Adventures In Design

JP Connelly is the production designer for NBC’s hit show The Voice, Top Chef, Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party and Adam Carolla & Friends Build Stuff Live. Working with The Voice for the last 13 seasons has created a healthy flow of creative and financial success. Hear how JP Connelly guides his blooming design firm, personal goals and creativity into a future that builds upon this success and hopefully takes them all to great new heights. It’s not enough to just succeed anymore, but to learn how to lead that success into future growth and opportunities.

Talking Points

Set design and production design as a character, a added element of drama and traffic flow of contestants to hosts.

Creating the best work for the client versus doing your signature style.

Designing an experience, nothing has to be basic.

Getting started with small projects, killing yourself to earn your reputation for the big stage.

Running your business in a way where it doesn’t run you down.

A healthy dose of fear will help your next big creative project.

Learning the difference between “We” and “I” when you build a business based off your personal identity.

How Nick At Night birthed Netflix and binge watching.

Designing the flow of a game show through production design.

Trying to look at your own work like a stranger would.


In The Circle of Trust (Bonus Content)

Adding new textures to What's Happening Live With Andy Cohen.

Award Shows the greatest drama of unscripted television.

Making safe mistakes and realizing some rules can’t be broken.

Hear two grown men fight over “favorite” colors.

Dudes are always trying to pick up something whether it’s chicks or dudes, the early career paths we take via libido.

Being insecure about your success and scared where to go next.

How to transfer your success into other arenas and projects.

Giving creative ownership of your business to your team.

What does Mark’s TV set look like?

Direct download: AID585i.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

On the first episode of Start Today co-hosts Mark Brickey and Biggie breakdown the 1989 Gorilla Biscuits track “Start Today” and go line by line trying to fully understand the songs greater meaning and influences that it had on their lives. However, before we get to breaking down the walls of this inspiration, first Mark provides a rich audio documentary explaining the influences, origin and history of the short lived New York Hard Core super group the Gorilla Biscuits.

 

Talking Points

- Controlling your temper, not blowing up like you used to and realizing work isn’t worth getting mad over.

- Understanding that you’re never too old to hangout and the importance of finding your tribe.

- Location, location, location, where you are plays a huge part in how you play.

- Staying one step ahead of your current career and always planning for the next big thing.

- Not just working hard, but working hard toward a focused life plan.

- Procrastinating solves nothing, only creates more work.

- There is no seniority in the arts, which leaves zero room for laziness.

- The importance of movement, keeping moving to keep surviving.

- Trusting your gut, you always know what’s right.

- Put in the hours, it will always show in the work.

- The importance of saying sorry face to face.

- Time is your enemy, friend and greatest love.


Circle of Trust

Mark talks about his lessons learned from both the song Start Today and the creating the first podcast episode. As well as plays audio that didn’t make the final public cut.

Direct download: AID574.m4a
Category:Music Business -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

The DKNG triumphantly returns for its second year still leading the charge on all things design. Dan and Nathan have been busy since we heard from them doing everything from giant catalogues to product design to character development. Mark takes us into the belly of the beast to go over all projects DKNG has pushed out the door since we rang in 2017. How do they determine billing on their projects? How do they interact with their clients across an entire project? How do they plan out their design work? How do they do what they do so damn well? Step back inside the inner workings of one of the hardest working design studios out there and see why Dan and Nathan continue to stay at the top of their game as leaders in the industry.

Talking Points

  • Reinventing the holiday card over the last four years and changing the oil on the Death Star.
  • B2B catalog at epic proportions with tons of data, style guides, and a lot of backs and forths.
  • Figuring out billable hours for developing sixty pages. 
  • Pie slices and pumping the breaks on two hundred and fifty small pieces that make up larger projects.
  • Letting your fans grow up, get jobs, and hire you.
  • Leaning last year's functional system and fixing more surface level design issues.
  • Remembering the purpose of the project.
  • New spins on old to semi old ideas or keeping what works as a standard.
  • A moment on Mark's off brand thighs.
  • Signature style, hand drawn illustration, and discovering the paintbrush tool.
  • Googling thirteen year old girl proportions and the fine line to get it just right.
  • Finding a client that feeds you all their customer facing design needs.
  • Typographic hierarchy and unique purposes.
  • Layering data into good design.
  • Four tiers of confidence that make things easy to read and still leaves some flexible room for change.
  • Treating data in steps and one of the best tricks in the book.
  • Keeping MXPX and The Jesus and Mary Chain the same sizenand the problem solving skills behind typography.
  • The many players involved in working on a licensing deal and establishing first contact. 
  • Tonal lighting to bring your illustrations to life and using two separate types of light. 
  • Showing a feeling instead of the details and turning the lights on in a bar at the end of the night.
  • Logo placement and tangents.
  • Making it all to deliberately lose some of it.
  • Symmetrical elements and layering more shapes.
  • The process in making a DKNG original illustration and the lego pieces they add in.
  • One tiny part at a time and finishing all over the place. 
  • Creating actual space in the classic Star Wars style.
  • How much is enough to make you want more?
  • Are you a painter or a designer?
  • Mark's process on the Fantasyland print versus Dan's process on creating a piece.
  • Going past the threshold on building real world gravity into every piece.
  • Logos and limitations up in lights.
  • The allure of signs that aren't structurally sound and the realistic storytelling behind it. 
  • Setting a bar you're comfortable with.
  • Creating feelings and the science behind it that is our job to understand.
  • The importance of a good mockup to help bridge the gap in your client's imagination.
  • Playing rhythm guitar to improve the feel of the room instead of stroking your design ego o the lead guitar.
Direct download: AID527i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 2:00am PDT

Biggie brings his business savior-faire back to Adventures In Design and pulls the curtain even farther back on a successful mindset. Once the romantic idea of starting a business has worn off there is still the day to day ditch digging that most people shy away from. Biggie is the first one there with a shovel, ready to go, and inspiring everyone else to get started. This episode is filled with business and productivity advice that can help you with your focus, motivation, and ability to finish. Biggie is beginning to reap the rewards of his hard work and we can all  learn from his discipline and drive to bring you to the same place... no matter which hallway you choose.

Talking Points

  • Recapping 2016 for Good Fight and Biggie's life.
  • The insane sci-fi concepts involved with human birth.
  • What records are dropping in 2017?
  • Romantic inceptions versus realistic expectations.
  • Focusing on your goals and not getting sidetracked.
  • Are you wired for multi tasking?
  • Moderating your pie in the sky ideas with your daily goals.
  • Avoiding complacency being the lion ready to go at the top of the hill.
  • Keeping your employees motivated, thinking about yourself, and being fair.
  • Delegation, communication, and being as hands off as possible.
  • Inspiring the inner sect.
  • Vision and inspiration.
  • Looking ahead to plan out success.
  • Keeping an eye on both your responsibilities and your employee's responsibilities.
  • Touching on the Three C's and some impressive organization.
  • Finding time to workout in a busy schedule.
  • Energy upticks form working out.
  • Shoestring Fries and Burpee Pull Ups.
  • Using benchmarks to compare your life's progress.
  • Overcoming the guilt in rewarding yourself.
  • Living within your worst potential means and the wisdom in frugality.
  • Poster framing as a metaphor for everything else in life.
  • The flip side of the struggle and self parking cars.
  • Watch wormholes that represent straight cash money.
  • Paying your dues, taking lumps, and reaping your rewards.
  • 2 Hallways. 1 Place.
Direct download: AID515i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

513 - Shop Talk with David Smith & Kloc

The Double Dave bonanza on Shop Talk continues but this time we have David Smith and Dave Kloc breaking down the week with Mark. Everyone on today's episode brings their perspectives on financial strategies and how the ebb and flow of a Net 30 lifestyle can wear on you. Also Dave, Dave and Mark have all recently dealt with some professional pivots in their careers and the mental fortitude it takes to make it through an uncertain time in life that comes to just about everyone. This Shop Talk gets deep at a moment's notice and always knows how to come back up for some light hearted air so be ready for a rollercoaster of emotions similar to the one you're most likely on financially if you're a freelancer. Now let's go find that guy with the twenty grand and get another paddle in the water.

Talking Points

  • The difference between small corporations, big dollar, and the freelance life.
  • Getting emo in LA with all it's isolation.
  • Choosing happiness over financial comfort.
  • The rollercoaster of the grind or being chained to your paycheck.
  • Financial strategies, multiple bank accounts, and staying ready for tax season.
  • Buying equipment that you've earned.
  • How one project should greenlight the next two.
  • The Net 30 or Net 60 that can sabotage your motivation.
  • Money, work, and the emotional side of getting paid (what you're worth).
  • Both sides of the fence on privilege.
  • The first VHS you ever watched.
  • Bad money and more paddles in the river.
  • Is working with the big boys even worth it?
  • Building blocks versus road blocks.
  • Natural selection in the creative community.
  • Decreasing the distance between whats in your head and whats on the page.
  • Professional pivots.
  • Design past branding and the the importance of the right connections.
  • Staying innovative when you;re an OB.
  • The luxury of moving on from something once you're bored with it.
  • What is crucial in your balance of life?
  • Setting up boundaries and the mental shift it has on productivity.
  • Does everyone feel behind? Does anyone feel respected?
  • Getting stuck and living in the moment to appreciate what you have.
  • Fighting for different results.
  • Who can't you let down?
  • Strength of character, sacrifice, and being kind.
  • Making your work ethic less volatile than your bank account.
  • The success of investing in yourself emotionally.
Direct download: AID513i.m4a
Category:Art Design -- posted at: 11:53pm PDT