About Jon Sutz

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Summary

I am a visualization and graphic designer, writer, creative consultant and strategist, based in Charlottesville, VA.

My three highest specialties are:

  • Empathizing with target audiences, and conceptualizing knowledge tools and activism strategies that meet them “where they are.”  Specifically, this skill manifests in my ability to create work products that reflect a deep understanding of the target audience’s knowledge, perceptions, literacy level, media usage preferences and how the nuances of modern culture can momentarily influence them.
  • Writing verbal frameworks for accountable presentations, in both screen and print formats.  This means that, in addition to creating written content that informs and persuades the target audience, whenever possible I also include efficient pathways that enable the curious and skeptical to access the source data upon which core assertions are based.

Combined, my skills and performance have won high praise from clients and employers, as varied as advertising agencies, major corporations, including Intel, Sharp Electronics, the American Productivity & Quality Center. 

Prior to 9/11, as a studio employee and later executive, I designed and/or directed the production of 3D animations, videos, and other key media assets for advertising, corporate communications and skills-training applications, for clients throughout the US and Southeast Asia, including Intel, Sharp Electronics and many others.  My last full-time job (long ago) was as the creative director of a multimedia and software development studio that was later acquired by global game developer THQ.

Law firms that are engaged in high-value and complex litigation have also raved about my visualization, analytical and writing skills, which I use to design and produce crucial components of their courtroom presentations.  In terms of sheer financial magnitude, my biggest measurable accomplishment in the legal realm was helping to resolve, in my client’s favor, the largest land-use dispute in Ft. Lauderdale, FL history, regarding his proposal for a $100 million luxury condo tower on the last available piece of beachfront property.

Since 9/11, my work has been focused primarily on theorizing and developing knowledge tools and activism strategies by which to advance and defend the cause of freedom, America, Israel and Western civilization.  I am also passionate about, and have donated significant time to advocating for children, dogs, and people stricken with fibromyalgia (like me; details below).

Philosophically, I am best defined as a classic liberal – meaning I am politically homeless.

I am also something of an oddball within both intellectual and activism communities, in that I enjoy using satire to publicize key facts.  Because I always base my satire on openly-cited evidence, even my opponents tend to have grudging respect for my work (example: my first “social justice campaign”: “The Coalition for Non-Living Americans“).

My life mission is summed up in this graphic. Learn more about my activism work here.


Contents:

(1) Overview

(2) Skills profile

(3) Multimedia consulting for law and advocacy

(4) Partial major client list

(5) Trivia


(1) Overview

Since 1989, I have provided creative leadership on projects for organizations throughout the U.S. and Southeast Asia, including Intel, Sharp Electronics, the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, Entergy, the American Productivity & Quality Center, and many others (see list with project links here). My work has spanned advertising, skills training, legal, corporate communications and advocacy media. See my resume and credits here, and client & employer comments here.

Intelscreen1

Still from a 3D-animated marketing video that I wrote and designed for Intel; details here.

My life mission is to utilize all my creativity and skills to:

  • Help ignite a renaissance of liberty, first in America and then throughout the world, by revolutionizing the means by which it and its requirements are publicly presented, debated and defended (more).
  • Help defend the U.S. Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic.
  • Passionately advocate for (a) Israel, (b) the rational interests of children, dogs, and the people who love them, and (c) those who are afflicted with fibromyalgia (details here).

The five people I most admire are Thomas Jefferson, Ayn Rand, Steve Jobs, Ronald Reagan and Andrew Breitbart.

From 2014-2020, the bulk of my work was devoted to editing and producing original articles, slide shows and videos for SaveTheWest.com, a website I created for a client in New York. See the archive of the original content I created for SaveTheWest here.


Saved-By-Shayna-Cover-1

My first book, dedicated to

Medical disclosure

I have a medical condition that prevents me from being able to work traditional business hours, or in a modern business setting, or travel with the ease with which I used to. In summary, I was in an accident in 2002 that left me with a neuromuscular disorder called fibromyalgia, that produces chronic pain and fatigue. Learn more about how fibromyalgia affects me here.

