Crazy, mad talent.
Bonfires and bullhorns.
Analytics. Metrics. Data. Pivots based on actionable insights. We study behavior, research trends. We run A, then B. We make C, followed by D and E. We see patterns. We listen to feedback. We check our egos. We fail, and fail better. This is what it means to be a research-based creative studio: study, plan, build, launch, test. Assess. Revise. Repeat.
This is Watson Creative
Creative lead. Business strategist. Sneakerhead. Matt cut his teeth as a designer at Lippincott NYC before joining NIKE as a senior member of its creative team for over a decade. After leaving Nike to take care of his father who was dying of cancer, Matt taught courses at local universities and freelanced from his drafty attic in North Portland. Today, Watson Creative is a multidisciplinary creative studio that shapes businesses from the inside out. Leading a team of researchers, strategists, creatives, developers, and storytellers, Matt has focused the studio’s diverse capabilities on a singular goal: to be counted among the best creative studios on the West Coast.
Yells at: Oregon State Beavers. All-time, most favorite: Original Air Max 90. Magic superpower: Observation.
Backed by two decades of agency and client-side experience, Michelle oversees operations at Watson—optimizing the processes and tools that support the people who make Watson Creative. Launching her career as a writer and brand strategist, Michelle was quickly drawn to the connection points between research, strategy, and execution, with specific interest in how brand character is expressed across products, services, and marketing communications. She has driven cross-disciplinary design and marketing solutions for world class brands including: SirusXM, NIKE, Samsung, Intel, Wacom, Logitech, Graco, Rubbermaid, Precor, Memorex, TDK, Whirlpool, Microsoft, and Johnson & Johnson. As a fourth-generation Oregonian, Michelle likes to spend as much time as possible outside skiing, gardening and hiking with her dogs.
Favorite Authors: Toni Morrison, John Steinbeck, Philip Roth, Norman Rush, JD Salinger, Ernest Hemingway. Favorite Bands: Tribe Called Quest, Everything But The Girl, Erykah Badu, Dave Brubeck, Morcheeba, Nina Simone.
Alchemy is everywhere. Angi’s job is to extract it. As a shooting guard and three-year starter at St. Mary’s University, Angi launched her career by blending her love for sports and design at WinCraft. She partnered with the NFL, NBA, MLB, NCAA, MLS, and NASCAR to create custom designs for professional athletes and teams. After WinCraft, she dove headlong into agency life, collaborating with giants such as 3M and Douglas Elliman. Widely recognized for her creative expertise and talents, Adobe asked Angi to join the 2019 Adobe Illustration Grand Summit in New Delhi, India. There she worked with a team of her peers from around the globe and Adobe product engineers to advance future iterations of Illustrator. From print to digital, analytical to mystical, Angi’s intelligence and tenacity give her the ability to flex across the spectrum of commercial art: strategy to creative to execution. Whether crafting campaigns for the Oregon Symphony, rebranding a Silicon Valley VC firm, or directing a lifestyle photoshoot for the Washington County Sheriff’s Department, Angi’s deep design thinking transforms how brands are received by the world.
You’ll be presented with opportunities to excel. Opportunities to struggle. Opportunities to be significant. Opportunities to be humbled. Opportunities to cry hard, to be foolish, and to love. Embrace them all.
Colby’s focus is growth, creating situations for talent and teams to thrive. Whether developing business face-to-face, positioning brands, or leading the implementation of internal and external initiatives, Colby is driven to get it done. As a relationship builder, branding consultant, digital strategist, and marketing leader, from sales to company culture, Colby understands what it takes to deliver and has the proven capacity to execute.
If Colby were anything else, he’d be a park ranger in Kauai. As for pet peeves? Know-it-alls and people who wear flip-flops (the tank tops of shoes) on airplanes.
