Monday, June 29, 2009

Auf Wiedersehen!

I started this blog to provide a resource for people looking to come to the Brandcenter. I think its done that. And now its time for me to go. If you have any questions about the school, me, advertising or life itself. Please feel free to email me. Best of luck to every reader.

Jesse Bowen

Monday, June 8, 2009

Quote of the day from Work day 1

"I need to do some work in between these meetings."

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I left my heart.

I left my city by the bay by force two years ago. I loved it there. Great friends, good food, lots of fun. I was running every day, losing weight, loving life. But I was missing something. A job. A career. Something to pay the bills.

I left for the other side of the world, Richmond Virginia. I worked my ass off for two years. And for two years I had no idea where the hell I was going after. I never had to worry about it for most of the time because I was too busy working, but slowly the thought creeped back up.


I had no dreams of being able to choose where I could go. There were no bidding wars on the horizon. No moving expenses, or dream apartments. It was really just what the hell was my next move?

But deep down I wanted to go home. The thing about California, and San Fran more specifically is that once you live there, its damn hard to go anywhere else, and I wanted to go back with my head high and a job. The returning hero.

I can happily say now that is what is happening. I've accepted a internship at Goodby, Silverstein and Partners. I couldn't imagine a better place to land, surrounded by more talented people to start my career again.

I left my heart there, but will be back shortly to reclaim it. Welcome home.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

A sign on the job hunt.

I was waiting in a SF coffee shop waiting for an interview. I was just spinning the cup thinking about what was going to happen in the next couple months, what I wanted, and dreaming a little and I looked at the cup and saw this:

"Failure's hard, but success is far more dangerous. If you're successful at the wrong thing, the mix of praise and money and opportunity can lock you in forever."

- Po Bronson

Job hunting is a lot of guess work. Its faith based hunting. You use your guts, head and heart to make decisions that affect you in ways you will only know 10 years from now. All my decisions are half chance. But I'm not worried about choosing the wrong path, because there isn't one. I love where I'm heading.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Big Day part two.

That was an interesting day. Sitting around watching, waiting for people to come by is the most draining event I've had here. Its an emotional roller coaster watching people look around for people they're interested in and pass by your table.

I can't talk about specifics, but I was very happy with everyone that came to spend time to talk to me. And I really appreciate all the feedback I got both positive and constructive.

This was just a beginning conversation, no one has jobs to hand out willy nilly. I believe that today was a large reason why the Brandcenter is the best school for advertising. The connections into the industry and the ability for them to scout our work.

We're entering the final phase here, the get a job one and we're ready for it. I look forward to the most important few months in my early career yet. Ill post as much as I can.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Big day part one.

Tomorrow is Recruiter Day. We have over 100 people coming to look through our blood sweat and tears. Its very exciting to be done but also damn scary. This is probably as far as I can take my education, unless I suddenly get a hankering to try something else. I'm on my own. In a bad market, with jobs and companies cutting at every turn.

I wouldn't have it any other way.

I think if you can make it in bad times, you should kick ass in the good times. As long as you have the work to back it up of course. And I think I do.

Its interesting to look at 42 pages of work which constitute 2 years of your life. Most authors could get 300 pages plus, or a painter produces a masterpiece, we get 42 pages of work.

I hope the recruiters enjoy the work as much as I had putting it together.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Top 10 Things You'll Hear from Teachers at the Brandcenter

1. Where else does this go?
2. What's the big idea.
3. Keep going.
4. Seriously?!
5. I don't care what he said.
6. That's fucking cool.
7. So what are you trying to say here?
8. Mmmmmmm.....
9. You need to create culture!
10. How did you get in here?

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The gloves are starting to come off.

We have one week. One week to get our proverbial shit together. I admit I've gotten more together in the last week than any other week here. You don't have time to think and ponder and rethink you just have to trust your gut and do it and hope your training kicks in.

There are a few offers trickling in and its the most interesting thing to see people react. Some people ignore, some jump high, some casually glance. Me I casually glance. I'm a cautious person, taking things rarely on faith, but its so tempting to think about whether this email is the one for me, THE job for me.

But of course, there are 97 other people with similar plans sitting around a cold concrete table looking around the room. Who's the competition? Who's the best? Who is my biggest challenge? We live surrounded by competition. But the real truth is none of us are competition for each other.

Sure, you might not get that position, and it might sting the pride, but it doesn't mean a slim slice of shit against your career. My job is out there, I have no idea where it is, and who will give it to me. But every position that fills without me is good for me, because its one step closer to mine.

