Dumb Questions for Smart Designers – Beat Baudenbacher

Join us in welcoming Beat (pronounced Bay-Ott) Baudenbacher to the DQSD family. We admit that the publishing of this interview was very delayed, but good things take time, so we are thrilled to share this with all of you.

This Switzerland-born, NYC-living design master is killing it for loyalkaspar, an agency in Brooklyn that has done work for ESPN, Hewlett Packard, CNN, Hulu, and many more. Beat cultivated his love of art and innate sense of design Stateside and, in 2003, he and David Herbruck co-founded loyalkaspar with a vision of a hub to create, reinvent, and amplify brands through strategy, design, production, and experiential.

Beat likens his creative work to the core human impulses to hunt and to gather. Just as humans had to craft the right hunting tools, study the right climate patterns, and exhibit an openness to explore new territories, Beat argues that the creative process is no different: hunting for big ideas, gathering the smaller ones, and coming at it all with a fearless embrace of failure.

Q. Real maple syrup or Aunt Jemima?

I have to say that I don’t understand maple syrup. It’s like the blood of a tree, right? You stick a hose in a tree and then enjoy it? I always go for real, not fake, anything.

Q. What’s been your best Halloween costume?

Being from Europe, dressing up for something that everyone dresses up for seems a little odd to me, but I have been known to play ping pong dressed as members of The Royal Tenenbaums.

Q. What’s the last thing you apologized for?

This is a little deeper, but in this day and age, as a white man, I feel like I should be running around apologizing for everything. However, last night I did have to apologize to my family for overcooking the rice.

Q. How do you feel about Swiss cheese?

I have many, many thoughts on this. First of all, the stuff you get here is not swiss cheese. It’s like plastic with holes in it. Truly. It tastes like nothing. There is cheese with holes in it in Switzerland, but how this stuff became swiss cheese, I do not understand.

Q. What’s your favorite creature to photograph?

I have decided on the chipmunk for obvious reasons. I have a house upstate and they are everywhere and they are awesome. They are very difficult to photograph but when you catch them magic happens.

Q. Tom Cruise or Tom Hanks?

That’s a tough one. Originally, I would’ve said Tom Hanks for sure, but I recently watched the newest Mission Impossible stuff with my kids and Cruise does some mean ass tricks on that bike. I’m not into the Scientology thing though, so that’s the disqualifier. But now I do want to get a bike, dude.

Q. What’s your favorite college mascot?

My wife went to school in Madison, Wisconsin, so on paper I have to say the badger, because he is freakin’ fierce and amazing, but when that thing got translated from paper to costume, it got all messed up and cartoonish. Something about the proportions got lost. Considering my college mascot was an orange dot, I will still stick to the badger. Do know ArtCenter College of Design? No? Okay. No football team.

Q. What’s your favorite brand of bottled water?

Ummm, wow. (Breathes) I do enjoy LaCroix, but not because of the design.

Q. Do you decorate for holidays?

Do I or can I? Yeah, we do, a little bit. My wife has a box of stuff in the basement and we bring it out. The key to decorating for the holidays, especially Halloween and fall is just a bucket of gourds and then you’re solid.

Q. Toilet paper roll, over or under?

Over. I think that’s pretty standard. That’s how it goes, isn’t it? Otherwise, it’s the wrong way and will cling to the wall.

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