1. Olga Filonenko, representing PN12 Tel Aviv — Photo by Mike Dote

  2. Eric "Gordo" Gorodetsky, representing PN12 Boston — Photo by Mike Dote

  3. Frederic Bonn, ECD, JWT New York — Photo by Mike Dote

  4. Viktoria Wallner, Global Creative Director/Brand Management, PUMA — Photo by Mike Dote

  5. Alex Josephson, Head of Brand Strategy, East Coast, Twitter — Photo by Mike Dote

  6. Meagan Cignoli, award-winning director and Vine auteur — Photo by Mike Dote

  7. Photo by Mike Dote

  8. Saki Maeda, representing PN12 Tokyo — Photo by Mike Dote

Portfolio Night All-Stars 2014: Let The Games Begin

The double dozen are unleashed on PUMA global brief

The morning sun eased its way through a hazy, humid New York sky as the 24 Portfolio Night All-Stars filed into the ADC Gallery. Bleary eyed and jet lagged, many of these All-Stars had just traveled thousands of miles to be here. But if there’s one antidote to time zone fatigue, it’s adrenaline, and that was rushing through the veins of every individual in this double-dozen. They had waited months for this moment, and it was finally, finally happening. Portfolio Night All-Stars 2014 was ready to begin.

The first morning of the five-day creative competition was a busy one, open to the general public. After a light breakfast, festivities were kicked off by Brendan Watson, ADC Director of Education and head of the Portfolio Night All-Stars initiative. The individual All-Stars were announced (although ADC fans got a glimpse of them all last week) followed by a pep talk by Keri Tan and Paul Curry, two of the participants of last year’s inaugural All-Stars competition (both now gainfully employed here in New York City).

Next up was a rousing bit of advice from Frederic Bonn, Executive Creative Director at JWT, one of the key partners of this year’s All-Stars competition.

“Fuck best practices.”
“If you’re not happy about something, do something about it.”
“As a brand you have to earn the right to be in my pants.”
“You are not ‘There’ and never will be.”
“Work your ass off.”
“Don’t be an asshole.”
“Do something people care about.”
“Give your audience something to be a part of.”

Key moments from Frederic Bonn’s presentation

Following Frederic’s words of encouragement, the All-Stars were thoroughly briefed on their assignment by JWT and PUMA, the brand that the participants will be tackling this week. With more presentations by the gang from All-Stars partner Twitter about their latest tech, and a inspiring Vine workshop by the award-winning director Meagan Cignoli, the All-Stars were finally ready to be unleashed on the assignment at hand.

But not quite. You see, up until that morning, the All-Stars were treated as one big group, knowing that they’d be divided into teams but unaware of who would be partnered with them. Before the morning was over, six teams of four All-Stars were created, all named after past and present makes of PUMA sneakers.


  • Stacy Randolph, Chicago
  • Gabriel Lavallée, Montreal
  • Eric “Gordo” Gorodetsky, Boston
  • Sydney Goldstein, Kansas City


  • Eva Kumpen, Toronto
  • Sony Cheng, Shanghai
  • Cheryl Chu, Singapore
  • Alex Miller, Austin


  • Anam Kibria, Dubai
  • Michael Collins, Minneapolis
  • Olga Filonenko, Tel Aviv
  • Mayank Bhayana, Mumbai


  • Rohan Fernandes, Paris
  • Kamph Kvang, Beijing
  • Grethe Meissner, Cape Town
  • Anelese Webster, New York


  • Rob Leduc, Los Angeles
  • Nóra Keszthelyi, Budapest
  • Dakota Page, Detroit
  • Elpida Zacharaki, Athens


  • Katlego “Katt” Phatlane, Johannesburg
  • Saki Maeda, Tokyo
  • Kyle Schlinkert, San Francisco
  • Aya Ibrahim, Beirut


The six teams of All-Stars were then let loose to brainstorm for the rest of the day, only pulled away from their sessions for a final, end of the day announcement. First, the “bad” news: the pressure has been turned up, as all six teams learned that they’d be expected to trek to JWT on Wednesday to present what they’ve created so far. This was tempered with a sweet surprise: a swag bag filled with all sorts of goodies from Twitter, Shutterstock, olloclip, Nude Audio, Baron Fig, Pantone and Luerzer’s Archive.

“We seem to have a really good sense of collaboration,” says Dakota Page, speaking on Team ASHA’s first few hours together.

“We’re already bouncing ideas off of each other really quickly,” adds Bob Leduc.

Over on Team SLIPSTREAM, they appear to be very happy with their quartet of All-Stars. “We complete each other’s unformed ideas, rather than just killing them,” says Aya Ibrahim.

Stay tuned tomorrow for more Portfolio Night All-Stars goodness!