Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Some Junk To To Tide Things Over

Monday, January 30, 2012

Utne Reader Ren and Stimpy Issue

Hey does anybody have this issue?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

New Character Design Blog


Hey folks

I am putting together a new blog site just for my design work - mostly from commercials and short spots.

That image above is a layout from Rex Hackelberg's fancy designs.

Take a gander if you are interested...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Mike's Thrills

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Does Anyone Still Have A Real Job?

Are People always asking you to "friend" them on a million social media sites that promise you rewards of eternal life, love and great jobs? Someone got me to sign up for "Linked In" about 4 years ago and it has not ever gotten me any work. All the work I get is from people who are already familiar with my stuff and they call or email me directly. I think my job description is too simple: "I make cartoons".

Now and then I'll read other people's jobs descriptions on "Linked In". I think I can see why if you do something that's tangible you may not find the kind of jobs that are available today.

Here are some typical skills that people advertise today:

"Develop, prioritize and execute optimizations for partners"

We all could use more "optimizations" so it's a good thing someone is continually developing them for us. I wonder why they murder them after they prioritize them?

"Manage strategy and execution for social media marketing by establishing best practices, developing brand voice, and streamlining efforts and positioning with international teams to launch an internal social media dashboard product for aggregated quantitative analytics."

I think if you put anything to do with "social media" in your job description, you expect your potential bosses to throw their money at you. This description admits the person does not actually produce anything; he manages others who do the very important job of aggregating "quantitative analytics". Where do you keep your analytics? I store mine under the sink.

Here is some detail that explains much more clearly what the worker above does:

"Manage large-scale conversational marketing campaigns that bring together brands, content, and audiences. As a digital media publisher, we bring together leading online voices with major brands to host robust social media environments where value-driven conversation is key. Management of these efforts involves working with cross-functional stakeholders (authors, sales, product strategy, engineering, accounting, finance, client services, etc.) and strategic partners to manage programs from inception through execution."

Can you imagine bosses dumb enough to hire someone on the basis of all this mumbo-jumbo? It must happen because so many people have job descriptions like this and people in charge believe it's somehow useful to spend a lot of money on fake jobs, while sending the real jobs to India and Korea and China.

What ever happened to jobs that are obvious and functional? Like: "I fix cars". "I design toys". I manage a grocery store". "I rob 7-Elevens".

There are a lot of theories about why the world economy has broken down. Mine is that nobody wants to actually do anything real anymore. Everyone is a manager of some group of researchers in the world of branding, social media (add your own trendy buzz-word) or focus testing. Or they are consultants for businesses that they have never actually worked in.

I think when corporations get too big, they stop thinking about making products and instead fill 57 stories of their skyscrapers with managers, middle managers, experts and consultants, none of whom have ever made anything with their hands. - Certainly not the product that the corporation ultimately wants to sell - if they sell anything at all. There are huge corporations now that don't seem to produce anything - consulting firms, ad agencies, some of the well known internet giants...

Even in animation, we now have lots of job categories that for the life of me I can't figure out their purpose: Concept Artist, Storyboard Revisionist, Note-Givers, not to mention the armies of executive producers that fill up the opening credits of many cartoons. I get all kinds of crazy skills described in animation graduate resumes. It's never "I can animate" "I can clean up and inbetween" or "I can do background layout". It's always management jobs or directing and designing and concept art - basically starting at the top. Not many want to do the actual work on a job anymore. I guess the schools must encourage that; I don't really know.

Imagine how much more efficient and cost effective the world would be if people still made things and we eliminated all the experts and managers and consultants with vague job descriptions that stop things from getting made by people who actually know how to make them. And we could make things in the country again.