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Agencies/Shops in Portland?

almost 8 years ago from , Freelance Designer

I have a number of friends that are trying to convince me to move out to Portland, but after looking, I'm not seeing a lot of agencies/shops listed on the typical job boards.

I'd prefer to work on a product somewhere, but could of course be as happy at an digital ad firm . Can you all help me create a good list of places to reach out to? They also don't have to be hiring currently, as I'm not moving there immediately. Thanks!

On my list so far is: W+K Simple Instrument Panic Hega

24 comments

  • Ren WalkerRen Walker, almost 8 years ago

    Portland's a great place for digital and tech, hence their nickname 'Silicon Forest.' Many national and international agencies are also opening locations in Portland. Common clients include Nike, Microsoft, and Intel.

    Nearly all of them have open applications you might want to check out if they aren't already actively posting open positions.

    Here's a list of tech + marketing companies I follow and know:

    There are also a lot of startups and smaller companies here. Check out https://pdxstartups.switchboardhq.com/ and follow @turoczy on Twitter (he usually posts about job openings—and good ones at that)

    2 points
  • Anthony DinesAnthony Dines, almost 8 years ago

    Add Second Story to your list, they do an interesting mix of what you seem to be interested in.

    2 points
    • Mike HendoMike Hendo, almost 8 years ago

      Good shop, if you don't have a ton of outside of work obligations like kiddos. I learned a ton working at Second Story and the design director at the Portland office is an amazing designer and person.

      0 points
  • Mike HendoMike Hendo, almost 8 years ago

    W+K: You better have some digital concepts that are rooted in a great Idea and have national exposure. And you need advertising agency experience in most situations.

    Instrument: You are a great thinker, but more-so you know how to make something absolutely beautiful, functional, and can think on your feet. There are a lot of smart people at Instrument who can poke holes and make concepts better, so you need to wear multiple hats often.

    1 point
    • Steven Dragon, almost 8 years ago

      Yeah I've seen some amazing work come out of Instrument, and been following their work since I heard that JD Hooge joined forces with them a few years ago, as I was a huge fan of his work back in the Gridplane days. As someone on the inside there, would you consider Instrument to be an ad firm or a design/solutions shop? I only ask because the work you all create (which is always solid, great job on whatever you've worked on there!), but from an outsiders perspective you guys seem to do an interesting mix of the two.

      Also, what have you worked on while there? Really enjoy the case studies, curious to which ones that I've read you worked on.

      0 points
      • Mike HendoMike Hendo, almost 8 years ago

        I would say it's more of a digital design/solutions shop than a typical ad agency. We have a process that requires creative problem solving abilities but it's also deeply rooted in digital. I've been working for the last 11 years and most has been in brand design and advertising, so I have solid experience in creative problem solving, but there is also an expertise in digital specific ideas that I am continuing to build as it is a constantly evolving world. Second Story definitely helped me understand working with digital experiences in controlled physical environments, and Instrument is teaching me a ton about responsive digital experiences in uncontrolled environments. Since they started as a development shop having a good understanding of tech capabilities is very helpful.

        I have been at Instrument for the last year and spent a big chunk art directing the Google 2014 I/O experiment, and have worked on some smaller projects for Nike.

        0 points
  • Matt SchroeterMatt Schroeter, almost 8 years ago

    They're typically smaller shops - here's a list of the more notable ones:

    http://www.thecreativeham.com/agencies/portland.php

    1 point
  • Chris CampbellChris Campbell, over 7 years ago

    Super late to this one, but we are always looking for a good designer at Opal :)

    http://www.workwithopal.com/careers/app_ux_ui_designer

    0 points
  • Drew ShimomuraDrew Shimomura, almost 8 years ago (edited almost 8 years ago )

    Might not help in your job search, but for others who end up looking at this post, I thought I'd add a few smaller UX / User Research studios in town.

    0 points
  • Sean WhippsSean Whipps, almost 8 years ago

    Portland has a decent scene of interactive/software/agencies. However, it's also a pretty limited market with a huge influx of people moving in from SF and NYC at the moment.

    I won't tell you where to work, but my only advice would be to have a job lined up before moving here. Holler at me if you need any other info.

    0 points
  • Jayson HobbyJayson Hobby, almost 8 years ago

    You can use this for ANY city!

    http://www.thecreativeham.com/the-list.php

    0 points
  • Ruben HRuben H, almost 8 years ago

    Also The Brigade is based in Portland. http://thisisthebrigade.com/

    0 points
  • Ray BriglebRay Brigleb, almost 8 years ago

    We're doing some interesting stuff at http://needmoredesigns.com/ in the Portland-as-it-gets White Stag building/landmark... and not only are we hiring, but I'd love to talk if you move here!

    0 points
  • Lacie Webb, almost 8 years ago

    What kind of role are you looking for? Freelance, full-time, etc?

    0 points
    • Steven Dragon, almost 8 years ago

      Ideally looking for full-time as a Designer/UI/UX role. I have a common background to a lot of others in this field: spent 6+ years making fun work in the digital ad firm world, and currently focusing on product design that I transitioned to a few years ago. Enjoy both worlds for different reasons.

      I'd love to start talking to some of these great looking shops "soon". I'm not moving there from out-of-state just yet though, so this was more a question to broaden my scope of who I'll be reaching out to.

      1 point
  • Casey BrittCasey Britt, almost 8 years ago

    There is a very small Huge office in Portland with an incredibly talented team. I don't think there are any positions open currently but something to keep an eye on. http://www.hugeinc.com/contactus/portland

    0 points
  • Daniel Noskin, almost 8 years ago

    Not an agency / shop, but Treehouse is out there :)

    0 points