Today on Obsessed Show I’m chatting in person with one of my best friends of all time, Torrey Dawley. This is my second in-person interview in a row, as well as another amazing creative professional from Indianapolis. Torrey started his own brand and design business back in 2006 called Sandpaper Studio. Today he’s scaling down client work with the aim of helping others harness the power of solopreneurship.
Torrey and I discuss the early challenges we both faced with scaling our businesses, the decision to go solo, and ways other solopreneurs can thrive.
Without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Torrey Dawley.
Today on Obsessed Show we have a long-overdue part II episode with my friend, Sam Vázquez. You may remember Sam from Episode 15 of the show. Seven years later, we’re catching up with Sam about his work in graphic design, fine art, music, and now, teaching.
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Sam Vázquez.
(I was trying a new thing on this episode, recording in-person with a multi-camera setup… If you tune into the YouTube version you’ll notice my camera dies after the first few minutes, but fortunately, Sam’s camera carried the weight.)
Today on Obsessed Show, I’m excited to chat with the Principal Designer of Focus Lighting, Brett Andersen.
Focus Lighting is an award-winning professional architectural lighting design firm located in New York City. The Focus Lighting team’s creative process is informed by a combined experience in theater, architecture, and design and they create lighting design solutions for hotels, resorts, retail, restaurants, museums, nightclubs, offices, and private residences around the world.
I’m excited to learn more about Brett’s role in the firm, and to chat with the first-ever lighting designer on the show…
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Brett Andersen
Today on Obsessed Show, I’m excited to chat with the CEO and Co-owner of Mancini Duffy, Bill Mandara, Jr, AIA.
If that firm sounds familiar, it’s probably because we interviewed the other co-owner and “anti-architect” Christian Giordano & Jessica Mann Amato.
I’m excited to learn more about Bill’s role in the firm, a massive project they’re working on in the heart of Times Square, and his music.
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Bill Mandara Jr., AIA.
CARLOS MUSQUEZ, EXECUTIVE CREATIVE DIRECTOR, CATALYST MARKETING AGENCY
Today on Obsessed Show I'm chatting with Carlos Musquez, Executive Creative Director at Catalyst Marketing Agency bringing his brand of creative excellence to the B2B branding space, something that is near and dear to my heart…
You may remember Carlos from episode 143, when Carlos was the Executive Creative Director of ELA.
Since then a lot has changed… we’re going to catch up on what’s new, what’s the same, and what he’s looking forward to next.
So without further ado, please enjoy this second conversation with Carlos Musquez.
On January 13th, 2018 at 8:08 am, an alert was issued to the 1.4 million citizens of Hawai'i, BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.
Today on Obsessed Show, I’m excited to chat with the creative team behind the immersive and creative new VR film, “On the Morning You Wake (to the End of the World).”
On the Morning You Wake uses innovative documentary storytelling and virtual production techniques to viscerally recreate the lived experiences of people who, for 38 minutes, had to react and make impossible decisions in the face of nuclear violence.
Steve Jamison is an Emmy Award-winning, BAFTA-nominated Director-Producer, and the co-founder of London production company Archer’s Mark., and Co-Director and Cowriter of the Morning you Wake…
Michaela Ternasky-Holland is the Emmy, Webby, and Sheffield Doc/Fest award-winning storyteller and Impact Producer for the film…
Lovely Umayam is the founder and chief creative producer for Bombshelltoe, an arts collective pushing for an active exploration of arts, culture, and history to promote nuclear nonproliferation, arms control, and disarmament and impact fellow for the film.
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with the creative team from On the Morning You Wake.
Today on Obsessed Show, I’m excited to chat with the founders of creative agency, SNASK, Fredrik Öst & Erik Kockum. "Freddie" was adopted from South Korea and raised in Northern Sweden after being found outside a police station. Erik is a confused and misunderstood misfit genius who believes that the feeling of freedom and allowance of making mistakes is the key to creativity.
Today we’re going to talk about how they formed SNASK 14 years ago, in the face of conventional wisdom, and the meaning behind their mantra – "Make Enemies & Gain Fans."
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with SNASK.
#snask #branding #designpodcast
If you prefer audio, you can find all of the places to tune in at: https://kite.link/obsessed
Today on Obsessed Show, I’m excited to chat with the president and co-owner of NYC tech-first architecture and design firm Mancini Duffy, Christian Giordano and co-owner and design principal, Jessica Mann-Amato. Christian has dubbed himself and his podcast "The Anti-Architect" and I’m excited to dig into that statement alone…and learn more about the 105-year-old firm.
