We spoke with our Production Designer Kiki Divic to hear about her experience of working on the show and how her nostalgic soul draws from the past for inspiration.
Why is the series titled Avocado Toast? (if you don’t know, take a guess!)
My first thought about the title Avocado Toast was that the show was featuring trendy millennials (who are a bit of your “basic bitch” type). After reading the script I quickly realized that these two leading roles were complex and shouldn’t be taken for face value. Everyone has a story how they became who they are – as well as the constant journey of self-realization and growth.
Tell us about your story in Avocado Toast the series. What were the main challenges and fears you had in your role? I was hired as the Production Designer for the series. I come from a commercial background and always wanted to sink my teeth into narrative work. I never worked with anyone from the team before so I was afraid if we would click creatively… would they trust me with my creative vision? After I presented moodboards, I think all of our shoulders dropped a little – we respected each other’s feedback, understood the vision, and at the end of day, knew we were all on the same page – we wanted to create meaningful art together.
Later, during post-production, I got to involved in branding of the show – I created the logo for the show, as well as designed various items – opening and end credits of the show, the poster artwork, website and other promotional materials. There was a lot of design exploration to ensure we got a brand that truly spoke to the tone and feel of the show.
How much were you able to relate your own experiences to create your character? And how much did you have to research or imagine?
This answer doesn’t pertain to character but more about the locations I needed to design. I was grateful that majority of the locations in the script weren’t a far stretch for me and I was able to look at my past experience for inspiration. I’ve attended elementary school, I’ve been to bars and cottages… but there were a lot of scenes that pushed me creatively (the dream sequence, the Chinese restaurant) but the one that excited me on a different level, was the advertising agency. I come from a graphic design background and worked in ad agencies before. I loved creating that whole space – from the branding of the agency, the fake ads and process work on the walls – to the small details of sticky notes on the desks.. while always thinking about the characters sitting at those desks and how to bring their personality into the space.
What makes baby boomers so awesome?
I think it has to be their work ethic, this was a generation based off of survival – where they didn’t have an opportunity to dream big or were ever asked “what do you want to be when you grow up”. It’s a generation that understands sacrifice.
What makes millennials so wonderful?
It’s the very reason that the boomers are not – millennials dream big and believe anything can happen. They break the traditional rules and ask the question – “why not?”
Sex, sexuality, gender and different kinds of relationships are depicted in Avocado Toast the series. Why is it important to continue sharing these types of stories today?
I think it’s important to share this kind of story today to break the norms or stereotypes that the film industry has put on these relationships. For example, when I was designing scenes with Molly, I wanted to represent her as a human who is going through the motions of becoming strong and confident in her sexuality – not a stereotype or character of a bisexual human, just a regular human.
Is there a type of role you dream of playing but haven’t had the opportunity yet?
I have a very nostalgic soul (yes, I go antiquing everywhere I travel) so I would love to work on a period piece – something that is extremely research driven to depict a time and a place (not gonna lie, I grew up as a kid in Europe and would love to work on a piece set in the Eastern Block). In Avocado Toast the series I had a taste for it with the 50’s diner dream sequence – it was so much fun to create the space with the set design and props. It was also a scene where all departments seamlessly came together – from wardrobe, lighting, acting and the way it was shot… it felt like a scene we were all very proud of.
What's next for you as a creator/actor/performer?
Now that I had a taste for narrative film, I want more! My favourite part about this position was reading and breaking down the script – sharing my ideas with the team and the close creative collaboration I had with the director Sam Coyle.
Instagram: @kikzilla Website: kdivic.com
IMDB: Kiki Divic
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Up next on Monday is a blog with the talented musicians, Colleen Dauncey and Julia Appleton in our Music Monday interview series.