One week. 7 days.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Ahhh the corporate world.

I sent a friend a youtube video of a comedian that reminds me of a mutual friend. I thought it would be funny and help a friend in a bad job with a hangover get over her bad day. Unfortunately you can't watch videos at this company, instead she has to email herself and watch it at home.


I remember this world well. The emails from HR about not spending too much time on IM, or blocking videos and websites. I like to think I'm about to go into a world full of open websites without, silly corporate blockers, eyes peering over shoulders, time stamps and email storage.

So for anyone out there you wants to watch youtube and get paid, advertising is for you.

Heres the video FYI. Jimmy Carr. He's fantastic.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Army Regimented Work

There is so much work to do. So much it hurts my little tall head. Recruiter lists got sent out today which made it even more real that this is all coming to an end. There's a good turnout and its exciting to be the center of attention of a group of people. People who haven't seen the work before. But its scary as well.

I've heard from some previous graduates that the session doesn't produce jobs. At least not immediately. Its a conversation starter, a formal meet and greet. Who knows what jobs are really out there? Its going to be a tough market out there, so I've also prepared some backup plans as well. I've been saving frequent flier miles for a lot of years and there's a lot of places where a tall norwegian boy could do well for a few months.

It feels good to have a backup plan. Takes the pressure off these next couple weeks. A little. But I've put the pressure back on. From now until the recruiter session my alarm goes off at 9:30 and I'm in bed at 1:30 am. Its gonna be a interesting few weeks, ill keep you posted.

1:30 am. Buenos Noches.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Final Countdown!

3 weeks left. That's it. Its time to go but that doesn't mean the end of fun. Well I guess it does for a while but the best part is in three weeks it will finally get warm and the river will start to fill up. So today is my list of the things I will miss most about the good old RIC:

1. Yuengling. (Why isn't this beer everywhere?)
2. Empty streets at night.
3. Halloween on Hanover Street.
4. Hipster bike jousting. (Oh what a joy)
5. Cheap everything.
6. An airport where you never have to wait in line for anything.
7. Beautiful old houses.
8. Sun decks.

This is a great city, I will miss you. So with three weeks left here's to lots of 1-8.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Please leave your key at the front desk.

There's only about 7 weeks left here at the B.C. and its starting to show. People are starting to ask about job leads, who has jobs, internships, anything. A lady even asked me at the store if they were hiring where I was working. Unfortunately no.

It's all around us now. My parents ask me every time they call. And every time i say no they respond as best they can. "It's tough out there, but you'll find something." My dad is a little more direct. "You can wait tables if you can't find anything right?" Sigh....Yes.

But I'm trying to enjoy this time. Its the last I'll have as a student, a reckless, fun loving, innocent youth. I can run in the afternoon and drink on weekdays, I can blow work off because the weather is too nice and sleep in till 12. Everyone is working their asses off, but I get the feeling a lot of people are spinning their wheels.

Its all good to work hard to produce something, but when you work because you think you have to is when you produce nothing. People are glued to tables and screens instead of relaxing and remembering that this is the last hoorah for most of us.

So if you're out there staring at the same screen trying to force out that last idea, get up close your computer and come have a beer in the sun. Oh so sweet. Don't forget to leave your key on the desk on your way out.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

The same old story.

Advertising is dead, or is about to die. You hear this line about as many times as: Where else can this idea go? Which might actually be the problem. I came across this article on the death of advertising. Its a long read but has the same familiar elements:

1. Consumers don't care.
2. Ads are ineffective.
3. Traditional ads are disappearing.
4. Advertising hasn't figure out the web.

All are true. And a lot of what we hear here is that we are the link between old and new. The generation that will create new advertising and banish the evil static banner for all time! But the truth is it isn't dead, and it never will be. The falloff in advertising in my mind comes from one simple idea:

The loss of added value.

In the 1950's advertising brought new time saving, money saving products into peoples minds for the first time. Who wouldn't want to save an hour cleaning their bathroom with new Dial? But now, we know. Soap cleans, saves time, got it. Get back to the show already! We're saturated in information and actually get to search and choose which we want to listen to or not.

So how does modern advertising tackle this problem? Added value. Product benefits, value propositions, history and other traditional advertising virtues are dead. People know more about your products than most of the people using them. You need to add value. Very few clients do this.

Nike lets you compete with runners around the world.
Apple gives you access to a world of music from anywhere.
HBO gives you TV you wouldn't see anywhere else.

