Interview with Ryan Brown, New Senior Designer

Tell us briefly about your role at XPLANE:
My role is to tell stories with pictures. Day-to-day as a senior designer, I partner with consultants to help visualize clients’ challenges, and then bring those sketches back to the shop to create something insightful and impactful with the creative team. My role is to help connect the dots (right after drawing them), lead project teams, and be a partner, resource, and support for folks across the organization.

Provide a brief overview of your background and experience
I’m a visual thinker who’s passionate about process and problem solving. For the past 10 years, I’ve brought teams of people together through art direction and brand development, at a range of organizations from small start-ups to large (or merging) corporations. I cut my teeth at small design shops and in the branding and marketing team at Nike. Eventually, though, I found a home with consulting firms focused on leadership development and sustainability, where I got to really dig deep into information design and translate complex ideas that matter in a clear and fun way. I’ve also been heavily involved in design for non-profits outside of my day job—as art director for the Bear Deluxe magazine, which focuses on art and the environment; and as creative director on the board for Framework international, which builds schools in Ghana. I strive to work for places that seek to make a positive impact on the world and that are rooted in learning, collaboration, and fellowship. 

 
Spotlight Questions:
 
Favorite vacation destination?
I like places that are beachy, woody, or wide open, so that I can feel small in the Universe.

What is your favorite slogan?
One man’s trash is another man’s garbage – Ryan Brown
 
Do you have any special talents?
I’m a super recognizer. I can remember faces. I once pointed out Ken Burns across the room at a sushi train.
 
What is your most embarrassing album you have on your iPod that you listen to?
Probably Lady Gaga. I don’t care what anyone says, she’s amazing… and I live for the applause.
 
If you could be a Superhero, who would you be and why?
The flash. I love the idea of being so fast that time would almost stop. There would be so many opportunities for comic relief.
 
Do you cook, if so what do you think you cook best and worst?
I cook breakfast pretty well, not so great at the rest.
 

Cats or Dogs?

Dogs all the way. I have an 8-year-old rescue Beagle/Bulldog (Beabull) named Sadie Mercedes who was a finalist on Portland’s Next Top Dog Model 2013 (look it up!).
 
What is your favorite blog?
I really enjoy the site laughingsquid.com. I get a lot of my art, technology, pop culture, and comedy fixes there.
 














Who is your doppelganger?

It would have to be Larry David. For many reasons, including this quote: "Anyone can be confident with a full head of hair. But a confident bald man—there's your diamond in the rough."
 
If you could switch lives with anyone in the world today for just one day, who would it be?
I think it would be eye opening and transformative to experience what it feels like to live in a place in the world that is dramatically more chaotic than my own privileged situation. Specifically, to walk in the shoes of a person who lives in a war-torn nation, where they could constantly be crippled by fear, sadness, and hopelessness, and yet they find a way to get by. It’s almost impossible for me to imagine how someone can persevere through something so traumatic, and walking that experience would absolutely change how I see everything. I realize this could sound hollow… it’s just a day.
 
What are three words used most to describe you?
Thoughtful, inventive, persistent
















Twitter handle: 
@ryanbrownworks             
Personal Website:  ryanbrownworks.com