What do you find the most challenging?
The most challenging thing is when I take on a new project sometimes I get nervous that I’m entering someone else’s domain. Where they are a professional and I’m not. So at the beginning of a project I have this goal to achieve something that is higher than mediocre.
For me I can’t stand working on something that I can’t understand, so I spend nights and days researching to get to know new topics better. It’s challenging for me to know at that point in time though, that I’m not the professional, as I am in some fields already.
What's the structure of a typical day like for you?
Currently it’s very bad. We just moved to a new country and there was this adaptation moment.
I love mornings, I think that’s the most productive time for me. I have some coffee and I send emails and files that I prepared the night before. I don’t like writing email at night because either I’m rude or very sleepy so I leave that until the morning. Then I go to work at Kitchen and after that I head home and walk my dog.
After that I look at what is on the table at the moment out of all the projects I have going. It’s either design or focusing on art direction and which way a project should be going.
The structure I’m going by right now is that if I did design all day then I spend that evening focusing on strategizing a project’s direction or writing. I try to maintain this balance of not designing all day or not writing all day. It helps me to not burn out on one thing.
What are some of your favourite tools you work with on a regular basis?
Notebook - This takes the first spot. I forget stuff and so I have to write everything down. Every night I write down everything that I need to do the next day.
Photoshop - I don’t even call this a tool, this is like my everyday friend.
Pages - I use this for all my writing.
Pencil and Sketchbook - For drawing and sketching ideas out.
How do you stay up to date with trends in your industry?
It’s normal that eventually as you get older and more experienced as a designer you’ll sort of stop doing trendy things but it’s still important to follow trends.
It’s very important at any stage of design or art directing to stay on top of the trends. I usually do this as soon as I come into work. I have this ritual for the first hour I will look at all the regular awards sites to see the Site of the Day. Usually I do this with my colleagues and we can discuss it together and give our opinions.
What is the greatest piece of career advice you've ever received?
A lot of the best advice I’ve received is from my father. He always said: “When you come to work, close the door. We all have problems but when you come to work close that private door and open the business door.”
Another one is that you can always express your emotions in a nice manner. Whatever the emotions are. I find that really crucial in every job - it’s really important to stay calm and not be judgemental.
When I was a kid I was always so anxious and always wanting to get things done so fast. That would get me into trouble with people because I would be very pushy and no body wants to work with a pushy person. I had to learn to calm down and say what I need to say in a calm way.
Why do you do what you do? What makes everything worth it for you?
It’s going to sound very corny but I compare it very much to love. You know, why do you need to love someone? I’m not a person that is chasing money, I assume people can see that from my portfolio. If I was I’d do a lot more commercial work that really sells.
Is it stupid to say that I have this mini-orgasm every time I finish a project? Please don’t write that… [laughs], but I do, I have this mini professional orgasm every time it’s done the way I wanted it to be done. It’s corny but why do we love? We love because we need love. I need to express myself.
Who would you want to see on Ways We Work?