Greg got his start in design when he first touched a computer in 1985. He majored in design and history, then worked as a designer, art director, and photographer in the Portland area. He ran his own agency in South Florida in 2006, where he worked with both local and national clients, including MTV and the Waldorf Astoria and Hyatt hotel chains. He was Creative Director for MOSAK Advertising & Insights in Austin, Texas, working with a wide range of clients including the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department and 3M, helping create award winning local and national campaigns. Greg joined Watson Creative in 2015, where he heads up the creative department and makes the connection between strategy and the creative process.
First: make the work better, always make it better. Second: coffee, always coffee. Third: travel in the direction of your fears.
Ian provides Watson with nearly two decades of professional marketing and communications management while instilling an inescapable creative streak in everything he does. Prior to joining Watson, Ian served as Deputy Communications Director for the Governor of Oregon, was a marketing VP for the West’s leading public affairs firm Strategies 360, and co-founded his own advertising agency, HungerStrike, where his client work earned both an International Association of Business Communicators’ Bronze Beacon Award and a Public Relations Society of America Award of Excellence. In the non-profit sector Ian served as the Communications Director for Compassion & Choices and as the Managing Director of the Oregon-based Bus Project, which he helped expand into six states. His communications strategy for the Trick or Vote program led to coverage in The New York Times, CBS News, CNN, MSNBC, FOX News, and NPR, and won Politics Magazine’s Award for best Get-Out-the-Vote effort in 2008.
Two truths and a lie! Ready? 1) Enjoys listening to his wife play the bassoon. 2) Pretended he was blind so he could touch Stonehenge on a middle school trip. 3) Founded the experimental theater company, Lightbox Studio.
Leading dynamic teams. Extracting order from chaos. And delivering meaningful outcomes to clients. That’s Jenni: people and systems, all day long. Beginning her career as a photographer and front-end designer, Jenni has sharpened her creative and strategic edge over 13 years of team management and digital strategy experience. She has led app development, go-to product launches, custom web builds, ad campaigns, and experiential branding for Tesla, Toyota, Disney, and Nike—to name a few. Jenni holds certifications in agile project management, scrum master, PMP, and an MA in Digital Management. Outside the studio, Jenni helps local startups elevate their marketing strategies, keeps pace with her two young children, and supports social justice initiatives in the community.
10 years. That’s how long Jenni was a dance instructor and performer—appearing on stages in Los Angeles, London, Paris, and New York. She has also worked for community nonprofits in Cambodia and Vietnam. Jenni likes her wine dark and her chocolate darker.
Account leadership. Problem slayer. Competitive cyclist. Todd built his 20-year career in design by directing client engagements for top creative agencies on the West Coast—including Second Story, Opus, Ziba Design, and now Watson Creative. He has led strategic, creative programs for Daimler, Intel, Wacom, SiriusXM, Logitech, Proctor & Gamble, Costco, Citibank, LiNing, and Nike, to name a few. Multidisciplinary in approach and experience, Todd has flexed across digital, print, production, service, software, and retail—cultivating creative cultures that can meet the demands of today’s design and innovation challenges. Determined. Positive. A center of calm in the storm. Todd believes that creativity is a powerful force for good in the world. A husband, father of two, and cyclocross maniac, Todd never loses sight of what matters: bringing a vision to life.
Search for peace and maintain it.
“If you don’t call it art, you’re likely to get a better result.” That’s Brian Eno, and gospel to Ian’s approach to creative services. Understand the need. Set the intention. Get to work. Because making something new—something that matters—takes attention, guts, resiliency, and a regenerative sense of purpose and wonder. This is true for people. And it’s true for brands. As a writer and strategist, Ian has created award-winning work for Umpqua Bank, Oregon Symphony, University of Virginia, Tillamook Dairy, Portland State University, Whole Foods, ConMet, Chatham Financial, KinderCare Education, and LEAP IP. Prior to his career in branding, Ian served on the faculty at Cornell University, where he was thrice awarded Excellence in Teaching. Ian is proud to call Watson Creative home.
