Maggie Svoboda on finding rhythm in curation
There is a process to content curation — source, review, compare, organize, present and, lastly, publish. For Maggie Svoboda, an established photo editor who has been at Blink since 2018, she’s not only mastered this task but has also been a crucial support system in the team’s efforts as they continue to scale.
“We work around the clock,” Maggie explains. “We have a lot of varied deadlines, but we do have a team abroad, as well, and so we’re on a 24-hour cycle for content curation. Our deadlines do vary based on the project, and we constantly have different projects. Sometimes we do real-time curation, and sometimes we work on projects for months at a time.”
Curators like Maggie are primarily data-driven. They sweep through massive data sets to source the best content for any topic, location, or subject. “At Blink, we are curating thousands of images and really trying to find the most powerful visuals that help brands connect with a wider audience,” Maggie states. “Companies and clients come to us because they know we have a really strong visual aesthetic, a lot of experience in the field, and that we are capable of creating a powerful story that connects them with their markets.”
“Right now, most people relate to images and videos rather than text,” Maggie expands. “And, specifically in relation to companies, the first image a market (audience) sees of a company or story is what will ultimately draw them in and make them relatable. A key component that presides over the content we curate for brands is accuracy — when I’m saying accuracy, I’m looking for accuracy with the storyline and photography, I’m double-checking to make sure all the facts are correct and the description is vetted, and then I’m finding alternative visuals that were also taken in that specific space at that same time.”
Maggie suggests these three mindsets when going into content curation:
1. Understand the relevance of the content: what is its relationship with the product, brand, company, or organization?
2. Analyze the quality of the content aesthetically and ethically.
3. Examine the details: does it only fit into one category, or are there multiple categories that this could be umbrellaed under?
While the workload means late nights and early mornings, Maggie firmly believes in the core muscle of the team. “The best part of my job is working alongside inspiring content creators, artists, photographers, filmmakers, and videographers. We get to bounce ideas off of each other, and talk about different projects that we’re working on, collaborate, and so it’s a really fun environment to be in.”
Thought of the day: Look for the rhythmic quality in a workflow, and see if it is malleable over space and time.