We had the good fortune of connecting with Mobs Robertson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mobs, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
Risk-taking is probably the biggest consistent factor that’s shaped my career. To be clear, I never chose a degree or graduated with a master plan for my work – I pretty much rode the waves that came to me. (Not to mention the waves I tried to surf but couldn’t quite catch.) In college, I was an advertising major (influenced by a season of Mad Men) and had started art classes to fill extra time in my schedule. I’d just decided to downgrade my art courseload from a major to a minor and continue just as an advertising major for financial, time management, and stress management reasons. At UGA, you have to apply to get into the art school (which I’d already done) and then apply to a focus area from there. I’d applied to photography and gotten accepted, and I was finishing up the graphic design class whose final served as the application for interested students. My professors had flipped between “tell us if you ARE applying” and “tell us only if you are NOT applying” a few times; I didn’t say anything, thinking they wouldn’t consider me. I was on the other side of the campus in the midst of an annual water balloon fight, had just stubbed my toe to the point of bleeding, when I got a text from my friend asking why I wasn’t at the mandatory meeting for new graphic design students. Confused as hell, I hauled ass across campus and met the graphic design program director wet, panting, and bleeding. I took a day to decide if I wanted to ride the serendipitous but risky-in-its-own-right wave that had just come my way. (I did.) The waves I’ve ridden since then have been… slightly more intentional, but I can pretty much trace them back to the moment I decided to sprint across campus with a bloody toe in wet overalls. From all of that, I’ve gotten some of the best friends and collaborators you could ask for, created the best work of my life, and carved out a completely unique path to my dream career.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’ve grown up as a professional at the same time that social media has grown up as an industry – so a lot of what I do and have done has been in somewhat uncharted waters. It’s an exciting place to learn and play and grow, while demanding the ability to adapt endlessly. I’ve actually worked in social media since high school, when I did an interview series for a local photographer. Since then, I helped launch the social media of a local bank in my college town (more interesting than you’d think), created content and managed the platforms for a restaurant group here in Atlanta (just as delicious as you’d think), and then moved on to launch and manage Butter.ATL through its many different iterations. It certainly hasn’t all been easy, but even the challenges have been enjoyable in some way. At the end of the day, I get to create content all about my favorite city and its vibrant culture. I’m very lucky. Most of the stress of my job comes from the pressure to innovate and one-up your own successes – kind of the struggle every artist has, in a way. No challenge comes without potent lessons, though, and the best one I’ve picked up is that it’s never too late to learn. Video editing, content strategy, stop motion – I’ve picked up all of these skills through a combination of desperation and determination, and now I use them all the time. Above all, my personal mission is to increase the number of fun things in the world, and do as much good as I can in the process.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
(Just a note – for the sake of my imaginary itinerary, I’m imagining a pandemic-less Atlanta.) 1. Lloyd’s for happy hour cocktails and crab night. This is non-negotiable (barring a deathly shellfish allergy). I’m a Lloyd’s disciple – their happy hour honks, the servers are all hot, and crab night is the best night of the week. 2. Since my #1 hobby is grocery shopping, I have to add either Buford Highway Farmer’s Market or Dekalb Farmer’s Market to the agenda, depending on how hungover we are after Lloyd’s. (Buford Highway if we’re feeling good – the sheer amount of fun shit in there would be too overwhelming for hungover eyeballs.) 3. I really love living in Reynoldstown, so a long walk around the neighborhood is certainly in order. We’d start with an obligatory stint on the BeltLine and veer off to hit ParkGrounds, the Cabbagetown playground, Little’s, and all the houses I’ll never be able to afford in between. 4. I’m pretty agnostic about coffee shops, but I love Hodgepodge Coffee. The vibes are impeccable and if I’m throwing money down on a latte, it feels way better if I’m supporting a Black-woman-owned business at the same time. 5. Speaking of Black-owned businesses, we’ve gotta go down to Tassili’s Raw Reality. The wraps… they slap. I don’t know what kind of vegan magic they’re working in there, but it’s a must-have on the itinerary. 6. Much as I love the High, if we can only hit one museum on the trip, I’d opt for MODA (which is right across the street, so you can still appreciate the exterior spots of the High where they filmed some Black Panther scenes). MODA is all about design, and even though it’s smaller I’ve been enamored with every exhibit I’ve seen there. 7. Aviva by Kameel is the feel-good culinary experience that’s gonna round this trip out. After a walk around downtown, we’ll hop in line and chat with Kameel himself, who regularly hands out samples while you’re waiting to order. Kameel is a god among mortals, and the food is fantastic.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I wish I could break my shoutout apart and give many deserving folks a piece a la Mean Girls, but alas. India Nabarro definitely gets a shoutout. We met working at Butter.ATL and she’s become my #1 soundboard for anything creative, as well as anything borderline manic, i.e. “would you still be my friend if I got bangs?” Her formidable graphic design and illustration talents have shaped the look and feel at Butter since day one, and she’s also helped my personal creative work in many ways. Okay, I am going to break my shoutout into two pieces because my boss, Brandon Butler, also certainly deserves a piece of the crown. He was the initial gamechanger at Butter who helped push us into success and connection with Atlanta, and he’s pushed me to be a more adaptable social media creator and strategist in many ways.
Other: TikTok! I’m @yoyomobs on there as well.
Steve West Photo India Nabarro
Nominate Someone: ShoutoutAtlana is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.