“What you can become is the miracle you were born to be through the work that you do.” (Kurt Vonnegut) “You got to stay ready to keep from getting ready.” (Young Thug) “Not that one is the first to see something new, but that one sees as new what is old, long familiar, seen and overlooked by everybody” (Friedrich Nietzsche) “We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.” (Toni Morrison)
“The enemy of art is the absence of limitations.” That’s Orson Welles on the crucible of creative problem solving. Doing more with less, Jeffrey is expert at extracting compelling stories from the most limited spaces. His passion for creating the new is guided by a single, foundational principle: tell the damn story! With strategy, precision, and a touch of magic, Jeffrey has crafted award-winning films for Oregon Symphony, Disney, The Palm Steakhouse Beverly Hills, Kaiser Permanente, Wild Roots Vodka, Ariapene, Clarino, Youth Villages, and Chown Hardware.
Watches: Timbers. Drinks: Old Fashioneds. Collects: typewriters. Despises: omission of Oxford comma. Adores: Star Trek, TNG > TOS.
Natalie provides a scaffolding around account services that allows her teams to think creatively while remaining aligned to client goals. With a diverse background in agency PR, creative, and interactive departments, Natalie’s nimbleness in thought and execution, plus uncanny ability to holistically manage the branding process, propel clients toward a defined goal. Before arriving in Portland and joining Watson, Natalie held a variety of roles at top agencies in Memphis—including Sullivan, Odin, and Inferno. While at Inferno, Natalie partnered with global teams on special global brand projects for FedEx Corporation.
From the south, she loves to talk about it like a true biddy. Also, loves her tiny plants and tiny pets. An analytical creative, Natalie ascribes to Hanlon’s razor: “Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by neglect.”
Alex brings 5+ years of digital development experience and a lifelong love of abstract thinking and problem solving, self-driven learning, and appreciation for craftsmanship to Watson Creative. Driven by big asks and complex problems, his favorite moments as a developer are the grand epiphanies that often hit around 5:30 in the morning. Then there’s the elation of seeing those epiphanies lead to real, workable solutions. His motto: “If nothing is learned, nothing is gained—no matter the size or complexity of the project.” Patience. Endurance. The ability to grow and improve. This is what pushes Alex every day to evolve the digital development space.
Alex is a diehard Blazers fan; unapologetic homer; already plotting out the perfect spot to bring his family to watch the Championship Parade.
Backed by 17+ years of marketing program and project management experience, Wendy has worked with Daimler Trucks North America, adidas, Mentor Graphics, Outward Bound, and business accelerator entrepreneurial ventures. She has pitched plans for new business and startup investment, consulted executive teams to create marketing and operational strategies, and developed processes for advisory teams and boards of directors. Driven by the desire to unpack what motivates and inspires people, Wendy is passionate about delivering engaging experiences. She is deeply committed to understanding an organization’s definition of success and collaborating with dynamic teams to exceed expectations. She believes everyone has a unique story to tell and thrives on creating opportunities for those to be shared. Outside the studio, Wendy loves to travel. Diving in Fiji. Spelunking in New Zealand. Cliff jumping in Cinque Terre. Hiking Colorado’s fourteeners. Combing the beaches of Bali. If it’s out there, Wendy wants to see it.
Running. Tennis. Cycling. Learning to code. Hashtag inscribed on the inseams of Wendy’s heart: #dontdiewondering.
Myles’ love of the sensory arts began with poetry and rapidly cycled through photography, acting, music, and film. Realizing his professional talent for photography and filmmaking, Myles has produced genuine and impactful stories for Amazon, Wacom, Lake Productions, and Oregon Symphony. Dedication to the craft. An unmatched work ethic. And a drive to create beautifully imaginative content. These are the talents that Myles brings to every project. His motto: “Seize every creative opportunity to its fullest potential and with utmost integrity.”
Active: PDX improv comedy. Loves: PDX beer scene. Enjoys: hanging out with his rescue chihuahua, “MJ.” That’s MJ with an exclamation mark. MJ!
