I chose my current avatar because Deadpool is one of my favorite characters in the Marvel Universe. I also chose it because it remind me of all the comics, posters, and merchandise that are out there and how they were all drawn or edited which is part of what I want to do after I graduate.
I chose this major because I’m primarily interested in working and getting a job with photoshop. Another reason was due to what I started doing in High School which was photo editing and drawing. Recently I fell off on it due to school and assignments but I did it almost all the time in 10th, 11th, and 12th grade. The most common thing I edited was the alien head from Dell’s Alienware franchise. This is one of the many pieces I made albeit a more recent one. I also like to draw a little the earliest drawings i have are logos and stick figures. Eventually, I started drawing more complex figures with facial features and unique poses.
In terms of I’ve often had thoughts of being a professional track runner. I like to exercise in my free time. I also used to be a part of a track team in my high school years. From that experience, I developed an active lifestyle of running, doing push-ups, and other exercises that will keep me in shape. I wanted to join a track club but right now there doesn’t seem to be any time for me to participate in one. I don’t mind working in groups however my preference would be to work alone. I tend to get more work done when i’m by myself as opposed to other people as it can be distracting and it deters my attention span away from the work at hand. I’m also not a very social person so any project where I would be required to work with people I don’t know wouldn’t be very ideal for me. I’d most likely just not say anything unless someone asks me a question. The design style catches my eye. I look more at what type of illustration style and type faces they used and how it made the image or poster or whatever more interesting and aesthetically pleasing. I like to think of myself as a visual learner so I get a lot of information by seeing it.
Kevin Lezama is a currently a college student majoring in communication design at the New York College of Technology. He was first introduced to art as a child and instantly fell in love with it. He comes from a very creative background where his family exposed him to musical as well as visual and physical forms of art. As a result, he developed this unique insight into the world of design at a young age.His family didn’t pursue their dreams and eventually stopped and so did the exposure to it. So Kevin,after years regained his interest in design as a freshmen in high school. He was determined to give it a shot because its what he really liked too do. He was so determined that by the time he was a senior he had accomplished many outstanding achievements and awards. He wasn’t satisfied though he knew college was the key to continue his success as a artist,designer and person seeking for more he felt going to college and choosing COMD was the right choice for him to achieve his dream to innovate and create. Primary examples of inspiration and admiration for Kevin are fashion mogul Tom Ford, Technology revolutionary Steve Jobs and one of the best rappers,producers and entrepreneurs Kanye West.
what is your Avatar?How does it represent you?
My avatar is based on a motto I live by which says “keep it SIMPLE” it’s a lime green background. “keep it” is an unknown font colored white.“SIMPLE” is an outline in white and copied again in a dark toned green which are then layered on top of each other. “keep it” is then positioned on top of the”SIMPLE”. All together the texts was placed in the center and “SIMPLE” was enlarged to give the image a very minimalist yet creative perspective to insinuate simplicity. Which is an example of economy and unity as well as stable figure-ground. Ultimately I think this avatar represents me because I tend to remember that quote in some of my most difficult moments in life.I think the most memorable and recognizable designs are the simplest ones. My creative expression tends to steer at moments to perfect simple details.
Question 1:where do you think the future of design will take you?
I want the future of design to take me everywhere and anywhere it wants too.I want to branch out and experience the virtues of not only my specific track of graphic design but learn and work on all types of different forms of expressions. For example printing,photography,painting,illustration,advertising, videography music,fashion,Literally ANYTHING. I want to be able to fully express myself to any extent possible. I believe money will follow where the heart goes. So being super passionate,risky and not being afraid of failure will get me to experience the most out of my major and design and that’s where it starts.
Why did you choose this major (COMD)?
