In case you were wondering…

I was once a mime. Yes, the white make-up, fighting against the wind, trapped in a box kind of mime. Back in grade school, I was part of a mime troupe that helped raise funds for the Cincinnati School for Creative and Performing Arts. I dressed up in full make-up and costume and moved around without making a sound for the entertainment of perfect strangers. As an adult… as a creative, I’ve realized that, at a very young age, I was asked to step outside of my comfort zone. (Being a mime is strange, even for a kid.) I had to put my personal inhibitions aside, if I wanted to help my school (and escape class for a few hours). I had to dig deep and explore, “What does it really feel like to lean against the wind? How do I convince others that’s exactly what I’m doing on a perfect, windless, sunny day?”

Though, I’m no longer donning the white make-up, I’m still leaning against the wind. It’s part of my job requirement – especially when developing creative ideas and strategies that will cut through the clutter and stay in the minds of target audiences.

For those who don’t know, I’m an advertising creative director. Academically trained as an art director – professionally evolved into a copywriter and strategist with a taste for digital media. Most of my career has been focused on how to package digital products for audiences who have not quite crossed the digital divide. I’ve stretched the definition of “integrated campaigns” in order to reach mass audiences using digital, traditional and nontraditional media. I’ve explored creating web pages that can also function as printed materials, developed print campaigns that can be customized via PDF at the community level, created shelf-talkers that double as graphic email headers. And that’s just behind the scenes.

The creative itself, the words, illustrations, photography and typography – is where I leave my inhibitions behind. Whether working hands-on or directing a team of art directors, copywriters and web developers, the creative is what I’ve been willing to let myself go and let the ideas take over.

I’m looking for new projects that I can help rise and shine – those projects that can learn to lower their inhibitions and take on a brand new day with their target audiences. If you know of these projects, shoot me an email (thedonii@me.com) or give me a call (202.321.6348).