Story Time for Portal by Facebook / Dr. Seuss!

/ Story Time for Portal by Facebook / Dr. Seuss!

As the father of three little girls (who are, sadly, no longer little enough for reading picture books) this project was extremely special.

This was my third time working as part of the AR/VR experiences team at Facebook on the Story Time platform for their Portal video calling device. This time, we would be partnering with our friends at Nexus Studios in London, adapting four early reading titles from the beloved Dr. Seuss catalog into augmented reality.

Working on this project through the Covid-19 crisis imbued the assignment with even more meaning. Story Time was designed to bring children face-to-face with family members so that they can share meaningful experiences that physical distance might prevent. Suddenly, here we are in 2020, and physical distance is a bigger barrier than ever. This somehow felt like we were giving people a magical, Seussical tool to overcome it.

Special thanks to Ian McCamey, who was not only our intrepid creative producer, but also serves as the talent on these delightful gifs!

Anolon Cookware/Cooking through Quarantine

/ Anolon Cookware/Cooking through Quarantine

Noodles & Company/The Z90X Program

/ Noodles & Company/The Z90X Program

When Noodles & Company introduced their zucchini noodles, aka “Zoodles,” they were a smash hit. Not only were they light and delicious, they also gave health conscious parents a guilt-free option when their kids were begging for Noodles’ famous mac and cheese, yet again. In fact, with Zoodles on the menu, there was no longer any legitimate excuse not to enjoy Noodles & Company every single day of the week.

Enter “The Z90X Program” – 90 different Zoodles combinations with one simple, super dumb plan: eat Zoodles every day for 90 days straight.

Creative team: Annie Russo, Kim McDonald

Story Time for Portal by Facebook

/ Story Time for Portal by Facebook

In 2019, I was fortunate to be part of a team at Facebook adapting licensed children’s book titles to AR for their Portal device. The Portal is a very special piece of video calling hardware, and Story Time is a feature that allows loved ones to share engaging stories with children no matter how far from one another they might be. The video above features Todd Parr, author of countless children’s titles, including the “Otto” series, demonstrating the Story Time of his own book, “Otto Goes to the Beach.”

We also adapted “Llama Llama Red Pajama” by the late, Anna Dewdney and several “Pete the Cat” titles by James Dean. It was an unforgettable project involving some of the smartest people I’ve ever worked with.

Fruit of the Loom x Humble Design/”A Humble Holiday”

/ Fruit of the Loom x Humble Design/”A Humble Holiday”

Fruit of the Loom is all about comfort. So during the 2019 holidays, we partnered with Detroit-Based “Humble Design” – a non-profit that furnishes homes for families transitioning out of homeless and domestic-violence shelters into Section-8 housing.

The effectiveness of Humble Design’s contribution is staggering. On average, 50% of families who make this transition will end up back in shelters. But with Humble’s help, approximately 99% of families stay housed for good.

As part of the effort, we traveled to Detroit and Seattle to tell the stories of two families in transition, and for every item customers purchased on fruit.com during the holiday the company made a donation to Humble. It’s a partnership we all hope will last.

Donate Life / Share the Love

/ Donate Life / Share the Love

A while back, a friend of ours died quite suddenly. As it turns out, he was an organ donor, and was able to save the lives of several other people as a result. Very shortly after that, I got the opportunity to work on a project to promote organ donation. The project didn’t end up working out, but this little song remains. It’s silly, and probably too long, but I’m proud to have written it just the same. If you’re not sure whether or not you’re an organ donor, check for the little heart on your driver’s license. And if you’re not, please register now at organdonor.gov

CSPI/ The MilliGrammy Awards

/ CSPI/ The MilliGrammy Awards

Dietary sodium is a tricky thing to talk about. Getting the right amount of sodium is essential to life, but the average American diet contains dangerous amounts.

A high-sodium diet is a major contributor to high blood pressure, heart disease, and in turn, death. The culprits are everywhere –processed foods, soups, cereal, cheese – did you know BREAD is the single biggest contributor of sodium in the American diet?

With the Milligrammy Awards, the Center for Science in the Public Interest wanted to shine a light on the absurd amounts of sodium in fast and fast-casual menu items. In many cases, the dishes that might seem most innocuous are packed with more than twice the daily recommended sodium intake. Just ONE meal could have more sodium than you should eat in 2 days.

The FDA has proposed safe sodium limits, the food industry and restaurant associations are currently fighting those restrictions. So for now, it’s up to consumers to educate themselves.

Verizon Wireless / Middleditch

/ Verizon Wireless / Middleditch

Target / Time for a Target Run

/ Target / Time for a Target Run

When people go to Target, it’s often because they’ve accumulated a long list of things they need (and some things they don’t need). This campaign is designed to remind guests that if you want everyday low prices on everyday essentials, make it a Target Run. And Done.

Thanks to my dear friends at 72 and Sunny LA (and my new friends at Target) for inviting me to help bring this work to life.

President Obama and My Brother’s Keeper/ “Proud to Present”

/ President Obama and My Brother’s Keeper/ “Proud to Present”

As President Barack Obama exits office, he’ll turn much of his focus to his My Brother’s Keeper initiative – a program designed to close the achievement and opportunity gaps among young men and boys of color through mentorship.

In the wake of the 2016 Academy Awards and the #OscarSoWhite controversy, the President saw an opportunity to demonstrate the need to believe in the future successes of young black men not only in the film industry, but in all sorts of endeavors.

We created this film together with friends at Matter Unilimited, Getty Images, and DECON to run on the MTV Movie Awards.

Please, if you’re reading this and want to get involved or just learn more, visit IAMMBK.ORG

#IamMBK