Working at Mother. Mark Whaites and Robert Saville were quite demanding as Creative Directors. You had to work hard as hell and they could be brutally honest and tell you it was shit (and i probably was). But when they liked something they stood up for it and really pushed clients to do brave stuff.
Please give us a brief bio of yourself.
Philosophy and Film studies at Stockholm University, then a BA in Graphic Design and Advertising at Central St Martins College in London. Worked at Mother London for 2 years then moved back to Stockholm and started at Lowe Brindfors in 2006.
What do you do for inspiration?
Mostly movies and the occasional art show.
Please list 3 of your favourite sites.
What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?
When my girlfriend accept my marriage proposal. But in terms of work, probably the day Magnum Pleasure Hunt became the most tweeted URL in the world. That was quite a feeling.
How do you relax or unwind?
Ride horses, especially jumping. It's impossible to think of work while riding a horse.
What's your favourite part of your job? What's the hardest part of your job? What do you do when you get stuck?
The favourite part and the hardest part are the same thing for me; getting a new brief.
What's the longest you've ever stayed up working on a project?
If there are any pivotal experiences/decisions you could point to that helped shape your career, what would they be?
Working at Mother. Mark Whaites and Robert Saville were quite demanding as Creative Directors. You had to work hard as hell and they could be brutally honest and tell you it was shit (and i probably was). But when they liked something they stood up for it and really pushed clients to do brave stuff. It was a great feeling coming straight from school, seeing that you could run a company like they did.
What software could you not live without?
How many projects does your company juggle at any one time?
Hard to say but round 40-50 I'd guess, Lowe Brindfors is a full service agency so that's both digital and ATL.
Who is your target audience?
Well that differs from project to project. But sometimes it feels like most brands want to target urban 27-something media savvy, Ray-Ban wearing, good looking people that work in media.
Has winning FWA awards helped you in any way?
It's great. Now I have something to tell the clients when they don't listen to my recommendations.
When dealing with major clients, how difficult is it to meet the needs of such wide target audiences?
Quite hard. It's always a tricky doing something that as many people as possible has to like without becoming bland.
What did your very first site look like? Is it still online?
If I remember correctly it was http://www.friskytten.se/ and yes it's still online. I'm actually still quite pleased with it. The site is promoting a classic opera played in Stockholm. The theme of the opera is manliness so on the site we combined the look, sound and feel of opera world but added a few classic manly "sports" that users can compete in: Machine gun shooting, burping and pissing. So users could test how "manly" they are whilst listening to opera music.
Are there things you do OUTSIDE of work to ensure that you are in the right mindset to be creative and/or successful in whatever you are doing?
I watch a lot of movies and TV series. I think movies and series are a great way to learn about communication, I mean there are few things that interest such a huge amount of people around the world. Watching a lot of it really can help you understand how storys should be told.
What was the last digital effort you saw (or were a part of) that used social media in a way that really made sense. Why?
I really liked the SAS campaign Globe of Fortune. That was clever because it extended into the real world and also it kind of made fun of the fact that people have all these friends on Facebook that aren't really their friends at all. Because, let's face it, how many of them would you actually like to go on a trip with?
The web is getting out of the web. Do you find that thinking in digital solutions alone hinders you? Do you feel the urge to solve the problem using all mediums necessary?
Well, I think that I've always had that approach. Coming from a more "traditional" advertising background it has always felt natural to put the concept and the idea in the centre and then adapt it to fit different media rather than letting the medium dictate the solution. But of course that's not always possible. Sometimes you just have to get on with it. Even if it's just a banner.
What are your views on design/graphic school. Do you think someone can get into the field without educational experience in a school environment?
Yes I do. I think it's a lot harder without education but it's not impossible. I've seen examples of people doing great work without it. It's fun and useful in loads of ways to go to college but not an absolute necessity.
If you were a student entering this industry or an aspiring FWA award submitter, what advice would you give them?
Practice. Coming up with ideas is actually something that you can practice. The more briefs you work on the better you get. I didn't know that when I started at St Martins, and I was actually scared stiff that I would run out of ideas. But I had the brilliant Clive Challis as a tutor and that was something he taught all students early on; ideas don't run out, they multiply.
There must be a project that you have always dreamed of doing, what is it?
Writing a novel. A thick bastard of a novel that spans at least three generations.
It has been a privilege, thanks very much
Thank you, Rob.