Perception is the prism that shapes reputation. Measuring perception is Brendan’s job. Numbers. Stats. Insights. When everyday is a puzzle to solve, you can’t get lost looking for the next piece. Brenden translates data and research into creative action. He has optimized campaigns for Emerick Architects, Oregon Symphony, Umpqua Bank, Ariaprene, Chown Hardware, and Upright Brewing. He escapes the studio to kayak, get lost in the Pearl District, or drink bourbon at the Bit House Saloon.
There is a giant tattoo on Brendan’s chest. It reads: “If you aren’t measuring, testing, and pivoting, you’re just advertising.” For real.
Ava began her career in marketing at Oregon Children’s Theatre (OCT), where she helped promote the enriching (and fun!) experience of theater for young people. Her time at OCT helped drive her passion for content creation and strategy, which she now deploys across an assortment of industries at Watson Creative. She thrives off of the variety of the day-to-day at Watson, where there truly is never a dull moment. Select clients include Umpqua Bank, Emerick Architects, Chown Hardware, and Upright Brewing.
What does Ava enjoy? First, anything Christmas—#bestholidayever. Second, cooking in her tiny kitchen. And third, watching bad television with her dog as the only witness.
Every website that Barton builds is crafted with the end user in mind. Clients that have benefited from Barton’s assiduity and passion for applied design include Portland’s World Trade Center, R&H Construction, WRVI Venture Capital, Oregon Blueberry Farms, and LEAP IP. Joining Watson early in his career, he has grown alongside the studio.
Bart plays the bass, didgeridoo, guitar, piano, and ukulele. He also makes video games in his spare time.
A storyteller at heart, Phoenix is driven to push brands forward through her passion for animation, motion graphics, and design. A digital art expert, she uses her knowledge of motion design, fine art, and messaging to add a unique flair to every project she touches. Her innovative design work has been essential to clients such as Oregon Ballet Theatre, Hughes Electrical, Umpqua Bank, Oregon State University, and the Oregon Symphony.
Nike Vandal Venti boots. Leather jacket. Ever-changing color of hair. Outside the studio, Phoenix works the beat animating, creates limited edition digital art for the Mahlstedt Gallery in New York, Cosplays, dabbles in FX makeup, and just about any other creative endeavor she can DIY.
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry said, “A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” Designers are visual artists that distill complexity into pure refinement, amplifying the essence of a message. This is why great design transcends its medium of communication—instantaneously resonating with an intended audience. A graduate of Whitter College and Otis/Parsons College of Art in Los Angeles, Raymond ran a branding agency in Las Vegas that specialized in travel, food, and gaming. Skilled in graphic and digital design, art direction, and brand strategy, Raymond produces award-winning work for global brands such as adidas, Coca-Cola, Jive, Keen, Marriott, and Wolfgang Puck. Raymond is happy to have found a home at Watson.
Something Raymond did once and will never do again: walk across broken shards of glass on stage for a Vegas show. Something Raymond will one day find and keep forever secret: The great Pacific Northwest Sasquatch.
Numbers and people. Holly has made it her life’s work to square those circles. Not easy to do. But once you’ve served as lead analyst, SAP trainer, and business partner in the Budget Management Branch for the California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation, you learn how to geometrize a path through “not easy to do.” The trick? Creating stories from analytics. Because data is never more than half of every equation. In addition to her role with the state of California, Holly was a Recruiting Manager at Robert Half, where she honed her skills in talent development, human resources, and account management. Fiscally responsible. Relentlessly inquisitive. Inventively artistic. Holly is the solution.
Two truths and a partial lie. Named her puppy after English footballer, Wayne Rooney. Favorite movie, “It’s Complicated” with Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin, and Steve Martin (and the reason why Watson hired her). One half of an identical twin pairing with whom she communicates in stereo.
Hunter knows code. Maybe all of the codes.