I want to be successful that’s why I know networking and creating relationships is important to me because that’s how I will build my self as an artist and future designer. I chose the major of COMD because I took various graphic design classes throughout my four years of high school. I found the class super fun and interesting. It was very simple for me to learn so I picked it up pretty easy. I thought going to college I should probably go with a field I know so why not COMD? I don’t regret it so far my classes have been really fun. My professors have been amazing and super insightful,I tend to be able to express myself better visually or physically then verbally or on paper. But taking my classes has shown me that theirs many aspects to being a designer. Which I think is perfect for me because I need to challenge myself and my abilities. Especially while working alongside many amazing and talented artists like my classmates. I chose this major thinking about the future but also found it nostalgic thinking about my past as well and how much sentimental value it has to me,I feels as a person it represents me most closely to when I first feel in love with art.
Can you see yourself doing something else?
I could see myself doing something else, If I really wanted too.I grew up playing sports mainly baseball and soccer. I eventually took on football and volleyball.I wasn’t bad I was a team player and lead them all as captain at one point. I loved it and still do to this day. The adrenaline and excitement from playing and the physicality of it all. If I ever took a break as a designer I would most lileky see myself part of a team in the future. I also see inspiration from being an athlete. I feel that sports is a great outer source to draw from for designers and artist alike.
Within COMD which track would you want to pursue?
I have always said I would do Advertising even from when I was in high school. However, being exposed to the different types of fields within COMD and design in general. I’ve taken a great interest in UX/UI and the possibilities it could have. I think I would chose the track that best fits me. Right now I believe that it is Advertising because i personally have more experience in that field. But I will definitely will be in my spare time finding out how I can involve UX/UI into my career.
What is my motivation?
I think my motivation is my lust to make money and being able to do something I love at the same time. Most importantly I know it’s the small support I get from my mom and friends and the desire for them to see me succeed is what keeps me going. I wouldn’t be where I am if it weren’t for them and I owe it to them that I can make something of myself.That being said, I am also a first generation student and although the path I am walking seems super confusing,lonely and even discouraging at times. I know it’ll all pay off at the end. I really want to be a main example and role model to my siblings,family and friends that anything is possible if you put your mind into it.
Alice Garcia is a Mexican American college student that is currently studying in New York City College of Technology. She is one of 6 children consisting of one younger sister and four older brothers. No one expected Alice to follow the drawing arts since her parents expected her to be a doctor, lawyer, or teacher. Nevertheless, she’s into photography and the gathering of ideas based on her surroundings to create a new perception behind a structure. Alice is currently majoring in communication design (COMD) and is wanting to see the hidden talents that she is to expand on.
Question 1: What catches your eye when looking at other people’s work?
When I look at someone’s work, I look at the creativity of the creation or look for differences between their work and mine. If a detail catches my attention, I like to say “Hey, that’s very good work you did there.” or “I like what you did to make it look very good.” or “It’s very presentable without making it seem like you ever did too many drafts to get this as a final result.” The final results are the overall of the hard work, developing and planning of what to do from start to finish for that specific assignment or homework. Mainly I look to see if there was really effort given especially if you see prints on the work because that says a lot as if they were poorly or if it was put away somewhere safe to protect the work without it ending up being wrinkled up.
Question 2: What is the school work like in your coursework?
There is a lot to keep checking on the school website because of there being a homework, a project having a specific due date during the week. Sometimes it maybe a lot but, it is college, it’s no longer like highschool where you would be told things to do. The classwork can be easy, yet a bit troubling especially with a drawing class… even if someone is just learning how to draw no professor expects a freshman to draw at a high standard, but it just mean that not everything is easy at first. It takes time to be able to do this and that without struggling on measuring certain spaces on the paper of a workpiece. There are a lot of standards that professors expect us to be able to do and be responsible for our own things and be well prepared with certain necessary items for the next class. As a result there’s obstacles I must overcome and it pushes me to strive for the better.
Question #3- What is your motivation (eg creative expression) in graphic design?
