Celebrating the Jacksonville Jaguars
Celebrating the Jacksonville Jaguars
Despite a heartbreaking loss in the AFC Championship game, this 2017 Jacksonville Jaguars season was amazing, particularly so for me as I got to experience it as a true fan for the first time in my life. The organization has grown so much over the past six years, and the final piece to the puzzle, a competitive team, has emerged. A world-class stadium is home to a fiery team, with future brilliance in sight. And, a city is once again invigorated with an electrical passion. I’ve been experiencing it for the last two months, but it was especially evident at the homecoming celebration after we defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers in the divisional round. Tens of thousands of fans greeted the team at EverBank Field and in that moment, it was awe-inspiring to see such an expression of community.
That night inspired a week of reflection on my time with the Jaguars. There certainly is a prestige to have worked for 1 of only 32 NFL teams, and a pride to have worked alongside an award-winning Jags Cinema department. Beyond those accolades though is what I treasure the most from my time with the Jaguars: the relationships with the people, and everything that they have taught me. This post is dedicated to you, current and previous members of the Jacksonville Jaguars.
My Thank You List
I must thank Kurt Wisenbaugh for hiring me and giving me, a guy with zero sports knowledge, a chance in the big league. Thank you for advising me about business and budgets. (And it was a joy to see our Florida State Seminoles win a third BCS National Championship together in Pasadena!)
Thank you Wayne, Delores and Mackey Weaver for advancing my hire during the 2011 NFL lockout. Thank Shad Khan, Mark Lamping, and Hussain Naqi for the resources, ingenuity and vision to develop and activate the most complex and dynamic video presentation in the NFL.
Thank You, Jags Cinema
Most of all, thank you Jags Cinema for six seasons of incredible content creation, friendship, and fun. Specifically, thank you Larry Rosen, for being a really cool boss, a mentor, a father figure and a consulting member of the Claymaker Board of Directors. Thank you for being a guiding light for me during my existential crisis. Thank you for motivating and inspiring me to create when I felt burned out. Thank you for the constant affirmation and words of praise, and for putting up with me on bad days! Thank you Sam Thompson Adams, one of the smartest people I know, for the wealth of knowledge that you’ve shared with me over the years. Thank you for our countless “Wings Day” lunches and serious chats, through good times and bad. And, thank you for not labeling the replay channels “Crimson” and “Tide” – because there is NO way this Technical Director would punch a show if he had to hear “Roll Tide” regularly!
Thank You, Dear Friends
Thank you Nial Nelson-Hopkins, for your Cinema 4D skills, your inspired content, your work ethic and for your humor that has carried over the years. And thank you for introducing the term “sandwich artist” to my lexicon. Thank you Blake Stuart for always having just the right epic song idea, the film school jargon and movie trivia, the Disney passion (albeit much more subtle than mine!), and for bringing balance and stability during stressful days. Thank you Eric Wierenga, for your brilliance in design and motion, and for creating the Claymaker brand’s artwork. And thank you for elevating our graphics operation over the years. Thank you Bryan Thomas for also bringing balance and stability on stressful days, and for your keen eye for visual storytelling and brand consistency. Thank you for your insights and perspectives, both of which have influenced my sense of humanity.
And, One More Thank You
And lastly, thank you Carlos Caceres and Everett Sullivan, for the work that you both have done and continue to do, but more importantly, thank you for what you have both done for my life. Thank you Ev for your brilliant eye, for always finding the light and capturing a frame in such unmatched ways. Thank you Carlos for your leadership across the board in all aspects of production, from the days when it was just the two of us to present day, as the department continues to grow. But beyond anything else, thank you both for giving me the sense of empathy that I now have for others. The insights and real life experiences that the two of you have shared with me over the years expanded my consciousness and gave me a greater understanding of reality. Thank you for keeping me accountable to be my best, and for putting up with me the longest of the group. Claymaker does not exist without you guys, in concept or in practice, and I am forever indebted to you both.