WordPress. Magento. Static. As Watson’s digital web lead, Joseph speaks it all—collaborating with 70+ clients across industries at Watson and completing 200+ website projects in the last 7 years. At the heart of his expertise in digital design and development is deep intellectual curiosity. There is always a better way to get the work done. And Joseph is out to find it. His motto: “Design with purpose leads to outstanding outcomes that foster relationships.” He helps the development team think more like designers while encouraging the design team to think more like developers. The result of this cross-functional coordination speaks for itself.
Huge fan: functional design. Guilty pleasure: watching high-speed chases on Youtube. Life lesson: learn to accept failure.
Joining Watson Creative by way of New York, Kaitlyn has worked in branding and design for nearly 15 years. Skilled in project management, marketing, and PR, Kaitlyn has cross-industry experience in fashion, culture, and hospitality. From campaigns to events, Kaitlyn has activated brand stories for Target, Tiffany & Co., CB2, adidas, Prada, NBC Universal, and Umpqua Bank. She believes that if it is to be effective, branding and marketing must ignite a sense of discovery and wonder.
Marathon runner. Tarot reader. Also, rye manhattan. INFJ. Food blogger. Also, textile artist.
Creativity meets organizational efficiency. That’s Jessica. With a masters in counseling psychology from Washington State University, Jessica is responsible for mapping the evolution of macro trends as well as helping manage the day-to-day needs of the studio.
Loves to root for: Washington State Cougars. Obsession: Pinterest. Bragging rights: Worked for Head Start and the Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP).
On a brisk October morning decorated with orange hues and scented by the first wood smoke of the season, a neighbor with kind eyes asked a young Jason how he was doing. “Apricot,” Jason said. When the neighbor next asked what Jason wanted to be when he grew up, Jason responded: “A web developer at a thriving research-based creative studio, preferably here in Portland.” Many, many seasons have passed since that brief exchange. But today Jason is indeed a full-stack developer experienced in web app development, content creation, and editing at a thriving research-based creative studio. Apricot!
Has lived: up and down the West Coast. Is vegan except for: cheese, honey, leather, and meat. Reads: a book a week. Was once employed to write non-pornographic but equally suspect articles for: Larry Flint Productions.
Whether she is making stories happen in the Wall Street Journal, TIME.com, Cirque du Soleil, or HBO, Karli will ensure that your brand finds its way into the national spotlight. As a PR Specialist and Digital Strategist, Karli has earned top tier media placements on behalf of the NBA, the NFL, NASCAR, Ronald McDonald House Charities, Seal the Seasons, Toasted Life, Umpqua Bank, Chown Hardware, Davis Elen, Artslandia Magazine, NYC Marathon, Oregon Ballet Theatre, and the Boston Women’s Fund. A graduate of the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, Karli is eternally optimistic about the power of media and the art of storytelling.
One album: The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. One superpower: total fluency across every language. One quote: Jean-Michel Basquiat, “Art is how we decorate space. Music is how we decorate time.”
Mike has been leading dynamic teams toward sustainable success for 20+ years. His experience encompasses managing startups, driving business development, growing revenue, and securing key accounts. Drawing on a combination of data, instinct, and acumen, Mike quickly recognizes deficiencies and understands how employees, vendors, and clients interact and impact outcomes. Backed by a track record of creating significant monetary gains, operational turnaround, and delivering sustainability to organizational infrastructure, Mike is a team player and trusted advisor to senior leadership and key stakeholders.
Born and raised in Oregon, places that tug at Mike’s heart include Pacific City, Hood River, and Bend. Also, anywhere that includes a golf course.
As long as you’re willing to dig down (capturing, excavating, and manifesting the essence of who you are), you’ll know why you exist and how your ideas, products, and services can scorch the fields of competition.
Shovel, pickaxe, dynamite
Pick your path.
There’s talent. There’s a little luck. And there’s the cornerstone of great partnerships with incredible clients.
We believe great work happens when great people work together. That’s why we’re always looking for the next great person.