16 Jan Johanna Escobar is Bringing Creatives Together – Betahaus
This vibrant, self-taught, self-made brand marketer got her start in Colombia, where admittedly, she had a lot of interests.
Like a lot of creators, what began as a hobby took on a life of its own.
First impressions? A megawatt smile and a killer sense of style. But, there is so much more to Johanna Escobar. While you can find her in Betahaus, working closely with her team on her upcoming project for #whatsartcollective, it’s not the only place you’ll find her. You can catch her everywhere: speaking at art clubs and creative festivals, collaborating with Ladies Wine + Design BCN; heading up her creative consulting and personal brand agency, Ms. Balloon; and in April, you will find her in New York City as she debuts her documentary for the launch of What’s Art New York, a subsidiary of her initiative: What’s Art Collective. Her mission? To promote creativity as a mode of change. She is especially motivated to inspire other female entrepreneurs to have fun while they create… and use that as a means to make their creative process even better. “What launched me into the world of ideas is my immense curiosity.”
What exactly, is Ms. Balloon? And how did this concept even get started?
Basically, what I do is think of ideas, and help brands to communicate those ideas through social media. This is how Ms. Balloon was developed. We are a design studio that specializes in creative consulting for brands, but what differentiates us is that we encourage those brands to take risks. We are already in a world saturated with brands and ideas. Every day people are getting up early, writing, creating, making more or less the same content. What they are creating ends up flat, looking and feeling the same. But it’s because they are afraid of taking a risk. I think it’s a risk that differentiates a brand from everyone else. I think taking risks is important, especially for women! It’s important to me to help inspire other female creatives and entrepreneurs, and encourage women to have fun as a means of creativity.Ms. Balloon’s manifesto is based on the way I try to live:“Play, Create, Have Fun, Express Yourself, Together.”
So what is #whatsartcollective? And, how did it develop?
Lately, in my professional career, I’ve been working with a network that helps creatives. I started asking the question: “How do creative minds work?” and in search of an answer to this question, we learned that there was a need to help creatives improve their processes. So I decided to go on a trip to learn more and almost as if by magic, I started meeting more and more people that led me to create a documentary about the “creative soul” about what happens with creatives, and what drives them to create their work. Through the development of the documentary, we began developing a collective methodology for Whats Art New York that is totally new from the industry as we know it today. The WANY Method? There are four basic pillars:(Creación colectiva) Collective creation(Multidisiplinariedad) Multidisciplinarity(Transversalidad) Transversality(Anti-conocimiento) Detachment from KnowledgeWith this proposal, we can create content that is fresher and more interesting than what is considered the most traditional content that is out today. “It’s through taking risks that we differentiate ourselves.”
What about you? Beyond your work, when are you happiest?
When I’m dancing! I realized that I love to dance, and especially to Latin rhythms. Before, I was a bit shy about it, but I realized that when I’m dancing I can feel most feminine, and that is especially powerful. I’m also happiest when I’m collaborating with people. I believe so much in collaboration. I feel like people are better when working together, and in those moments I feel my like I’m at my best, and that’s when I’m happiest.
How did you find yourself at Betahaus?
Well, actually, before coming here, I was working from my home studio in Poblenou. I was following another member of Betahaus on Instagram and saw the amazing photos of the space, and I felt interested in taking a look. But what really inspired me more than anything was the very fun Catalan campaign. Catalunya has given me so much and seeing so many guiris who were trying to integrate themselves so much with the Catalan community they were in made me feel how inclusive Betahaus was. I came for a month and stayed. Before, I was working with so many people, but being here has opened so many more doors. I think it’s incredible working with a community. Working from home can be super close and isolating. But it really is incredible working with such a vibrant and supportive community here at Betahaus.In February, #whatsartcollective will be launching it’s crowdfunding efforts to support its project, and in April, the project #wany (Whats Art New York) will premiere its documentary in New York City, USA.