Drawing inspiration from some of the tech-forward companies Mancini works with—like Peloton, Disney, and Soho House—Christian and Jessica focus on technologies that propel the world of design forward. Mancini launched the Design Lab, which brings together designers, technologists, and clients to leverage VR, 3D Printing, Drones, Generative Design, and AI to break barriers limiting traditional design capabilities.
I’m excited to chat with them about how they recalibrated and modernized Mancini, sparking industry-wide change.
Infusing Technology into all Facets of the Design Process
The Creation of their software, The Toolbelt, and its impact on the industry
AND the Future of Workplace Design
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Christian Giordano and Jessica Mann-Amato.
Today on Obsessed Show I'm chatting with interior designer, writer, and TV personality, Kimberley Seldon.
Based in Los Angeles and Toronto, she founded Kimberley Seldon Design Group in 1991. Kimberley is also the Founder of Business of Design - an online learning platform for independent designers, as well as a recurring on-air design expert for Cityline, previous Host on the HGTV series Design for Living with Kimberley Seldon.
As you may well be aware, a new trend emerged in 2020 amidst the pandemic - RV travel. #Vanlife on Instagram passed 7 million in 2020, and has continued to rise to over 10 million in 2021. What's more, an October 2020 survey reported that total RV shipments increased 21.4% year-over-year.
And we’re going to talk with Kimberley about her new interest in designing for #vanlife… I mean, I’d really like one myself…
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Kimberley Seldon.
Today on Obsessed Show I'm chatting with the founders of modern home furnishings and design brand, Blu Dot: John Christakos & Maurice Blanks.
Based in Minneapolis, Blu Dot has 12 locations across the US (with new stores in Miami, San Francisco, and more on the way). You may know Blu Dot from their gorgeous mod pieces that are all over Instagram, or if you’re like me and don’t have a Blu Dot location in your backyard, Blu Dot may occasionally grace your mailbox with a catalog.
In 2020 and 2021 their focus became updating the home office for continued work from home and the need for flexible indoor/outdoor social spaces. Today we’re going to be chatting with John & Maurice about how they’ve continued to innovate and push their design forward in the last two years, meeting these new demands without sacrificing the integrity of their products, so without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with John Christakos & Maurice Blanks.
Today on Obsessed Show, we’re continuing an unexpected trend of interviewing another lead singer. Today I’m chatting with A/J Jackson; songwriter, director, and perhaps best known as the lead singer of the international platinum-selling rock band Saint Motel… they’ve played Coachella and toured with Imagine Dragons, but imagine my surprise that their song “just my type” has nothing to do with typography.
A/J is also the founder of AVIEW, a new sunglasses brand, and the role color theory plays in his product line.
I’m excited to explore the thread from film to songwriting, to launching a product.
So without further ado, here’s my conversation with A/J Jackson.
Today’s episode is brought to you by The Perfect Match—a game where designers submit mood boards created with Adobe Stock assets and earn the chance to play on a live game show to win big.
As designers, we pitch great ideas through visuals, all day, every day. But how well does our design communicate? Do clients and higher-ups really understand the work we put in front of them?
Well, let's find out.
Test your skills by assembling a brand-inspired mood board with Adobe Stock images to The Perfect Match, and if your skillful project is chosen, you could be featured on Adobe's monthly live streaming game show with other groovy designers, art directors, and creatives, where the winner goes home with $750.
It's free to participate in The Perfect Match, and just submitting an entry gets you a coffee for your time. Visit https://theperfectmatch.co/obsessed to learn more, and get ready to bring your design skills to win.
Thanks Again to The Perfect Match for sponsoring today’s episode.
Today on Obsessed Show I’m honored to be chatting with John Flansburgh, ½ of the dynamic duo that is They Might Be Giants. As you can only imagine my response when I received the email… “Hey, this is John F. from TMBG, and we’d like to share our Book with you in hopes that we can figure out a chat on your podcast.” Well spoiler alert, I was pretty excited to make that happen. Of course I said yes! Like I, many of you may know them from songs such as Istanbul (Not Constantinople), I Palindrome I, Particle Man, Birdhouse in your Soul, or even the theme song to Malcolm in the Middle… but today we’re talking to John about their latest project. Their new book & album, which is fittingly entitled, “BOOK,” is a collaboration between the band, past Obsessed Show guest and Designer Paul Sahre, and photographer Brian Karlsson. I was lucky enough to get a preview copy a few days ago, and as I understand, this is only one of two copies of this gorgeous book that exists… so far! I’m excited to learn more about John, the book, and They Might be Giants. So without further ado, here’s my conversation with John Flansburgh.
