Home » The Creative Now: A Chat with Shelley Noeldechen, Associate Creative Director at Porter Novelli

Cade Martin is doing a series of interviews about how people are coping during COVID-19. In this interview we hear from Shelley Noeldechen, Associate Creative Director at Porter Novelli.

The Creative Now: A Chat with Shelley Noeldechen, Associate Creative Director at Porter Novelli

by | Jul 20, 2020

By Cade Martin

As a kid, I spent many a dinner at a table surrounded by friends of my parents, an eclectic cast of characters — sculptors, writers, painters, creatives. That thread of creative community has remained in our offices, our teams, and our collaborations. But that thread feels thinner in this moment.

So I asked, with the purpose of sharing, and of supporting and caring for this creative community in its current, uncertain reality. I asked what people are doing, how they are feeling, how they are sparking creativity. It feels important to share what we do, when we can’t do all our doing.

Reaching out first to some of the talented people I’ve had the good fortune to profile though the Capitol Communicator portrait series.  It’s my version of a virtual dinner table of sorts. Grab a chair and listen in to my conversation with Shelley Noeldechen, Associate Creative Director at Porter Novelli.

Shelley, what, if anything, are you doing differently?

Working from home has its upsides and downsides. I am spending way less time commuting which gives me time back that I’m trying to spend on doing more of the creative things I love. But the downside is between crisis work and not having to commute, sometimes you end up working ungodly hours. Managing this while not being able to just be with your team is tough. We schedule weekly hangouts and just have fun with each other via Zoom which really has helped.

Are you staying creatively active?

Cooking is a love that I never normally have time to do because I’d be getting home so late.  I love to experiment and it’s actually been really fun to try to combine things in the house I haven’t tried before. For example I wrapped prosciutto and provolone inside thinly pounded chicken breast tenders, lightly breaded and created a lovely little twist on Cordon Bleu. 

Last year on my trip to Egypt, I picked watercolor back up after ten years and created a number of vignettes capturing inspiring moments from my trip. Having more time back has also allowed me to continue to work with my watercolors and I’m so enjoying it.  My Egypt watercolors can be viewed here.

How are you sparking yourself creatively?

Commuting in and out of the city has always been a source of inspiration  I love looking at what other companies are doing with ads, experiential pop ups, even just signage or banners outside the storefronts. Without that, I’ve leaned more on online outlets like This is Colossal for creative inspiration. So many organizations are offering virtual classes and events now too, it’s great to take advantage of them. Cannes Lions is all virtual this year and much more affordable!. Adobe is launching an Experience Makers Live event. It’s exciting because so many more people will have access to great content and networking.

About the Author

Cade Martin

The only child of a university art professor and freethinker mother, Cade Martin grew up surrounded by shapes and images. His love of art grew out of summer vacations filled with trips to galleries, museums and art studios. At home he often found himself around the dinner table with an eclectic cast of characters – sculptors, writers and painters. They paraded through his childhood, shaping his art foundation and forming his appreciation for the candid beauty found in people from all walks of life. Cade’s been chasing characters ever since. He seeks out their stories-told through the architecture of their faces or the costumes they wear-whether he’s on a commercial production or setting up an Avedon-like photo booth at Comic Con. They are the heroes in his pictures. His thirst for capturing adventures took its hold while shooting stills on movie sets and then as a photographer for National Geographic covering the railways of India. And it is that sense of adventure that Cade brings to his productions elevating the ordinary to the extraordinary with a cinematic touch. It’s not just a picture. He’s committed to the experience, building beautiful environments and, sometimes for his portraits, simply building trust. A talented storyteller, Cade splits his time between the East and West Coasts creating images for editorial, advertising, fashion, and lifestyle clients


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