.

What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?

Oh. I think it is that I did stop smoking.

Please give us a brief bio of yourself.

Uhm. I am a space monster, came here 22 years ago on a battleship from Omicron-8. Currently I live in Moscow, Russia, where I find myself perfectly as a team member of the Red Keds Creative Agency team with other space aliens.

Also I am studying at the university and playing tennis. That's quite an intensive life, but I like it.

What do you do for inspiration?

Eat people and drink a lot of black tea of different sorts. Also I hide myself from humanity as much as possible while thinking and trying to systemize all the projects we are going to set up.

Please list 3 of your favourite sites.

That's an abstract question. You're asking me to choose 3 favourite sites from a list of millions sites of different types, different target audiences and styles.

We can't set in a line a commercial promo-site based on a flash technology for dutch teenagers, a world-wide shopping system like amazon.com, and a portal like livejournal.com. These are all fruits from different gardens.

So there aren't three of my favourite sites at all, but if we speak about commercial promo-sites, so these are the top 3 commercial sites, in my opinion, that hit directly the target audience they need, using different kinds of video-implementation of the stylistics they need, have a great scenario, that raise the feelings they need to access clients mind (humor in philips, freedom in vodafone, power in audi), have great visual and sound content, and work technically brilliant.

http://www.shaveeverywhere.com/

http://www.vodafonejourney.com/

http://www.audi.com/R8

I think this list isn't so unique, but that's true - these sites are good (as regards to the mentioned internet trend).

What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?

Oh. I think it is that I did stop smoking.

What software couldn't you live without?

Microsoft Windows.

What projects do you have in the pipeline?

Well, there are several projects, which our team is going to launch these days: there's a forthcoming Honda CR-V site and a site for a country-wide advertising postcard agency - FlyCards.

Both of them are flash with rich visual and sound content. And a Red Keds soul inside both of them...

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

Talking about flash commercial projects, my vote goes to:

http://www.2advanced.com/

http://www.blitzagency.com

http://www.fantasyinteractive.com/

What effect on traffic do your new designs have?

Let's say it so: each time we launch a site, we've got a parabolical effect in raising the audience, that is visiting all of our sites, and our corporate site, of course. The bad thing is, that it is only for a few weeks. The good thing is, that we're getting a stable audience revisiting our portfolio. I am grateful to all these people who support and believe in us.

Who is your target audience?

It totally depends on a project, on its mission. If we work at a project like Converse Russia where the mission is to renew the brand on the Russian territory, so our target audience is people with a bit crazied mind, a quite agressive extreme sports category with a teenage sense of humor.

If we're making a site like Honda Legend or Honda Civic, where the mission is to tell about the car among the Russian web-audience, so we've got a totally different audience: these are corporate top-managers inspired with idealistic pictures of power, metal shining and hi-tech innovations.

There are as many audiences as many kinds of people, and that's why the first thing we do, before making any physical movements - we think and talk with each other drinking coffee and tea. This is how it normally works in Red Keds .

What area of web design lacks the most?

I think there is still some perspective we need to work out, namely the perspective of avant-guarde and non-commercial style, web-sites conceived so-to-say 'ars gratia artis'.

Although a lot of specialists view the web only as a marketing place and sales tool (and I partially agree with those), I believe that web CAN be a piece of art, and even a subject to historical analysis.

If you review the evolution of different kinds of professions in general, you should see, most of them started as if in the 'commercial' direction but now they became a great niche for artists, composers and poets, who create for the eternity.

That's what we've got ahead on the web. It isn't good, it isn't bad. It's just web as it will be.

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

Oh, nothing special, it was a self-destructive homepage with a lot of animated gifs, java-applets etc. It was something like seven years ago, so it's not online anymore.

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

Bah, not yet. Maybe later, when I'll have something to say to people in a written form.

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

There was a lot of difficulties I had and still have with materializaton of our weird ideas. That's the thing of all the Flash thing - you always need to think, because each new project is a new constructive approach, everything you can seemingly do is to migrate different modules, prototypes and classes, but you've gotta think the whole thing out from scratch again and again, always with distinction.

The first things that come immeidately to mind are technical innovations implemented in the Converse Russia and the card painting system FlashPaint.

Also there are lots of different routine experiments with 3D, sound-and-rhythm management and multi-user flashing, which I did only for myself - and almost every experiment was a tough thing to build, at least it seemed such at the moment of creation.

Do you think Flash is here to stay?

Yes, it is. It's a perfect technology to improve everyone's abilities. It's a pearl of the multi-professional ocean of creativity and combining a lot of specialists together. So it is, for sure.

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

Of course he can. It's a question of your abilities and a yearning for things to create and problems to solve.

Having an educational experience is a great plus, so you've got at hand all the basics, you already know all the mistakes people did in the past and can operate with different extra-skills, so it's always an improvement, but not a must.

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

Well, our team has a character, we've got out our own position in working with clients, so the most effective way for getting new clients is to disclose to them this character and position, show outstanding professional skills and work with them together.

We always consult and support our clients, because we make a site not just for them - we're doing it for us. So in the end we're friends with our clients - that's our way.

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

The best way to learn anything anywhere anytime is not just to be aware of some problem, but also engage yourself specifically with it until you finally solve it. Just do it and one day you find yourself doing things you only dreamed of a few years ago.

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

I guess, that was a portion of rabbit meat in a pot with mushrooms, potatoes and paprika.

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

Usually I flash naked ;)

Seriously, I like labels, but that's not a theme to discuss with friends. I just buy comfortable clothes when I feel I need some.

Any parting shots or pearls of wisdom?

Well. Yes. Help me to repair my battleship.

It's been a privilege, thanks very much.

Thank you.


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