The Creative Career Symposium (CCS) was a nice little event and a not so bad way to spend a Saturday afternoon. I was on a panel with some other professionals who work in or around the creative industry. The purpose of the event is to give some career insight to those who may are considering a career in a creative industry.
Now – I work with a lot of web designers & developers, but I’m not a designer myself – nor is anyone on my staff. So, I was kind of wondering if I was a good fit for the panel. Turns out, my experiences in working with creatives & creative agencies was a natural fit for the panel.
I was on the 1pm session along with these fine folks:
- Mario Schulzke, Director of New Media: Respond2
- Benjamin Lloyd, President: Amplify Interactive
- Elaine Aye, Interior Designer: Green Building Services
- Ryan Crisman, Producer: Red Door Films
- Ed Flick, Head of Design: Nautilus
- Anna Low, Graphic Designer: OIA Creative Packaging Solutions
Some great insight came from the panel and we covered a lot of ground during the hour and a half session. Some highlights:
Question: Why is Portland such a hotbed for creative people and creative companies? Describe the difference in creative culture here versus other places.
- Ed brought up the fact that Nike is a PDX company, and they really bring in a cottage industry of creative types from photographers to designers etc.
- Mario spoke about the work/life balance that a place like Portland can offer, and how that allows people to be creative
Question: Talk about your specific creative field today versus five years ago â€“ what changes have been made and how do such changes affect the way you work?
- This one was near & dear to my heart. Specifically, I pointed out the difference in site design and the maturity of the industry. Creative needs to understand that they’ll be incorporating user feedback and analytics in improving site design methodologies & processes.
Question: What are some of the most important skills of successful people in your industry?
- The panel had a lot to say about this one – but everyone agreed that the ability to communicate, and more specifically the ability to articulate an idea so that different types of people (technical vs artistic) could understand your idea
- Practically speaking – and this is something I’m sure no prospective creative person wants to hear – everyone also agreed that you need to know how to use Microsoft Excel in the business world.
The Art Institute taped the session – but there’s no word on when or if they’ll make it available.
I missed the 10 AM session, but there was some great talent on that panel as well:
- Debra Haines, Director: Filter Talent
- Bryan Trullinger, COO: Summit Projects
- Jolynn Ovington, Designer: Nau
- Danny Rubyono, Design Director: Downstream
- David Cress, Executive Producer: Bent Image Lab
All in all – I enjoyed participating in my session, and I think the people that attended got some value out of it. Hopefully they’ll ask me back again!