Maneuvering the Differences and Similarities Between AV Projects


The professional AV industry ranges far and wide, from film, television, and concert tours, to corporate events, weddings, and hotel AV. That’s a lot of different roles in different situations with one common goal: a great audience experience. To stay ahead of the curve, AV professionals have to learn how to work with all facets of people so that they feel empowered to do their best work, said independent creative designer Robert Hickman. He is a designer and producer for lighting, video, graphic/web/print design, and audio production, as well as today’s guest on the Pro AV Podcast.

During his 10 years in the industry, Hickman has worn a lot of different hats, including working as the stage manager for Christian music group The Newsboys, with Matthew West and Reach Records Artists as their touring designer, theater event manager, account manager, and even security guard for concerts.

“I’ve been that guy sitting all night, guarding a door from intruders and protecting the one or two people that are going to be walking through that door,” Hickman said with a chuckle. He’s worked his way up and has since branched out to form his own company.

Working for clients like Elite Multimedia, Hickman said clients and artists are part of the creative challenge that he loves in his work.

“Being able to work with an artist who really cares about the look and feel really pushes your boundaries to say ‘OK, maybe we can do that,'” Hickman said. “My goals, after all, are to compliment their vision and provide visual strength to help deliver their message.”

On the podcast, he breaks down how to find opportunities in the unexpected of the AV industry, what the common challenge for every project is, and why focusing on the people will deliver a more quality design and installation.

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