My motivation in graphic design is to learn more of what’s there to get out and develop from it. I have created certain things like creating logos or learned the ways with photography or how to use the photoshop programs to develop new creations. I believe that what I’m learning right now is helping me improve with new experience on how there are many ways to present or demonstrate within my projects or homeworks, by following the guidelines, suggestions, and other opinions of other classmates. I use everything I have learned so far from the beginning of this semester and from high school. I want to improve with gaining so many skills that are or will be beyond what I had started with. In high school, I didn’t get into drawing since I never had an art class but drawing was a hobby of mine but now I must overcome the habit of me saying “I can’t draw” into “I can do it if I put the effort into bettering drawing as not just a hobby.” I see other classmates determined to reach their own goals and I want to follow that path and believe truly that I can successfully make it happen if I work very hard to really be someone in the future.
Question #4- What job do you desire after this?
I want to be a graphic designer, although at first I thought about following into the advertisement path, but then I thought I have done more of the graphic design things like logos and usage of other programs. But there is a part of me that thinks that I really want to keep persuading this area of work, and also I’m trying to expand my knowledge on the course, so I can be utile on other fragments of work. There is something intrinsic about creating something for the sake of creating, which is why if my knowledge can be used for the greater good I am pleased. So I am looking forward to being a graphics designer, to better help the media understand the purpose I am trying to imply of the product or slowly unveil the meanings. Mostly a job in business corporations.
What is your avatar? How does it represent you?
The avatar that I chose is an actual picture of me that I took on snapchat which is not from too long ago, probably 3 weeks ago. The reason I picked this picture as my avatar is because I want to show others my real appearance as an actual person and also what there is for others to describe of me. I wear glasses since probably middle school and even then you would probably believe that I’m smart, too. In the avatar, I don’t smile like that either in pictures but I can sometimes. I also always carry a necklace with my first name initial. I don’t like having my hair long so I keep it short around shoulder length. The one thing I like to do is play around with adding filters to my pictures like the one on my avatar to look more creative and look nice when I edit it. Here I present myself as a future graphic designer.
Nathaniel Thomas is an African American student who is studying communication design at NY City tech. He grew up in Brooklyn with his parents and younger siblings. In his free time, Nathaniel likes to play video games and draw. He mainly draws regular 2D figures or whatever he’s in the mood to draw. Looking to learn something new and improve his skills, he enrolled at NY City Tech and is studying communication design. He’s currently learning how to do one/two point perspective, doing inked drawings and different types of patterns. He will learn more along the way
What is your avatar? How does it represent you?
My avatar is the letter N with a different font and a colorful design. I chose this because it represents me and the type of art I like looking at, nice and colorful art. The way this is designed makes the colors pop out. The avatar has all types of different colors such as purple, pink, green red, blue and more. Another way this artwork is designed is that the blocks of colors overlap each other. For example, there is a pink block overlapping the purple block. A blue block is also overlapping the purple block but at the top.
Question #1-Do you prefer working by yourself or in a group environment?
I prefer working by myself but if I have to do a group a project, I don’t mind. Working by myself is better because I get to see what I have to do and I can concentrate on doing the whole thing rather than just one part. For a group project, sometimes it might be hard seeing what everyone else is working on. Also, I think if the whole group keeps in check, we might be able to do the whole project and get a good grade on it.
Question #2- Where do you think the future of design will take you?
I’m actually not sure where the future of design will take me. It depends on what my strengths and weaknesses are and what I like to do the most. So far, my strengths are just being a great drawer. There’s still so much for me to learn in the world of art. I could become a painter even though I never really painted before, or someone who likes to make sculptures. In the end, it all depends on my strengths and weaknesses and what I like to do the most. Right now, I just prefer doing regular pencil on paper drawings so maybe I might be someone who just likes to draw, who knows.
Question#3- What is your motivation in design/to be a design student?
My motivation in design and being a design student is searching up or scrolling through social media and seeing a great looking drawing. All these drawings that we see online is because someone made them. I want to be able to say I made some of these drawings. Another thing that motivates me is watching cartoons. Cartoons like spongebob, rick and morty, family guy all have a unique style to them. For example, spongebob has a style that makes the animation bouncy and smooth, while rick and morty has more of a sci fi type look with aliens and other creatures. These cartoons all exist because someone or a group of people worked together to make it. This is also a benefit of working together, they end up making great work that lasts for years. Spongebob and family guy have both lasted for more than a decade. I hope that I’ll be able to do something like this too.
