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A Lean Approach to Technology in Your Studio with Curren Calhoun of Gap Inc.

Daniel Jester
Chief evangelist at Creative Force

Full episode transcript

Daniel Jester:
From Creative Force, I'm Daniel Jester, and this is the E-commerce Content Creation Podcast. My guest for this episode is senior director of photo production and technology for Gap, Inc., Curren Calhoun. Curren and I met when we were on the same technology panel for a creative operations conference a few years ago. His adoption of lean principles even when evaluating and implementing tech solutions in his studio proved that he's always thinking about how best to serve his customers.

Curren Calhoun:
But what you need to do is tie everything into the customer experience. What's the customer experience that your partners want to make? How do you deliver on that expectation consistently time and time again? But have a flexible enough system that allows you to adjust when that experience needs to adjust.

Daniel Jester:
Before we jump in, my weekly moment of gratitude for the listeners of this podcast. Thank you so much for taking the time to listen to our show. And if you're enjoying the show, please rate us on Apple Podcasts, or a written review would be incredible. Stay tuned after the episode for ways to get involved in the conversation, and maybe even there's a post credit scene. What? You'll have to stick around to find out.

Daniel Jester:
This is the E-commerce Content Creation Podcast. I'm your host, Daniel jester. My guest today, senior director of photo production and technology at Gap Incorporated, Curren Calhoun. Curren, welcome to the show.

Curren Calhoun:
Thank you. Thank you. So glad to be here talking with you today.

Daniel Jester:
Yeah. So full disclosure for our listening audience, because this is sort of a meta podcast. We had a great intro that we ended up having to scrap because of some technical issues so we hope we can get it right the next time. It's a good thing we got the tech guy on the show and we're having technical difficulties.

Curren Calhoun:
The irony is not lost.

Daniel Jester:
So we brought you on the show today to talk what we just kind of mentioned, the modern e-commerce photo studio heavily leverages technology, lots of different pieces of equipment, software, lots of different things. The technology is constantly evolving and changing. The business landscape and the business needs is evolving and changing. You've got like several different moving targets that are happening all the time. And we want to talk a little bit about best practices around identifying, implementing, supporting software, and then doing all of this in the service of continuous improvement. You and I had a conversation about a week ago where we talked a lot about some of these things and how important continuous improvement is even when you're talking about technology and equipment, which I think it's something that we've talked about on the show and it's certainly an interesting topic to add to the tech conversation.

Daniel Jester:
You're very passionate about tech in a photo studio. Can you tell me a little bit about just like your sort of thoughts and philosophy on the way that we interact with tech in a production studio environment?

Curren Calhoun:
Technology to me should be an enhancer. It needs to enhance the process that you're doing and allow the creatives to focus on creating, using their skillset and not doing repetitive tasks. Anything that you can automate, you should automate. Automating those tasks allow the creatives to focus on what it is that you want them to focus on, creating excellent content that engages with your customers and creates that entire brand experience that you're looking to do.

Daniel Jester:
It can be really difficult to light and shoot a product well if you're having problems with Capture One, if you're having problems with the camera that you're holding in your hand. Humans don't multitask well, it turns out. So technology in our studio, in our equipment and our software, it needs to work well just to kind of reiterate what you said there.

Daniel Jester:
I think a place to start in this conversation a little bit, Curren, we have a need in a studio, we need to identify some new solution piece of technology equipment, whatever it is. One of the things that's always challenging, it's a perpetual challenge in a studio environment, is that the process somehow needs that perfect blend of guardrails and structure, but being flexible enough to deal with the unknowns that come up every single day. Can you tell me a little bit when you're thinking about like a new software platform or whatever it may be, tell me a little bit about what are some of the things that you're looking for? Where do you want that structure? Do you need that flexibility? And why is that so important when we're adopting new technology in the studio?

Curren Calhoun:
When I'm looking at a technology solution, I'm looking for something that doesn't force the team into a specific way of doing things, that it enhances the way that they need to do things based on the business that we have. I've been at four organizations and none of them do things the same way because of just their general business model. So if you have a solution that doesn't give you the flexibility to adapt it to the way you need to work, to either interact with your creative team in the way that they need to work or to interact with your e-commerce teams, your digital operations teams for the way that they work and the way their technology stack is built, you're not going to be successful. So you have to have some flexibility in the way your technology enhances what it is that you need to do.

