...avoid looking at the sh1t from "flash tutorial sites" where they've got a billion keyframes, and actionscript buried in movieclips, and onEnterframes up the a$$.
Please give us a brief bio of yourself.
I'm 25 years old, born and raised in Seattle, WI've got my own house, which I bought with my girlfriend, and a 1 year-old chocolate lab named Rand.
I graduated from the University of Washington with a B.S. of Informatics. Worked at UW my last year of school, building websites for the medical school. At the same time I did some freelance stuff.
After I graduated, I got hired at CrashShop. CrashShop split up and 5 of the CrashShop guys formed Dual. Dual closed up shop and now 3 of us from Dual now work at Hornall Anderson Design Works. I'm an Interactive Designer.
What do you do for inspiration?
Nothing out of the ordinary really. Daytrips?
Please list 3 of your favourite sites.
I don't have just three, so I'll list some of the many by category.
What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?
Having a group of friends/colleagues that are as passionate about design, if not more, as I am. They're always available and up for a critique or discussion.
What software couldn't you live without?
What projects do you have in the pipeline?
Right now we're finishing up a truly massively multiplayer flash game for a large corporation to promote their new brand.
The key part of it is players can interact with the environment - manipulate things, such as drive a vehicle - and other players are affected by them.
Other than that, the commercial work I'm doing right now isn't that exciting. However, I am working on an internal presentation tool that I think will be pretty cool.
It's basically a Flash presentation app for our sales and marketing team to create branded presentations showcasing our work for our clients.
On the personal side, I've got TOKAWOKAN with my design buddies, which will be AMAZING, just wait!
I'm also going to help my girlfriend put together an online portfolio - she's a print designer.
I've also got a bunch of small collabs/ideas that hopefully will see the light of day.
Who do you rate as being the top 3 design companies?
Including, but not limited to
Forsman and Bodenfors and all the companies they've worked with.
What effect on traffic do your new designs have?
None that I'm aware of. People don't know who I am, with the exception of a few local designers :P.
I would hope that the design and functionality has more of an effect on traffic for sites that I work on then the fact that I, or the company I work for, made it.
Who is your target audience?
Depends on the project.
What area of web design lacks the most?
Thinking of sites as applications/tools/experiences rather than "e-brochures."
What did your very first site look like? Is it still online?
All I remember is that it was DHTML/HTML and you could change the background color of the site. It's not up anymore.
Have you written any books, if not do you plan to?
No, haven't written any books. I don't so much want to write a book, as I want to construct/design a book. About what, I don't know yet.
What was the toughest thing you ever did with Flash? How long did you spend on it? Is it still online?
I'm lucky, usually I can just dream up whatever the hell I want and hand it over to Jason Hickner or Adrien Lo and they'll just figure out a way to build it, as long it's not stupid.
So the really tough things as far as Flash builds are concerned, I can leave to them :). My focus is more on the design/concept side rather then the implementation, although I enjoy doing both.
But to answer your question, I think the new FWA site has been my/our biggest challenge. As you know, it took more than a year from concept (there were a few different ones) to what it is now.
Do you think Flash is here to stay?
What are your views on design/graphic school. Do you think someone can get into the field without educational experience in a school environment?
Good for some, bad for others.
When your company was just getting started, what did you find was most effective for getting new clients?
I wasn't really involved in getting new business at Dual or right now at HADW, but I have some thoughts on this.
In addition to just doing good work, educating potential clients about whatever it is you do, and how you can help accomplish their business goals, I think is the ultimate seller.
This means truly understanding what the client wants.
How have you learned so many Flash/design skills and techniques and can you offer any advice for newbies?
I'm going to answer the Flash side of the question, because I think the design side is obvious.
In college, I took a bunch of programming courses that taught me a bunch of programming basics - 0bject oriented programming, data structures and types, classes, etc...
Understanding these concepts has helped me immensely in understanding the capabilities of Flash.
A thorough understanding of programming concepts basically means you can code in any language, it just becomes a matter of syntax.
I'm also extremely lucky to know people like Jason Hickner, Brannon Jones, Adrien Lo, and Jared Wray (guys from Dual) who are all geniuses!
I'm just a beginner compared to these guys when it comes to coding implementation.
They've taught me a lot about programming methods and concepts, which have helped me immensely when designing interactive projects.
So my suggestion would be to take a programming-centric approach to learning Flash, instead of the typical frame-based method. I didn't even know how to do a frame based animation till Flash 7.
Read the ActionScript library in the Flash Help and figure out what you can do with it.
I think it will result in a much more capable interactive designer, and ultimately a better product if they know what the real limits of Flash are.
Oh, and avoid looking at the shit from "flash tutorial sites" where they've got a billion keyframes, and actionscript buried in movieclips, and onEnterframes up the ass.
That stuff is just wrong and dated, and it makes me mad just thinking about it.
What is the most expensive thing you've bought in the last week?
What type of overcoat do you wear when Flashing, basically are you a labels man?
I'd probably be considered a labels man, but I prefer not to advertise here or on my clothes, what labels I wear.
I just like nicely designed clothes. I've learned the hard way that you get what you paid for.
Any parting shots or pearls of wisdom?
The Seahawks are going to win it all this year, I can feel it!
Daytrips are fun.
It's been a privilege, thanks very much.