A place to make amazing happen.

Hi. Let’s get started.

A Quick Introduction:

NEXT/NOW is an independent creative agency that creates next-generation digital experiences for world-class brands and ideas. We use graphic design, interactivity, industrial design, technology, and architecture to create unforgettable moments of connection between people and organizations.
Our team has a varied background, from brand and museum management to video game development, and pretty much everything in between. Our focus on creating new approaches to existing challenges ensures a vibe of innovation runs through our studio. We work as a team, but have solid workflow practices that ensure projects are delivered with the right outcome.

The Benefits:
• Competitive Compensation
• Health and Dental Insurance
• Transit Benefits Program
• Medical and Dependent Flexible Savings Accounts
• Paid Vacation
• 401K
• A great team and client base to work with daily
• A dynamic and vibrant office environment
• Hang out with Tanner, the office dog

You’ll be working in our amazing loft space in Chicago’s West Loop and working on projects for some of the world’s best brands, creating portfolio quality projects and images.

CREATIVE DEVELOPER/DESIGNER/TECHNOLOGIST

 

Next Now Agency is hiring a versatile Visual Communications Designer | Creative Technologist | Experiential Artist.

Candidate should be fluent in 2D and both 3D design and time-based media.  All softwares and technologies are on the table. Candidates should excel at a  unique combination of disciplines across multiple media. A willingness to combine influences from a wide variety of sources is key.  You are a creative technologist. You are a confusing amalgamation of developer and artist. Your skill set is vast and seemingly unrelated but utilized to discover solutions with an art forward approach.  

Previous experience in real time production pipelines for Event, Games, Theater or VR is a must.

Applicants should be ready to show professional work that highlights these combined skill sets.  

An example would be a projection-mapped sculpture where the applicant designed the sculpture, animated 3D content and then projection-mapped the piece themselves.

Confidence and willingness to explore a wide spectrum of software and workflows is an absolute must.  Next/Now’s mission is to remain in the space not yet imagined by leveraging radical new workflows and technologies to articulate our client’s narratives across all forms of visual engagement.  This does not leave much room for those set in their ways.  

Software required to be considered:
Adobe Creative Suite: Expert (Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, After Effects, Premier)
Cinema 4D: Expert
Redshift Render Engine: Expert
Octane Render Engine: Expert
Houdini: Working knowledge / Have used professionally
Maya: Working Knowledge / Have used professionally
Touchdesigner: Advanced
GLSL: Intermediate
Python: Advanced
C++: Working Knowledge / Have used professionally
Unreal Engine: Expert
Unity: Expert
Notch: Working Knowledge / Have used professionally 

 

Nice to haves:
Arduino
Processing
Open Frameworks
VVVV
Ableton Live
Reaper
Davinci Resolve
Fusion
Nuke 

 

TECHNICAL ARTIST/UI

The Technical artist at Next Now is the bridge between Art and software development. They are both strong content creators as well as natural problem solvers. The technical artist provides needed support through art asset creation and technical support through optimization and engine implementation, as well as low intermediate -level programming support through the creation of custom scripts and other useful toolsets to aid the creative process. Responsibilities

Work with the 3d team, Design team and Engineering/Development team to identify ways to increase efficiencies in production pipelines and identify risks or flaws in proposed and existing pipelines

Propose solutions and optimize content for memory and performance concerns on all our current platforms 

  • Develop and maintain art asset pipelines, and collaborate with the Art team to optimize workflows,
  • Be proactive, and develop and implement new ideas/solutions to problems as they arise.
  • Assist in various areas of game art production to help assure the timely delivery of the product.
  • Take the initiative to identify, prioritize, call-out, and suggest solutions to problems both big and small.
  • Regularly playtest builds and provide professional feedback to the team on how to improve our games.
  • Help ensure feature interfaces are implemented and displaying properly
  • Help the team develop workflows and standards for efficient content generation
  • Support the team in debugging issues with the game, tools, etc.
  • Help drive framerate and memory optimization of the game
  • Work within all the art department to ensure all dependencies are met
  • Create art assets that require high technical skill or specialist knowledge
  • Timeline based Animation Skillset (UI, VFX)
  • Experience with Unity and Unreal User Interface framework for both VR and AR applications

3D GENERALIST

The Role of the 3d generalist is to provide stunning visual 3d content and engaging cinematic and real-time assets. 3D Generalist position is the swiss army knife of our Art team and can solve a wide range of problems with well-rounded experience across multiple disciplines. You thrive on collaboration, have an eye for how to polish a game into perfection, and a natural curiosity for all parts of the creative pipeline.

