Austin Breed / Creative Director
Austin is a relentless maker, but his goal isn’t creativity or self-expression. “Creating is fine,” he says, “But I make things to learn. As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to learn everything.” At age 13 he taught himself Flash so he could learn to make cartoons and games. Austin attended Park University where he earned a degree in Graphic Design. His pace of learning didn’t slow down after graduating. Working in his native Kansas City, he ran a design practice by day while being a ‘hacktivist’ on the side. An example: he organized several Game Jams that catalyzed teams of strangers to build ready-to-play digital games in 50 hours. Austin’s make-to-learn mindset is a perfect fit for Peer Insight. As a visual designer, he makes stories, prototypes, and environments where project teams can learn what wows and what works. He has helped teams learn about energy consumption habits (DTE Energy) and what bank customers will and won’t tell a person vs. a machine (Capital One).
Viewing possibilities as a beginner, unfiltered and gestural sketchbooks, mood boards, self-publishers and the work of “outsider” artists, such as Henry Darger’s watercolors or the music of The Shaggs.
During one of my interviews, we walked a few blocks to a neat loose-leaf tea place and the group was laughing and telling stories along the way. I remember thinking that the way they were interacting and teasing each other made them seem like a big family, and I liked that a lot.