Today on Obsessed Show I'm chatting with industrial designer, Vikkal Parikh.
Influenced by his unique background in architecture, Vikkal has spearheaded breathtaking, mixed media narratives for some of the world's top-tier brands. These include the likes of Facebook, Adidas, HBO, Microsoft, White Castle, and more.
With the increasing surge in animation due to the limitations and inaccessibility of live-action filming, he predicts that COVID may have signaled the end of what he calls "hipster content" -- expensively produced imagery designed with an ironically bad or archaic aesthetic -- and the return of more character and storytelling-driven compositions. He's most excited about the potential for the tight integration of real-time CG with live-action.
In his free time, Vikkal can be found playing for the Hoboken Cricket Club, goofing around with his three kids, and listening to some high-energy Bollywood music.
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Vikkal Parikh.
We’re back with Vigor Branding principal, host of the Forktales podcast, and author of the new book, The Bullhearted Brand, Joseph Szala. If you’re a long-time listener, you may recall Joseph from all the way back in season one.
Today we talk about his latest evolutions, including how the Grits & Grids podcast led to his new show, Forktales, and what led his to launch his latest book, The Bullhearted Brand on Kickstarter.
So without further ado, please enjoy the latest conversation with Joseph Szala.
Today on Obsessed Show I'm chatting with greeting card designer and founder of the Kate Smith Company… you guessed it, Kate Smith.
According to her website, Kate and her husband Ryan launched their first company, From Frank, together in 2012. We quickly grew the line of 50 greeting cards into a full-fledged character brand — which we won’t spoil all the details in the introduction.
In 2018, they decided to expand their repertoire of fart jokes and created Kate Smith Company — making From Frank the official animal arm, or paw if you will, of the brand.
But that’s not all… Kate was the very first intern candidate I ever met with in my first business, so we’ve got some catching up to do.
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Kate Smith.
Today on Obsessed Show, we’ve got a special treat. This episode is supported by Wireframe, a podcast all about creativity and design.
I checked out an episode of Wireframe, and today I get to share this episode with you in its entirety. Like our show, Wireframe is a show made for creative professionals: graphic designers, UX designers, illustrators, and typographers.
Wireframe is hosted by Khoi Vinh, Principal Designer at Adobe and one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People in Business.
Today’s episode touches on the small world of design, through the lens of package design. We’ll go from Adobe, to Twitter, to iPhone boxes, to olive oil, and our old friend Stefan Ango, who joined us for season One of Obsessed Show.
So without further ado, please enjoy this full season 4, episode four, of Wireframe.
Search for Wireframe in your podcast app (like the one you’re using right now). We’ll also include a link in the show notes. My thanks again to Wireframe for their support.
Today on Obsessed Show I'm chatting with industrial designer, Neil Ferrier.
Neil Ferrier (who previously worked in advanced product development at Oakley) is a mechanical engineer by degree and the owner of industrial design firm DISCOMMON, which specializes in left of center bespoke goods. Aside from reinventing classic accessories like impact protectant watch wallets made with space-grade foam that hardens upon impact, to fully machined aluminum whisky tumblers, Neil's company was responsible for securing a Boeing cargo plane to land in Hong Kong, pick up millions of PPE masks and deliver them to the healthcare system in South Carolina.
His portfolio of projects ranges in both scale and industry; he's designing custom Air Jordans in collaboration with BOA and The Shoe Surgeon one day, and building portable iPhone-powered ultrasound carrying cases + accessories the next. Dynamic is an understatement.
As a fan of Jordan 1, I’m curious to hear more about these and other projects, and of course, to get to know Neil better.
Okay kids, all the way from Greenville, SC, please welcome, Neil Ferrier.
Today on Obsessed Show I'm chatting with the founders of Artifox, Dan and Sarah Mirth.
You may know Artifox from their Instagram drool-worthy workspace furniture and clever artifacts, perfect for a world where so many of us are struggling to find inspiration, while working from home.
According to their website, Artifox was born from their founders’ needs for a desk that was both aesthetically pleasing and provided a more functional and efficient work environment. And it turns out, they weren’t alone.