What the hell does soap add? Or gum? Or banks for that matter? Give me something I have never had from you: Added value.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The real test.

This school is tough. Really tough. Its tests pulls and pushes you to do better all the time. Everyone does this, each with differing success. Some use the time to better themselves, some fold under the pressure. This place is not for everyone. But the work is not the real test.

The real test is life. As much as we push and divide and neglect our lives they always come creeping back in. Sometimes unexpectedly, and that is the real test. Can you handle 18 hour work days and a social life, a best friend, a family, a girlfriend/boyfriend, everything else that pops up outside 9 to 5?

Im going through that test right now and its tough. Its tough to give your work the time it needs along with everything else that forces itself into your head. It doesn't help that this is the time where you really need to hunker down, but that's the real test. Anyone can make ads. Not everyone can have a life and make ads.

Monday, March 9, 2009

There aren't any positions available.

Get used to that one. You will hear it a lot. Its true. Companies are shearing back hard, and marketing is the first thing to go. So what the hell do you do? Beg? Plead? Scream? Cry in despair?

The best thing to do is realize the truth that there are TONS of jobs out there. You heard it here first. TONS and TONS of jobs. The only problem is that they aren't advertised and even worse the companies themselves don't even know they exist, only you do.

Smart driven people are always needed. Always. No company is going to turn away someone that blows them away no matter how bad off they seem because the only real asset any company has is its talent. And no where else is this more evident in advertising. Ideas and talent are all they have.

So when you call or email or network and people say "I don't think we're hiring" what they're really saying is "You might suck." Try again, say "I understand. Do you think I could come in and show you my work?" Most times they will be happy to help and it gets your foot int he door, its your job to make sure it stays there.

Most people out there stop the minute they hear a company isn't hiring, instead focusing on the leads on craigslist or headhunters instead of focusing on what they really need to do, show companies why they can't afford not to have them on their payroll. Happy hunting.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Visions of the future.

First: Microsoft's vision of the future from 2009

Second: AT&T's vision of the future from 1993:

Look forward to the future boys and girls.

Friday, February 27, 2009

You're welcome world.

Commercials make people enjoy tv more. Read here.

In case you are too lazy to read here's the synopsis. If you ate your favorite ice cream every day all day for a month, do you think it would be your favorite anymore? How about your favorite song stuck on repeat, or living in paradise forever, like Richmond? Probably not.

Its called adaptation, which means breaking up good things helps you like them more. Remember movies and theater do this too for breaks, TV is just an imitator. So you're welcome world, now go buy some shit so I can get a job.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


KISS - Keep it simple stupid.

Its supposed to be the holy grail of advertising. Simple, concise, and easy to understand. Most campaigns are centered around this for many reasons. Information overload from competition, lack of information, and just plain easy communication are usually the reasons. Good examples of this is medicine ads. Sure you could take time to show why your asthma medication is better than the others but in reality people wouldn't know the difference, all they want to know is will it get rid of my asthma so I can dance in a field of flowers in my sundress.

But today we learned a new concept:

MACS - Make it complex stupid.

Making a concept complex and layered and heavy on information seems like the opposite of what you would want. Why would people wade through mountains of info with their free time? But brands do this all the time. Look at sports. Simple concepts. Put ball/puck/object through/over/past an object. A winner a loser. But it demands some complexity because people love sports. They are obsessed with stats, history, tradition, that make the experience richer and turns casual fans into the grandmas with the pins of 40 years of collection stapled to a jersey. Making it complex alone though isn't the answer you have to make people work for it, making people feel like they are part of a club that they belong alone.

Make tough products easy and digestable, and easy products complex and intricate.

I wish someone had put it like this 2 years ago, it probably would have helped.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Please feed the lions.

When someone comes up to you and asks: "What do you think of this?" how do you respond?

Do you give honest feedback, not sparing details hoping to make it better?
Do you dumb it down tell them its good to help save a possible argument?
Or do you say I like it, because the worse their work is the better yours looks?

Most people would be the first two, Mark Fenske thinks its number three. And as much as I hate to admit it, he might be right. We use these little lies to help justify being a good friend or to save face, but sometimes it is that simple drive to be the best.

While it might seem like the lions don't really want to eat you. They might just be waiting.

But part of me also calls bull shit. I've heard a few times now that to achieve greatness in this industry, you need to sacrifice. Sacrifice family, friends, time, and morals to reach the upper echelon. This is a flat out lie. If you can't reach the top without violating every inch of your soul. You can keep the top.