Daniel Jester:
It's occurring to me, and I know we mentioned up top about the idea of continuous improvement. But one of the tenants of continuous improvement is root cause analysis. And so it's really hard to even talk about identifying and implementing new technology because it's entirely possible that maybe the right way to approach this is to get your stakeholders together and do a little root cause analysis because you may need to determine what are the ways that we're working now that need to be able to fit in to the software solution. And alternatively, are there non-value add steps that we would tend to want to hold onto that we may be able to remove. And so even from the point of like talking about what our needs are, you're already probably touching on some root cause analysis. In your opinion, does that make sense?

Curren Calhoun:
Oh, 100%. When you think about root cause analysis and looking for waste in a system, the non-value added components of what's there, if you don't look at that beforehand, you're going to build a workflow solution that just enhances those things that you're looking to remove. So there's an element of root cause analysis that you definitely need to go through. You could look at a technology solve that's available on the market, but then you need to take a step back and look at your process to say, "Wow, that was an interesting thing that I saw. That was an interesting feature that I saw. How does that apply to me or should it apply to me and I haven't thought about it yet in my current process, in my current workflow?" So without a full review of what it is that you need to do, you're either missing out on an opportunity to add something that's a positive or to remove something that ultimately is slowing you down.

Daniel Jester:
Well said. That's a good segue into sort of the next phase of this if we're thinking about this in kind of a linear process of like looking at our process, identifying a need. One of the things we need to do early on when it comes to implementing new technology is we need to make that business case and sell that up to the people who hold the checkbook. And by reviewing your process, it stands to reason for me, Curren, that you come equipped to that conversation saying "Here's 10 things that we'll be able to remove from the process that no longer value add by implementing this new system."

Curren Calhoun:
Yes. Highlighting what you can remove from a workflow due to the manual steps that you're currently doing today is a key thing to point out. The only caution though is, years ago, one of my technology partners highlighted to me, "You need to be cautious about how much time you're going to save, because someone's going to ask you what does that translate to in people."

Daniel Jester:
Right. Yeah.

Curren Calhoun:
So the way I've been looking at it now is what does this do to enhance the customer experience? So work backwards in the process. Don't work forward. Reverse it. Start with what's the expected customer experience. What does the workflow do to allow you to ensure that that's consistently met or to give you the ability to enhance it based on asks that you're receiving that you currently can't produce without adding more people? So it's the trade off. By optimizing within this tool set and with these workflow enhancements, I'm able to now do these things that I otherwise couldn't do because I don't have the time or I don't have the support from a technology standpoint to implement them. And that it impacts the customer experience this way. You can have the conversation about I'm going to save time with a workflow enhancement. Does that impact your contractors that you may have come into the studio to support the work that you're trying to do? But you need to walk into the conversation that you're going to have, eyes wide open, as to the types of questions you're going to get based on what you're presenting

Daniel Jester:
The most well-equipped people to have these conversations are able to be effective translators between what the creative team at the studio level needs and what the senior leadership C-suite, what resonates with them, right? And so if we're giving our listeners so far to kind of recap some of the tips that we are kind of trying to lay out here, one of them being, look for a solution that allows you to work the way that you want to work but being willing to sacrifice non-value add steps when necessary. That would be one. And then the next one that we're just kind of talking about now is, prepare yourself to have the conversation on what the software implementation means for both your creative teams. And then translating that to a positive business case to the people who have the money.

Daniel Jester:
I think you're totally right to say, like, you need to anticipate the questions that are going to get asked. And somebody will ask the headcount question. Does this mean that we can close an open role that we haven't filled? These are things that we don't necessarily want to let go, because I think, Curren, and I don't want to speak for you but I'm certainly an advocate of using technology to lessen the workload and allow our teams to do more of the things that will have an impact on the customer, like higher quality imagery, being better at the job that they do because that's an investment. If you give them more time to learn more skills on set, they get faster, they get better, the quality improves and they start to do it faster.

Curren Calhoun:
Yeah. I say that to my team all the time, that my job as a translator, it's taking a creative process and creative thoughts and ideas and translating it into a universal language, which is numbers. You're interacting with a variety of different groups. The top ones I can think of are, you've got creative teams, finance teams, site general managers that all have different desires. They all have different needs that you need to support. So how do you communicate with each of those groups in a way that they're going to understand what it is you're trying to say to them and also rally behind you to support what it is that you need to get done? It's not a dishonest conversation. It's just, I've had creative teams that they don't want to see a spreadsheet. You open a spreadsheet, they immediately want to move on to something else.

