Ep. 30 - Creative Leaps of Faith with Todd Balsley
Photographer and Founder of Clever Supply Co., Todd Balsley, joins me to discuss following your creative passions.
In this week’s episode, Todd Balsley the founder of Clever Supply Co. and photographer joins me on the podcast to embark on an exploration of his intertwined journey through the realms of photography and marketing. I’ve known Todd for many years and it was fun to look back and reflect on his creative journey.
We uncover the genesis story of Clever Supply, tracing its evolution from a concept to a thriving reality. We delve into Todd's growth as a leader and the foundational company values that have become the cornerstones of Clever Supply's identity. And discuss lessons learned from his time working in tech at Apple and Buffer.
Todd’s been a photographer for 15 years and over the last 6, he has been making camera straps for some of the best photographers. Most recently, he just launched his newest straps and partnership with Joe Greer.
Clever Supply started out in Todd’s garage, where he came up with the idea to combine great hardware with the best leather he could find. The result was a comfortable, high-function camera strap that looked great, and inspired him to take his cameras with him everywhere.
Having spent years in the tech industry, Todd found immense satisfaction in crafting something from scratch with his own hands. It was even more rewarding to see someone actively using what he had created.
Todd’s goal is for Clever Supply to be a brand recognized as a champion for creatives, especially photographers in the artistic domain. While selling products is how they sustain their business, Todd is deeply committed to enriching the photography community. From purchasing prints and sponsoring projects to commissioning work, giving back is not just a business strategy; it's a core value that defines Clever Supply.
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As I do with every guest, I asked Todd to tell me about a cherished rare possession and he sent me a note about the following:
Todd on his Waxed Canvas Jacket by RGT:
This jacket holds sentimental value for me, not only because my wife gifted it to me a few years ago, but also because it represents a full-circle moment in my life. About a decade ago, a beloved jacket of mine fell apart, fundamentally altering my perspective on the importance of high-quality, durable goods. That experience served as the catalyst that led me into the world of leathercraft.
Todd shares about his go-to camera, Fuji x100v:
Over the years, I've experimented with various cameras, but at this stage in my life, which involves capturing countless everyday moments with my family, this particular camera has brought me unparalleled joy. Ultimately, the best camera for you may very well be the one you most enjoy having by your side. Plus, it just looks so good and an essential fashion accessory.
Follow Todd Balsley on Clever Supply’s instagram and check out the most recent product release, the IOE Short Strap. And make sure to listen and leave us a review on whatever platform you listen to the podcast!