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Floris: ‘You connect with someone without having a conversation’

Live illustrator

Role at Bord&Stift: Writer, illustrator and project planner.
Working here since: Summer 2017.
What music do you listen to? ‘I have a very broad taste in music, from indie to hip hop to metal. Since I’ve been taking dance classes I also listen to jazz a lot. One of my favorite songs is When I get low I get high from Chick Webb and Ella Fitzgerald, a jazz song from 1936.’

What a lot of different things you do at Bord&Stift!

‘That’s right. I write, draw AND plan. At first I was asked to be a technical writer. After graduation, I had more time and extra project planners were needed. I thought: I want to learn that too. I had been drawing for some time, as a hobby. I started doing that for Bord & Stift, and voilà, now I have a triple role.’

Which of those three roles suits you best?

‘I like the variation. The tension arc is very different; as a planner you do a lot of short-term actions, while writing and drawing require a longer breath.

As a writer I choose the storyline and try to put the message as concisely as possible. You learn to separate main and side issues. I like the first moment with the customer the most, when he pours out a bin of information and I filter the useful pieces from it. I then look at how I can formulate the message concisely and attractively.

I also like to gain experience with planning. In my private life, I’m not necessarily good at it, because it feels a bit more casual. This is not the case in a company, then you have to keep your wits about you. Planning almost goes without saying if everything within the production process runs smoothly. But if things are more difficult, my role is very important, I have to be the bridge between my colleagues and the customer. It is nice to solve such puzzles. And it is educational, also for organizing in my private life.
Drawing really feels like a bonus, I enjoy it a lot. It makes me very happy that I can do something so nice on the side.’

Is the contact with customers different as a writer than as a illustrator?

‘As a writer you often have intensive contact with customers. It is the first phase of the process, in which you look together for the core of the story and the best way to express it. Many people know quite a bit about writing – or they think they know – and are therefore more critical about what we send. As a writer you are looking for a way to package the wishes of the customer in a clear and targeted text. As an illustrator you get less opposition, then customers especially enjoy seeing the test drawings.’

What makes you happy at Bord&Stift?

‘Every time it amazes me how much space there is to think together in private and work areas. There is real interest. If I have doubts about how I have tackled something, or run out of time with an assignment, colleagues will help. You will not be judged for anything.’

What do you do besides Bord&Stift?

‘Lindyhop! That’s an African American dance from the 1920s and 1930s. I really like to dance anyway; the music, the movement. It’s playful and cheerful, it forces you out of your head and in your body, it’s fun to adjust movements to the music, to respond to what I hear. I also like the social aspect, the moments of contact, the attraction and rejection, the tension. You connect with someone without having a conversation.’

Also read the interview with Hannah:
‘Mountain hiking gives focus and space at the same time.’

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