.

If I'm wrong again then to heck with it -- I'll open a sandwich shop in Vancouver and make techno in the back room when not cutting tomatoes.

  Please give us a brief bio of yourself.

I was born in Vancouver, BC, Canada and lived there my entire life until February 2005 when I moved to Orange County, California to take on the position of what I like to call the Senior Interactive Development and Design Architect at 2Advanced Studios - for short, however, I just call myself the Senior Dezeloper. Yes, that 'zed' is intentional.

I've been a graphics buff for as long as I can remember, however, I never followed any sort of career in graphics until roughly 5 years ago.

For the longest time I was just this dude making flyers for parties, or if not that, I was going out of my way to make my resume look extra special, haha!

Otherwise, my creative side has always been more focused on audio and music, as I was a house/techno DJ for 9 years, and now currently produce music in my spare time.

I found Flash about 5 years ago when I was learning foundation programming concepts in school. Flash had this funky language called Actionscript and it actually made sense to me! At once I realized the potential - it wasn't just audio or flyers anymore, it was multimedia – a hybrid of the two.

After school I started freelancing and started up www.waveofthought.com to house my work and hopefully bring in more clients.

Eventually, I found my way to 2Advanced Studios where I now currently work and get to work on a much more robust array of projects.

As always, I'm just doing my thing, trying to improve, always challenging myself and having a ball in the process.

  What do you do for inspiration?

If I’m going to be working on a project, I try to find out as much as I can about the requirements weeks before I start working on it.

I envelope myself in the problem and then do something else. It provides time for the brain to mull over the situation and come up with a simple solution to what may seem complex at first.

Usually something comes to me when I least expect it. If that fails I go abstract with shapes and analyze what I've made, trying to see if I can make it interactive AND still make sense... usually it just blooms from there and I ride the wave.

  Please list 3 of your favourite sites.

http://www.soleilnoir.com/ - beautiful fusion of gradient colors, swirl effects and real-world scenery.

These guys freak me out in a good way http://www.conclave.ru/ - because I love twisted, dark, bizarre, weird stuff.

http://www.phong.com - for the influential role it played in showing me what could be done with AS back in the day and teaching me a lot about Photoshop (check the 'astro' area). He also did a great job on Eminem’s “White America” video.

  What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?

So far, the Metroid Prime 2 website. I architected the entire framework for that site based on Eric Jordan’s designs and concept.

From there we had an engine which was ready to be worked by Shane Mielke, Eric and myself.

It was one of those projects in which everything fell into place as the three of us worked on multiple files simultaneously.

There wasn't any toe stepping! I'd be working on the level-design tools, game-saving, interaction, or something else framework-related while Shane was sprinkling his magic across all the scenes/levels.

Meanwhile, Eric was rockin’ the 3D, content and sound design.

So, from a teamwork and seamless-development-cycle perspective, this had to be the most solid experience I've had yet with a project. The Redbull helped too.

  What software couldn't you live without?

Flash, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, SEPY, Ableton Live, Sound Forge, and a shizload of plugs (audio).

  What projects do you have in the pipeline?

I'm currently working on a site for Surfride, which will be an interactive Skateboard builder integrated into their e-commerce software, as well as a third demo for Upper Deck.

Also, on a personal note, I have www.mixlogistics.com that I work on whenever I have time. It will be a site to showcase all my music, but a no-rush thing since I get enough of that at work every day :)

  What effect on traffic do your new designs have?

I couldn't tell you since, for the most part, my work goes into functionality, user experience, and motion design - not necessarily a direct aesthetic you can always point to.

I'd like to think my style is starting to become more evident these days merely based on the way something works, rather than how it looks. Time will tell though, and the more I put out, the more evident a particular style will become, if there is one.

  Who is your target audience?

The client's target audience of course (but personally I cater towards the cooler people within that audience haha).

  What did your very first site look like? Is it still online?

LOL! It had a big ass bass (fish) floating through some rotating circles while being scaled - there were these super lame sliding text animations as well.

If I had it still, I'd probably put it up just for laughs. It sucked - it really, really sucked. I thought it was cool at the time though, just because I had stuff moving on a webpage and they weren't animated gifs!!

  Have you written any books, if not do you plan to?

Negative, and there are no plans in the works as I'm doing what I want to do on the production level and am having fun with it. That doesn't rule anything out for the future though!

  What was the toughest thing you ever did with Flash? How long did you spend on it? Is it still online?

It's got to be LogoYes, but only because I inherited the project from another guy.

I was thrown into the deep end of an immense app that was 70% done with a totally whack coding style. I was forced to rewrite all the memory management while simultaneously implementing new client changes!

Then, I had to get into server-side and deal with font metrics…argh. Needless to say, it doesn't matter who you are, that kind of thing will make you pull your hair out.

Also, my online portfolio, www.waveofthought.com was a real challenge as the amount of mental back flips I had to do to juggle everything around was ridiculous. A good portion of my core knowledge behind AS is a result of that website.

  Do you think Flash is here to stay?

Absolutely - but if I'm wrong, the concept itself will persevere I'm sure.

If I'm wrong again then to heck with it -- I'll open a sandwich shop in Vancouver and make techno in the back room when not cutting tomatoes.

  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 never went to design/graphic school. I've just always had a taste for doing things with pixels.

By no means does this mean everything I've created has been beautiful, but having the right frame of mind for such a thing goes a long way, since the more you develop yourself the better you will become.

Some people go to school because they want "to be" something, others go because they want to improve their skills. I say do what works for you.

I went and did a 2 year computer systems technology program at BCIT in British Columbia, and learned to code C++, VB, Delphi, Assembler, etc.

After school, I applied that foundation to Flash and was ready to hit it from the AS side while also flexing my love for graphics and sound. Sometimes you fall into things - sometimes the perfect fit hits you upside the head.

For me, Flash was the perfect marriage of passion and skills.

  How have you learned so many Flash/design skills and techniques and can you offer any advice for newbies?

Experimentation and setting goals. The single most important thing I could tell anyone if they want to learn skills is to just MAKE SOMETHING.

You aren't going to learn if you sit there and read a book and copy out the code found within, nor are you going to be versatile if you don't pick up the mundane stuff.

Innovation doesn't come from asking people to do it for you, it comes from understanding the problem and knowing your tools.

You know you are on the right track when you stop asking other people, "How do I do this?" and start asking yourself, "How would I do this?"

Flash is a tool - figure out what it can and cannot do, learn what things can be utilized in certain situations, learn HOW to use the online help, and let your imagination go wild.

All of a sudden you will be applying your own vision to a piece of work without realizing it, simply because it makes sense to you.

  What is the most expensive thing you've bought in the last week?

An m-Audio Trigger Finger for busting out more complex rhythms and controlling my software - boo ya!

  Any parting shots or pearls of wisdom?

1) Don't mix tequila, beer and vodka

2) Don’t replace an expressive timeline tween for an AS alternative if you don’t have to.

  It's been a privilege, Brad, thanks very much.

Likewise! Thanks for the opportunity!


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