.

I've found the best way to learn something new is by having a project. Nothing will light a fire under my ass like having pressure to figure out how to do something.

Please give us a brief bio of yourself.

My name is Paul Bjork and I have been involved in interactive design/development for over 10 years. I am currently employed at Wieden & Kennedy in Portland, Or.

  What do you do for inspiration?

I turn off my computer. My family has a cabin in the mountains. I like to go there to recharge. I find watching the river can unlock all kinds of ideas.

  Please list 3 of your favourite sites.

Only 2 true favorites:

thefwa.com

google.com

  What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?

Not giving up.

What software couldn't you live without?

Photoshop

  What projects do you have in the pipeline?

Unfortunately I can't talk about them.

  Who do you rate as being the top 3 design companies?

Pass...

  Who is your target audience?

These days I typically work on projects with a target of young adults 18-35, but it depends on the project.

  What area of web design lacks the most?

Permanence... It's so transient.

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

Wow.. Well, I started out doing a lot of CD-ROM stuff back in the day, and that stuff looked... well, really bad. The first web site I designed that was all mine was the Nike intranet. It looked pretty 1998. Obviously the design is no longer in use.

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

No I haven't...No plans.

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

It was a huge campaign I worked on for Cap'n Crunch many moons ago (flash 4). It was basically a ten week scavenger hunt/adventure game.

There were so many moving parts to it...countless mini games and puzzles all communicating with a backend server/database and each other... Individually they weren't that complicated, but when you add up all of the pieces it became a ten headed hydra... I spent 6 months working on it.

Ultimately it was a big success and the client was thrilled. We had great numbers and minimal issues. I learned a lot about managing/centralizing assets for a project of that size...

Do you think Flash is here to stay?

I think it's here for the foreseeable future. My dream is it will become a more powerful tool for creating visuals like After Effects.

  What are your views on design/graphic school. Do you think someone can get into the field without educational experience in a school environment?

Personally I don't care about education as much as the work... School is great, but if you don't have chops then it doesn't really matter...

When your company was just getting started, what did you find was most effective for getting new clients?

When I was a freelancer I found the best way to get new clients was to always exceed expectation. People talk, so word of mouth really does work if you always give people your best.

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

I've found the best way to learn something new is by having a project. Nothing will light a fire under my ass like having pressure to figure out how to do something.

I use books as resource material, and look online for help when I need it, but nothing can replace the pressure of a deadline to motivate learning.

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

A bottle of Jameson 18 Year Irish Whiskey... That shit aint cheap!

  What type of overcoat do you wear when Flashing, basically are you a labels man?

Ha... Not really into labels. I would work in my boxers and a t-shirt if they let me.

  Any parting shots or pearls of wisdom?

Nope.

  It's been a privilege, thanks very much.

Thank you!


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