2 Minutes With … Dean Rojas, President of Gassed

On following through and making things happen

Dean Rojas is co-founder and president of Gassed, a full-service TikTok agency taking brands from ad concepts to customer acquisition. Clients include: Ruggable, Dude Wipes, Fabletics, Ridge Wallet and MeUndies. He began his career in performance marketing for personal care brand Dr. Squatch, working with founder and CEO Jack Haldrup.

We spent two minutes with Dean to learn more about his background, his creative inspirations and recent work he's admired.

Dean, tell us …

Where you grew up, and where you live now.

I was born in New York and raised in Southern California.  I've been moving further up the West Coast over the past four years and I've currently settled in Vancouver, Wash.

How you first realized you were creative.

I found my love for videography when I was around 13 years old. That's when I started posting YouTube videos. I didn't consider it "art" at the time and just saw it as a hobby. I became deeply obsessed and ended up switching my major in my sophomore year to Art & Technology so I could make videos all day, everyday.

A person you idolized creatively early on.

It's gotta be Quentin Tarantino. As someone focused on the technical side, I learned from Tarantino that the story itself is the most important piece of the puzzle.

A moment from high school or college that changed your life.

That phone call to my parents telling them I was switching my major from pre-med to art, and that long pause before the response. I knew that the degree itself wouldn't get me a job, and that lit a fire under my ass to dedicate 100 percent of myself to the craft, taking multiple internships and working on various projects to prove to myself that I was capable of making a career out of this.

A visual artist or band/musician you admire.

The website team at Day Job.  I'm a huge fan of the work they've done and I will hire them immediately when I start an e-commerce business.

A book, movie, TV show or podcast you recently found inspiring.

Gary Vee's Crushing It! I have read and listened to his audiobook a dozen times. He's a character for sure, but holy hell can that guy motivate.

Your favorite fictional character.

Spencer Shay from iCarly. He's super charismatic, always in a good mood and a 100 percent pure-bred creative person who makes everybody happy.

Someone or something worth following in social media.

Ryan Trahan. His comedic timing coupled with his editing and storytelling is unmatched.

One of your favorite creative projects you've ever worked on.

This campaign I worked on with Crocs. I had a ton of fun coming up with creative ways to show the product and, most importantly, make a bit of a mess along the way.

A recent project you're proud of. 

The campaign I worked on with Ridge Wallet. My favorite thing is coming up with poppy/eye-catching b-roll. And when I ask a brand if I can light their product on fire, and they say yes, it's going to be a good relationship.

Someone else's work that inspired you years ago. 

Ben Brown had this series called Visual Vibes. It was just a bunch of extremely technical, well-shot and beautiful cinematography that didn't have a story, but it still kept your attention. This inspired me to go out and capture content without needing a script or shot list.

Someone else's work you admired lately. 

Peter Quinn! He's an insanely talented VFX artist who creates these "seemingly simple" loops that remind me of Vine back in the day.

Your main strength as a creative person.

Executing on an idea. I feel like a lot of brainstorming and ideas get thrown around, but I've always been the person to go out and make it happen.

Your biggest weakness.

Saying no to projects. I end up spreading myself too thin. This is something that I'm working on and I am getting better at delegating to the team.

One thing that always makes you happy.

Stand-up comedy. Comedy podcasts. Comedy skits. Comedy movies. I'm a huge fan of a good laugh and a great beer.

One thing that always makes you sad.

Those commercials at the dog shelters.

What you'd be doing if you weren't in advertising.

I would be working in the medical field making YouTube and TikTok videos about it. That was pretty much going to be my path.

2 Minutes With is our regular interview series where we chat with creatives about their backgrounds, creative inspirations, work they admire and more. For more about 2 Minutes With, or to be considered for the series, please get in touch.

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