So I've decided to be open and honest about work I see, becausewhile I might not be right about the work, I refuse to compete through capitulation, and am done listening to people telling you to sacrifice me for tiny gold statues.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

The new workout.

When you start working out with more weight or different machines I have usually beaten the shit out of myself after the first day. That bad curl up and die the next morning, hurts to cough, cursing the strong kinda hurt. Mark Fenske's workout is making it hard to laugh.

Fenske believes in one thing for his portfolio class: volume.

Instead of light reps over three weeks. Full projects are due every week. More weight less time. I was concerned when I first started. How in the hell could you produce quality in 2 weeks let along one. I thought I was going to leave in May with a portfolio full of one offs and puns.

But like everything I've learned here, everything the professors do here is for a reason. Doing work in half the time produces work twice as good. It focuses your mind, makes you think simpler, and produces work at volume. Now of course not all of it is good, I'd say 50% is bad but better than a lot of other things we've done.

If anything, there is one thing that I have learned here. When you force yourself to work hard, you surprise yourself with what you get back. Time for some more reps, gotta get ripped before May.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Ones I wish I had done.

And finally enough superbowl. 4 days is enough. But I thought I would end with a post about the ones I would like to have had a hand in based on script, concept, or art direction. Enjoy.

Concept: Modesty goes a long way.

Script: Conan is always funny.

Art Direction: Beautiful. Simply beautiful.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Superbowl Missed Opportunity



Enough said. 3 wins.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Winners of the Winners

Ahhh the winners. The risk takers, the inside tracks, the little men. Oh wait you paid 3 mm for your spot? Well congrats you titans of industry! Enjoy.

The big winner. Thank you Cash for gold. It goes to show that a company willing to make a splash and a cool commercial can make a splash. If I had any gold, I would give it to you, if I hadn't swallowed it out of fear of hobos coming for my family savings!

Crispin, you got it, damn you. You got it. What great branding for HULU. Once again an ad requiring knowledge of the porn machine known as the internet. This is great. I love HULU and 30 Rock, you make me want more, big balls for NBC as well. Alec Baldwin should be the face of GE as well, who wouldn't like that. People older than 32 you say? Oh ok.

CRISPIN!!! DAMN YOU!!! A classic commercial twisted. Tough ground but damn you, you did it. I applaud you and your lond haired god of a founder. I am your Kirk to your Kahn.


Oh congrats TBWA. You got me. If you aren't on the internets or the tubes that connect to it, you probably won't get the SNL/Pepsi spots. But what's interesting to me is that agencies and clients are willing to try spots, high costs spots, that are targeted at me and younger, the guards are changing. MacPepSuber!!

Ok so these might be a little slanted toward my generation. They require an internet presence, pop culture knowledge and the ability to handle hard fast edits. Sorry grandma! The Superbowl is a place to roll out new cool ads, and this year was better than I hoped. You could feel a change between generations and styles, this could be the end of your JG Wentworths. SEE YOU IN HELL!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Worst of the Worst

So im going to be one of 6,543,332 million blogs posting about the ads they saw during the Superbowl. So what am I going to offer that no one has? Sarcastic remarks. Today, worst of the day.

Oh man I wanted to love this. I loved the commercial. It was written well, shot well, paced right, made people stop. Until the end. So this accomplished man is retarded about finding a car? You mean he rode the bus until 30? Or he had a helicopter made of gold? But the real problem is you could have dropped anything, ANYTHING, into the end and it would have worked. As we sat there listening, GEICO would have been better. I mean compared to all that, what's simpler than finding car insurance?

Tela flora. Ok big buy for a small brand in a recession. I love the ambition but the message gets lost. Most people are drunk/high/crying because their team is at home (Put me in the third) to notice the difference. They try to say our flowers are better because they're hand delivered, flowers in a box are usually half dead. What I heard: Flowers are a bad present: Send Tela Flowers. This was top level execution.

Sigh. America please. Pretty please. Pretty pretty please, stop. Taking a shitty chick flick that lasts 95.5 minutes and replace Brad/Leo/Ruttiger with horses does not make me want beer. It makes the opposite, the repulsion of beer. Three cheers for Nattie Lite for not advertising again!

Once again these are my worst. I understand that being in school allows you not to have clients, budgets, revisions, roadblocks, and the countless things that come between you and a young advertising man in Virginia. I commend all that took this challenge, there is no worst in the superbowl. You all beat 96% of everything out there.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

This is going to hurt me more than you.