Since my accident, I have worked only on freelance and part-time consulting projects. In recent years, however, I have focused more on developing entrepreneurial projects to help advance my missions, and earn money. Several of these projects include:

  • My first movie, which tells the story of America, freedom, tyranny, and world history, in a format that is designed from the ground up to appeal to adolescents (and up). 7 years in development.
  • My first dog welfare activism campaign, HeatKills, an informational website I created that helps to prevent dogs from suffering in hot cars (Update May 2021: It’s now migrating to HeatKills.us)
  • My first nonprofit-in-formation, I Love Israel, which presents evidence-based information about what makes Israel such a remarkable, inspiring nation. See the 12-minute mini-documentary describing the project here. See the press release here. See the GoFundMe fundraiser here.


(2) Skills profile

My primary skills are:

  • Creative consulting, strategy development & direction: The ability to generate original approaches, and nurture them into polished maturity
  • Visualization and storyboard design: Storyboards for 2D and 3D animations and technical visualizations, and complex video sequences (see my animation directorial demo reel here)

My clients and employers have raved about my inventiveness, passion, performance, and the results my work has yielded.


(3) Multimedia consulting for law and advocacy

In recent years, most of my work has related to consulting on and designing multimedia solutions for:

  • Litigation media: I help attorneys to craft winning courtroom presentations, largely by converting complex data into visualizations that the layperson can understand, and finds persuasive.
  • Advocacy media: I help various “causes” – primarily those that are dedicated to advancing liberty – to develop creative strategies, and professional, persuasive and memorable media assets and presentations.

Litigation media

In 2000, I was retained for my first legal application: to help resolve what was, at that time, the largest land use dispute in Ft. Lauderdale, FL history. The case concerned a proposal for a $100 million condominium tower that had been obstructed for years, due to a falsehood-riddled propaganda campaign. As described in this project profile, my work mostly involved converting voluminous, complex legal and technical data into crisp, compelling graphic visualizations that general audiences could understand. The developer later credited my work with being a vital factor in resolving this long-running dispute in his favor.

Based on the success of my work on that project, I have worked since 2000 primarily as a part-time freelance litigation media consultant and designer. Essentially, I help attorneys to create winning courtroom presentations and ancillary materials (juror notebooks, settlement brochures, etc.).

At right: An excerpt from a courtroom presentation I created regarding a wrongful death resulting from a traffic accident. According to the client law firm, my work helped win a pre-trial settlement for the victim’s family.

For more information, please see Testimonials from legal clients my Litigation media portfolio.


Advocacy media

I also use my varied creative skills to help liberty-oriented advocacy organizations to brand and market themselves, and to present their arguments – in the courtroom, and the court of public opinion. Since 1998, I have been engaged by, or donated my time to a variety of nonprofits, think tanks and civic campaigns.

In October 2021, I unveiled a project I’d been creating and self-funding for years, as a pet project: ILoveIsrael.me, an encyclopedic, free online resource, containing evidence-based information about what makes Israel such a remarkable, inspiring nation.

Here is the mini-documentary about the project (12 minutes):


My most notable work in the advocacy realm, that produced a seismic public result was my deep involvement in the “Lost Liberty Hotel” project.  Its purpose was to provide a humorous yet powerful challenge to the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2005 ruling in Kelo vs. City of New London, regarding eminent domain — and ended up creating a wave of state-level legislation to prevent unjust takings of private property for profit-making purposes.

I’ve also engaged in several self-initiated media projects to advance and defend liberty (information upon request).

