What is your job title, and what does it mean?
I am Flying Cork Media’s Creative Director, meaning I am in charge of creative direction for the agency and client projects. I make sure that our brand identity, messaging, strategy, voice are being properly represented.
Best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
One of the best pieces of advice I got as a designer was from a portfolio professor in college. The advice was to always have your audience in mind. Whether your audience is the client or your boss, always design with their needs in mind over your personal preferences. It’s always good to get your ideas in there, but it’s also important to be able to work within a team and accept other people’s ideas to get the best solution or product.
Weirdest job you have had?
One of my first (and weirdest) jobs was right after college as a nightlife promotional photographer. It was exactly how it sounds: I would go to venues at peak hours (10pm – 2am), and it was just my job to kind of just creep around the club and take candids of people having a good time. Needless to say, I have a lot of weird stories from that job.
What’s your favorite part of your job?
The people I get to work with. I feel like everyone says that, but I really do enjoy being a part of a team where everybody has their own valued skill set. I love being able to work with people who are just as passionate as I am about what they do, and I get to learn from their passion, which only elevates and informs my own work.
How has Flying Cork helped with your career development?
Flying Cork has helped me grow as a creative professional because of all the different touch points I get to influence. Whether I’m working on a website, a brand identity, or television show, I get to have my hand in a lot of different creative projects. This forces me to constantly exercise different muscles in my brain.
Also, as a Creative Director, I spend a lot of time on creative strategy. So not only do I get to think visually, but I can also think creatively with psychology – how a product or experience will affect a person and the actions they will take because of it.
Favorite thing to do in Pittsburgh?
My wife and I really like to go to wineries around and outside the city. We enjoy wine tasting and just being outside.
What has been your favorite project at Flying Cork?
My favorite project has been my work on the television show, Tomorrow’s World Today. I was originally brought on to help as a designer for the show, but with so much focus on the show’s production, I saw the need to build out the Tomorrow’s World Today brand identity. This eventually led to me becoming the Brand Manager for the show and getting to take a heavier hand with the actual show’s visual look and feel which has been very exciting for me.
I’ve already been there twice, but I really enjoy visiting Ireland. I love the people and culture, and I love pub hopping, listening to live music, and hiking there.
What is your most memorable commercial advertisement billboard?
I’m a big fast food guy, and Wendy’s is one of my favorite places. Wendy’s always had a very traditional, old-fashioned brand that was, in my opinion, starting to get stale. In the early 2000s they made a brand shift with these hilarious commercials with the wig with the pigtails, which really started to repaint Wendy’s as a very fun, more youthful brand. It completely changed the face of the brand and gave a lot more brand equity leading to a full rebrand years later. They also really led the charge on having a very funny and “relatable” social feed.
I love a good prime rib. I also have a strong passion for cheesecake.
What is a cork popping moment you’ve experienced while working at Flying Cork?
Just as a Creative Director, my Cork Popping Moment has to be our relaunch of the Flying Cork brand identity. By spearheading brand conversations with the rest of the team about our voice, vision, and more, I was able to take the brand, modernize it and add in some new elements to rework the brand to better fit our vision for the future of the agency. It was so rewarding for me to see the new direction take shape with the launch of our new website.