Responsibilities

  • Create hard surface and organic models using 3ds Max, Maya, and Zbrush, Blender
  • Create physically-based textures using
    Substance Painter

    Substance Designer
    Substance Alchemist
    Quixel mixer
    Mega scans
  • Optimizing polycounts and texture sizes for optimal VR/AR/ Interactive experiences.
  • Take existing 3D assets and optimizing their polycounts/textures
  • Collaborate closely with a multi-disciplinary team to implement stunning graphics
  • Collaborate with Designers, Artists, Art Directors, and Project Managers to ensure a consistent brand vision
  • Participate in art reviews and respond to critical feedback in a professional manner
  • Integrate 3D assets into Real-time engines to create visually engaging experiences
  • Have a grasp of High to optimize poly workflow for AAA  real-time quality Asset
  • Must be a strategic thinker

EXPERIENTIAL PRODUCER

We are looking for a skilled and versatile Producer to become a part of our dynamic team.

At Next/Now, our specialty is crafting engaging interactive experiences for physical spaces. Our installations are typically designed for museums, tradeshows, retail spaces, sports venues, events and traveling brand tours. The Producer role reports to the Director or Project Management/Production.

The role of the Producer is integral to a project’s success. The perfect candidate will be a general creative problem solver and critical thinker, a natural leader, confident and solutions-oriented, adaptable, flexible, positive and enthusiastic.

At a high level, the Producer is Captain of the Project’s Ship. The Producer at NEXT/NOW is a hybrid role of Production Manager, Account Manager and Project Manager. 

The Producer’s role includes, but is not limited to:

  • Leads internal cross-functional teams from start of project to end
  • Owns project from top-to-bottom, start-to-finish, including onsite installations
  • Day-to-day point person for clients, vendors/fabricators and internal team, and owns all daily correspondence; Runs and facilitates client meetings
  • Total comprehension of the NN-suite-type projects, hardware, software, fabrication, installation, etc
  • Liaises between client and internal teams 
  • Makes critical decisions and is empowered to proactively and creatively create solutions
  • Confidently commands all onsite installations, including managing client expectations, overall install ROS, internal team schedule and workflow, and assistance with setting up hardware and testing
  • Confidently provides critical feedback to internal teams
  • Thoroughly understands scope of project and identifies project growth opportunities
  • Manages timelines, milestones, sprint planning for their projects
  • Manages project quality
  • Ability to be proactive in production needs, can accurately assess all project needs and can guide client through internal process
  • Manages user testing 
  • Manages budget of project
  • UI/UX and end-user-minded
  • Manages and plans all travel and logistics including shipping

Role requirements:

  • Up to 25% travel for meetings and installations
  • 4-8 years experience as Account Manager, Project Manager or Production Manager/Producer in client-facing role
  • Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Communications or other Business
  • Enthusiasm for emerging technology and desire to learn
  • Comfort working in a fast-paced environment
  • Excellent strategic thinking and communication kills
  • Physical ability to talk or hear, use hands and fingers, and occasionally be able to lift up to 25 pounds

Next/Now is pleased to offer a full benefits package, including:

  • Competitive salary
  • Health/Dental/Life Insurance
  • Short and Long Term Disability Insurance
  • Medical and Dependent Flexible Savings Accounts
  • 401K
  • Commuter benefits
  • Paid Time Off
  • Inclusive, collaborative, fun team

This position is full time, based out of our West Loop Chicago office. 

Next/now does not discriminate based on candidate’s race, color, religion, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, marital status, parental status, military/veteran status, or any other characteristic.

 

ASSOCIATE EXPERIENTIAL PRODUCER

 

 

We are looking for a skilled and versatile Associate Producer (AP) to become a part of our dynamic team.

At Next/Now, our specialty is crafting engaging interactive experiences for physical spaces. Our installations are typically designed for museums, tradeshows, retail spaces, sports venues, events and travelling brand tours. The AP role reports to the Director or Project Management/Production.

The role of the AP is integral to a project’s success. The perfect candidate will be a general creative problem solver and critical thinker, a natural leader, confident, solutions-oriented, adaptable, flexible, positive and enthusiastic.

At a high level, the AP is Captain of the Project’s Ship. The AP at NEXT/NOW is a hybrid role of Production Manager, Account Manager and Project Manager. 