Question#4- How do you intend to grow as a designer with this program?
I intend to grow by improving my drawing skills and learning to do different styles such as 3D drawings one and two point perspective, inked drawings, sculptures or anything else. Also, I want to learn what I like the most and what I’m really good at. I’m not sure on the courses I plan on taking next semester or next year, I have to work on that. I might join a club but I’m not sure which one yet. As long as I’m improving, that’s good
Bryan Rodriguez is a Colombian-American who is currently enrolled at New York City College of Technology. Mr. Rodriguez is a communication design BFA student who is pursuing a career in the field of Animal Protect. He is looking to use his education in the arts to create artistic forms of advertisement to stop animal cruelty. Animal cruelty is neglected across all social and economic frontiers. Bryan is trying to help expand the awareness of animal cruelty and saves many lives of endangered animals.
What is your avatar and how does it represent you?
The avatar seen above is a painting by Henri Matisse called The Woman with a Hat (1905). This painting is one of the many Fauvist paintings he created which was rejected by many fine art critics. This painting was hated because of the lack of realism and style of brush works which was contradicting the current realism and illusionism. I chose painting as my avatar because Matisse did not care what others thought because he expressed emotion and meaning with colors and his brushwork. This tells me that others might not like what you put out there you should never give up and allow yourself to stay creative. The other reason I like this as my avatar is because of the use of color and detail with such a vibrant palette of colors. These vibrant colors included earthy colors like bright yellow, green, red, purple, blue, and many more.
Q1: Can you see yourself doing anything else?
I can see myself doing something else that has to do with animals and taking care of them. I always was fascinated by animals and how they lived in natural with other animals. As a kid growing up I was around many animals like horses, chickens, cows, and swans. My family from my father’s side owns a lot of animals and farms with a lot of open space. Every time I went to visit Colombia it was always a different experience with all the different things that I got to do. I always liked watching shows like national geographic and animal planet because of the interesting stories and information on the animals. I would consider becoming a vet for animals of a more exotic background. This type of job I would also be happy doing and would love a job taking care of animals and saving there lives so that they would live another day.
Q2: What is the class that draws your attention?
The class that draws my attention is modern art history because I ended up learning a lot about paintings and artists. The most interesting things I’ve learned in that class how to have to be like different types of modern art become of era and culture. Non-western and African were more in tune with their sense of nature in there painting with more earthy colors. On my first day of the history class, I wasn’t sure I wanted to study painting because I thought it was only about the history and background of the era. That is until I got more into the idea of why the painter paints what he painted. Because a great painter like Monet and Matisse likes to paint the expressionist style of art. This left me with a good feeling that I was going to like this class and how it already made me feel like I also had my way of artistry like other great artists. These great artists give light to show other artists what can be done without other’s approval. This class has really enlightened me to pursue my dreams of arts and want to continue on this path of building my own clothing company.
Q3: Why did you choose COMD as your major?
I chose to be a COMD major because of my love for art and using it to make others happy. As a kid, I was always a person who liked to draw and every since I want to be an illustrator because of my love for animations and comic books. I always like to create my comic books and like to show my friends a new story every time because it brings me joy. In this field I want to be hands-on with animal protection and to save animals from becoming extinct. This ties in with my love with animals because I want to be an artist that helps a cause for it become more helpful and has more of an impact on society. I today’s world see world problems like everyday new becomes something things happening don’t affect us. So this is why I want to become a COMD major to make a difference in the world we live in.
Q4: Where do you see yourself in 5?15? years
I see myself in the next five years hopefully finished college and found a job to start working at. I hope with the next year I start to learn new things and become a better person. I want to focus on my future so that I have a wonderful life ahead. In the next ten years, I hope that I can start my clothing company based on saving animals and to stop the killing of animals. The idea of the clothing company is what I really dream of owning because this clothing brand will sponsor many animals and organizations that need our help. Through clothing, I want a message to be seen by everyone that sees it on a person every day. This is the main focus that I want to achieve which is to have a good company that can soon grow and becomes a new way of a vision for a brighter future for the animals. Wow in fifteen years I hope that I have a good life with a nice family two kids and enjoying every moment together. Family is everything to me and what I see myself focus more on when I get older. I hope that in those years my business becomes successful and makes a real difference in the world.