That's what parents say as explanation for pain. Problem is you always think it's a way for them to make it ok in their head. It takes a while but you realize they really don't want to hurt you, they just want you to do well. More than that they want you to do better then they ever did.

Same here. It has taken some time to realize here, but all the intimidation, yelling, late nights, conferences, reviews and pain were all just parental ass whoopings. They were for our own good. We will leave this place hungrier, smarter, and stronger than any other person competing against us.

So while I won't go as far to say that I'm glad they did it. I will say I understand, and thank you.

Friday, January 23, 2009

No one cares about Art Direction

Unfortunately it's true. No one really cares. Consumers don't care. Creative directors don't care. Client's don't care. Writers don't care. Hell art directors probably don't give a shit from time to time. The only time people care: When it's piss poor.

I've come to realize the words on the page are the most important part, reluctantly I've discovered this. The words are what the client want and the consumer. They are the set in stone, legal binding contract between a consumer and a client. I admit that 50% off is more important to me than the stock photo of a lady twirling in a field of sunflowers, or the fact that that block legal copy is kerned properly makes it no more legal.

But if that lady spinning in the field looks like it was shot with a camera you give to your five year old, or god forbid they use Papyrus or Myraid pro as the font, then you can probably start preparing for a few angry emails. A lot of art directors are out there trying to make work that won't get noticed, because it lets them keep their jobs and keeps clients coming back.

The same is true for design, no one cares that people spend months trying to get their mouse to feel and look great, or that someone stared at lumps of clay for hours trying to make their phone look like a nuclear submarine. It only matters when your mouse feels like a brick, and your phone is closer to those paddle wheel boats in Central Park.

Thankfully there are not many of those that I have run into yet, but they're out there. But this same principle applies to work and book reviews. I've had my work looked through by some pretty talented eyes, who know how to spin circles around me, and I've heard comments about my art direction, drum role please......twice.

1. Your art direction is clean.
2. I like your art direction.

Ok well there's two ways to take these:

1. It's good keep doing what your doing.
2. You're not doing enough, and I'm being kind.

Its probably not one or the other. It's a hybrid between the two because if I was making work that blinded people I wouldn't be at school and if it was terrible I wouldn't be at school. I should be shooting for number 2 because as profitable as it can be to make spinning sunflower field work, no self respecting art director smiles at seeing their half off coupons on a bus seat in Detroit.

No one cares about art direction. Until it's amazing.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Sorry about not posting, I've been busy....

.....with a few million friends in DC.

Friday, January 16, 2009

BSSP Informational Interview

Butler Shine Stern and Partners was the last stop on my SF tour. I have always heard great things about this shop, they were doing good work for years, and was a great place to get work done. From what I've heard it's a writers shop but I have always seen great art direction come out of there, so its probably all rumors.

I met up with Chris Hancock, a senior writer at BSSP. He took his time and peeled through my book page by page, stopping to listen to me fill in my gaps and overviews, gave great feedback and closed the book, gave some more overall feedback, looked at me and said.

"Please keep in touch."

Excuse me? Like you want to see more? Work? It was a weird feeling to have someone interested in your work since all you get is go back and do it again. It left me with a weird feeling on the walk back to the ferry to SF. Sitting, watching the bay, I realized that come graduation, that everything was going to work out all right

Thursday, January 15, 2009

T.A.G. Informational Interview

T.A.G. was not even on my radar. I had no idea what to expect. They won a Cannes Grand Prix for Halo 3 "Believe" campaign and were part of McCann thats all I knew. I showed up to McCann and they told me they were at their own office, so I trekked over and up the elevator in a back alley in a empty building. I was worried that T.A.G. was just a office with a secretary and one production artist surfing the web.

THe offices were the best I had seen. No offices or closed off spaces, loft style everyone looked relaxed and were hopping between the ping pong table and the xbox. After getting to look around I started to wonder where the rest of the team was. There were maybe 30 people there. How could thirty people put together a Cannes Grand Prix?

Sitting down with one of their two CD's John Patroulis I saw how. They had fun but worked their asses off. Everyone threw ideas around, and no one was left out, and it looked like a damn fun place to work. Aside from running the global Xbox account they were pitching accounts left and right and looked like they were headed for big things.

If they weren't on my radar before, they were a big green blip now.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Youd be stupid not to do this.

President Obama got his official presidential portrait today. Now that in itself is not a big deal. However he is the first president to be officially photographed using a digital camera. Which camera company was used to shoot it. There is a HUGE quick marketing opportunity here.

