
kind of have like guiding principles.

Oh, go ahead.


be helpful

Danielle LaRoy: I think,
I think, be helpful.

Um, Is a good one, just because
like self, self promotion gets old.

Um, And I think what people really
appreciate on Twitter is just seeing

things where you're like, oh, that's
how they do it, or like, oh, that's.


That's how we got from A to B.

Like the more helpful you can be again,
that like, karmic loop comes back

around and you'll find other folks
being helpful and sharing openly.

And the more we can all do
that, I think the better.

better the energy is

Yeah, I love

Danielle LaRoy: sphere.

Jessica Strelioff: you will never see us.

Being mean or criticizing anyone on
the line like, anytime I see that.

But like, anytime I see it like,
taking down like, work that a

creative has done, I'm just like,
you know that it doesn't like,

it's not a good it's

Jessica Strelioff: just don't.

jess-rosenberg_1_03-12-2024_120340: always
so shocking to me seeing people act that

way on social media towards other people
like still, how is this still happening?

It's such a tough world out there.

We just all be kind and help
each other and not be trolls on

the internet or in real life.

Jessica Strelioff: Totally.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: very
stressful to also read that stuff.

It's I feel the, I cringe
every time I see someone saying

something mean about a design.

I'm like, That took probably a really
long time to make that tiny bit of

design it probably took 35 people and
countless approvals and that designer's

soul was crushed by the end of it.

And then you're taking, you're
trying to be mean to them,

jess-rosenberg_1_03-12-2024_120340: Yeah.


goes back to karma what
goes around comes around.

And I'm a true believer.

the Trolls in the world will see their day
and be trolled right back at some point.

Jessica Strelioff: Totally.

liz-meyer_1_03-12-2024_130340: absolutely.

thank you both so much.

Again, it was so lovely having
you on and learning more about you

and your impressive careers and
everything you're doing at Goodside.

We can't wait to keep following along
your journey and keep learning from you.

So thank you so much again.

Jessica Strelioff: Thank you

Danielle LaRoy: Thank you.

Jessica Strelioff: This was so lovely.