Joshi Hiralall is a design student, currently studying in New York College of Technology. Joshi always had to keen eye for art but he most often, drifted towards Photography. Joshi had to keep his mind occupied with something. Now his parents were not the most art forward type of people but that never stopped Joshi to find his passion of drawing and photography. Now in current time Joshi is a CommD major, trying to gain the knowledge his needs to reach his career that he so wants. A career being a Professional Photographer and traveling the world to learn different art styles and sharing the knowledge.
My avatar is abstract drawing, drawn by GuangYuan YU a Chinese artist. Now I chose this drawing to be my avatar because it has two meaning that I want people to get. One is the art style, abstract art is hands down my favorite art style. The uses of color and shape to create this ambiguous sense in this piece. Also the sense of thought to bring animals into the world, or city in this drawing in a fictional way. I really look up to people that drawing in this fantasy, fictional, abstract way. Second meaning is how this art, abstract art perfectly describes how I think and my thinking process, its all my ideas coming at the same time and gets mashed up together to create a abstract mind.
What is my dream job in the field of design?
My dream job in the field of design is photography because I love pictures and the art of taking the perfect picture. As well as filmography, which I would like to think of the next step of photography. Also the advertisement, marketing aspect of design so I can learn to entices people with my pictures and learn to sell my prints to the people that love and respect my craft. I would want to become a landscape and an portrait photography because I want to travel and meet new interesting people along the way. As for the filmography part I was thinking about starting with commercials for companies and then advance into visual effects for movies. Here’s where the marketing, advertisement side comes into play as I’m working with companies with larger projects. I have been thinking about sound design too but Im going to take it one step at a time.
What are some things you wish to accomplish as a designer?
As a designer I wish to accomplish a bunch of things, things as of right now and things as of in the future. Accomplishments I wish to make right now is to gain knowledge from different sources. Gaining knowledge from professors, classes, friends, people that have been working in the field for a while now. Also self knowledgement, going online and taking notes off the resources of the web. Going up to people that are doing what I want to in the future and asking for advice, that is probably my favorite way of getting information on my career and the field work involving that career. Then the other way which is just going to my classes that help me develop my skills in my design career.
How do you intend to use your skillset you learn, to influence your community?
My skillset that I will learn as a design major will help me to influence my community in a variety of ways. I can share my ideas to the community and help people expand their creativity. My skills will help by creating new pathways for people new into design and need a push for idea making processes. Also taking pictures and sharing my idea process can help people understand the thoughts that go through my mind when completing or starting a new project at work. Also I will love to do workshops and teach classes of people who have a desire to learn the art of photography and filmography.
What is your motivation as a design student?
My motivation as a design student is everything and anything that makes me feel free and happy. Could be out with friends in the city, just relaxing and talking about life or I could just be out on a walk in the park by myself. Anything that puts me in my happy place or a sense of peace. This place is where my creativity comes in fruition and my idea are taken place.
Faariah Hiyaat, or Fari as she is known by many, is a Guyanese-born, American-raised 17-year-old, whom is exploring the innovative world of design with the help of her enrollment at the New York City College of Technology as a COMD major. She has been private school bound for predominantly her entire childhood and teenage years, where design courses of any sort are not offered. Under these circumstances, her experience in the design field is rather scarce, however, her drive to create has been there ever since her early childhood years. From being a young fashionista, to drawing an exact replica of Spongebob at just 7-years old, Ms. Hiyaat is striving to expand her skill set in the design field in hopes of a more productive and flourishing future as a designer.
I’d like to start off by asking you, what exactly is your avatar and how does it represent you?
