Wake The Town
Gear Seven/Arc Studios/Shift
Contemplative Reptile
  • International Edition
  • USA Edition
  • UK Edition
  • Australian Edition
  • Canadian Edition
  • Irish Edition
  • German Edition
  • French Edition
  • Singapore Edition
  • Spanish edition
  • Polish edition
  • Indian Edition
  • Middle East edition
  • South African Edition

Uprising: Caitlin Perz on Balance and Inspiration


The Howatson+Company producer speaks to LBB’s Delmar Terblanche on how her job sits at the intersection of creativity and practicality

Uprising: Caitlin Perz on Balance and Inspiration

“I grew up a very ambitious, persistent, and bossy kid. If you told me that you didn’t think I could climb a tree, I would prove you wrong…

“I remember getting into fights with workers at theme parks because I was too young to go on a ride and I would argue otherwise. I was also very eccentric and creative, always with a paint brush, instrument, or pen in hand.”

Caitlin Perz's past paved the way for her present. As a child she was persistent and drawn to the creative - a perfect combination for a producer. And, indeed, today she works as a producer for Howatson+Company, having come over from CHEP two years ago. There (as now), she worked with her “amazing mentor” Holly Alexander, and experienced the closest thing to an “Aha! moment” she’s yet encountered. 

“Seeing how close she worked with the creative teams and how involved she was in their concepting set the bar for what I want to achieve in my career…

I’ve worked alongside her now for just over three years. During that time no two jobs have ever been the same so it feels like I’m constantly learning, changing and evolving which is the exciting part of being a producer. “

We sat with Caitlin to talk more about how she wound up as one of Howatson’s rising stars, and just what creativity means to her.

LBB> How did you first get into the industry – was it something you deliberately tried to get into or was it more accidental? 

Caitlin> Getting into the industry itself was accidental, but I always knew that I wanted to work in production some way or another. While studying at UTS one of my electives was an internship. I was accepted by a small agency in Pyrmont at just 19 to be a creative assistant. Three months later they hired me, and I continued to work there for just over two years. 

As it was a very small agency, I got to wear a lot of hats and learnt a lot about all departments. But I also quickly learnt about the pressures and stress that our industry is commonly known for. Being so young, it became a lot and I quit as I felt that I was being pulled away from the ‘creative’ side of the role which I loved. 

After a few months decompressing and re-evaluating if I wanted to stay in the industry, a job came up at CHEP as a production assistant and I never looked back. 

LBB> What’s your major goal with your work? What do you want to add to the conversation?  

Caitlin> My major goal is to be an advocate for fair representation and communication in media. I think it’s important that all of us in the industry acknowledge how much of an impact we have on public discourse through what stories we choose to tell and how we choose to convey them. 

This can be as simple as who we cast and why (although I’m not a fan about how tokenistic this has become). Because at the end of the day, if we want to create great work, fair representation simply needs to be at the centre.\

LBB> What forms of media and entertainment do you enjoy – and who are your favourite creators in those fields and why? 

Caitlin> I’m currently really into Joan Didion, her life fascinates me. I feel there are certain creators who come up every now and then that are very niche and have such an impact that there will never be anyone else like them. 

I admire how devoted she was to her craft but also her ability to have constantly evolved throughout her career - finding a new format or medium to convey the message or story she wanted. Also, her transparency around how sometimes you just do a job because it pays the bills. Not everything needs to be award winning and all that matters is being honest with yourself about what you devote your passion towards. 

Music as well plays a big role in my life. Musicians such as Nils Frahm and FKJ really inspire me and their way of weaving styles and instruments together to create something new and unheard. 

LBB> What’s your favourite part of what you do? 

Caitlin> My favourite part of what I do is when you have that job - whether it's reading a script, reviewing a treatment, watching the offline or listening to the composition – and you have that moment where you go, “This is going to be great.”

LBB> What’s the big debate in your specialism? 

Caitlin> I’m not sure if it’s necessarily a debate, but what I find most intriguing is whether agency producers should be involved in the creative and sharing knowledge of production itself. 

I studied Media Arts & Production, so have a background on the practical side which I feel helps me with every job. If we (producers) know what’s going on we can accordingly budget, schedule and streamline projects and manage conversations with creatives/clients throughout the process. 

I’m a big advocate for agency producers working closely with production producers and also learning as much as I can from them on projects, rather than trying to create a clear divide.  

LBB> Looking at the broader industry, what gets you really excited?  What are you looking forward to for 2023?

Caitlin> What gets me excited is how the work is always changing with the latest trends, whether that’s new creators or new forms of media for us to work with. When I first started my career six years ago, Instagram was only just picking up advertising, and TikTok wasn’t even a thing. Who knows what will come this year. I’m also excited for clients that put faith in creative, which, at H+C, we’re very lucky to have in abundance and trust us to push boundaries. 

view more - Uprising
Sign up to our newsletters and stay up to date with the best work and breaking ad news from around the world.
Howatson+Company, Wed, 08 Feb 2023 03:13:20 GMT