As artists, we think hiring artists is too hard.
Oct 5, 2022
Introducing Rolo, talent discovery on easy mode.
You may be asking yourself, do we really need yet another website to keep track of, and for that matter, do we really need another one of these medium-style posts pontificating to the heavens?
And you may be right, but, we think(hope) that by the end of this you’ll be just as excited about Rolo as we are!
So, the next question you may be asking yourself is what is Rolo and why do we need it?
Anyone that has worked in the design, animation, or media space in general, knows that there is a constant balancing act and homeostasis to be had between two forces. On one side we have the clients asking themselves: How do we find the right talent for the right project? And on the creative side, we have artists asking themselves: How do I get my work in front of the right people and find the right creative opportunities?
…our hope is that the system we’ve created can ensure that you’re getting the right opportunities that align with your personal goals…
Whether you are fresh out of school and looking to cut your teeth or a seasoned pro with countless awards under your belt, these two indisputable laws of nature seem to govern us all.
In the past, there have been many websites that have tried to solve this problem and in our humble opinion, none of them have done it quite well, yet. At their worst, they often relegate the artists to a commodity and don’t truly celebrate each of their unique skill sets and points of view. At their best, maybe they lead to the occasional connection, but often become a source of spam for all the parties involved and are quickly forgotten.
It’s hard out there and this is by no means an easy problem to solve. We get it.
There is a lot going on under the hood here but the TLDR version is that Rolo’s goal is to lessen the gap between client and artist. We want to make a community that doesn’t just cater to one side of this eternal balancing act but speaks to both of them.
Remember those other websites we were talking about? Many of them have some great features but more often than not, when you fill out your profile they offer these broad overarching labels: Designer, Animator, Art Director, and so on. The reality is that at face value, these labels don’t mean anything. Take Designer as an example. Are you a graphic designer that specializes in brand guidelines? Are you a motion designer that is skilled at creating styleframes and storyboards? Or are you an agency-style designer whose primary focus is crafting the perfect pitch deck? They are all Designers but have vastly different skill sets, experiences, and focuses. The list goes on and on and that is just under the umbrella that is “Design”.
In a media landscape as vast as ours, that simply isn’t cutting it. What this does is oversimplify the years of experience and expertise of the artist as well as put the onus on the client to keep clicking to find the right type of designer that they need. When you now multiply that by the evergrowing facets of our industry you can see how we got into the problem that we are in.
Our solution to this is a proprietary recipe of herbs and spices to give you just what you need. Really though, it isn’t that complicated. Instead of treating our tags and labels as these monoliths. We’ve taken a tiered approach to refine our system to focus on Roles, Skills, and Tools.
Within Rolo “Designer” isn’t all you are, it’s just one of many Roles you can fill. From there you can specify your exact Skills (Branding, Styleframes, Pitch Decks, and so on..).
To go even deeper, you then have the opportunity to identify the exact Tools you use (Yes, we know that everyone needs Figma designers nowadays, we got you covered, it’s in there!).
It’s kind of like the Eames Powers of Ten film but far less existential.
The idea here is that if you don’t really know what you are looking for you can simply search for “Designer” and see a beautiful tapestry of all the artists on our platform that identify as “Designers”. But, if you have laser focus and know exactly what you need you can search for a “Designer” that specializes in “Branding” and “Systems” and is within 1 timezone of you. That’s right, timezone and proximity play a role in the Rolo search, too!
That doesn’t even get us into the specific user tools we are building to make your life easier when it comes to finding artists, creating custom lists, doing outreach, checking availability, and so on.
Hopefully, that has your interest piqued.
Now you may be asking yourself, what about the artists, isn't this a balancing act between two parties? So far we have only heard about the client side of things.
On the artist side of things, our hope is that the system we’ve created can ensure that you’re getting the right opportunities that align with your personal goals. If you are a 2D animator who doesn’t do 3D animation. Our hope is that our tiered tagging system will cut down on the blanket booking outreach emails you receive where you have to explain for the millionth time what you do and what you don’t do.
We also know how demanding it can be to maintain a personal website in addition to a Behance page, and a LinkedIn, plus an Instagram, maybe a TikTok, and the multitude of other social channels that have yet to be created. It’s a lot to keep up with! We don’t want Rolo to add to that pain which is why we’ve tried to streamline the process as much as possible. From the first click to finished profile you can sign up for Rolo, choose your tags, select your timezone, upload your favorite images, and be done, once and for all, in less than 15 minutes!
Our goal is for Rolo to be a platform that celebrates artists. And not just those that are in the major markets or are already working at the top shops. We want Rolo to be a place that can celebrate artists from all across the world at various levels of their careers. We come from this world and we feel that there is a lack of websites that are truly spotlighting all our eccentricities, skills, and unique points of view. We’ll be starting a weekly newsletter sharing a new artist each week as well as various content series and artist profiles. Rolo isn’t just about making clients, producers, and recruiters’ lives easier. We hope that it can also be a place to come and be inspired and dive deep into the projects being made within our space.
At the end of the day, these are lofty goals but we think we’re onto something that has legs and we’d love for you to be involved and help us make Rolo as useful as it can be!