Monthly Archives: March 2012

25 my first professional dot

“Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.” -Steve Jobs, Palo Alto, CA, 2005

Without further ado, my website:



24 Best of: Commercial advertisements

I was shocked when I first saw this commercial on television. I thought it was so funny I remember searching for it right after I first saw it. Adweek posted a list of the 10 Funniest Commercials of All Time. TBWA/Chiat/Day came up with this spot and absolutely nailed it. Jack Ferver absolutely killed his performance as the berries-and-cream loving lad.

In a post done by Eric Page at the University of Iowa, he quotes another source on ads:

“Ads are a reflection of our culture,” says Dave Collins, who specializes in marketing. “The process of developing an ad is taking a marketing idea and encoding it with symbols that fit into the context of that culture.”

I think that is so true of advertisements nowadays. What our culture deems funny and “odd” will make it in advertising. The term “oddvertising” has often been interchanged with advertising. Although I couldn’t get one specific definition of the word, it seems to be used in today’s commercial advertising world quite often. In the same post by Eric Page, this image was at the top:

which I think sums up “oddvertising” quite well (designed by John Paul Schafer). People like weird.

23 my creative toolbox

Here is a list of the first 10 tools that I use in one way or another every day for my creativity game:







































pause for the greatest basketball player of all time

“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” -Michael Jordan

And for one of the greatest photographers of all time.

22 Visualizing Data

My next Gateway project is a data visualization infographic, due on SOJC Sunday (a term I’ve recently coined). Mark Blaine said something about watching the first few minutes of this video, but we ended up watching all 18. I was extremely happy we did though because it provided me with inspiration for a future project in the class, which I haven’t had lately. David Mccandless has a peculiar knack for visualizing data.

For my project, I’m thinking of breaking down how much it costs for a student who comes from the great state of California (I know it’s a lot). But how much does it cost me to miss an hour of class? How much does it cost if I sleep in too late for my human phys. class at 8AM and show up two minutes late? We’ll soon find out.

The final product:


21 Jobs speaks at Stanford

Steve Jobs tells the 2005 graduating class at Stanford three stories.

1 “So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something, your gut, destiny, life, karma…whatever, because believing that the dots will connect down the road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leads you down the well worn path, and that will make all the difference.”

2 “The heaviness of being successful was being replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods in my life.”

*Long story short, he started Pixar after he left Apple. And he got married. Then went back to Apple.

3 “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work, is to love what you do.”

4 “Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I have ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything, all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure-these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking that you have something to lose.”

5 “Death is very likely the single most important invention of Life.”

The best part about all of this is coming back from the bathroom at 3:26AM and seeing that low glow of the white apple on the back of my screen. Rest in Paradise, Steve.

20 best of: funny people

I’ve always said laughter is the best medicine. It can brighten any moment at any point in time. These are some guys that have always made me laugh throughout my life.

Tracy Wong came and talked to our class last week and I was fully engaged in his presentation. He shared with us his 6 secrets to succeeding in the world of advertising. His slideshow presentation was filled with epic quotes and phrases that left me feeling inspired. I think there is something to be said for massive Helvetica typeface on a huge screen. The 6 secrets he shared were:

The biggest hurdle to being creative is your big, fat ego

2  99% of any great idea is strategy

3  Ears are your greatest creative weapon

4  The secret to success in advertising is to embrace compromise

5  Engaging in democracy garners the best work

6  Love your client like you love your dog

I have never had much of an ego, so that being number one on the list got me pretty excited. I never heard of ears as weapons either, and I have one that is bigger than the other, so that could potentially help me out down the road. But really, listening is a tool that everyone needs to refine throughout life, because we learn so much from what we hear. And America is run by a democracy, so…ya.

Tracy went through his presentation and showed us some of his earliest work. One that stood out to me was an advertisement he designed with his partner for K2 skiing. In two slides, he went from describing how he started the idea from a picture of a yellow piece of lined paper torn out from a notepad with maybe five words on it. The next slide displayed this:

So cool to see this transformation. Tracy, you provided me with inspiration, laughter and motivation to make work. You, along with those hilarious comedians, provide laughter in people’s lives. So important.

19 habitat for humanity…cleverness!

Habitat For Humanity has always inspired me to do good in the world. Doing something for someone else in need always results in an incredible feeling. Volunteering has always been a part of my life that I take pride in. Working at First Place School in Seattle, WA my senior year of high school, I learned the true values in what it means to help out others that are less fortunate. Since then, I’ve coached four different sports teams through the YMCA association, and helped out at the YMCA in the redesigning of their “Rainbow Room.”

My point being, volunteering for the betterment of your community is one more of those intangibles that are so important to a person’s career and life.

These billboard ads created by Habitat For Humanity in Portland, OR are reason enough for me to devote my time to them. I LOVE the slogan, “From here. For here.” It says so much in just four words and provides a sense of community for those living in Portland. Uniting a community of people is so powerful and  has the opportunity to gather and motivate a huge group of people to do good.

I love the poses of the people in all three of these billboards and the action they’re performing. It displays them working with their own two hands to build a better community. Also, the cloudy skies selected for the backdrops fit perfectly with Northwest culture.

18 Best of: Street art

Creativity is always preached, no matter what the topic at hand may be. In advertising, being creative takes you so incredibly far. I think it’s a balance between personality and creativity that make a successful person in the industry.

Street artists are fascinating to me. They have more creativity and skill in their pointer finger than I do in my entire body. They’re professional artists putting their work on display unlawfully, but creatively.

Take Banksy for example:

He does great stencil work and cutout work that grabs people’s attention instantly. He has such a cool portfolio of his work laid out on his website for everyone to look at and reuse. He has a consistent style that people around the world know now to be unique. I like the picture on top because it relates so well to what we’re learning about now. We won’t succeed every time, he knows that. I take that piece of work he did as a sarcastic remark, reminding us to not take ourselves too seriously.

Sean Bernards is a friend of mine who is extremely creative. He blogged about a street artist who calls himself Blublu. Blublu came up with this video that uses an incredible amount of photographs making a still life movie of street art. Everything about this is creative. He thinks of some weird shit, but I really like it.

17 coffee, it’s referenced a lot

I used to despise the taste of hot, bitter, burnt coffee. I suppose it is ironic that I’m sitting in a Starbucks writing this.

I started noticing that my sister was drinking it on a regular basis. I was shocked to see that because we once shared the same opinion of it. Coffee is like many things for me, an acquired taste. I started to indulge in the $7.3 billion a year craze two years ago. According to this infographic, men say that coffee helps with getting work done. I agree because it keeps me focused on what I’m doing. It’s also a way to take the edge off at times for me. I think it’s funny how often I’ve heard coffee referenced to in the world of journalism and how it controls the days of so many people.

When I start my advertising career, I don’t want to become one of those people. I don’t want to talk about coffee and what it does for me in a day. I know what it does for me, and I’ll keep it that way. So coffee drinkers, keep it to yourselves, no one really needs to hear that you can’t survive without the drink. We all know that’s not true.