"You're now gazing at President Barack Obama's just-released official portrait -- the first of a U.S. president ever taken with a digital camera. That means we can peek at the EXIF data -- this fine specimen of portraiture was snapped with a Canon EOS 5D Mark II on January 13th, 2009 at 5:38 pm with no flash, using a 105mm lens stopped to f/10 at a 1/125 exposure, with an ISO of 100 by newly crowned official White House photographer Pete Souza. Nice work, Souza -- but we think it could use a few lens flares." - Engadget

Dentsu is their agency. What are the odds they do nothing and never use this fact? I say 75%. These are the kind of gifts that land sometimes and if you don't use them, well wait until Nikon gets their hands on next years shoot.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Goodby Informational Interview

Goodby Silverstein and Partners is a trip. Walking into the building is a trip itself. I sat in the lobby looking at their massive amount of awards lining the walls. Clios, Andys, Lions lined the entire lobby, but something wasn't right. Out of all the awards lining the walls there wasn't one award that wasn't a gold. No silvers, no bronzes, nothing. Every award they had on display was a category winner. Apparently they weren't too fond of their second place finishes.

The first people I spoke with were Stephan Copiz and Matt Roberts, both were in charge of the NBA which has won just about everything and is great work. Stephan is a great art director and had some great advice for art directors, which surprisingly was the only advice I got for an art director.

Have at least one campaign that's art direction heavy. Do something crazy, that hasn't been done art direction wise to show that you can art direct the hell out of something. It was the first time I had heard anything that wasn't idea idea idea.

Goodby was great, it didn't feel like an ad agency though, quiet and cubicled it felt like an insurance company, but considering the amazing work that comes out I imagine no one cares too much about that. It definitely is a place I would love to work, one day.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Cutwater Interview

It's never too soon to start looking for a job, especially when jobs disappear like its 1931 again. So I contacted some people before I left Virgina and set up a meeting with two ex grads, Jay Lorenzini and Eric Boyd, from VCU who now work at Cutwater.

Cutwater was fromed as a satellite of TBWA and is now seperate and run by Chuck McBride. They currently (1/10/08), are AOR for Jeep, Lenscrafter and Ray-ban, along with doing some great projects for Levis and many other clients.

I took two of my current campaigns a nervous smile and tried it out. I was afraid I was going to get a bunch of people looking to rip young guys like me apart, exact some revenge. This was as far from the truth as possible. They were honest and dead on with my work and completely open for any questions and full of great advice on books. I spent over 40 minutes with them and really got a good feel for what VCU provided outside Richmond and what Cutwater was all about.

Cutwater is a fantastic place to work. They had just lost Levis to W+K recently and were still coming down from it. Lee Clow had flown in to look at their work to help glean and choose the best. The offices are very cool and surprisingly quiet, but it was obvious that they had massive amounts of talent.

I left high. I had exceeded my expectations for myself and Cutwater and left with great advice and contacts. I loved the work that they were doing and more importantly the people they had.

Tomorrow: Goodby Silverstein and Partners

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Don't mind if I stretch out.

Its been a good month. Lots of relaxing, food and sleep, but productive as well. I've officially 100% appled myself with an iphone and nike+ so I'm expecting my apple tee any day now. Took some vacation time in Mexico and found out that Mexican emergency rooms are exactly as you picture them but with just as good care as anywhere else for quite a lot less.

In my little ad world its been moving as well. I've been shopping meeting people, showing my little book to anyone who will listen. Places like Cutwater and BSSP have been kind enough. The first thing I ask when I go is for honesty about the job situation and my book, and while harsh it has been good. It definiely feels like the most constructive criticism I've gotten in or outside of school.

As for the job market, the honesty is a little less hopeful. Basically its fucked, not regular way but six ways to sunday on a bike without a seat over speedbumps way. (I'll let you visually drink that in.) But the reality is: we're good, fuck it great at what we do, young and cheap. How can you beat that?

One person told me that great agencies look at recessions as golden opportunites. They can invest in young talent and drop the dead weight. Time to lose some weight before May.

I've stumbled along some great blogs I'd like to pass on as well in case you don't have enough:

Jelly Helm's Blog
is fantastic and usually not ad related, it feels like a perverse view into his daily life. If you don't know him he was an ex-adcenter teacher and W+K demi-god.

Design Boom good design trumps all.

It starts again on monday, more as it happens.