When working in a group, make sure you can tell the difference between your idea and the best idea (they’re not always one in the same).
Please give us a brief bio of yourself.
PATRICK: I am the CEO and co-founder of Jetset Studios. I’ve had a life long fascination with technology and entertainment - and the way that people relate to each other using both.
RUSSELL: I am the Creative Director and co-founder of Jetset Studios. I am a lifelong pop culture addict – a sci-fi, comic book, cartoon fan and have worked as a professional musician, screenwriter and new media pioneer.
What do you do for inspiration?
PATRICK: I pay attention to what people do offline; how people talk to each other, how they behave in groups. The most entertaining online experiences are the ones that tap into the real world.
RUSSELL: I go to Disneyland with my children and watch b-movies late at night.
Please list 3 of your favorite sites.
What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?
PATRICK: Programming Hulk Checkers Challenge
What software couldn't you live without?
PATRICK: If you asked me five years ago, I would’ve said Flash. Now all I seem to use is Outlook. Speaking on behalf of our production department, Flash would be the hands down winner.
What projects do you have in the pipeline?
RUSSELL: King Kong, When a Stranger Calls, The Hills Have Eyes, Barnyard
Who do you rate as being the top 3 design companies?
PATRICK: I follow advertising companies more than design companies. Of the advertisers, I do like Crispin Porter + Bogusky.
What effect on traffic do your new designs have?
PATRICK: Jetset’s official site for The Exorcism of Emily Rose contributed to a $30 million opening weekend. The 3D game ‘Blackout’ that we created for the Dawn of the Dead is the number one search result on Google/Yahoo for the word “blackout”.
Who is your target audience?
PATRICK: Anyone with pop culture sensibilities and who is easily distracted.
RUSSELL: Anyone with a pulse.
What area of web design lacks the most?
PATRICK: Concepts! To make something buzz worthy, the ideas must be as good as the design.
RUSSELL: I think that designers are often tempted with new technologies to make things more complicated than they really need to be. Simplicity is key.
What did your very first site look like? Is it still online?
PATRICK: Our first site was for the urban pot comedy, How High. The design is shaky, but the site is still very funny. It’s online here: http://www.howhighmovie.com.
Have you written any books, if not do you plan to?
PATRICK: my attention span is too short to write anything longer than an email.
RUSSELL: I plan to write my memoirs as a pop-up book.
What was the toughest thing you ever did with Flash? How long did you spend on it? Is it still online?
PATRICK: ‘Barricade’ for the Dawn of the Dead official site.
This wasn’t the toughest in terms of programming – the difficulty was coming up with a 2D experience that felt like at 3D experience, but was still under 500k. It took about two weeks working with a 3D artist to get it right.
It was a huge hit when it came out two years ago and it’s still pretty popular.
Do you think Flash is here to stay?
PATRICK: Yes. Just waiting for Macromedia to port Director’s 3D API to Flash (then I’ll be in hog heaven).
What are your views on design/graphic school. Do you think someone can get into the field without educational experience in a school environment?
PATRICK: I think you don’t have to go to school to be a good designer, but it helps – especially building the vocabulary for communicating with people who do not understand design (and vice versa).
When your company was just getting started, what did you find was most effective for getting new clients?
PATRICK: I agree with what Russell said below.
RUSSELL: Word of mouth. Quality never goes out of style. Ideas are still the ultimate killer app.
How have you learned so many Flash/design skills and techniques and can you offer any advice for newbies?
PATRICK: It may not seem like fun, but get a good Flash book and read it from cover to cover – it’ll save you a lot of time and aggravation in the long run.
What is the most expensive thing you've bought in the last week?
PATRICK: Two fourth row tickets to see Louis Black
Any parting shots or pearls of wisdom?
PATRICK: When working in a group, make sure you can tell the difference between your idea and the best idea (they’re not always one in the same).
RUSSELL: The internet is your friend.
It's been a privilege, thanks very much.
RUSSELL: Are you going to finish those fries?