#WFH Diaries: Ross Weaver of 180 Kingsday
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the world, we're checking in with folks in the creative industry to see how they're doing. Here's an update from Ross Weaver, an art director at 180 Kingsday in Amsterdam.
Give us a one-line bio of yourself.
I'm Ross, a 24-year-old Welsh art director at 180 Kingsday.
Where are you living right now, and who's with you?
An Aussie engineer, a Dutch doctor, and two British art directors. Nope, this is not the start of a bad joke. That's just who makes up our flat of four in Amsterdam.
What's your work situation like at the moment?
As you can imagine, our apartment currently resembles a very busy startup that's getting a bit too big for their local coffee shop. But in our case, the coffee is much worse.
Describe your socializing strategy.
These days our socializing mainly revolves around our versatile kitchen table. It's our desk and our bar. It's where we eat breakfast, lunch and dinner. And it's where we bust out the board games when we've overdosed on Zoom calls.
Our Friday after-work drinks still happen like clockwork. It's not quite the same clinking your glass with your screen, but at least no one gets stuck with the bill
What are you reading?
Just before the world turned upside down, I started the book Factfulness by Hans Rosling. In a way, it has been the perfect book to read in the current climate. Rosling writes of how our perspective of the world is distorted, and why it's in a much better state than we think. Very topical, very hopeful.
What are you watching?
In the unlikely scenario you feel like you haven't gotten your money's worth out of your Netflix subscription this month, drop everything and go watch Tiger King. It's a mind-boggling doco that has more than its fair share of twists and turns.
Or if you run out of energy to scroll any more, take a look at nowness.com and shortoftheweek.com. Lots of great directors, stories and inspiration.
What are you listening to?
Our new office has me making the most of my sound-canceling headphones, and between calls I'm churning through plenty of podcasts and playlists. Three podcasts I'm addicted to right now: Hip Hop Saved My Life, No Such Thing as a Fish and Have You Heard George's Podcast?
I won't bore you with what's on my daily mix, but I strongly advise you to listen to some 8D audio, a technology that creates spatial sound, making you feel like you're at a live show. I guess it's the closest we're going to get at the moment.
How are you staying fit?
Now that my commute consists of walking to the kitchen rather than my usual bike ride, I find it pretty important to keep moving for my flatmate's sake as much as mine.
I run most days and never miss a Wednesday at 5:30 pm, when our work run club is still going strong even in solitude. Strava is proving to be a great motivational tool!
Have you taken up a hobby?
After coming to terms with the fact that learning the piano from my flatmate was a little ambitious, I opted for dusting the cobwebs off a few side projects and my camera. One side project I'm enjoying right now is, Logos IRL. We're all familiar with the rigid brand guidelines, but no matter how hard we try, not even the best Wacom warriors can control how a logo will look when it's released into the world. So I adjusted a few logos to show what they really look like in real life.
Any tips for getting necessities?
I'm trying to channel the most efficient person I know when it comes to shopping—my mum. "Make a list and stick to it." Wise words.
An awkward moment since all this started.
An intimate space and multiple video calls is a dangerous recipe. The acrobatic ways we try to avoid being in the background of each other's video calls when clad in only a towel is something that won't get old.
Best work email you got since all this started.
Not an email but a video call. It was our all-agency meeting at the end of the week when a friend and colleague announced his great news by showing everyone an ultrasound of his new baby. A genuine moment of joy filled 80+ tiny boxes of my screen. A strangely amazing moment we all shared individually but also together.
An aha! moment since all this started.
That greenscreen Zoom calls are a thing!!
What's your theory on how this is going to play out?
What will happen, and what I hope happens, could be very different things. But I do hope we don't all forget the positives that have come from this awful mess.