Graphic Overload: The Office of Blik

Graphic Overload: The Office of Blik

Gregory Han
Jun 10, 2011

What's happening at the offices of wall graphics/decal company, Blik? Take a look (and a listen) at these new mixes from Scott Flora and Jerinne Neils, co-founders of the cutting-edge Venice, CA-based wall graphics company, where work gets done in an inspiring, image-overload space, while also revealing about how they deal with sharing an office when one likes to play their music out loud while the other prefers headphones...a common issue when sharing a work area.

What do you listen to while you work? Scott: I love ambient and experimental stuff with layered, digital beats and sounds. Some friends get stressed by a strong percussive-driven rhythm, but I used to be a drummer and DJ (Chicago House mostly) and it relaxes and motivates me. I like to find new bands and music all the time, and although I listen to older stuff, I prefer to keep it fresh—I'm always looking for something I haven't heard. I have Brian Eno, Plastikman, New Order, Black Uhuru, Jazzanova, Kraftwerk, Autechre, and old-school rap rotating through my Pandora stations as I write this and I find stuff I haven't heard all the time. Pandora limits me to 100 channels, but if I could have 1000 I'd fill it—quickly. 

Jerinne: Scott has an aversion to headphones and since we have adjoining offices, I tend to listen to whatever he's playing—usually ambient, house, or techno. When he's away or has his music turned down, I can get away with listening to my own music, KCRW or KEXP in the mornings, but usually indie rock.

How do you listen? Scott: My desktop Creature speakers. And sometimes, if I really need to concentrate, I use Apple earbuds. 

Jerinne: Headphones, but only in one ear so I can take calls or talk to people in the office. I also got a Jawbone Jambox for Christmas, which is a fun way to listen, too.

Do you have any favorite music websites/providers? Scott: Soundcloud is great to explore stuff that producers make in their basement and just upload, and I love my Pandora One app. I surf through Mixriot and listen to Groove Salad, Proton Radio, KCRW, and KEXP in Seattle. I'm a Sirius radio subscriber and I like college radio (KXLU, Loyola Marymount's broadcast in LA, rocks). Jerinne: Pandora. Proton Radio—I like to listen to Transitions with John Digweed.

Does music influence your work? Scott: Absolutely and it always has; it's actually hard for me to work without it. I listen to a variety of music types throughout the day depending on what I'm doing. If I'm designing, I generally like something a little more up-tempo, I like a DJ from Rotterdam named Eelke Kleijn and a British producer named Gilles Peterson—both do podcasts. If I'm working on a proposal or business stuff, I like Jason Bentley's show on KCRW a lot and KEXP. Our office is a member of both stations and we just completed a large custom interior and exterior wall installation for KCRW studios. 

Jerinne: I'm mostly Operations, so I don't need music to help inspire me to design or create something. But it does influence me in that I feel more productive and focused when I'm listening to it and generally just more relaxed.

Where do you find music recommendations? Who influences your musical taste? Scott: Jerinne and friends definitely influence, but I also love to discover new stuff on my own; not a lot of people I know like exactly what I like. I tool through Soundcloud and like to sift through sites like Bleep and Warp Records. Jason Bentley and Gilles Peterson play a lot of stuff I connect with and I start with the bands I hear from them and then explore further. 

Jerinne: I'm not really influenced by anyone or anything, I just play what I like, which is pretty eclectic. Scott gives me recommendations; he introduced me to Pandora and Proton radio. I listen to Sirius XMU and then buy what I like and when I buy a song or album on iTunes, I do check out the "Listeners Also Bought" recommendations. I've discovered new stuff this way.

What song or artist best represents the work you create? Scott: I love Brian Eno and how he works like both a scientist and an artist. He's constantly pushing boundaries and exploring what is new and he operates on so many levels. My mind works that way; I often pull from my background in research and science to study and explore what we do at BLIK. 

Jerinne: Can it be a radio station? KCRW is a great independent radio station with eclectic programming and in a way that best describes Blik and what we do. We're very independent and aren't influenced by others; we work with a variety of interesting established and up-and-coming artists and designers so our designs vary, which is good because we have decals that appeal to all tastes.



Images courtesy of BLIK

Originally published at Lifework by Amy Feezor

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