Daniel Jester:
Right.

Curren Calhoun:
Where you go to the finance team, "Where's the spreadsheet?"

Daniel Jester:
Yeah.

Curren Calhoun:
You know? So you have to understand how you get in front of each of these groups. It's kind of like learning styles. Everybody has a unique learning style. Well, each of these groups has a unique listening style. And how do you connect in with those groups and translate what it is that you need and what it is that your team does into each of those communication styles to each of those audiences that you have to interact with?

Daniel Jester:
Curren, perfectly said. I made a note as we've been kind of talking through some of these ideas. And this is timely because as of the time that we're recording this, we just had a blog post go live where I attempt to make the case for a dedicated training manager in a studio. And I put the note in here. Again, I'm a little biased. I got a little bit of an agenda to push here. But effective training is going to be absolutely critical to a successful implementation of new software. And so this is one of the areas that I think when we're having that budget conversation, when we're translating the needs here, we don't want to forget about that part. Do we need to invest money, potentially, to make sure that our teams are up to speed on these tools, this software, this equipment, whatever it is, quickly so that they can use it effectively?

Curren Calhoun:
I think there's two sides to that coin. In a larger corporation, they usually have change management teams. So Gap Inc, we have a change management team when we implement a integrated solution. So in our case, if it was a workflow tool, that's going to be integrated in with other tools. So our change management team is going to ensure that every user across the spectrum of that tool is going to understand how to use it and can effectively leverage that tool in the future.

Curren Calhoun:
When it comes to studio specific tools, that's where it gets a little bit different. Studios tend to be the groups that have to create these solutions for themselves. And that goes in on the IT side, that goes on the training side. We're such a specialty group that admittedly areas say, "I don't really know how to effectively support you." And that's okay, because we are so specialized in what it is that we need to do and there's so many facets to it. The only people that truly understand how it works are those of us that live inside of it every day.

Daniel Jester:
Right. Yeah.

Curren Calhoun:
Investing in the training is an important piece. There's the train the trainer aspect. So we have one person will send out and we'll get some specialized in something and they'll come back and make sure everybody else is aware of that. There's the traditional projects where you give someone the task of creating the SOP, your standard operating procedure. And then you have to continuously update that. There's a lot of different ways you can go about creating a location for your team to reference so that everyone can stay on board with the proper process task and you could remain consistent. Those could be SharePoint sites if your company has SharePoint. They could be a Wiki page. You could fire up a Wiki site pretty easily and then maintain that. There's a lot of different ways that you can do it.

Curren Calhoun:
The biggest thing the training allows for is repeatability and reproducibility. In a Six Sigma sense, those are key things. You have a gauge, which is your standard. Then you need to repeat that and reproduce that across the teams. So repeating it is you need to be able to achieve that same standard time and time again. And then you need to be able to reproduce that against multiple photographers across the spectrum of the group that you have. That's an important factor. If you can't do that, then you're not achieving what you're being asked to do by your brand partners. In my case, we have multiple brands that we support. So we have different gauges that we have to repeat and reproduce across the team in order to actually effectively create a customer experience that's not disjointed.

Daniel Jester:
That's a pretty good segue to the next kind of part of our topic a little bit, which is support. And you touched on a moment ago, you mentioned IT support. I would be willing to bet anybody listening to this who's worked in a studio has had some challenges with IT support. My experience personally with the companies that I've worked with is that you end up largely relying on sort of generalized company IT support. And the honest truth is, and I have met some very lovely IT people who I would call friends, but the truth is that they are not equipped to support a photo studio. And sometimes that even dictates what platform your studio runs on, you know? Amazon runs on PC because it's just easier to support that across the entire organization. So you had a couple of thoughts on how you can really improve internal studio support from like an IT sort of perspective, and I'd love for you to share those with our listeners.

Curren Calhoun:
Yeah. You say PCs, and I think back to the first organization I worked at where we were running on PCs and then eventually started running Macintosh computers but had to run parallels because we had to run the Windows operating system on the other side in order to load the images. I still shutter with that one every now and then.

Daniel Jester:
Boy, that's tough.