For more information, please see my Advocacy Media Portfolio, and:

Jon Sutz: A creative asset in the defense of liberty

What makes me different from other advocates for liberty

“Meet Today’s Typical Millennial” by Jon Sutz


(4) Partial major client list

From 1989-2000, as both a studio employee and a freelance consultant, I provided creative leadership on a wide variety of advertising, educational, skills training and corporate communications projects for clients throughout North America and Southeast Asia, including:

  • Intel: Script, storyboard for computer-animated promotional video: “Freedom.”
  • Sharp Electronics: Script, storyboard for educational multimedia program: “Future Lab.”
  • Lodgistix-HMS: Scripts, storyboards and direction for the hospitality industry’s first CD-ROM based training program.
  • The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company: Design of graphics-based training tools.
  • PCS Health Systems (now CareMark): Design and direction of multimedia trade show presentation.
  • SGS-Thomson Microelectronics: Design and direction of animated trade show kiosk presentation: “Transputers and Disk Arrays.”
  • SOFTWIND: Storyboard for animated video for this pioneering developer of high-tech water pumping windmills.
  • McGuire Woods: Creative consulting, storyboards, direction of animated videos to help defend the “Big 3” U.S. automakers against class-action national litigation (asbestositis).
  • The Gatestone Institute: A liberty-oriented international policy council and think tank, chaired by former U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton; info.

See my resume and credits here.


(5) Trivia

6 words to live by

“He actually built the damned thing!”

From the movie, “Tucker: The Man And His Dream,” about an automotive visionary who went into competition against the Big 3. Trailer here.

My favorite motto

“Always reach for the stars. You may not quite get one, but you won’t come up with a handful of mud either.”

Leo Burnett (advertising legend)

Runner-up: “Each passing minute is another chance to turn it all around.”
“Sofia,” in “Vanilla Sky” (see “About the banner design,” below)

Favorite place

Charlottesville, Virginia. It’s the only place I’ve ever really felt ‘at home, as I describe in my upcoming book. Many people have special places, where they go to renew their spirits. I’m fortunate to live within a few miles of both of my special places: Monticello and University of Virginia.

Also, as I describe in my first book, an inspiring memoir I completed in 2013, on those very rare occasions when one sees graffiti in Charlottesville, it’s almost always spelled correctly.

Update September 2022: It’s changing, fast, and not for the better. I’m going to travel to find new spots in which to live and do my work.

How I use humor to defuse tension (mine or others’)

I recently had my first colonoscopy. As I was waiting for the gastroenterologist to come in and order that I be sedated, I thought I’d lighten the mood (mine), and suggest that if she ever becomes dissatisfied with her current gig, she could use all the skills she already possesses go to work for the IRS as an investigator, digging deep to find out if criminals stashed away untaxed income in some recess beyond casual view. She laughed, and said she’ll keep that in mind. Then it was lights-out.

Ten guests for a dinner party

Five people from the past, and five from the present.

Past: Thomas Jefferson, Ayn Rand, Steve Jobs, Ronald Reagan, Andrew Breitbart.

Present: Ayaan Hirsi-Ali (author-activist), John Lasseter (PIXAR chief), Sandra Bullock (actress-producer), Natan Sharanski (dissident-author-activist), Mary Chapin Carpenter (singer-songwriter).

First alternate: Cameron Crowe (below)

About the banner design

The banner was inspired by two things: First, when facing a particularly difficult creative challenge, I take – and I encourage my clients to take – what I describe as a “blue sky” approach to solving it. This means dreaming big, ignoring artificial or preconceived limitations, and pursuing a completely original, ultimate solution. I believe that in any mission-critical project, it is vitally important to define the ideal, the ‘perfect’ solution. We can always compromise downward from there if absolutely necessary – but it’s extremely difficult to build towards perfection while mediocrity is the objective.

The banner was also inspired by, and is an homage to what I consider the unparalleled artistry of one of my favorite modern films, “Vanilla Sky” (trailer), and particularly its ending. The film was created by one of my two* favorite modern writer-directors – Cameron Crowe (*the other being John Lasseter).

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