Message from Montie

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Figgy presents 'Let's Create New Media in Chicago' event

Message from Montie

Shamontiel is the author of two novels: "Change for a Twenty" and "Round Trip." Check her out at

James Gustin (modelpose).JPG

James Gustin, owner of Figgy, mimicks a model in the photograph behind him


I lived in Chicago's Edgewater neighborhood for three years, passed the building that housed Figgy just about weekly, and never once did I peek in to see what the company was about. So when I heard about the networking event tonight from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., curiosity brought me to the mysterious company underneath the Granville Red Line station. Tuesday's event had small business owners, entrepreneurs, media content creators, ad agency representatives, writers, photographers, video editors, image editing specialists and local entertainers. It was the type of event that temporary agencies would've drooled over because of all the fresh and hungry talent networking with other like-minded individuals.


The "Let's Create New Media in Chicago" event was thrown courtesy of 15-year-old company, Figgy, and I volunteered to be one of the registration people primarily to meet the talent as soon as they entered the gate. They were ready to mingle, party, eat and drink, but most of all, they wanted to know what everybody else there did in their specialty area. It was a networking event without the drawn-out speeches, PowerPoint presentations and lecture halls.  

Guests were served pizza (sponsored by Domino's) and drinks (sponsored by Kilo KaiĀ® and Half Acre Beer Company). Walking into the gate, guests got a nametag and immediately scurried to the building on the left-hand side for Multimedia video productions or the building on the right-hand side where the food and conversation was in full effect. And those who didn't mind the chilly Chicago weather hung around outside in the lounge chairs with a fire flaming in the center.'s owner James Gustin and I apparently had the same idea with the fire because he scurried off to get marshmallows, reminding me of my Girl Scout days.


In the meantime, I went to the left-hand building to find out what was on the big screen next to the computers. The Multimedia showcase showed videos from various creative Chicago companies including: "Svelt Commercial" and "Nightly News at Nine" by David Pickett, "The Click Daily Show" and "Speak Your Power" by See 3 Communications, "Hello Lombard" by Sean McMenemy, "QUICKBEATS trailer" by Big Teeth Productions, "Red Shoe Project--August 2009" by Red Shoe Project, "An Episode of 'Beyond the Pedway'" by Tim Jahn, "Fashion Cents" by Kim Turner and Sean McMenemy, "60 Minutes with Glenn" podcast by Glenn Johnson, "Heater Werks" and "Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce" by Fig Media and "After the Boom" podcast by Matt Cheuvront and Monica O'Brien.


I met some interesting people outside of the videos too, like Doc Kane, president of Roscommon, who I teamed up with at the registration table. I respected his business savvy demeanor while he talked about his four-year-old company, placing creative employers with different small businesses, and we also have the same opinions on the corporate market--works for some, drives others nuts. He has the drive in entrepreneurs that I've been running into a lot lately.




Tim Jahn


And then I had the opportunity to find out more about from media integrator and blogger Tim Jahn and Gustin. (See the video below to find out more information on the company.) I left with business cards in hands, smelling like fire and a smile on my face. Being around creative people inspires me to keep doing what I do. has more Chicago events to come, so if you missed out on this one, don't let it happen twice.


















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