Curren Calhoun:
Yeah. So on the technology side, the reality is, if you take a look at a typical IT structure, they have specialists that work together to ensure the entire system is functioning. If you look at a photo studio, especially a scaled, large production studio, that essentially is the same thing. It's another specialty that requires IT support. You've got two options. You're either going to invest and fund a specialist that sits in it that focuses on work for you. Inevitably, whenever that happens, there's other projects that come up and the IT team says, "Well, we need that person to work on this project" and they pull them over. It may not be photo specific. So now you've lost your frontline of support. So you can make the argument to say, "Well, I need a specialist. And it makes more sense for me to set that specialist within my group because of the speed at which I need the support to be delivered." They can become specialists in the applications that you utilize. They can work in partnership with your IT team for operating system rollouts.

Curren Calhoun:
You see, inevitably, you're going to have application issues when a new operating system rolls. We're going through that right now. It's a never ending battle and you need someone that can spend the time to focus on staying up to date with the changes that are out there today. What's coming? Remaining connected in with different people involved with Capture One, your workflow tool, any of your underlying support tools that might be moving files and doing file movement automation for you. Someone that can focus on that every day provides a lot of value to what you do and the speed at which you can respond to an issue that might pop up.

Curren Calhoun:
I've experienced multiple times where IT has their automated pushes to keep their security software up to date, to keep their OS patches, security patches up to date, your VPN clients up to date. And inevitably, what happens is those get rolled out and that breaks something because you haven't had a chance to test it to ensure that's going to work. And then you have to try to roll everything back. It's one of those situations where the best intention of your IT team to provide an off-the-shelf solution across the entire organization in a specialized environment actually is detrimental to what you're trying to do. And you need to find that balance. And the thing is you are the subject matter expert. You need to be the subject matter expert for your area. So you need to educate your IT team on what it is that you need and why that off-the-shelf solution may not be the best for your environment. And then find a partnership within that group that you can continue to build on that's going to support their needs are as well as what your needs are and just achieve a balance.

Daniel Jester:
That's the sort of practical piece of advice for our listeners on this. You really need to have a person or a couple of people in your studio who have at least a cursory understanding of the way that the studio systems work together and can act as an advocate on behalf of the studio with the larger IT organization. And again, has that translation role, is able to translate the needs of the creative team in the studio with the mandate. Because oftentimes, your friction between the studio and IT comes because IT has a mandate to keep the system safe. And that's a very, very important mandate. But to your point, it can cause problems. And problems in a production studio generally means bleeding a lot of money if you can't continue shooting.

Daniel Jester:
Let's talk a little bit about the value of spending a little bit of money on extra equipment. I'll let you kind of explain I think what we're talking about. But basically what do we do if computer on set has some problems, some failure, and we can at produce, and you've got a model and hair and makeup and stylist, a photographer and digitech and assistant are all sitting there wondering what to do? How do we unblock that and get it moving?

Curren Calhoun:
Well, you just teed it up perfectly. If you take all of those roles and you look at the cost associated with each one of those roles and then you take a look at the cost of an additional Mac Pro computer, you do the math. It's typically cheaper to have an additional Mac pro sitting on the sidelines waiting so that you don't experience the downtime of what amounts to a very expensive production. You're on figure photo production, you're marketing on figure photo production, your general marketing shoots, they have large teams that are required to be able to make those shoots successful. The longer they sit and wait, the more it costs you in the downtime that you experience. So the cost of investing in an additional computer system to be able to pull in within a short period of time, it's a no brainer. It's easy math to do.

Curren Calhoun:
In our case, what we try to do is you think of your digital tech as your front line of support. They're the first person. They're sitting at the computer. If the machine freezes, the first person interacting with it is your digital tech. What are the steps thatthat digital tech can do to try to resolve that situation? And give them a timeline. Tell them, "If you can't resolve that within five minutes, you need to escalate that to another individual to step in and try to do the same thing." That's more of your internal computer specialist. That individual comes in and does some troubleshooting as well. If they can't resolve it in five minutes, where's that second computer?

Daniel Jester:
Right.

Curren Calhoun:
Swap that out. Pull it in and get it up to speed. Get the shoot going. Take the machine that's not functioning correctly. Take it offline. Trouble shoot it. Work through it. Even if you have to re-image the machine, just get it back up and running again. But don't troubleshoot it on set. Get the set moving quickly.

