Monday, January 15, 2007

The good, and no-so-good, of art direction by remote control

"It works a lot better than I thought it would," says Darryl Brown, the art director of Geez magazine. You see Brown, who has a full-time day job at Staccato Design in Portland, Oregon, does all his work over a high speed hookup with Geez headquarters in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

In a video taped by the internet channel Yamhill.TV, from Yamhill County, Oregon, Brown talks about the upsides, and down, of working remotely. (The video, avaiable in Quicktime and Flash, is just over 7 minutes long).

Brown says the biggest drawbacks of working at a distance are that he misses out on a lot of the discussion and early planning of issues (though he is copied on everything, he leaves a lot of that to the editors) and also the "creative energy" that is present in the last couple of weeks before an issue goes to press.

Geez is by no means the only such publication where far-flung staff somehow find a way to work together, using the internet. It would be interesting to hear comments from some others and how they feel about the arrangement. If they had their druthers, would they be working face-to-face, or is remote working the new normal?


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