Interior Photo of Chicago Athletic Association HotelInterior Photo of Chicago Athletic Association Hotel


5 minutes

What is Craft? Pt. 1

LOCAL’s approach to change comes as an analysis of 3 parts: Insight, Story, Craft. While on the surface, the formula appears simple, each phase has its own set of complex influences & biases – both internal and external. In order to refine our understanding of each part in an effort to be better and do better for ourselves and our clients, the team often shares references that explore the best…or even the worst…examples.

As a group we recently discussed Craft. What is it and how do you know when you see it? Through a dozen submissions, a synthesized consensus was this: Craft = to construct ‘something’ of quality with thought and skill. Then came the toughest part…sharing our absolute favorite examples of Craft that inspires us in hopes of inspiring others.

In two parts, we have shared our recommendations so that you can also deep dive into Craft: its meaning and its prime examples.

Reese Glisson (Senior Account Manager) – Mad Men

Mad Men depicts the highs, lows, and vices of an often misunderstood industry, advertising in the 1960s. The story revolves around creative genius Don Draper who is meticulous about every detail that goes into crafting an advertisement for his clients’ consumers.

Ph cred: IMDB

Brooke Wright (Partner and Chief Client Officer) – Travel

Experiencing different cultures, architecture, communities, ways of thinking, and art is the best way for me to refine my craft. We have to be willing to step out of our comfort zone to see the beauty that lies outside of our immediate surroundings and routines.

Ph cred: Delta

DJ Nuckolls (Producer) – Jiro Dreams of Sushi

This documentary made me realize how little we know about this seemingly simple dish. You can spend your life refining your craft and become the best at what you do, but there will still always be opportunities to push yourself closer to perfection.

Ph cred: IMDB

Devin Bambrick (Senior Creative) – The Chicago Athletic Association Hotel

It’s a masterpiece of environmental design that’s rooted in a strong and simple concept and then delivers a compelling experience through playful nuances.

Ph cred: The Chicago Athletic Association Hotel

Kathya Acuña (Senior Strategist) – Yotam Ottolenghi

Pick a recipe by Yotam Ottelenghi and practice it, over and over again. Until you have mastered it, wowing your own palette. Yotam Ottolenghi simplifies beautiful and complex flavors into approachable recipes. Deliberate practice to deepen our knowledge sharpens and refines our skills over time.

Ph cred: National Geographic

Neil Bedwell (Partner and President)A variety of documentaries & podcasts

Firstly, I think you can learn craft from anyone who truly applies it to any discipline. For resources, I’m going to say two things (that are similar). #1. Documentaries that unpack the lives and commitment craftspeople take to their chosen discipline (I loved the Ralph Lauren one as an example). And, #2, Podcasts with diverse, expert guests. Huge fan of Rich Roll as he goes deep into the “how” and “why” of the best craftspeople across science, art, sport…

Ph cred: IMDB

To come: What is Craft? Part 2.