Personally, whenever I’m viewing someone’s profile, on any platform, I’m almost always interested in finding out who the person is or what he/she looks like. I believe that your profile photo is the best place to advertise that, of course; it’s the first area that people’s eyes are drawn to in most cases. It also helps others get to briefly know you or infer things about you. Having said that, my avatar is a photo of me, taken on July 4th by my mother, at Orient Point, NY. Although it may not seem like it, this picture is actually an off guard. I chose this as my avatar because I love the vibe it gives off; it’s a picture that’s full of life. It catches the eye without doing too much, which basically sums up me as a person. The way the rays of the golden hour bounce off of my melanin rich skin is quite impeccable, in my opinion; it creates a sense of unity, and, tied in with the background, an aura of serenity. Additionally, the way the wind is blowing through my hair, along with my smile, showcases the idea that I’m quite an easygoing girl who just wants to enjoy life. I love exploring, which is where the beach background comes in, and standing out in my own ways, whether it be my appearance, my writing, the way I carry myself, anything really! I feel as if this photo really captures an accurate representation of me and what I love. Also, the fact that my mom took it out makes it a billion times more special.
So tell me, what are you passionate about?
Well, I LOVE fashion. I love putting outfits together and coordinating colors. It puts my mind at ease and gives me a sense of satisfaction whenever I put together an outfit that really strikes. Additionally, I believe that with every outfit, jewelry is a must-have. I never leave the house without being all blinged-out, and if I do, I usually walk with my jewelry in a box, ready to be put on whenever I’m in a rush, which is almost every morning. Many times, my family members and relatives depend on my opinion when it comes to an article of clothing, or anything in general now that I think about it, and whether or not it works for them, or whatever the case may be. Aside from that, I enjoy pretty much any type of designing to be honest. I simply just love to create, draw, doodle, innovate, silently express myself, etc. Overall, I connect all this to designing because when you design something, essentially what you’re doing is using your imagination, your creativity, and your perspective to create or put together a piece, whatever you desire it to be.
How do you intend to grow as a designer with this program?
I’m hoping that with this program I’ll be able to further expand my knowledge in the world of design. I intend on learning new techniques and adapting new skills that will benefit me in the future, concerning my field of study and any jobs I may come across. Sometimes I’m not as creative as I think I should be or as I’d like to be, new ideas don’t really pop into my head on the spot or as readily as I’d like. So, hopefully this program will help get my creative juices flowing a bit smoother and open up my eyes to new perspectives. At the moment, my mind isn’t really set on any particular field within this major that I’d like to pursue, but I know that as I learn new skills, gain more experience, and grow as a designer, my mind will steer into the direction that’s best suited for me.
What catches your eye when looking at other people’s work?
When viewing other people’s work, quite a few things run through my mind. Firstly, I almost always analyze how precise and crisp an article of work is. That’s a major area for me because at times, I tend to be a perfectionist. I also focus on how different and unique a piece is in comparison to what I’ve been exposed to thus far, or what reality is accustomed to seeing. I don’t really judge too hard in that area because we’ve already been exposed to so much in our generation. Our world is full of invention and creativity, so it’s hard to put out something that’s never been seen or created before. Color is also big factor for me. I love vibrancy and colors in general. Don’t get me wrong, monochrome pieces are still beautiful and interesting, and often times pieces look best as is, however, there are occurrences where color adds that sparkle that really brings an article to life.
Lastly, can you see yourself doing anything else?
I don’t like to anchor myself down or become dependent on one thing. I always like to have backups just in case things go downhill. So, I actually can see myself doing something else. I love science and forensics. I enjoy solving mysteries, putting things together, and learning more about the human body, nature, our world, and the universe. Also, I used to be quite good when it came to chemistry, USED to be. I haven’t done chemistry in a while so my skills might be a little rusty and need some refreshing, but at one point it was one of my favorite subjects. This is a huge turn from the design world but I’ve always been interested in areas like these. Another thing I love to do is bake. Although it may seem a tad bit ridiculous, I’ve had thoughts of opening up my own bakery. I still have a lot more learning to do concerning that though, so of course I’d need to perfect my skill. Above all, fashion and designing is where it’s at for me to be honest, but hey, if things don’t work out, at least I have backup plans.
