Title: Senior Art Director
Here since: September 2006
What do you actually do at SKAR?
Lay out and design various promotional materials for a number of different clients. In other words, make stuff look “purdy.”
Tell us why you got started in this business.
I had always liked to draw and paint while I was growing up. Then in high school my art teacher convinced me that I could have a career in commercial art, so she helped me enroll at Kearney State College, one of the best art schools in Nebraska at the time. The rest is history … ANCIENT history!
What is the favorite part of your job?
Getting to work with fun, talented people who have a passion for what they do. It makes my job a lot easier and inspires me to be more creative and work harder.
What do you like to do in your free time?
I love to cook (major foodie here), lift weights, have a few beers with friends and take care of an ornery English bulldog named Mona.
It’s a known fact that you are a music freak. What’s your favorite band of all time?
Wow, there are so many of them. I’m a huge fan of ’70s art rock bands like Yes, Rush and Genesis. Hard to choose just one, but if I had to I would say Genesis. The band’s songs are very creative and innovative. They have a sound all their own.
Try to think of something interesting about yourself and share it.
I am an identical twin and the youngest of eight children. I could eat soup every day, even in the summer. My brother and I turned our dining room into an English pub and dubbed it “The Brindled Bulldog Pub” complete with logo and branding (a free souvenir T-shirt to all who enter the establishment). I also make a mean guacamole.
What just bugs the hell out of you?
Picky eaters. How in the world does a person know that they don’t like a certain food without at least trying it first? Being such a food freak, I just don’t get it. And what’s with this gluten-free craze anyway???
What advice would you give to someone considering a career as an art director?
You should have an eye for design, learn to accept constructive criticism and be able to work on tight deadlines. If you are passionate about what you are doing then you will find your career in graphic design very rewarding.
How did your experience as a Kearney State track star benefit your career?
I learned that if you train hard and are a team player, you don’t always have to be the most talented to succeed. It also taught me to handle a large number of tasks at the same time.
When designing, what things do you consider to make it effective?
I consider a layout to be similar to a jigsaw puzzle. I have all these pieces to the puzzle: the copy, photos, graphic elements, objectives, etc. They all need to fit together just right to make a complete picture.
How many times have you been to Las Vegas and why?
I have been to Vegas so many times, it’s almost like my second home. I have been going there almost every year since graduating from college. It’s a fun place to get away for a long weekend. I started going to Vegas back when the drinks were dirt cheap and you could eat at a buffet for a few bucks. Have you been to Vegas lately? Those days are LONG GONE.
You are a big fan of the boss – Bob Ross. Explain.
I can just sit back and watch him paint for hours, even in reruns. His calm demeanor was very relaxing, especially when he painted those “happy little trees.” I once dressed as him for Halloween. Quite the tribute.
What are some of the memorable changes you’ve experienced over the years in the design world?
I started out when there were no layout software programs for computers. Designers at the time had to order type from a typesetter and paste it up with wax and a T-square. A marker rendering is now a lost art form. QuarkXPress and FreeHand got kicked to the curb for InDesign and Illustrator. I’ve traded in my picas and inches for pixels and DPIs.
What was your favorite toy as a kid?
Monster models like the Mummy and Phantom of the Opera with cool glow-in-the-dark pieces. Oh, and jigsaw puzzles of course.