Graduate Spotlight: Steve Hansen

He’s worked on some of the world’s biggest brands including Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Vodafone, Air New Zealand and Holden and has the awards to prove it. So how did Steve become ‘a magician with an imagination’?

Tell us what you do

I’m a commercial creative and artist. An art director.

My job consists of coming up with ideas and solutions to our client’s business problems. I find a human truth with the aim of bringing it to life in a compelling and captivating way.

I’m not just in charge of coming up with the insights and ideas but nurturing and protecting those ideas through the process so they reach their full potential in the real world.

Someone said I’m a magician with an imagination.

How did you get there from Media Design School?

I had the privilege of working for some of New Zealand’s most well-known agencies under some of the world’s best: Nick Worthington, Toby Talbot, Brigid Alkema and of course Kate, Jeneal and David from MDS just to name a few. These people helped me get my career to the point it is now.

And of course, hard work, perseverance, late nights at the agency, beer and cheap eats at food courts played a part in my success also.

What's been the most surprising/disappointing/thrilling things about working?

It is an emotional rollercoaster. There’s a lot of doubt, hope, hundreds of rejections of ideas, but it all becomes worth it when you crack the big idea. And that can just be all in a day’s work.

What skills did you learn at MDS that are relevant now?

Searching for human truths. Getting inspired by everyday things around you. Working under pressure. I also learnt all the foundation tools at MDS which I still use today.

What's one thing you still want to do in your career?

Start my own agency. Essentially so I can pick the beers which I like to go into the beer fridge.

What tips would you give others looking to get into your field?

Ring 0-9-303 0402 and ask for Kate. You’d be silly to do anything else.

And don’t create ads. Create culture.