The AP’s role includes, but is not limited to:

  • Leads and supports internal cross-functional teams from start of project to end
  • Owns and supports project from top-to-bottom, start-to-finish, including onsite installations
  • Day-to-day point person for clients, vendors and internal team, and owns all daily correspondence; Runs and facilitates client meetings
  • Liaises between client and internal teams 
  • Makes critical decisions and is empowered to proactively and creatively create solutions
  • Familiarity of the NN-suite-type projects, hardware, software, fabrication, installation, etc, with the desire to engage and learn more
  • Manages all onsite installations, including managing client expectations, overall install ROS, internal team schedule and workflow, and assistance with setting up hardware and testing
  • Thoroughly understands scope of project and identifies project growth opportunities
  • Manages timelines, milestones, sprint planning for their projects
  • Manages project quality
  • Ability to be proactive in production needs, can accurately assess all project needs and can guide client through internal process
  • Manages user testing 
  • Manages budget of project
  • UI/UX and end-user-minded
  • Manages and plans all travel and logistics including shipping

Role requirements:

  • Up to 25% travel for meetings and installations
  • 2+ years experience as Account Manager, Project Manager or Production Manager/Producer in client-facing role
  • Bachelor’s degree in Marketing, Communications or other Business
  • Enthusiasm for emerging technology and desire to learn
  • Comfort working in a fast-paced environment
  • Excellent strategic thinking and communication kills
  • Physical ability to talk or hear, use hands and fingers, and occasionally be able to lift up to 25 pounds.

Next/Now is pleased to offer a full benefits package, including:

  • Competitive salary
  • Health/Dental/Life Insurance
  • Short and Long Term Disability Insurance
  • Medical and Dependent Flexible Savings Accounts
  • 401K
  • Commuter benefits
  • Paid Time Off
  • Inclusive, collaborative, fun team

This position is full time, based out of our West Loop Chicago office.

Next/Now does not discriminate based on candidate’s race, color, religion, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, marital status, parental status, military/veteran status, or any other characteristic.

DIGITAL SOLUTIONS SPECIALIST

We are looking for a tech-savvy candidate with stellar people skills and problem-solving experience to join our team. Our projects are installed at sports stadiums, travelling tours, music festivals and more. We typically have a few live projects in the field at the same time. Our company is growing, so we are seeking to add an Interactive Installation Technician to our team to help field incoming calls from clients and provide guidance based on existing set-up manuals, create manuals for new projects, configure hardware and offer real-time tech support. 

Our new Interactive Installation Technician will spend one day a week in our studio supporting quality assurance (QA) testing on our projects in development. The rest of the time can be remote work, fielding calls from clients needing support and on occasion traveling to our installations for initial set-up. On-call hours may fluctuate based on project needs. While weekend on-call hours are a must, we will not necessarily have a project live every weekend. We would aim to establish your schedule a minimum of one month in advance.

We hope to see this role grow as we grow!

Responsibilities

  • Answer incoming calls and emails from clients
  • Assess issues and seek immediate resolution
  • Document calls, issues and resolutions
  • Support the team in QA of projects in development
  • Create detailed user manuals in support of our clients in the field
  • Travel to installation sites when needed for setup and onsite support

Requirements

  • 2+ years of experience in the tech-support or audio-visual field
  • Great communication skills
  • Stellar troubleshooting! Must have a comfort level to diagnose and resolve issues
  • Knowledge of Windows, iOS, Android operating systems
  • Experience diagnosing and resolving common issues with PCs and other hardware such as VIve and Rift
  • General understanding of cabling schemes and displays such as touch screens and monitors (LED walls and projectors a big plus!)
  • Familiarity with networking (wifi, routers, ethernet)
  • Familiarity with remoting into PCs
  • Experience with live events

The Benefits:

Competitive contract
Flexible schedule
Room to grow!

Freelance Touch Designer Developer

 

 

NEXT/NOW is on the lookout for a skilled and versatile Touch Designer developer who knows how to straddle the line between the technical and the creative realms. We are seeking a dynamic candidate to join our team as we create world-class digital/physical installations.

You can read more about us on our website: https://nextnowagency.com

Developers at Next/Now are part of collaborative teams comprised of experience designers, digital artists, and producers. We’re looking for candidates who are critical & creative thinkers, interested in research and design, and passionate about next-generation interactive experiences.

Must haves:

  • TouchDesigner
  • Python
  • Multi-touch application experience
  • Projection mapping experience
  • Experience working with real-time video processing and effects

Nice to haves:

  • Familiarity with Arduino
  • Experience with LEDs (DMX)
  • Experience working with depth cameras (Microsoft Kinect, Intel RealSense)
  • Experience working with VR platforms (Oculus Rift and/or Vive)
  • OpenGL Shader programming
  • OpenCV Experience

The Benefits:

  • Competitive Compensation
  • A great team and client base to work with daily
  • An inclusive process that invites input during project ideation and execution
  • A dynamic and vibrant office environment