In our 12 Questions blog series, we feature interviews with someone from the crowdSPRING creative community of 200,000+ designers & writers from 200 countries. Today we feature Natalia, who goes by the username kokoyangkoo.
Natalia is a book-loving designer from Indonesia that has been on crowdSPRING for three years. During that time, Natalia has participated in over 200 projects with a focus on logo design and redesign. We asked Natalia 12 Questions about design, creative inspiration, and what it’s like working on crowdSPRING:
1. Please tell us about yourself.
Hello! I’m Natalia, a freelance graphic designer from Semarang, Central Java, Indonesia. I currently live in Yogyakarta City, a historical city full of cultural events and great talents in arts. I studied Visual Communication Design at the Indonesian Institute of The Arts (ISI) in Yogyakarta.
2. How did you become interested in design?
I have been interested in design for as long as I can remember. My father worked from home as an offset print-maker and was always reading novels, poetry, comics, and newspapers, which I think influenced me. I was always around so much artwork and design that I decided that maybe I could be someone who produced artwork someday.
3. What led you to start using crowdSPRING?
Originally, I wasn’t interested in freelance work because my day job as a graphic designer at a book publisher took a lot of my creative energy. I had some close friends who were creatives on crowdSPRING and I could see that the work was quite exciting. A few years later when I decided to make the jump to freelance design and that’s when I began working on crowdSPRING.
4. What inspires you?
Most of my inspiration comes from books I’ve read. My favorite books are focused on either design or history. I like to learn how people grow from their natural environment and how different time periods affected taste, lifestyle, and mindset. That is an important source for me to understand what people want in their designs. I’m also constantly inspired by people on social media, especially Instagram!
5. How would you describe your style?
I am pretty flexible with my design style. In fact, as a designer, I think we should not be constrained by style. I think it is great to know/master a variety of design styles so that you can be more flexible in working on various design projects. The most important thing is not your personal style, but to answer the needs of clients with visual solutions.
6. What is the design process like for you? How do you start?
I think the design process is actually something that is unique because you take something abstract like a concept or feeling and turn it into something visual.
Normally, I do research for the project first. I always read the brief from the client multiple times, check the visual references, and research the company or industry to find information related to the project. If I do not immediately find the idea to be executed, I normally walk away from the project for a while or look for ideas by sketching on paper. Only when there is an idea I return to do the work on the computer.
7. What do you do with your free time?
I love doing anything creative. When I’m not working in front of a laptop, I spend mot of my free time making crafts like stitching and binding books. When I’m not doing crafts, I also enjoy reading, especially the works of Haruki Murakami and books published by my friends.
8. What is your most memorable project on crowdSPRING?
My favorite project was a logo for a photography website called “Nature Travel Culture“. I remember after reading the brief, I immediately got the idea for the logo. After researching for a while and getting to work on the computer, a few hours later the logo was finished and the client loved it.
Although the shape was simple and just took a few hours to make, the logo is probably one of the best logos I have created so far. The client is still using the logo and includes it as a watermark in all his photographs. The logo was even featured on the crowdSPRING blog as a Fresh from SPRING!
9. Tell us what you’ve learned since joining crowdSPRING.
After three years with crowdSPRING, I believe that luck takes preparation, success needs a process, patience will bear fruit, and freedom is worth fighting for 🙂
10. What is your favorite part about working on crowdSPRING?
My favorite moment is when the client is happy with your work and gives good feedback. Professional design work can sometimes be draining, but when the client is satisfied and appreciates your work, it reinvigorates you and makes you ready to work again.
11. If you weren’t designing on crowdSPRING, what would you be doing?
I have always liked history and visual arts, especially when the two combine in paintings, book covers, and old buildings so I think I would enjoy teaching art or history. I could also see myself being librarian because I really enjoy reading and prefer working in a quiet place.
12. How do you see graphic design changing in 2017?
I’m more interested in something that is classic and I think some things should never change. I love old buildings, paintings by the masters, logos, posters or anything that still looks good after tens or hundreds of years. Whatever will come out throughout 2017 I hope it is a lasting work, not just a momentary trend. I hope this is true not just in design but also in music and other arts. I think it is always better to create something that can be enjoyed for a long time, not something trendy.
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