BIO

I'm a full-time creative director, motion graphics designer & entrepreneur.  
Part-time writer, mentor & educator.  All-the-time explorer of things near & far.  

Creative leader and architect of Undefined Creative – a boutique motion design agency I started in 2010. 
A travel addict, with sixty-one countries on six continents, and counting (see the images here).  

Through my writing, I share insight on travel and creativity, professional longevity, small business entrepreneurship and day-to-day career satisfaction. I write for mainstream creative and entrepreneurial publications, and speak about these topics whenever opportunity arises.

I'm most interested in helping creative people, especially women, hone their skills in visual communication, expand their professional horizons, develop action plans to reach their goals and think beyond traditional career/job boundaries. Whether it's working with individuals or small groups, I'm here to inspire, motivate and educate.

I'm a graduate of the Strategic Steps for Growth Media and Entertainment Industry – a 9-month program, the core of which is the "StreetWise MBA" curriculum developed by Interise. The competitive entry program is offered through a collaboration between NYU Stern School of Business' W.R. Berkley Innovation Lab, NYC Small Business Services and City of New York Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment. Intensive study of the curriculum's four core modules (Leadership, Finance, Marketing & Business Development) have provided me with additional insight and skills I rely on when advising others. 


QUALIFICATIONS

Teaching & Mentoring: NYU, University of the Arts, NYU School of Continuing & Professional Studies, 3% Conference Speed Mentor, She Runs It/Advertising Women of New York Mentorship Program, Pratt Institute Career Roundtable.

Selected Publications: 99U, Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Fortune, AIGA, Brandchannel, Promax Daily Brief, HOW Design, CampaignUS.

Speaker & Panelist: Motion Conference, Manhattan Edit Workshop, Sports Video Graphics Forum, CoreConnect Conference, PromaxBDA Creative Entrepreneurs.

Professional Affiliations: SVG Sports Graphics Committee Member, Promax/BDA, AIGA, Taproot/Taproot+, Catchafire.

For my complete career trajectory, please find me on LinkedIn.
For my professional work, visit Undefined Creative.
For my personal work, see riaskaya.com


WHY DO I DO THIS?

Because I love to inspire and help. I've made my share of mistakes on my career path, and I've had my share of success. I've learned from both and it would be a shame not to share that knowledge have with others.

I'm quite fortunate – entire span of my career-to-date has taken place in one of the most vibrant, populated, creative places on earth, New York City. This means I've had access to workshops, panels, networking opportunities, conferences, mentors, peers –you name it – right outside of my front door.

The internet has greatly increased access to information, and there are resources available in all geographical locations. Still, personal interaction while seeking advice beats reading a listicle, and the abundance of resources and access of a major creative metro hub is hard to find elsewhere. Through writing, speaking, and offering these on-demand mentorships, I'm helping what happens here reach further – especially for those who are, in fact, limited by location.

Truth is, I never intended to do anything like this. Yet, I've always advised friends, co-workers, students, interns and at times, perfect strangers, on how to think outside of the box to get where they want to go in their professional life. But it was only when I began to write and speak about my experiences as a creative professional that I realized that:
a) helping others succeed makes me happy and...
b) I love piecing together the professional big pictures of others and finding blind spots, opportunities and unexpected options. 

If you decide to book a session, you'll see that my hours here are limited. That's because I spend 40+ hours a week running my company, as well as writing and speaking about these topics. I believe these are indeed my top qualification – being an active entrepreneur, employer and thought leader*.

*I'm not a big fan of the term myself, but there's no other way to succintly say:
I'm a regularly active participant in conversations about creative entrepreneurship, life-work balance, best practices and general career advising.