5 Minutes On TV Show Ideas With Lisa Peacock – What Are You Doing?

A podcast mini-series from Designing North Studios, exploring all of the wacky and wild tv show ideas that a person can dream up.

Have you ever found yourself dreaming of a brilliant tv-show idea? Or wondered what people do at home after a long day at the office? Ever thought about putting these two things together? Well, our unconventional creative director, Lisa Peacock has.

Imagine, you’re driving home from work; the sun is nearly setting and people all around are scrambling to get home to family and friends — anticipation for cocktail hour is how I envision it. As excitement for the day’s resolution stirs commotion, you withdraw focus from the current moment in time to ponder the possibilities of what people do as the sun begins to set. As cars crawl into garages, and living rooms light up, an innate curiosity sweeps over — what are they doing? This is where Lisa suggests that the show begin.

Knocking on doors in search of fascinating stories. What better way to uncover the evening habits of everyday people?

Call it a weird curiosity; but it’s as raw as reality tv can be. Everyday people being presented with an unexpected opportunity to share their story with a media audience; no script, expectation or designed outcome, just a candid search for fascinating tales of life right at cocktail hour. After all, we truly believe that everyone has a story to tell.

Do share! We are always open to hear about outlandish ideas you may have brewing.

Inside The Designer’s Studio: Dr. Stephen Price

Dammit Janet! For Rocky Horror Picture Show aficionados Dr. Prices’ choice of curse word may seem an odd choice to express frustration. Now we may be ‘Time Warping’ a bit too far back for non-Transylvanians, but there’s a certain truth to Dr. Prices’ choice. “Dammit Janet…” sings the pleading protagonist Brad Majors as he waxes lyrical on the lengths he will go to for his love: Janet. The roads were long, the rivers deep, but Brad’s mission was to deliver a ring to Janet and propose. He made it.

Dr. Price and his wife, Peggy Price

As you get to know Stephen Price you’ll see the parallels; he won’t give up until he has an answer, and that answer is key for the treatment and care of his patients.

A relentless problem solver, Stephen is an expert Naturopathic Physician.
He specializes in debugging patients symptoms to determine the results of chemical reactions between vitamins and minerals. Using this knowledge he puts his clients on a path to well being by prescribing balanced nutritional supplements.

Stephen has become the goto doctor for detox patients with medical or nutritional issues. And on occasions even applies his chiropractic magic to Hollywood’s elite.

A self-confessed ‘maker’ and ‘fixer’ Stephen applies an innate inquisitiveness with a bedside manner that should be the benchmark for all medical practitioners. With a mind like Gregory House, and the charm of McDreamy, get ready to meet Dr. Stephen Price.


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Inside The Designer’s Studio: Jennifer Hillman-Magnuson

Meet Jennifer Hillman-Magnuson, author, mother and “peanut butter smuggler” who with her family, resides full-time in the beautiful state of Oregon. This wasn’t always the case. As an accomplished writer who began her journey with the likes of Nickelodeon, Jen’s creativity flows in her imaginative writing style and memoirs that are wildly entertaining. Author Jennifer Hillman-Magnuson as DN Podcast Guest

WTF is a “peanut butter smuggler”? I hear you say. Well, fly-by-the-seat-of-her-pants mom, Jennifer Hillman-Magnuson happens to be the author of the hilarious book, “Peanut Butter and Naan: Stories of an American Mom In The Far East”, a memoir that documents the real-life challenge of moving a family of seven from cozy Nashville, Tennessee to Chennai, India. Knowing that her family’s favorite snack might not be readily available in Chennai, Jen packed her bags with enough jars of PB&J to last weeks–a move that TSA likely had some questions about.

The process of documenting her life abroad became a reliable means for Jen to communicate with the family and friends that she left behind in the west. In a place where electricity supply is inadequate at best, the telephone and internet were a thing of luxury. After being persuaded to turn her journals into a permanent record, Jen shared her experience of embracing exotic culture while keeping a piece of Uncle Sam alive for her kids. From rubbing shoulders with Nashville’s music elite to a fully non-rock-and-roll experience in the depths of India, Jen’s memoir is a candid window into what an all-round American mom could expect to find in the far east.

With a reference to the 2014 science fiction action film Lucy, Nigel reveals that movies provide a necessary escapism for the hard working mother and acclaimed author. Even a writer needs an outlet every once-in-a-while. Although verbal story telling provides much of her modern entertainment, Jen’s foundation in journaling laid the groundwork for her imaginative storytelling abilities.

Journaling to create lasting memories is one thing, but writing and eventually publishing an award winning book is quite another. With the success of “Peanut Butter and Naan…” behind her, Jen is excited to reveal her latest book: “Wither – Acute Stories of Shame and Other Embarrassments”  in which she catalogs the sometimes uncomfortable descent of mortified individuals into a fiery pit of face-burning embarrassment. The book pays homage to the brave souls who shared their jaw-dropping stories with the public.

And, as if her world wasn’t busy enough, can you guess what Jen would be if she wasn’t a writer? Here’s a hint: Egon Ronay vs. 007 would be a fitting title.

Happy listening.


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Inside the Designer’s Studio: Pat Hazell

pat-hazell-microphoneMeet Pat Hazell, chief creative officer at Sweetwood Creative in Austin, Texas. One of the original writers for NBC’s Seinfeld, Pat is a Tonight Show veteran, and a critically acclaimed playwright. And, lucky us, Pat is also a creative director with whom we have the pleasure of working on both client projects and internal Designing North Studios uber creative projects as well. In fact, he is the co-creator of our annual event, Knight of the Roundtables.

Nigel tried to pry some guilty pleasure secrets from Pat during his podcast interview, but it appears that Pat is really and truly, as Nigel puts it, a good egg. As a child magician, Pat loved the creativity that he could infuse into his acts, learning what worked and what didn’t as he attempted to engage and enthrall his audience.

He sees every act of creativity as an act of courage – a campaign to fill the space while simultaneously adding value. His greatest challenge in the creative process, whether it’s writing for stand-up comedy, crafting a script, or penning a new score, is finding a quiet space outside of his shower – or as he calls it, going into a Russian sub and closing myself off. He’s currently seeking that solitude to put the finishing touches on his musical Grounded for Life, a farce about being stuck.

Pat’s favorite and least favorite words? You’ll have to listen to find out. Spoiler alert, there’s a hint to one of those answers in this text.

Happy listening.


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Inside the Designer’s Studio: v:shal kanwar

stanford-featured-vishalv:shal kanwar is a man of many talents and is possessed with restless energy. In fact, we weren’t quite sure that he ever slept until this podcast revealed (spoiler alert) that indeed he does. As one of Designing North Studio’s go-to creative directors, he has been instrumental in a number of high-profile digital products. He is intensely focused on user experience – delivering streamlined, consistent, common sensical experiences that delight our clients and their customers.

In this episode, we learn more about our Indian born, African raised, colleague’s creative processes and passions. In addition to his digital chops, v:shal has a bachelor’s degree in finance, has worked as a professional fashion photographer in Asia, and is a sought-after disk jockey in world music. He’s produced dance music for festivals all over the world. He relishes chaos, detests homogeneity, and is not a fan of dubstep.

Hear the rest in v:shal’s own words:


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