Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Creative Interview with: Ricky Ferrer

Art director, designer, letterpress printer, type and music lover, Ricky Ferrer is a creative in every sense of the word. His interview:

Tell us a little about yourself.
I grew up in Texas, went to catholic school and then college at UNT for communication design. I chose it because it was the closest school for design, but it ended up being a rigorous and outstanding program. I highly recommend it and am excited every time I meet a recent graduate making a name for themselves. Soon after college I left for NYC to pursue my design career. Just recently, I ended up back in Texas to become the online art director for D Magazine.

When did you first discover your love for design?
This is hard to pinpoint, but I believe it was two paths that converged: my love for computers and my love for comic books.

My mother was a software engineer and I grew up with computers. I had a fascination with the web as soon as I discovered it. I built my first website in 1994, which was a Simpsons trivia page. I experimented with type in Photoshop and learned basic HTML as a hobby. I also grew up drawing. First making my own comic strips, then comic books, then graffiti, then fine art. All of which I would extremely embarrassed to show now.

I learned in college that design could combine both my left and right brain interests. I explored drawing, painting, printmaking, interactive and graphic design all at the same time. Everything I explored made it into my design process and vice versa.

If you were in a different profession, you'd be ________________. architect? I love it when best practices mixed with creativity solve a problem. It could be any form of design really—from interior to fashion, but architecture seems to me the largest scale in regards to projects, but honestly I don't know if I'd have the patience for such long projects.

Where do you find/go for inspiration? How do you overcome creative blocks?
I keep a pretty active Pinterest account. I create new mood boards for every project I'm working on. Saves paper and easy to see all at once.

I've found the best cure for creative blocks is to just get to work. Don't procrastinate. If you just start sketching and trying to solve the solution at hand, you'll get to the there quicker...and only then. You just have to get over the fear and get to work.

Who are some people (designers or others) who've influenced your work?
Good question. I constantly follow other designers and design firms. I frequently check blogs from Under Consideration. Places like Pentagram, Mucca and Hyperakt are consistently inspiring. Safe answer, I know, but true.

What site, product, or brand would you like a chance to redesign?
I'm most excited about my current product, D magazine. There are quite a few challenges to tackle with the redesign. However, I've always been frustrated with the design of T.V. meteorologist maps. Also Craigslist could use a major redesign.

Any hobbies or interests outside of design?
Haha, not a whole lot. I do love any sport where you can hold a beer while playing. A few of these include bocce, bowling and foosball.

reads: the fountain head 
music: I'm a huge music buff. Lately I've been very into raggae. Sister Nancy tops that list.
apps, software, platforms, or tools: Since working in web design, I've been really into web apps like typecast and invision.
typefaces: I'm also a type enthusiast. There are a plethora of typefaces I love. Too many to mention here. One typeface I love, but not had a chance to use, is Giorgio.
sites: I never thought I would say this, but the new Myspace site looks amazing! I just put in a request for an invite.

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