Daniel Jester:
Man, I could probably spend an entire episode just talking about interruption-mitigation techniques of this type. But I think that's great because I wanted to mention it earlier, but your digitech is a natural choice to give them a little bit of cross training and IT troubleshooting. Give them some kind of a framework to operate within. If something goes wrong, what do you do? Well, you restart the computer. You know? I mean, maybe that's not the first thing you have to do, but a lot of times you're going to end up there. And then having somebody to escalate it to. And then if you can't get it unstuck in some amount of time, you need to have that person who makes the call and says, "Swap the computers. We got to keep this set running."

Daniel Jester:
You could also, if you have an available set, this is one way to do it if you're concerned about CapEx cost of having a computer sitting around, you could move them to another set. But I'm going to look directly in my camera right here that our podcast listeners can't see and I'm going to talk to those smaller scrappier studios and say, "Just spend the money." Have the extra camera. Have the extra computer. Have an extra monitor. Have extras of all of these things, because ultimately it's a small price to pay when you're talking about not only the cost of the entire crew on set, but also the opportunity cost of those images potentially not being ready when they need to be ready.

Daniel Jester:
This is all business continuity, business interruption, mitigation stuff that we all need to be doing in the studio. And I feel like we just barely started paying attention to that I feel like in a few years leading up to the pandemic. And it's probably a good thing we did. I remember I was at Amazon, two years into my three year career at Amazon before anybody started talking about business continuity at the studio level. And it was like, I'm glad they had that conversation because it came up, didn't it?

Curren Calhoun:
I definitely would say that as a leader inside of a photo production operation, business continuity has to be top of mind for you. It could be weather related business continuity. In San Francisco, we have conversations about, "Okay, there's wildfires going on? Do we have people working remote? Are they going to lose power? Where do we have them work if they don't have power?" You know?

Daniel Jester:
Is it safe for them to be working?

Curren Calhoun:
Exactly. When I was working in Pennsylvania was there's a snowstorm coming, "Okay. Who do we need to put in a hotel so that we can make sure that we can have continuity with the work that we have coming up?" So this just becomes another component of that. And you need to practice it. The best continuity plans are ones that are practiced. One organization that was at the best one at it, you could walk away from your desk, you'd come back, there'd be an envelope there. And you'd just sit there and go, "Oh no, what's in the envelope?" You'd open it up and it would be like, "This room's on fire. What do you do?"

Daniel Jester:
"You've been the victim of an earthquake."

Curren Calhoun:
Exactly. Once a month, it would happen and they would put that into play. So that place probably had continuity situations pop up more often. And it was weather related. It was generally weather related types of events. And you're going to have that. So what's the plan? San Francisco unfortunately is an earthquake prone place. What's the plan? So you need to be thinking about those types of things. And COVID was definitely one of those situations that if you didn't have a business continuity plan, you were writing it pretty fast.

Daniel Jester:
Yeah.

Curren Calhoun:
So it brought this top of mind to a lot of people. And we should continue taking that forward. Look at everything inside of your process and understand what's the continuity.

Daniel Jester:
Curren, we touched a little bit on continuous improvement up front. I want to kind of talk about that in the context of continuing to support your new tech implementation. So tech changes, features change. Does it make sense to have somebody who sort of has a bird's eye view of like, "Hey, this features coming out and this might alleviate our need to do these extra steps? Are we constantly monitoring our software features to see if there's a new thing that we can strip out, a new step becomes non-value add and we can continue to streamline?"

Curren Calhoun:
100%. There's two pieces to that. If you don't have a home built workflow tool, then you can rely on your vendor. A vendor is supporting multiple clients. They're out there in the marketplace. They're seeing what's going on. They're seeing where the needs are and they're coming to you and saying, "Hey, we have this new feature. Do you see where it can add value to what you're doing?" On a homegrown system, you need to be surveying what's going on in the marketplace out around you. And then bring that back and enhancing your homegrown solution to get that done.

Curren Calhoun:
I've worked at places with homegrown solutions, with external solutions. I've built a couple of homegrown solutions. I wouldn't recommend that so much because then you end up becoming your own IT person, support person, developer. That becomes a bit of a challenge. But sometimes you don't have a choice because you have to make the business case. You almost need to do certain steps to do a proof of concept to say, "Hey, if we can take this to the next level, then we can actually realize some of these things that I'm talking about in this business case." And that becomes a continuous improvement. You're still improving the system step by step, but you're doing it through proof of concept phases, through some other implementation steps.

