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Meet the Artist/Owner: Mechanism Digital’s Lucien Harriot

NAME: 
Lucien Harriot (@mechdigi)

COMPANY:Mechanism Digital Inc.

CAN YOU DESCRIBE YOUR COMPANY?
A New York City-based production studio founded in 1996, providing design, visual effects and new development for the film, television and advertising industry. We are a smart, friendly group of passionate creatives who stay up late to help entertainment and marketing pros tell their stories in memorable ways.

WHAT’S YOUR JOB TITLE?

Executive producer and visual effects supervisor.

WHAT DOES THAT ENTAIL?
Being chief cook and bottle washer. Sales, quality control, overseeing marketing message and implementation, writing bids, producing projects, on-set VFX supervision, continuously refining the vision and direction of company.

The team at Mechanism Digital.

The team at Mechanism Digital.

WHAT WOULD SURPRISE PEOPLE THE MOST ABOUT WHAT FALLS UNDER THAT TITLE?
Every little thing which hasn’t been specifically delegated, plus emergencies such as when the Department of Buildings shows up and needs to inspect and discuss the number of sprinkler heads we have in each room.

WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED OVER THE YEARS ABOUT RUNNING A BUSINESS?
Acquiring and training new clients and employees is very time consuming and expensive.

Treat each client as if they are the most important client. Treat employees like they are volunteers who could easily go someplace else. Strive to build loyalty from both and don’t take it personally if they decide to move on.

HOW DO YOU BALANCE KEEPING EMPLOYEES HAPPY WITH KEEPING CLIENTS HAPPY?
Teach everything you know and give as much help as possible to enable clients and employees to be the best they can be. Set an example of treating everyone right and everything else should fall into place.

WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE PART OF THE JOB?
Problem solving and the research, development and experimentation at the beginning of a project.

WHAT’S YOUR LEAST FAVORITE?
Wrapping projects and cleaning up after each delivery. The adrenaline is gone and the remaining tasks are less exciting.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TIME OF THE DAY?
Late afternoon. The frantic calls and meetings of the morning discussing client notes from last night’s deliveries are over and the team gets into their groove and we start to see project revisions mature on screen.

IF YOU DIDN’T HAVE THIS JOB, WHAT WOULD YOU BE DOING INSTEAD?
Technical director at a large animation studio, or sailing around the world. One or the other.

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History Channel’s Last Stand of the 300: Mechanism Digital provided 900 VFX shots for the 90-minute show.

CAN YOU NAME SOME RECENT CLIENTS?
General Electric, Michael Kors, Luxottica, Harvard Business School, Prudential, National Geographic Channel and Discovery Channel.

NAME THREE PIECES OF TECHNOLOGY YOU CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT.
– Email – the center of communications
– Excel – spreadsheets to manage budgets
– 3D animation software — to visualize new ideas


One thought on “Meet the Artist/Owner: Mechanism Digital’s Lucien Harriot

  1. Vancillia Oliver

    It’s very good to hear from you after all these years. When you came as a guest to NYCIT and spoke to our class about your profession, I believe I was the only one that was interested. As for me I still take pictures, but I have not done anything from that point. But thanks for remembering me. Truly yours, Vancillia Oliver

    Reply

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