Name: Jason Stefanik. Profession: Freelance Creative Director. Member of Work Heights since 2014
WH: You’ve worked in advertising for over 16 years. How do you navigate being creative while being paid by corporations to sell something?
My job (with my copy-writing partner, Alex Taylor) is to basically take what a company wants to say, and find a way to say it that consumers will find memorable and entertaining. Because if your commercial or pre-roll video doesn’t stand out, doesn’t make people laugh, doesn’t grab their attention, than whatever sales message you’re trying to get across will be ignored. That’s why we try and make commercials as entertaining as the show they interrupt, or pre-roll videos as interesting as the video they precede.
WH: Lots of your work is hilarious with a sense of comedy timing that makes it memorable. Is that something that comes from the comedic writing or the production?
We always push to create work that people will find funny, or weird, or memorably funny in a weird way. That’s the kind of work we write. But so much of our funniest stuff actually happens during production. We are constantly writing, even during the shoot and into the edit, to find the funniest lines and beats.
WH: Your creative work has an undertone of surreal, even dream like scenarios. Were you a big day-dreamer as a child?
Yes. As a kid I wanted to go into special effects, film or architecture and I’ve gotten to combine at least two of those things in my work.
WH: Finally you’ve been a member of Work Heights for about 3 years. What do you love about it?
I love the quiet. I do my best work sitting alone in silence (which sounds worse than it is) and Dean Machine is a great place to do that. Especially on warm days when I can sit out back in the garden.