If you aren’t familiar with their products, you should definitely check them out, because they are gorgeous.
I’m curious to hear more about their company and what’s next for them, so without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Dan and Sarah Mirth.
Theron Skees—Designer’s Creative Studio
Lecturer, Department of Computer Information & Graphics Technology
Chris Rogers, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Computer Information & Graphics Technology
No, not that Snowden… also, we’ve had a ton of snowfall at Obsessed Show HQ this week… coincidentally, not that “snowed-in” either. #dadjoke
Eric Snowden is driving the future of mobile creativity by leading a global team of designers to bring to life powerful new tools like Illustrator on the iPad. I’m curious to hear why he believes mobility is the key to the future of design, as well as his perspective on where mobile is headed for professional and amateur creatives alike.
I’m very curious about this topic of bringing our core design tools to our mobile devices, so without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Eric Snowden.
Today on Obsessed Show I'm chatting with co-founder of Handsome, John Roescher.
John Roescher is a former military vet who started the company because of a passion for the potential of the internet to explore new ideas and make connections - a similar urge that originally led him to join the military right out of high school. Once COVID hit, though they had worked with major global brands, they had somewhat lost that love.
Looking down the barrel of the pandemic and on the verge of closing, he made the hard choice to tear Handsome down and rebuild from scratch, culminating in a complete rebrand and restructuring, embracing the weirdness he loves about the web. He brought on R/GA veteran Jennifer Allen as COO to help lead the change. The resulting success was reflected not only in his renewed love for the digital but growth even during the pandemic:
We’re going to dig into John’s story of 2020, and more, so without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with John Roescher.
Okay kids, all the way from Austin, Texas, please welcome John Roescher.
Today on Obsessed Show we've got our first ever (I mean, I think it's the first-ever... once you're past 150 episodes, you have the right to forget stuff) - so I THINK it's the first-ever letterpress designer and printer, and his name is James Lewis Tucker.
You guys may not know this, but I got my start with very print-oriented design roles, and I've had the pleasure of producing a few letterpress projects, and it's just one of my favorite design touches.
Today we're gonna nerd out with James about all things letterpress, and why we might still be thinking about letterpress going into 2021.
Side note: I was (strangely) about to lose my voice during this recording, so apologies in advance for when my voice gets all wonky.
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with James Lewis Tucker.
Prescott Perez-Fox is an art director, brand strategist, speaker, podcaster, and teacher, recently transplanted to Phoenix, AZ. Now a Lecturer at Arizona State University, he brings his knowledge, passion, and a few hard-fought lessons to the next generation of multidisciplinary designers.
In addition to his brand-focused design work, Prescott is the founder and host of The Busy Creator Podcast, a popular discussion show dedicated to creative productivity, workflow, culture, and technology. He speaks at workshops and conferences on topics relating to creativity and workplace dynamics, and regularly consults with agencies and teams on improving their practice and work systems.
Prescott completed his BS in Mechanical Engineering at Drexel University before heading to England's University for the Creative Arts for an MA in Graphic Communication. Prescott is also the founder of the NYC Podcast Meetup, an avid swing dancer, and veteran rugby player.
Without further ado, please welcome our third conversation with Prescott Perez-Fox.
Valerie Aurilio, General Manager, and Phyllis Murphy, Executive Creative Director
Today on Obsessed Show it's a two for one sale... I'm chatting with Valerie Aurilio, General Manager at Landor & Fitch, and Phyllis Murphy, Executive Creative Director, at Landor & Fitch.
If you're doing any design work in the branding space, there's very little chance you haven't heard of Landor, and as we record today on the evening of November 3... spoiler alert, we didn't know who won yet.
But Valerie and Phyllis are literally branding America’s future. Together, they are leading a partnership with the America 250 Foundation to execute a multi-year campaign that builds Americans’ awareness and understanding of the nation’s 250thanniversary in 2026.
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Valerie Aurilio and Phyllis Murphy.
Throughout his career, Gomez has regularly shifted between live-action, animation and graphic design, cross-pollinating between the mediums to inform his design aesthetic with outside influences. While it may be common practice in the design space to stick to one lane and perfect a given discipline, Jose has found the most growth as an artist by switching it up.
He's worked for some impressive clients such Gatorade, HBO, Mountain Dew, Ford, Adidas, Slack, Mercedes, Cleveland Cavaliers and AT&T.
So without further ado, please enjoy this conversation with Jose Gomez.