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Fifty for 50

DAAP graduate helps New York design firm mark its golden anniversary by laughing at itself with a new creative video each week. 

by Dakota Wright
September ’13

A cowboy cracks a whip. A coworker slaps a designer silly for choosing the wrong typeface.  

It’s just another day at the office at Addison, a Wall Street design firm celebrating its 50th anniversary with 50 lighthearted video shorts that poke fun at their firm and the industry in general.

“We’re making funny videos about workplace shenanigans, humor, stuff like that,” says Addison art director Leila Taylor, DAAP '95. “They're fun. It's a strange work environment.”

She and her coworkers brainstorm new ideas to feature in each week’s video, drawing from the experiences that have shaped them and the company into what they are today. Addison employees write and act in the videos, several of which feature Taylor.

Taylor and a coworker have trouble simply hanging up the phone after a conference call in one video, ending with the declaration “50 years of learning from our mistakes.” 

Another shows an intense, multilingual conference meeting for the simple act of ordering a lunchtime pizza, exaggerating the realities of working just down the street from the New York Stock Exchange in one of the city’s most chaotic districts. 

As for Taylor, living in New York City has been a lifelong dream — difficult lunches and all. “My best friend teases me that my goal was to live in NYC and be friends with Andy Warhol,” Taylor laughs.

Taylor found her way to the Big Apple through numerous co-op opportunities during her time at DAAP. She even returned to teach an Introduction to Typography class for fashion majors in ’97.

Learn along with Addison as they release new video shorts every Thursday afternoon; they are closing in on their 50th.

Dakota Wright is a UC journalism student and writing intern with UC Magazine.

UC graduate Leila Taylor, DAAP '95, is featured in the above video by Addison. Taylor, the company's art director, also appears in several others as Addison makes its way toward 50 videos over 50 weeks to mark their 50th anniversary.

More of Addison's video shorts