Interview with Sam Kim
Designer @ CNN

Visit Sam's Personal Site to learn more about his ongoing projects and sources of design inspiration.
Hi Sam! How has your work with Courageous Studios changed or shifted since you first started working with the studio in 2015?
When I began my career in 2015 at Courageous studios the in-house branded content studio dedicated to Warner media's news division CNN, HLN and and Great Big Stories the team was new when I was mainly focused on in-house projects such as brand guidelines assets and internet marketing projects as the team has grown. That range of client has also expanded and we have to broaden the range of our projects, now as a branded content studio designer I primarily create designs that support branded content stories across many different platforms, including digital hubs, digital ads, premium production video campaigns, digital presentations, 360 degree videos and experimental event. We continue to expand that at formats available to our clients in order to meet their business objectives.
What have been some of the biggest projects you've spearheaded with Courageous Studios?
The biggest projects.... of Courageous studio collaborated with CNN and product strategy and sales operations team to create a new ad product called CNN Connect ad units. This units allowed our advertisers to deliver their brand messages with CNS API such as editorial content and market data, property platforms to ensure their brand creative is surrounded by a contextually relevant experience. I worked closely with the senior director of the digital ad team to create the ad units from designed to development. Thus far these ad units have been a great success creating a new revenue opportunity for the company.
What makes working with a branded content studio - that's an extension of a media giant like CNN - unique?
Working at a branded content studio for CNN is unique in the sense that we are so heavily focused on covering brands stories, that have editorial merit and provide utility or value to our audience. Our mission is to partner with the marketers to create and deliver compelling stories and content that meets clients goals. So instead of primarily selling products and services, even though we can do that too we create brand identity, loyalty and openness through beautiful and emotional stories. And here's the best part- our content keeps on CNN, HLN and great big stories. So we have a huge dedicated audience that loves our content and the data trusts it. So it's a win for our clients and also a win for our audiences as well.
How would you describe your own creative process and approach to graphic design?
As soon as the project lands on my desk I begin researching the project and talking with all the other contributors and stakeholders. Whenever I'm stuck or need some inspiration I think my co-workers to a cafe or go for a walk around the city. We get some fresh air and some caffeine as well and most importantly we walk away with a more true understanding of what the project is and usually some good solutions as well.
What's next for your work with Courageous Studio? What will be your main focus in 2019?
My main focus will be two parts, my career and my personal. So first, on my career path lately within my role I'm focusing on post-production design projects with development teams creating beautiful landing pages design article and in-depth interactive ads. This is to say I'm working to create a beautiful wrapping for the story to ensure people want to engage with it. Personally I hoped to expand my interest. I've been living in New York City for almost 10 years and still feel like I haven't really expanded it or explored the city. I went to visit the news places, try new things, meet random people and make new friends. So good design, after all it's about drawing inspiration from everything and everyone and everyone's. That's the beauty of the work and all the more reason to go out exploring.