I think everyone needs time off. If the only thing you think about is your work, you're missing a huge opportunity to be more creative, efficient and complete.
Please give us a brief bio of yourself.
I grew up in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Since an early age I had the urge to have a creative outlet to communicate with the world. In 1999, while in high school, I created a controversial newspaper and soon after I started working as a developer.
What do you do for inspiration?
With time and experience, you learn how to turn the inspiration switch on and off. I usually don't seek references until I have something in mind and when I do, I'm mostly verifying if that has been done yet or not. My inspiration comes from what I read and see, so if I'm working with a very specific subject, I try to immerse myself in the subject and see what happens afterwards.
What do you regard as being your biggest achievement?
Even though it's not the biggest or most awarded project I've done, I believe that my biggest achievement was the creation of Paixão Nacional (National Passion) in 2010, a project that uses geolocation and google maps to display user generated content, a large collection of pictures of butts in places all over the globe.
This project was shortlisted at FWA, with huge repercussion, and generated multiple appearances in newspapers, TV, and magazines, opening up many doors for me. I also acted as frontend developer and project manager, putting together a team of six (Allan Kirsten, Wylkon Cardoso, Lucas Dupin, Bruno Malvestuto, Rafael Valverde and Vanessa Maia) from different states that had never met each other before. It was a crazy and fun experience.
How many hours do you work each week?
I'd say somewhere around 45 hours.
If you weren't working on the internet what would you be doing?
I started coding when I was 17 because of a newspaper I used to write for. I think that if I wasn't working on the internet I'd be doing something related to that, maybe I'd become a journalist.
What's the longest you've ever stayed up working on a project?
Not that I'm proud of it, but I think it was something like three days, non-stop. I've had some other crazy projects in which I worked an average of 20 hours a day for months. Looking back at it now, I see that was far from ideal.
How many projects does your company juggle at any one time?
It really depends on the size/scope of the projects we are in production on. We have a team of 25 creative developers, so we are able to take on quite a bit of work.
Who is your target audience?
My target audience is the general public, especially when we're talking about my pet related projects. I want to entertain, inform or simply communicate with everyone and not just with people in the advertising industry.
Has winning FWA awards helped you in any way?
Even though I have won multiple FWA awards, I know that the most significant help came from getting shortlisted with Paixão Nacional. It opened so many doors to me and it was a huge display of my creative and technical work.
What did your very first site look like? Is it still online?
I can't say it would look beautiful nowadays, but at that time for the amount of products and information that were shown, I can say that it used to be very nice. Unfortunately it's not live anymore, but I'm very proud of it. In order to build it I had to learn about ASP and Firebird. That was almost 15 years ago!
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 think everyone needs time off. If the only thing you think about is your work, you're missing a huge opportunity to be more creative, efficient and complete. Reading and studying about different things, spending time with my family and meditating are things that keep me on track. Video games, movies and, of course, music are great too.
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 can mention the campaign for the launch of the movie Straight Outta Compton. That campaign was a huge success and people embraced the idea, some joking and some taking it very seriously. You could generate your own insignia and share them across social media. The original plan was to have people tell where they are from, but it became much more than that.
Have you been a part of a campaign that was rooted in digital and THEN reached over into other consumer touchpoints? Did this happen organically or was it a part of the plan from the beginning?
Again Straight Outta Compton is a great example, we thought it would live inside the digital universe only, but out of the blue, people were wearing t-shirts, there were a ton of mashups, and the campaign simply became a reference.
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?
Definitely! The way people interact with each other, with technology and information is changing, fast! I really feel like installations, immersive experiences, live action and mapped projection can help a lot of brands and people. Wearables, VR, AR… all that will brings a revolution and it won't take long.
How difficult do you find employing the right people in a world where everyone calls themselves a web designer?
It's not that hard if you're open to go beyond. Usually I tend to bring in people with a great attitude, who's work I've been familiar with for some time - I follow some people's work for a while before approaching them - and of course, I trust my team to let me know with whom they'd like to work with.
How do you keep your finger on the pulse of the latest web trends?
That's so complicated nowadays. I read a lot, I keep working on my personal projects and I try, as much as possible, to motivate people to look out for new things, new approaches and technologies so that later on we can talk and I can, even if superficially, learn a bit more about these new trends.
There must be a project that you have always dreamed of doing, what is it?
I've been very interested in installations. I'd love to build a booth in a public space to reach people who are out there, that are not related to the market or technology. I'd like to perhaps build a horror installation. I am also always concerned about social causes, so something to raise awareness would be very interesting to me.
What does the future hold for your company, or you as a person?
HAUS will keep growing, building more and more cutting edge projects. In regards to myself, I honestly don't know, the goal is to do as much as I can, with the best quality that I can and explore more and more possibilities such as, IoT, installations, experiments in the browser… Of course, I'll keep helping my team to build more awesome stuff too.
What are you excited about learning next and is there a long term challenge you are considering tackling?
I'm exploring some different things now, learning more about product management, psychology, philosophy, exploring microcontrollers, organizational leadership and much more. At some point, I'll put it all together.
It has been a privilege, thanks very much
The privilege is all mine, thank you!