CAS’s favourite graphic designer and the creator of our awesome branding has agreed to feature in our a day in the life interview to tell us more about what he does as a graphic designer.
Pedro was born Porto, in northern Portugal. He first studied sculpture then graphic design and publicity at University and worked for several years for newspapers and magazines as a layout and advert designer. In 2009 he moved to Lisbon and started working for an Angolan advertising agency, designing new brands and key visuals for a variety of products and services such as Oficina Expresso, Supertaça Compal and Projekta. He has also worked for Cuca beer and launched Tigra beer. In 2017 Pedro moved back to Porto with his wife and daughter and started a new position as Senior Designer at Nortada beer.
A Day if the Life of a Graphic Designer:
1. Briefly explain what your role encompasses in 50 words or less.
To design and simplify graphics, identities, key visuals and media within visual ergonomics. Translating their readability into the best possible user experience for the brand.
2. What responsibilities do you have in your everyday role?
Besides being a dad, ensuring all Nortada graphics and point of sale artwork and social media marketing is done. I also think up and sketch out new beer label concepts, consider different scenarios and materials to enhance beer pack shots. I also come up with new ideas of products to be sold at Nortada’s physical and online stores.
After my dad duties, I also manage the brand design of two dairy brands; TiPiace and Regalo, as freelancer.
3. What part of your job do you find the most inspiring and the most challenging?
The possibility of creating visual graphical forms for an audience to see and memorise. Also taking on the challenge of making the world an easier place to understand and navigate.
4. What keeps you going on a crazy day at work?
Listening to metal music haha. The velocity of drumming and the power of distorted guitars calms me down. It also blocks out the chaos of the office outside.
5. What’s the best piece of advice you have ever been given that has helped you to succeed in the work place/arts industry?
Not to work too much, leave the office on time and have different projects going on, that way you won’t be obsessed with your current projects and have the clarity and neutrality to analyse and self criticise your work from the client’s perspective. Seeing, thinking and doing things that aren´t work, like spending time with family or just walking in the park really does help to improve the quality of your work. To be able to disconnect is a fundamental skill.
6. Where is the art market headed in the future?
It´s really difficult to predict the future, as technology evolves so fast and works as cumulative knowledge so the evolution curve is exponential and the results are really surprising, creative and unexpected. Also, artistically speaking, we go around in circles, for example vintage style is very fashionable, also the 80’s is very trendy right now. Eventually augmented reality will be here to stay. I’d like to think that we could go back to a time that life wasn’t so fast-paced. Values like real friendship and real socialising will come back again and technology will serve us instead of us being enslaved by it. So I hope we’ll go back to real human relationships and less “I” and more “we”.
7. What is your favourite art space or website?
I’m addicted to Behance.com. All the best artists and designers are there.
8. Where do you get your inspiration for new ideas?
From everywhere. A great Idea can come from the most unexpected places at any time of the day. Of course there are places and times that are more fertile for ideas and inspiration to happen like when you actively search art and graphic web sites and brainstorm with your team. But I like the quietness of thinking alone. For inspiration, it’s vital to do different activities other than work. It´s working by not working if you like.
9. How are you creative personally?
As you can see from the photos, I like to do photo manipulations for myself and my friends. It´s a fun thing to do and it also stimulates your art direction instincts. I also frequently observe other artists work and read articles/tutorials to keep learning and growing.
10. How do you cultivate innovation within your team?
Having relaxed and informal lunches, talking about absurd things.
11. How do you best engage your audience/customers?
I really don´t use my social network tools – I have an online portfolio and a Facebook page which I use as a second portfolio. My social media skills are not the best, like the old saying, ‘in the house of a blacksmith the ornaments are made of wood.’
12. In your opinion, what’s the biggest problem or challenge in the art world today?
Well, mass digital stupification which makes people care less about art and other people and care more about ‘selfie’ culture. It´s all about ‘I’ and not ‘we.’ The challenge is to reverse this.
13. What’s your proudest achievement at work?
To be able to provide for my family I by doing what I love. That´s a true blessing.
14. How do you unwind at the end of a day at work?
Riding my bicycle next to the river, going for a run, or simply drinking a beer or two hehe.
15. If someone is interested in doing what you do, what is the best way to go about it?
First of all don’t be too interested in money. Design is an area overloaded with amazingly skilled people so you have a lot of competition that the wages get really low. If you want money – choose politics! Knowing this, if you still want this career, you have to love detail, texture, patterns, colours and shapes etc. You need to be interested in the little things because that is most likely where you’ll find the solutions. Master Adobe and its latest software. It´s like a musician that can write and read music but cannot play an instrument. Adobe is that instrument.
16. What’s the best news source to keep abreast of all the latest arts news?
People post and repost all the time so you get information coming to you through major social platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn. Other than that, I usually visit Ads of the World, Abduzeedo and Behance.
17. How can interested parties connect with you/follow you/see your work?
I’m not very good at selling myself online but I get some clients coming from Behance or LinkedIn but most of the projects I do come from word to mouth recommendations and friends of friends. You can visit my website, www.pedrolima.com to follow me on Facebook, LinkedIn and Behance.
More a day of the life of interviews coming soon. For other interviews featuring creative professionals, click here.