OMFGco in their own words: We met at W+K. We got Olympic Provisions as a client, and a week into that job we were like, oh man, we should do this everyday. We decided to start a company, started buying URLS. We wanted to sound generic enough that we could kind of do whatever we wanted. We prided ourselves early on as being able to build stuff with our hands, being a design build kind of studio without saying design build. Part of it was out of the necessity of bootstrapping, part of it was that we like to do the work. As we've grown and evolved, we've taken a step away from that. Now we at most do prototyping. We work with the right vendors and the right collaborators to make our jobs come true. We build brands for visionaries. It's a challenge to our clients to be visionaries. It also helps us say, trust us, this is a great idea. It's okay that it hasn't been done before. That doesn't mean that it can't work.
If you live in Portland and you notice things that look cool or good, then you know their work, even if you don't know you know it. Portland Meadows, Ace Hotel, Union Way, XOXO Fest, Stumptown Coffee Roasters, Beam & Anchor, Olympic Provisions...as I type it all I'm starting to think they're a little greedy. They should maybe give someone else a chance.
About their great work they're humble. "We like to champion the notion that the best idea wins," Fritz said. "It's not about whose idea it is. It's about what solves the problem best." They also seem to have found the best way (for them) to work. Jeremy explains, "I think we're at our best as an agency when we get out of the way of our clients and their vision." They push for fun. "We believe there's no such thing as a design emergency," they said. And they know how to collaborate. "It's only a collaboration if both people get to a new place they wouldn't have gotten to on their own," Jeremy explains. "Otherwise it's just people working together, which is different than a collaboration."
They collaborate by passing files around, and by building space and time into the process. "There's a certain level of looseness that you have to build into your time that you're going to spend on it. There's an organic quality to real collaboration. You don't know the weird ideas that are going to come out after sitting in brainstorming on something, or drinking, or whatever causes the left turn that causes the great idea to come out. By leaving room for it you serve the notion of what a collaboration can be."
Their advice to you: Don't look outward for approval, and come in dumb everyday. OMFGco will be speaking on day 1 of We Make Celebrates, our maker conference in October. Get tickets here.