Creative Minds Collide: Thomas Crane

Thomas Crane is the very definition of a self-starter. Ever since high school he has been engineering new ways to define creativity. The first of his many ventures began when he dyed his lacrosse stick and his buddies began asking to buy one from him. This then grew into a local partnership with a sports store that sold his lacrosse sticks and would give him a portion of the sale. From that moment forward, Thomas Crane has spent his life living out what it means to be a “creative.” 

He defines a “creative” as

“someone who finds the line where business meets art.”

Thomas Crane

His journey to find the line between these most precisely began at a Chainsmokers concert, where he was inspired by their videographer, Roy Cramer, and the work that he did. After that concert, Crane began bringing his GoPro with him wherever he went, taking videos and pictures of his friends until he saved up enough money to buy an actual camera.

Like the hustler that he is, Crane then began shooting for free at the local clubs in Buffalo and DMing the artists performing to see if they would allow him to snap some shots of them for free. Through this he got a gig shooting for a boy band opening a concert which then turned into a steady gig that took him on tour all around the country. 

Going on tour with a band was Thomas Crane’s ultimate photography goal and he had reached that goal by the mere age of 19. He explains one of the biggest lessons he learned while on tour was that, “You don’t know the stove is hot until you touch it. The only way my brain can learn anything is through experiencing.” For Crane, and for many creatives out there, reading a book is nothing in comparison to immersing yourself in the environment and getting your hands dirty doing the actual work. 

He then shot a music video for a cosmetics company, Foreo. From there, he was hired as the content director and worked at the company until COVID-19 abruptly brought his career to an end. However, his mindset on this was nothing short of optimistic, “God always, in the most abrupt ways, knows how to tell me when a chapter is done.” 

The pandemic brought Crane and his long-term girlfriend back home to Indiana where he found another job for a content marketing studio as a full-time editor.  He took the time during the pandemic to find out what he wants from life, because “When is there going to be a better time to figure out what you want to do in life?” This is when he began taking his side hustle, Real Nobody, to the next level. From his time at these various jobs, he explains that “Learning how to make something beautiful, but also something beautiful that sells” is at the very core of turning your creativity into a career. 

He advises fellow creatives,

“Don’t be afraid to start over because you’re not starting from scratch, you’re starting from experience.”

Thomas Crane

Thomas Crane takes advantage of all life has to offer him. ‘No’ is not in his vocabulary when it comes to experiencing new things, he explains, “I just want to use what God gave me as my talents to experience as much in the world as I possibly can.” May we all learn to take a page out of his book and allow ourselves to experience all life has to offer us. 

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