Five Good Minutes With… Samantha Jayne, Art Director, Author, Quarter Life Survivor


By thelaegotist / / Samantha Jayne recently published a book on her popular Instagram account, Quarter Life Poetry. She created 4 spots to promote the book about life in your 20s– and was welcomed to shoot a lot of it in the new Mullen office. We took 5 Good Minutes to find out more about Samantha and Quarter Life Poetry. The LA Egotist: So, Samantha, please give us the rundown about your new book and the videos you created to get the word out. Are you still in this life phase, or do you write from the perspective of a wiser person who has lived through it? Samantha Jayne: It’s called “Quarter Life Poetry: Poems for the Young, Broke & Hangry” and it’s published by Grand Central Publishing. It’s a collection of poetry and illustrations about the quarter life struggle that is based on my Tumblr and Instagram. Here’s the Amazon link. I’m 26, but I’m hoping I’m out of the woods with my own quarter life crisis. It involved a messy breakup, quitting my job, and moving cross-country on a whim. I’m in a much more stable place now. So I’m drawing from my experiences in my early 20s, and also my friends’ experiences. Egotist: These are really nice looking shorts/ads. I know Mullen/Lowe let you film at the LA office. Were you allowed to use agency resources? Did colleagues lend a hand? SJ: Thanks! I freelanced for Mullen/Lowe and asked if I could use the space for one day on the weekend. They were awesome about it and excited to accommodate. I’m sure I could have asked for more resources and they would have happily helped, but I wanted to make everything easy and brought in my own crew. I partnered with Arturo Perez Jr, an incredible director. He’s the one who made these look so professional, along with our talented crew. Egotist: It is damn hard to promote a book these days. How is working in the ad/marketing world helping you to market the book? Can you offer specific examples? SJ: It is damn hard! Breaking through the clutter is the toughest thing in the world. But I know my audience, and tried to think of an exciting way to promote the book, because book trailers certainly aren’t it. I came from the ad world of writing commercials and scripts, so that’s naturally where my mind went. The spots began as short 15-second bytes to put on Instagram, but Arturo came into the fold and helped shape them into fully fleshed out spots that look great. It’s that same sort of art director director collaboration I experienced in advertising. Egotist: I would imagine social media is playing a key role since the book is based around your Quarter Life Poetry on Instagram. How many followers do you have? SJ: Right now I have 101k followers on Instagram. Egotist: How has being an Art Director contributed to the experience of designing/marketing/promoting a book, and vice versa? SJ: It’s made the process very natural. Quarter Life Poetry is a brand, just like any [social media] profile is in a way. Quarter Life Poetry just happens to be a brand that I completely understand, because I belong to its demographic. It’s much more challenging creating ads for Acura or Patron because I’m not the target audience and I need to put myself in their shoes. So I went into the creative process knowing that if the work resonates with me, it would most likely resonate with my audience. I’ve also learned as an Art Director to create a look & feel for a brand. So I’ve developed a specific look for Quarter Life Poetry, which keeps it recognizable and cohesive. And when it came to advertising the book, I’m so used to writing TV spots that it was the obvious answer. I’ve had so much fun creating the book, but even more fun marketing it. What’s next? Right now I’m working on a tv series with Arturo – we’re co-writing it, and it’s in the same tone as the promo videos. So I’m holding off on freelancing for now since this is my focus at the moment. Arturo is known for his realistic and cinematic spots and he certainly does freelance commercial work. He’s signed at Room Two, a division of Gartner for commercials, and Anonymous Content for tv and film. He was a finalist on HBO’s Project Greenlight. He just finished directing Google & Reddit’s “Formative” series, which was just written up in Forbes. Here it is: