Inspired by Lifehacker’s How I Work series, Maestro is helping to provide a glimpse into the work styles of our team, as well as a few of our friends and partners. Would you like to answer these questions or is there someone you would like to see featured here? Let us know!
Location: Kalamazoo, Michigan Current Gig: Creative Director at Maestro Current mobile device(s): iPhone 4S (white) and iPad mini (black) Current computer: MacBook Air (13”) One word that best describes how you work: Precisely
What apps/software/tools can't you live without? I’d be lost without Photoshop and iTunes. In fact, the times when I am using Photoshop and listening to music, everything else just fades away. When I don’t find myself in that situation, I am most likely capturing information in Evernote, striving for Inbox Zero in Mail or tweeting from Tweetbot.
What's your workspace like? When I am in the office and at my desk you’d see a pretty clean workspace. I am a one-display kind of a guy so you’d see my MacBook Air in its mStand to the left of a 27” Thunderbolt Display.
To the right of that is a framed photo of my family and a Bang & Olufsen Beolit 12 for when the whole office needs a musical punch in the face. Directly in front of my wireless keyboard and Magic Trackpad is my trusty Starbucks mug, usually filled.
When I am working remotely it is usually just me, my MacBook Air, iPad mini and some earbuds.
What's your best time-saving trick? I am a fan of productivity while working. I bet I can cut down on an hour of wasted time each day just by utilizing keyboard shortcuts, smart application management, full-screen app focus, gestures and keeping an organized Finder. That last one comes and goes with how franticly the week is going.
What's your favorite to-do list manager? I’ve been a fan of Things since it first launched. It would take a pretty big disruption by a competing product for me to be swayed. I even hung around while CulturedCode was meticulously building their own Cloud service and everyone else seemed to already have that. The product continues to be refined, but only ever so slightly. Just the way I like it.
Besides your phone and computer, what gadget can't you live without? Apple TV. At the office I use it when I need to AirPlay something for the team, and when I am at home it is being used to play music or stream stuff on Netflix or WatchESPN. I love it, and look forward to the day when it’s all I need to use to watch the stuff I like. NFL, I am talking to you.
What everyday thing are you better at than anyone else? Finding ways to put something off until later. I recently heard Jon Acuff speak and he called himself a Perfectionist Procrastinator because of his ability to put something off for awhile and then when it came time to do something about it, he did it to the max. As a designer it is so easy to feel the pressure of the blank page. It gets me every time, but it produces great work so I keep doing it. I’ll talk more about that some other time.
What do you listen to while you work? Music. In fact, I’d listen to music 24 hours a day if I could. You know in movies when the soundtrack is supporting what’s happening in dialogue and it completes that moment? I want that. My wife could tell you that when I need to get something done the first thing I usually do at home is turn on some music. In fact right now, I am listening to Birdy and she’s helping me get this written. I’ve been putting it off for days.
Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert? Hybrid. When I’m in a situation that is familiar I’m pretty outgoing, but when things are less familiar I tend to keep to myself. Not sure what that means, but I like the flexibility.
What's your sleep routine like? I can tell you this for sure; I am banned from napping during the weekends. Admittedly, I wake up a total grump. The idea of napping seems so great but it really never helps me. I’m usually in bed by 11:00 p.m. and up around 7:00 a.m. If I don’t have 8 hours of sleep I can tell the next day.
Fill in the blank: I'd love to see _______ answer these same questions. Jim Gaffigan
What's the best advice you've ever received? Don’t listen to your heart. It’s deceptively wicked.