I got my first check for writing at the age of 18 and my first piece in a magazine (Details) at the age of 23. Since then, I've covered everything from the sex trade in Japan to pitfights where grown men brawl Fight Club style in warehouses and underground clubs. I love getting close to situations where people are living life in extremis. Sometimes it's amazing (following a sideshow circus whose members swallow real swords and spit fire) and sometimes it's gut-wrenching (attending to the most vulnerable with the Compton Fire Department or interviewing the mother of an Iraq war veteran killed in combat). My work has appeared in Playboy, the Chicago Tribune, Black Book and numerous other publications.
As a technologist and design enthusiast, I fell in love with the Web. Its potential -- as a storytelling and communication tool, as an alternate environment, as a gathering place -- is yet being discovered. I've been a partner in a boutique Web studio with amazing designers and programmers where we did fantastic work for clients like WholeFoods, AirTran Airways and Marmot. I went on to run my own digital studio, Zephyr Syndicate, producing jaw-dropping sites for Manga (Anchor Bay Entertainment), Dark Sky Films, UGLY-NY and a variety of other top-tier clientele, as well as award-winning Web games for Arizona Jeans and powerful branding pieces for CAT (Caterpillar) Footwear.
I favor immersive environments, fluid communication and immediate understanding. Social media platforms like twitter and facebook are only the beginning. As our understanding of this powerful medium builds and new methods emerge for designing and utilizing information, we'll see new organisms born native to the Web. I hope to be alive when our best minds can easily connect using something more meaningful than a 140-character status update. To this end, I spent the last three years teaching Web design, game design and multimedia classes to the next generation of visionaries and entrepreneurs at DePaul University.