Jax Harney and Ross Culligan join the award-winning team as executive producer and senior colourist
Having perfected their craft from a young age, Jax Harney and Ross Culligan are ENVY Advertising’s exciting new talent. With an innate interest in colour and lighting, Jax built up an impressive portfolio, working with photographers, lighting directors, retouchers and within fashion film, before eventually discovering her ideal role as a colourist. Ross worked his way up following more of a traditional route; once a runner, he quickly gathered great respect within the industry as his creative production skills shone through. Both have been welcomed to the team with great excitement as they gear up to join ENVY Advertising in its vision to expand towards more creative projects.
Q> What drew you to ENVY?
Jax> When I met with Greg [White, Managing Director] he described his vision for the department and I jumped at the chance to get involved. I’ve been following [ENVY colourist] Danny Wood’s work for a while – I think he’s an incredible talent. Danny has been here for over 10 years which speaks volumes to me about the company culture. Everyone here has been super welcoming and I’m excited for what’s to come.
Ross> I’ve known Greg for over 15 years and have to agree with Jax that his vision for where he wants to take the business creatively is very exciting. There is a real drive to promote and support young talent here and we work in a fantastic building with like-minded people.
Q> What upcoming projects are you excited to get stuck into?
J> I get giddy about most jobs to be honest – I’m a colour nerd. However, I’ve got a big job coming up at the end of this month – it’s an exciting project so watch this space!
Q> Where did you learn your craft?
J> I learnt my craft on the job. I started out in photography at 17 as a 2nd photo assistant and worked my way up. I studied light and colour with different photographers/lighting directors/retouchers – anyone that would give me the time of day – so that I could sponge all of their knowledge. I later studied with the ICA to help translate my stills colour tricks into motion using DaVinci Resolve. Most recently, I spent a lovely week with Filmlight to add a new string to my bow with Baselight – my new weapon of choice.
R> I came through a traditional route; from a runner at SVC many moons ago (I know, I don’t look that old), through various bookings departments and eventually into post production. I crossed paths with many of the talent I find myself working with at ENVY today.
Q> Have you always known this was what you wanted to do?
J> I’ve always been fanatic about colour but it wasn’t until I moved to London and became more involved in fashion films that the role of colourist emerged to me. It’s crazy, I can’t imagine doing anything else now.
R> I’ve always been in the industry. Previously head of production at UNIT with a total eight years there. Before that, I’ve worked at Prime Focus, Rushes and Blue.
Q> Which creative talents in your field have inspired you in your own career?
J> I’m a big fan of photographer Glen Luchford. I’ve had the pleasure of working with him on a number of campaigns and his work is simply beautiful. I’m also in awe if Jill Bogdanowicz – if you haven’t seen The Joker yet, go watch it immediately!
Q> What was your first creative milestone in the industry?
J> I have a few projects that I am proud of… but there is one project that’s dear to me at the moment. It’s called ‘Absent’ – directed by Libby Burke Wilde and beautifully shot by Molly Manning Walker. It’s a project to raise awareness for Period Poverty and the charity Freedom for Girls. It’s an important topic that needs awareness.
R> A breakdancing Terry Wogan promo for Children In Need was one of the first shoots I attended. I thought I’d made it chatting to Sir Terry and explaining how the VFX would all come together.
Q> What recent projects are you most proud of and why?
R> I worked on a project with the Muppets as the feature talent. The directors spoke of them as if they were real people (spoiler alert?), talking about what they would and wouldn’t say and wear. It was a lot of fun! Some very challenging weather conditions on set meant the post was far more involved than we thought but it all came together nicely.
Q> What really drives you creatively and how would you describe your approach to your work?
J> In my role I love that everyday is a completely different day; new faces, new footage, new emotions to evoke – it never gets boring. One day I can be working on a Happy Poppy Kids commercial and the next it could be a cold desaturated moody vibe required. My approach is to treat each project as they come. I have a whole host of reference imagery including art, photography, my favourite films etc. but sometimes I can get inspired by a pretty leaf on the ride in.
Q> Outside of work, what are you passionate about?
J> I’m a secret gamer. I love my PS4.
R> I’m a keen musician and still manage the odd gig at the weekend. Living by the sea, I try to get in it or on it as often as possible!
Managing Director, Greg White, gives us his views on why Jax and Ross were the perfect fit ENVY Advertising…
Q> What was it about Jax and Ross that impressed you and what do they bring to ENVY?
Greg White> Over the past few months we’ve added real quality to an already extremely talented team. As we move to define our creative services across edit, colour, VFX and sound, it’s essential that new additions bring with them the talent and hunger to be involved with the very best in the industry and they have both definitely done this.
I’ve known Ross for many years and his approach to work has always been outstanding. He has a meticulous eye for detail and brings with him an incredible amount of experience as well as a strong understanding of what we’re looking to achieve here at Envy Advertising, especially having previously worked with many of our creatives during his time at Blue.
In terms of colour, we’ve been looking to grow the team for a while and similarly with Ross, it wasn’t just about filling seats, it’s about quality and those individuals we knew would complement the existing team while bringing their own unique approach to the building. We were extremely considered and we’re delighted to have Jax join us to grow the department alongside Danny, both of which are incredible colourists and complement each other’s styles really well. Jax has a huge amount of energy and passion for her craft and we’re looking forward to seeing the results from her brand new suite!
Jax Harney Show Reel 2019