This week I had an interview with a guy who is not only a great artist but also very funny and inspiring. His name is Artem Borysenko. I urge you to stop with what you are doing at the moment and while enjoying a cup of coffee to read this interview. And of course I hope you enjoy this interview as much as we had making it.
Welcome to Iconpaper Artem. Would you please introduce yourself to our Iconpaper followers?
Hi, guys! I’m living and working in the lovely city Odessa, Ukraine. I’m working as a freelance graphic designer.
Where did you learn your skills? Where do your creative instincts come from?
Actually it was an accident. I remember, at school I was bored on some lessons and drew some stuff instead of notes. But I never thought I would do it professionally. My first actual digital work was a tweak for a school album photography where I added some modernization to teachers. Some of them have become cyborgs, some werewolves, some black-metal musicians, and some just bald whiskered man. Damn your inhumanity Photoshop! Maybe after that I had two options — either plastic surgeons or designer.
How does a typical day in the life of Artem Borysenko look like?
Work, rest, movies, exercise, music, food, etc. It can be mixed in any order. I think many folks have similar work days. Some trick — I make a break every hour for 5-10 minutes. It can be used for something good, for example, I making push-ups. You can try it in the office, I think your colleagues would be very surprised.
Altough Iconpaper is a website dedicated to Mac, iPhone and iPad customization, I really wanna know the answer to my next question from you as a designer. Are you a Mac or a PC and of course why?
I’m working on Windows. But I can see why many designers find MacOS so inspiring. Apple kick-ass in interfaces.
What design tools do you use and can you explain your choice? Which tools would you suggest to fellow designers?
I mainly work in Photoshop. It has a very comfortable workspace and great stability. Sometimes, I’m using Illustrator, but I’ve to be honest, I don’t like it very much.
Where do you get your inspiration from or go for inspiration? And how do you deal with creative blocks?
Internet is just full of amazing works of great masters. All this can make an positive influence. I like to save cool works on my hard drive and watch them time to time.
Actually, I think the hard labor of ideas is not a productive process. If nothing comes in head, don’t sit and stare at the monitor — brains overheating hardly helps. Go do something else and good idea will pops. I guess, it’s because brain loves to surprise you occasionally.
What are your favorite online design resources?
Every day I’m checking only Dribbble. Behance also is very good.
What’s your typical design process when designing an icon or icon set? And what makes a good icon or icon set in your opinion?
I need the names of icons — from them I come up with the ideas and drawing sketches. After approval, I only need to draw them tasty in color.
Good icon/set is basically the thing that perfectly fits the task. I think, rules of one perspective for the set, color-scheme or something else, can’t be used if it leads to better result and fits the project . Even the strangest metaphors may be appropriate (I love this kind of projects, actually). Off course you don’t want to mess with that if you have strict guidelines.
How long do you spend on average creating an icon? What are the factors that contribute to how long you spend creating an icon or icon set?
It’s quite simple. The bigger the icon, the longer time it will need. You can draw a little about an hour, and spend 10 to finish a big one. Also style and amount of details counts, of course.
What other things do you do besides designing icons?
I draw illustrations, working on UI and websites. But icons are my favorites.
Most designers have unusual quirks. For instance I find the best collaborator is myself and often talk to myself to brainstorm ideas and solutions. What are your quirks?
I almost always work with music and I love to sing along pretty loud. That’s why, I guess, my neighbors want to poison me.
Quick Fire Five:
• Forrst or Dribbble? Dribble.
• Comic Sans, Love it or hate it? Love it.
• Hand drawn or Digital? Digital.
• Facebook or Twitter? Twitter.
• Design for Life or Design for Pleasure? He-he, I guess, for both things.
I follow you for quite some time via Dribbble and like/love the designs you make a lot. What do you think is your best work (so far) and why?
I can’t identify something in particular, many of them I like by idea, execution, or both. I think it’s a common thing — thinking that the current work is the best and finding flaws after some time. There is nothing you can do with that.
What are your plans for the near future and where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
Actually I’m not a kind of planning guy. Is it too bad? Some new ways to work, some new ways to fun. What can I say?
Can you tell us who your favorite designer is and please tell us what’s so special about him/her?
Please tell us what’s the last song you’ve listened to, the last movie you’ve watched and last videogame you’ve played or we should listen, watch or play and do you have any good tips for us?
I can recommend great band Dead by April, if you listen this kind of music. Guys have very unique style.
Now I’m watching TV-show Seinfeld for second time. So definitely can recommend that.
Do you have experience with commercial projects and if so can you tell us something about your experience with these kind of projects?
I’m mostly working on commercial projects. The situations were different — both good and bad. With time you will find your clients and work will go smoothly. Make your job well and be patient, universe will reward you.
Full of interesting things, the world is. Shouldn’t be lazy you to learn that if you want. Fun have! Does these sounds Yoda enough?
Thanks for the interview, it was a pleasure!
Interview with Artem Borysenko,