Creative Director at Pixel Farm and proponent of the creative spirit. Originally from Northern Virginia and a graduate of the Savannah College of Art & Design, Jeff has built an impressive career working with top advertising agencies like Fallon, Droga5, and McCann, as well as many Fortune 500 and 100 companies such as Coca Cola, IBM, and Ford. In his free time Jeff enjoys creating art for art’s sake, whether it be a piece for this year’s Motionspoems screening at The Walker Art Museum or “OFFF” a project which he won a Gold Lion award at Cannes.
We asked Jeff to share a little about his background, the biz, and the things he loves:
Tell us a little bit about your background.
I’ve been in the biz for over 14 years now. What started as an attempted career in interactive design in 2000 quickly turned into design and motion graphics a year later since the .com bubble burst in my face right out of the gate! I have spent my career working as a designer/art director/ creative director inside VFX/Post-production shops. I love building teams and I love having many capabilities and a variety of teams to work with so these larger facilities have always given me the ability to make any idea come to life.
Any professional hero that you look up to?
Mickey Mouse. Mainly because he’s all I watch every morning and every night with my son. But, he reminds me that someone created his world and that you can have fun doing just that - creating imaginary worlds that make people happy (and sometimes educate them as well).
What do you like to do when you are not working?
Um. That’s what I like to do. Seriously. I like what I do so I’m always doing something that’s related to it. If I’m not working I’m playing with my kids which I like a lot because I’m playing with toys. Basically, I like ignoring the fact that I’m getting older. I don’t want to grow up.
Favorite place in MPLS to find inspiration?
A lake - any lake. When I walk or ride around a lake, I’m forced to escape my work or chores and to simply think.
Favorite piece of art/project you’ve encountered lately?
I recently saw Marco Brambilla’s Lunar Art piece. I love it not for the art or execution but simply for the vehicle… he got to take over a ton of Times Square screens! That’s a dream come true!
Advice for aspiring motion graphics artists?
Be prepared to constantly evolve. Watch your peers and observe how this craft is always changing in style and technique. Motion graphics is design at heart and infused with storytelling. Fundamental principles of animation are required and emotion is always involved. Direct all the elements as if they are actors and the message will be that much clearer and impactful.
Favorite movie? Why in one word.
Time Bandits. Escape.