Personally there are so many things I want to do. But I think the next thing coming is the world. Yes, I've decided… I'm going to design the world.
Please give us a brief bio of yourself.
Born October 3rd 1983, Toronto Ontario, raised by a single hardworking mother. I played sports all of my childhood, predominately track & field and volleyball, but most notably Basketball.
I played in various leagues and at the climax of my athletic career I played basketball at the Provincial level.
Not a very artsy kid, but creative for sure. Never dabbled or was even interested in arts or culture until just after high school. Never had enough money to blindly enroll into University, unless the program I chose was definitely the career to pursue. So I never did.
I spent countless hours reading books searching for an interest. At 18 I stumbled upon a book by David Carson: 2nd Sight. It changed my life. I immediately enrolled myself at the International Academy of Design, but quickly learned that design wasn’t something that I would learn by being told what it was.
So I dropped out and started experimenting with graphics and composition. However fun and self-gratifying the experimentation experiences were, I needed to eat. So I picked up another book and taught myself flash… the rest is history.
What do you do for inspiration?
I go outside and live life. I find that my best ideas are formed when least expected.
Sometimes I’m just chilling with friends, walking down the street, joking around, and then…boom! The idea will hit me like a tidal wave.
Or sometimes I’ll see something not as it was meant to be seen, and form an idea from it. But I struggle the most to come up with an idea when I plant myself in front of my computer.
All the beautiful work I see often clouds my judgment in the search to find the right answer. I’m a firm believer in intuition and instinct. Follow your nose, your gut and your heart. Whatever feels right is right, or at least is in the right direction.
Please list 3 of your favorite sites.
So many sites make that list and for so many different reasons, but here are 3 that I would mention for sure:
http://www.leoburnett.ca/ - They just have some super duper creative juice on tap.
http://www.imustcreate.com - I love pantone chips. What more can I say.
http://www.pushhere.com/ - To me this site is the embodiment of everything that is great; Simplicity, beauty and functionality.
What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?
Regarding design? I think I could safely say that ONE of my biggest achievements was the creation of my personal site http://www.jeedub.com/2004.
To be able to reach out, inspire and motivate people in the same way David Carson did for myself, makes me feel even better having been able to build a site that really captures my personality.
Outside of design I’ve made some serious strides in respect to growing and maturing as a person, most of which I would classify as being a much greater achievement than any of my design achievements.
What software couldn't you live without?
This past summer I’ve been very lucky to do a lot of things I’ve never done before, and with the evolution of digital photography it is very easy and fun to document the events in your life.
Having said that, I couldn’t live without Photoshop. And what good is it to document life events using photos without the ability to broadcast it to the world, http://www.jeedub.com/visions.
Next on my list would have to be Flash. But it’s the OS system that makes all of this possible, so I guess I couldn’t live without Windows XP. Every other program I think I could do without… especially MSN.
What projects do you have in the pipeline?
Graphic Design is a very flexible and broad term used to describe what it is we do. Sometimes I call myself Graphic Designer, sometimes I call myself an Interactive Designer, sometimes I call myself a Creative Communications Specialist and sometimes I call myself an Art Directing Ninja.
But I think there is an abundance of variations of titles because there is an abundance of opportunity and paths that stem from the fundamental title of Graphic Designer.
Personally there are so many things I want to do. But I think the next thing coming is the world. Yes, I’ve decided… I’m going to design the world.
Who do you rate as being the top 3 design companies?
Is this a trick question? That’s a tough one. There are too many genres of design to say who tops them all. But because I’m such a good sport, and for argument’s sake, here’s my list:
Those are my choices in no particular order.
Who is your target audience?
What area of web design lacks the most?
What area of web design lacks the most? The client. I think too often designers get caught between what the client wants and what they want.
Too many websites lack the personality of the client, as well as a solid narrative to guide the user through the entire experience. Too many bells, too many whistles and a slight abundance of hard of hearing, if you ask me.
Have you written any books, if not do you plan to?
I have not written any books, and I really don’t think I’ll have much time to until I’m older.
By that time I would have seen and done more, and would have probably come to terms with the issues concerning the industry that is bothering me today. If not, then you can definitely expect some critical writings to surface.
Do you think Flash is here to stay?
I definitely think flash is here to stay, or at least some evolved form of it.
What are your views on design/graphic school? Do you think someone can get into the field without educational experience in a school environment?
I don’t have any diplomas or certificates. I’m a living, breathing example of what ambition and hard work can achieve.
How have you learned so many Flash/design skills and techniques and can you offer any advice for newbies?
Reading books and deconstructing online tutorials. As well as asking those who know. Do I have any advice? Think before you ask.
What is the most expensive thing you've bought in the last week?
I bought a Plasma TV for my mum.
What type of overcoat do you wear when Flashing, basically are you a labels man?
Yeah I’m a labels man. I believe in my brands and they believe in me. Don’t get it twisted though. You can often catch me digging around in thrift stores, because thrift is real dead-stock gear, priceless.
Any parting shots or pearls of wisdom?
It's been a privilege, Greg, thanks very much.