Zoom fatigue. Creative burnout. Loneliness and isolation. Comedy Director Matt Pittroff faces the “new normal’s” complications head-on with an age-old remedy: candid conversation. Idea Killers, a podcast birthed by the Workingstiff Films Production partners, was born out of craving a comprehension of the aforementioned complications at hand as well as the ever-present culture of fear within the advertising industry.
The in-depth conversations also journeys through the creative roadblocks from memory lane and today’s ever-changing landscape.
For the guests, Pittroff fosters an environment where creatives feel safe to speak freely, vent a bit and offer up perspective on what it takes to come up with and maintain a great ad campaign.
As for listeners, Idea Killers yields invaluable insights offered by industry experts that have “been there, done that,” providing mentorship to younger creatives, while serving as a friendly reminder that regardless of the frequency and or severity of the challenges that come with the territory, it’s a pretty sweet gig and, “beats shoveling shit” as Pittroff reminds in his sign-offs.
Pittroff aspires to inspire, “I have had the privilege of working with a lot of talented creatives. Young and old, big and small shops across a wide spectrum of categories and a very common creative roadblock seems to be FEAR!!!! It comes at you from all angles and throughout all parts of the process. But that fear doesn’t need to kill the creative. My hope is that candid conversation with a diverse Adfolx will offer insights that help us all get to great work.”
As the podcast evolves, so does its benefits. It prompts creative conversations without having a single job or “task at hand,” addresses creative inspirations and aspirations unrelated to singular client deliverable. Though like a commercial production, the episodes are created with an end user, target audience in mind as it intends to address the ever-incessant quandary, “How do you keep a good idea alive?” within the ad industry. While addressing that question has been steadfast, though, the means of doing so has not.
“When you’re in the throws of production, there’s an acute focus on the task(s) at hand. We wanted to get to know our partners better and figured an audience may take interest in learning about them as well. Gain the same type of understanding of one another that we seek out on jobs for a client’s product. Idea Killers is (hopefully) a relationship strengthener and can only make us better for the next job, knowing we’re on the same page, with the same movie in our minds,” Producer Brenna Mathers explains.
“When Brenna and I started kicking around the idea of Idea Killers, I had never even listened to a Podcast. I am visual guy, so originally we were working towards video content. Then we “shot” Ep 01 and I got so sick of looking at myself on screen (and I was already sick of looking at the screen) that we pivoted to an audio format. The hope is that peeps will get out of the screen space, and into some greenspace to listen. Of course, now I love a good podcast. They are quickly becoming the world’s new oral history. It will be interesting to see how ALL of these stories get archived,” Pittroff observed.
As a walking Workingstiff, Pittroff has and will always put in the effort and understanding and attention to detail within his craft(s) and can not be confined to one medium, “I have always loved the ad filmmaking process. I love the variety, the pace, the personalities, the problem solving. You name it. I am super lucky that I have gotten to a point in my life and career that I am comfortable pursuing other creative ventures. I used to spend my down time panicking about my next job, and now I use it to get creative in other ways. Everything from virtually collaborating with my old punk rock buddies and making a really bad record, to shooting a hilarious (and award winning) short film, to making a podcast. The way I look at these are just different storytelling mediums, so why the hell not.”
PRODUCTION COMPANY: WorkingStiff, Inc.
- Matt Pittroff – Director and Host
- Andy Stack – Custom Music Arrangement
- Jessica Johnson – Graphics / Animation
- Alex Righter – Audio Engineer
- Steve Blair – Executive Producer
- Brenna Mathers – Producer