.

What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?

Having gone through 8 years in the field without killing any Art Directors...

Please give us a brief bio of yourself.

I started 8 years ago and I don’t remember having applied for a job at Sid Lee (Diesel Marketing back then) when I got a call from them end of 1999.

I worked there first as the lone Flash Developer then Lead Flash Developer for 5 years before I got tired of the Montreal winters and moved to California.

In California I worked at Juxtinteractive and Exopolis before Sid Lee showed up and dragged me back to Montreal to act as Co-Director and lead again the Flash department.

What do you do for inspiration?

Mostly doing siestas while listening to music, that’s when I resolve problems and come up with the best ideas.

Please list 3 of your favourite sites.

http://www.marketing-alternatif.com/

http://www.pollstar.com/

http://www.papervision3d.org/

What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?

Having gone through 8 years in the field without killing any Art Directors. Seriously I think what makes me proud is the close friendship/partnership I developed with most of the creatives I’ve worked with.

What software couldn't you live without?

BitTorrent…

What projects do you have in the pipeline?

Some real estate project websites, most of them you and I would never be able to afford. New Cirque Du Soleil shows and events and some more stuff for adidas.

We also have a project that will ask artists in different fields to create a piece around a predefined theme that will be showcased on the web and in a travelling gallery.

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

I'd rather name individuals than companies…

Jorge Calleja – h4che

Up and coming designer Stuart Lyle

Brien Holman from Exopolis

What effect on traffic do your new designs have?

If we take adidasyourworld.com as an example, with the mysterious cube banners campaign we put out, we got more hit on the first month than the adidas original website for the same period.

It gave the exclusive collection a wider exposure other than just the branding work we did in the stores.

What area of web design lacks the most?

Web designers that can do really immersive creative experiencial work but also have a thorough understanding of User Interface principles.

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

No, my english is too bad, and thinking about it, my french might be even worse.

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

Anything that requires crazy math knowledge is a pain in the ass for me. I always find my ways in the end but the road toward it is painfull.

Early in my career I had a contract to do games that explain complex math calculations with visuals and I had to translate those calculations in Flash math coding which in many cases was really hard for me to figure, plus it was in arabic language…

It’s not online anymore and I’m glad it’s not!

Do you think Flash is here to stay?

With Flash 9 we are definitly at a turning point where we will see absolutly stunning creations.

Can’t tell for the long term because of emerging new technologies but it is for sure here for a while. If they can only make Flash content fully indexable without much effort it will widen it’s possible usage and its lifetime.

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

Not in the design field, one can try but will never have the refinement of one who did go to school.

It might possible for the really gifted and passionate ones but in my opinion anything commercial requires a more practical knowledge of design rules than just being talented.

The opposite can also be true, sometimes you go to those career days in design school and you just feel sad for some of those students that are clearly in the wrong field, they just don’t have the flare for it.

As for Developers I think self-thought individuals can certainly make it.

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

Having top of the line thinkers, strategists and creatives that will come up with killer pitches that will blow clients off their chairs.

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

I’m not big on R & D so most of my learning was done while doing actual production, saying yes to things I was not sure were possible then breaking my head trying to make then actually happen.

I don’t think this is good for everyone, I am most productive while under pressure but some people don’t like doing experiments in those circonstances.

For newbies the best I guess would be to try to do experiments that can be later applied to real productions, doing only crazy math coding is not enough to push yourself into actually mastering real Flash production (it sure does helps a lot but some, like me, get away without much math knowlegde).

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

Paid a tax professional to do my taxes…

Any parting shots or pearls of wisdom?

Work to live, don’t live to work.

It's been a privilege, thanks very much.

Thank you FWA it was a real pleasure!


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