I chose this avatar because Deadpool is one of my favorite characters in the Marvel Universe. I also chose it because it remind me of all the comics, posters, and merchandise that are out there and how they were all drawn or edited which is part of what I want to do after I graduate.
Question 2: Why did you choose this major?
I chose this major due to what I started doing in High School which was photo editing and drawing. Recently I fell off on it due to school and assignments but I did it almost all the time in 10th, 11th, and 12th grade. The most common thing I edited was the alien head from Dell’s Alienware franchise. This is one of the many pieces I made albeit a more recent one. I also like to draw a little the earliest drawings i have are logos and stick figures. Eventually, I started drawing more complex figures with facial features and unique poses.
Question 3: Can you see yourself doing anything else?
I’ve often had thoughts of being a professional track runner. I like to exercise in my free time. I also used to be a part of a track team in my high school years. From that experience, I developed an active lifestyle of running, doing push-ups, and other exercises that will keep me in shape. I wanted to join a track club but right now there doesn’t seem to be any time for me to participate in one.
Question 4: Do you prefer working by yourself or in a group environment?
I don’t mind working in groups however my preference would be to work alone. I tend to get more work done when i’m by myself as opposed to other people as it can be distracting and it deters my attention span away from the work at hand.
Question 5: What catches your eye when you look at other people’s work?
The design style catches my eye. I look more at what type of illustration style and type faces they used and how it made the image or poster or whatever more interesting and aesthetically pleasing.
Cristal Castro is a European-American communication design student at the New York City College of Technology. Her passion for the arts and design came at an early age, drawing anime characters and strange cartoons. Despite being told she’d be better off as a sonography specialist, Cristal knew from the beginning that she was born for the design industry. At NYCCT, she hopes to refine her skills in all types of design to expand her knowledge in the field and become successful. In this interview, she discusses her experiences in design, her role model, and what the future looks like in her eyes.
What are your past graphic design experiences?
In high school, I took multiple design classes including Digital Animation, Prototyping Design, Design Studio, and Digital Media. I created my own app and logo, created a movie poster, and even sketched up a futuristic car and made a clay mold of it. I used Adobe Photoshop, SketchUp, and Sketch (my personal favorite). During my free time, I enjoy creating different graphics and covers for books and songs. Sometimes when I am making something, I like to listen to music because it helps me set the tone for my product. I made a cover for a song called Olivia by Satin Jackets, and used my photograph of Nerja, Spain to set a minimalistic tone. I felt that the tone of the cover matches with the song itself.
Who is a role model you look up to in this field?
A role model I look up to in this field is Paula Scher, one of the most influential graphic designers in the world. About a year ago I watched a docuseries on Netflix called Abstract: The Art of Design, highlighting artists that have made an impact in design. The sixth episode was about Paula Scher, and that’s how I found out about her. I was surprised when I realized that I’ve seen her work almost everywhere, even at CitiBank. The way she’d combine pop culture with typography and contemporary art intrigued me, especially since at the time when designers didn’t use those elements in their work. Another thing that I admired about Scher is the fact that she has become very successful in a male-dominated industry, and I want to do the same thing.
What is your avatar and how does it represent you?
My avatar is Sam Manson as an adult from Danny Phantom. She has long, black straight hair and is wearing a spiky choker. She is also wearing a black camisole top with an oval-shaped logo on it. I think the avatar represents me in the sense that I like to express myself visually, not verbally. I think visual expression is much more powerful because when you hear something, you don’t always remember it. However, when you look at something that really catches your eye you are more likely to remember it. Part of my childhood was watching cartoons from the late 90’s to mid-2000’s, and Danny Phantom was one of my favorites. I enjoy drawing cartoons and even creating my own while having nostalgia. Sam was my favorite character from the show, and if I were to draw myself as a cartoon, I’d look like her.
Can you see yourself doing anything else?
