It's a wonderful life
making beautiful things...

jennifer_mcgrew_with_custom_costume
...Fantastic times at work...

People know me for custom costumes, production design wizardry and art department magic. By training and 30+ years' practice, I am a fast designer, cutter-draper-patternmaker, tailor and fabricator. As a producer in preproduction and on set, I levitate crews, logistics, projects and budgets. With my shop's talented partners, I'm a contractor for projects in custom costumes, sets, props, miniatures and effects.

People also know me as an alpha reader, content editor and script consultant for other writers. I research unusual topics, make résumés and websites for friends, plus I periodically engage in journalism. I love to read, my interests converge all over the place, and everything is fascinating.

Life is definitely better when I get to work with other creatives to raise the bar for exciting design and content. Work graces me with awesome zen states plus terrific colleagues, clients, students and friends. 

WORKSHOPS AND PRESENTATIONS

BOOK ONE OF THESE
FOR YOUR BUSINESS OR ACADEMIC GROUP
(801) 913-6762

I will perform as a public intellectual when asked.
And I have my own laser pointer!

Other workshops, presentations and topics I can discuss with your group are here.

Gun-head

ETHICAL WORK

When Designers Need to Put Down Their Tools and Walk Away.

This is a workshop full of historic and contemporary examples about bad design and bad decisions, plus strategies about how to stand your ground if YOU are being pressured to create work that's just plain bad for people or the planet.

We cover counter moves for creatives and designers who've had enough, who need practical solutions, plus reminders about why it's important as citizens and designers to have a moral compass. 

If you wish, think of this workshop as coaching. It can be personal coaching- one-on-one if you like. I love helping other creatives. Hit me up. I'll put the coffee on.

mr peanut goes to war

MASCOTS DEMYSTIFIED

Sweet Successes and Funny Failures Throughout History

My shop partners and I have made MANY mascots over the years, I've gone down some fun rabbit holes in researching this fascinating phenomena and its histories.

I've constructed a visual and interactive workshop that covers mascot theories, histories and character ideas, designs, psychology, focus groups, dollars spent and ad-reach for some of the most memorable (as well as most forgettable) campaigns ever. A presentation especially for marketing creatives who need to make critical decisions that send the right messages.

 

the tailor renaissance painting

HOW TO HIRE

What Your Business Needs to Know About Contracting and Working With Designers.

I've operated a strange niche business in leased commercial space for more than 20 years and have survived several economic downturns- plus most of my team's work been as subcontractors! As a student, our university programs never required us to take business classes. This is a challenge for many. Along my path, I've studied and cultivated everything I could find about running a business within gig economy realities, and I have some hot tips for you, whether you're a contractor or a contractee.

As freelance designers or subcontractors, we must navigate particular challenges. But we also live in a fantastic subcontracting economy, full of opportunities for strategic alliances, plus opportunities for leveraging our power and making money in exchange for our work.

Ultimately, businesses and designers need to develop common languages as well as sets of best practices to flourish together. We also need clear, legally binding contracts for managing project expectations and outcomes. If you're a fellow creative or a business seeking to subcontract one, I explain how to do all these things so your processes and products shine, and everyone wins!

CREATIVE WORK

My colleagues and I make amazing things.
My production and costume design operation is called McGrew Studios.

Learn More

CV

I have a Curriculum Vitae.

The print version needs a lot of paper.

Learn More

STRONG IDEAS- MODERATELY HELD

Mostly I keep my most incendiary ideas to myself. But there's a bit of verbage here in this blog.

Learn More

LET'S TALK

      • Costumes and environments for your next film-
      • New wardrobe and effects you'll show off at your next big presentation-
      • Your narrative. Show me your book drafts, scripts and proposals-
      • Cultural and artistic issues-