Michelle Peck has been the FreshForm Creative Director since 2016. Michelle is originally from San Diego, studied advertising in Colorado (Boulder) and has been back in San Diego since 2005. Michelle has worked on projects for Dexcom, Sony, San Diego International Airport and California Avocado Commission.
What is misunderstood about what you do at FreshForm?
A creative director can mean different things to different people. I often say I’m a blend of a Creative Director and a Brand Strategist. My approach starts with understanding the high-level business goals, user needs, and the design challenge. So, I have to be good at leading workshops, interviewing stakeholders, and documenting findings. I then take what I learn and distill it into clear themes and insights to establish the creative strategy that will set the framework for the end-to-end customer experience. Maintaining a clear concept and visual direction is important to ensure the creative vision is articulated in a meaningful way that will connect with our design team, our clients and the end user.
Throughout the process, I continue to test and validate our creative approach against the strategy to make the right decisions for the brands we work with and their customers. I review and approve everything that goes out the door at the agency to confirm it is on par with the strategy and meets the highest standard of design quality. Overall, my job enables me to inspire and motivate the creative team and our clients so they’re engaged and passionate about the work we’re doing.
I typically look at Flipboard once a day to stay on top of the latest headlines and articles in the design community. If I come across something I’m inspired by I’ll subscribe to the news feed and let the information come to me. FastCo Design is one of my favorites.
What advice do you have for a young designer?
Ask a lot of questions. I tell interns and new designers on our team that there are no bad questions. I love when designers are curious and willing to learn something new. Don’t assume you know everything. Be open to advice and feedback and make sure you listen to others and learn from your mistakes. And take notes! Write everything down so you don’t forget it.
What is your favorite gadget (high tech or low tech)?
The items I carry around with me at all times are my laptop, sketch paper, notebook, a pencil and a pen. As long as I have something to write with I’m usually good to go.
What is your favorite lunch spot?
I like to walk if I can, because many days I’ll tend to never leave the office. Saffron is great for a quick bite, but I also love going to The Crack Shack to relax and sit outside—they have an excellent ahi salad.