Curren Calhoun:
You need to keep looking at what the marketplace is doing. This podcast is an example of hearing an idea that you may not have thought might apply to your space and then taking that and seeing how you can improve your system with an idea that you've heard from a discussion of people that experience the same pain that you experience on a regular basis.

Daniel Jester:
Anything else, Curren? We've been chatting for a while here and I'm really enjoying the conversation, but I want to be respectful of your time. Any other parting thoughts for our listeners on implementation, best practices, studio tech? Anything like that you'd like to share?

Curren Calhoun:
I'd say the biggest thing that's been a revelation for me, you can always make the argument on the ROI piece, you can always go have the conversation about ways that you can do things better, faster, but what you need to do is tie everything into the customer experience. What's the customer experience that your partners want to make? How do you deliver on that expectation consistently time and time again? But have a flexible enough system that allows you to adjust when that experience needs to adjust. If you think of it from a theme standpoint, it's mainly that. How do you create a workflow and a studio system... When I say studio system, I mean like a broader group of people and roles that actually combine together to deliver that customer experience. How do you deliver on that customer experience and do it in a flexible and adaptable way so that you can continuously improve what that customer experience looks like on a day to day basis?

Daniel Jester:
I keep coming back to that idea that it kind of starts with like, looking at your process and root cause analysis. Why do we do it this way? What does it mean to do it this way? Can we pivot this if we had to?

Daniel Jester:
Curren, really fantastic to have you on the show. I loved every bit of that conversation. Your insight is incredible. Does Gap have any... Are you guys trying to fill any open role? This is the part of the show where we'll generally share a little bit about of our guests. Can our guests connect with you on LinkedIn if they want? Do you have any open roles that we can plug for you?

Curren Calhoun:
Yeah. I mean, I'm on LinkedIn. Feel free to connect in with me. As far as open roles, we're always looking for freelance talent just to build up the pool of individuals that we bring in to support the work that we have to complete. I don't have any open full-time roles at the moment. But yeah, if you're looking for freelance work inside the San Francisco area, feel free to reach out to me as well and I can pass you along to the right people.

Daniel Jester:
That's it for this episode. It was truly a pleasure to have Curren on as our guest. If you have feedback for us or want to pitch a guest or topic idea for the show, email us at podcastat@creativeforce.io. You can also connect with me on LinkedIn, I'm Daniel T. Jester. The show is produced by Creative Force, edited by Calvin Lanz. Special thanks to Sean O’Meara, and our guest, Curren Calhoun. I'm your host, Daniel Jester. Until next time, friends.

Daniel Jester:
We finished recording the episode and then Curren hit us with this little story. We're all kind of cracking up over it. Curren, go ahead. We're going to drop this in. We'll find some place to drop this in for people to listen to. It's kind of funny. But it speaks to why we should just have extra stuff. Go ahead, Curren.

Curren Calhoun:
I'm a fan of when you make an investment, you should have a backup. This is illustrated by me walking by couple of my team members one day, talking about equipment that they needed. And one of them said to the other, "Yeah, we need one of these. We should pick up one of these. And the other one looked at him and said, "No, we should get two. WWCD." And I stopped and I looked at them and I said, "What do you mean by WWCD?" And he goes, "Well, if we need one, we should buy two. Because what would Curren do? Curren would buy two." And I'm just staring at them and said, "Okay." And I walked away. But it was it's so true.

Daniel Jester:
Yeah. You're known for that philosophy. Have the extra one. Yeah, absolutely. That's great. That's so funny. And also my wife would kill me.

Curren Calhoun:
Yeah. This doesn't apply to personal things. This is only for work.

Daniel Jester:
It doesn't apply to personal work. Okay. Yeah, I need two of those things.

About the host

Daniel Jester
Chief evangelist at Creative Force

Daniel Jester is an experienced creative production professional who has managed production teams, built and launched new studios, and produced large-scale projects. He's currently the Chief Evangelist at Creative Force but has a breadth of experience in a variety of studio environments - working in-house at brands like Amazon, Nordstrom, and Farfetch as well as commercial studios like CONVYR. Creative-minded, while able to effectively plan for and manage a complex project, he bridges the gap between spreadsheets and creative talent.