They say that you have about three seconds to make your first impressions on a person when you first meet them. It's the same thing with creating web sites.
Please give us a brief bio of yourself.
My name is Christian Mezofi, I am 26 years old and I work at Perfect Fools as an Art Director.
I moved back to Sweden in the beginning of 2006 from Copenhagen where I worked with NikeFootball at FramFab Denmark.
My interest for graphic design started back in 1989 when I got my first digital pen for my Commodore 64. After a few years I started creating graphics for demos and adventure games for the Amiga.
During high school I decided to start my own clothing label for skaters, and it was probably during this time that I became interested in web design.
Back then it was all about animating .gif's and html. I don't think I ever saw it as a way to make money. Just something that I had to do to keep myself amused during school.
What do you do for inspiration?
There is so much to learn about inspiration and a huge advantage of knowing what makes you feel inspired and how to apply that to your work.
I start every morning by drinking a huge cup of coffee in front of my computer and listen to loud music in my headphones. I try to listen to music that fits the project I am working on. It gets me in the right mood and ideas just start to pop up in my head.
Before going to bed, I often try to juice myself up. I daydream about the project and how everybody on the team will out perform themselves. Kind of like athletes visualizing themselves being the winner before a game.
Watching and analyzing things I see everyday also helps me stay inspired.
What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?
Definitely being able to work with something that I love and look forward to every Monday morning.
What software couldn't you live without?
What projects do you have in the pipeline?
We have a bunch of new sites coming out in December/January. Lincoln is the first one in line, keep your eyes open.
Who do you rate as being the top 3 design companies?
Who is your target audience?
Most of the work we produce targets people that are familiar with Flash, age 15-35.
What area of web design lacks the most?
They say that you have about three seconds to make your first impressions on a person when you first meet them. It's the same thing with creating web sites. You immediately have to get them interested in your product or they will close the window.
I think that web design today lacks communicating the message to their users in other ways than just throwing cool effects in the users face.
There are a few agencies out there that has perfected this, but I'd like to see more in the future.
What did your very first site look like? Is it still online?
I think it was for my old clothing company Reign back in 1997-98. It probably didn't look good by today's standards so I am thankful it is not online anymore.
What was the toughest thing you ever did with Flash? How long did you spend on it? Is it still online?
With the soccer World Cup 2006 coming up, we created a music editor for kids in the ages 10-14 where they could compose their own songs to celebrate their team.
We had an idea of how to create a cool music editor that didn't look or work like other editors. It was a big challenge to do something that kept them entertained and willing to put their time and effort into.
Luckily we had a great team working on this project and as soon as we had the first beta in our hands we knew it was going to be a hit.
We worked about 5 weeks around the clock to finish it in time. The kids loved it, the client was happy and we were one experience richer.
Do you think Flash is here to stay?
I've had my hopes up for every new version of Flash, but always been let down in the end.
It's progressing slower than a hung over snail. Flash today is very CPU demanding, I don't see
it being that much faster in a few years if they don't rewrite the program from ground up.
I have a vision of Flash and After Effects merging into one software for both web and motion artists.
Bandwidth is becoming less of a problem than before, and video has made it's entrance with full force.
So yes, I think Flash is here to stay but it is time for Macromedia to step it up.
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 think a lot of people attend schools for the wrong reasons.
It is a place to learn and build your network, not something to just have on paper to impress your mom and future employers.
When we're hiring new people, we don't look at what schools they have attended. It's the work that counts.
Don't get me wrong though, I would not trade away my years at Hyper Island for anything.
Schools are good to kick off your career fast but if you have the right attitude and talent you can get into the field without it and learn from your colleagues.
How have you learned so many Flash/design skills and techniques and can you offer any advice for newbies?
I don't know why, but I have never liked tutorials. I prefer to discover techniques by playing around, it also makes it easier for me to remember.
Try to copy the techniques of your favorite designer, carefully study every little detail and learn from it.
I have a graveyard folder on my computer where I bury old unused material. Sometimes it comes in handy when I am out of ideas.
What is the most expensive thing you've bought in the last week?
Gears of War and Call of Duty 3 for my Xbox 360. Two of the best games this year for sure.
What type of overcoat do you wear when Flashing, basically are you a labels man?
I don't care about labels; I wear clothes that I like. I am a typical jeans and t-shirt guy. I always wear something on my head; I think I have a severe case of hat fetishism.
Any parting shots or pearls of wisdom?
Always try to do better in the next project, never be satisfied and success will follow.
It's been a privilege, thanks very much.
Thank YOU, and keep up the good work with FWA.