Career wise, I see myself 100% invested in design. I have a huge imagination and many ideas, and design is what allows me to express myself and my brand to the fullest. In design, there’s always room for improvement, even if you’re successful. Everyone has a different perspective when it comes to art, and you always learn from that and grow. That’s what I love about design. I also see myself travelling around the world. When you travel, you get to experience other cultures, types of architecture, and techniques that they use in design. When I went to Nerja, the paleolithic buildings were white and royal blue, which set a more simplistic and tropical tone for a graphic that would be designed for that town.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In ten years, I see myself living in Madrid, Spain working as an art director at a large company. Spain is my home, it’s where I am originally from. Madrid is a bustling city filled with creative, bright minds. Everything is much for laid-back, which is the polar opposite of the chaotic New York City. Being at home will allow me to introduce new styles and techniques to the country, adding a cultural twist. I hope to become influential as a result, to the point where there is picture of myself at the Adolfo-Barajas International Airport. This is where I see myself in the future, but will time take me somewhere else? Who knows.
Samson Charles is a creative minded person whose artistic point of view shapes his academic interests in graphic design and can lead him on his path to a career in the design field. He now studies Advertising Design which is a COMD major at New York City College of Technology, in hopes of broadening his knowledge on design.
My avatar is actually a piece i created on Adobe Photoshop. One day i was just scrolling through my social media and saw these three words, “Real eyes, Realize, Real lies.” Once i saw those three words, an immediate thought was, how can i make those three words look visually appealing. First off i wanted to make those words stand out, and i wanted to make the colors very warm, and tried not to put any cold colors in it. I wanted to make the words go through the paper as if it blends in with the background(finding the right colors were tough). I believe i have a keen eye to detail, and it shows it in this picture. My avatar describes me because it shows that i’m a very artistic person.
Q: How do you intend to grow as a designer with this program ?
A: I intend to grow by taking as many classes i can to better grasp my knowledge of design. There are so many professors in this program that either worked in this field for so many years, or studied in this field for so many years. So me as a learner i want to take advantage of that as much as i can by showing them my work, getting their professional feedback from it, learn from my mistakes to better myself. And there are so many workshops, clubs, or events that i’ll definitely go to, to gain more knowledge about design, know the in’s and out’s of it. There are so many peers i can talk to, to get their input on a certain design, just to see how other creative minds like myself think.
Q: How do you intend to use the skill set you learn to influence your community ?
A: I intend to do that by being a voice, or a bigger voice for people who don’t have it. To me design are two things, one of which is the obvious, it’s about expressing your creative ideas and/or thoughts for other people to see. And two, design is about being that voice for people when the time calls for it. Being a designer, you have the opportunity to uplift a community and be that voice. There are so many designers who make artwork to help out a group of people, or to represent a social issue. There are so many aspects to designing, me as a designer i want to use my skill set to help other people, to inspire people, or just to create new innovative art as the years go on.
Q: Can you see yourself doing anything else ?
A: To be honest with you, designing is the one and only thing i can see myself doing for years to come. I just view myself as a creative person, I’ve been drawing since i was 13 years old. Being so connected to designing really disconnects me from doing other things, it’s like being in a committed relationship. And i’m in school studying design, to learn as many skills i can to perfect my craft. So to be clear, i don’t see myself doing anything else but designing.
Q: What are your expectations of being a COMD major in your first year ?
A: I have very expectations because i’m dedicated to becoming the best designer i can be. I want to learn everything i can so i can apply it to my craft. I’m taking classes for my major, and so far i’m learning a lot of stuff i never knew before, and i’m very confident that new knowledge like this will help me succeed in the design industry once i’m done with school. So far my first year in the COMD major has been great, i met great professors, new friends, gaining so much new knowledge, and i’m adapting very well to everything.
The OpenLab at City Tech:A place to learn, work, and share
The OpenLab is an open-source, digital platform designed to support teaching and learning at City Tech (New York City College of Technology), and to promote student and faculty engagement in the intellectual and social life of the college community.
The OpenLab at City Tech:A place to learn, work, and share
The OpenLab is an open-source, digital platform designed to support teaching and learning at City Tech (New York City College of Technology), and to promote student and faculty engagement in the intellectual and social life of the college community.