We all should be E-Bussinesmen Designers

03 February 2009

I just spent my last 5 months in Barcelona working as web consultant/designer for a business in the Tourism, this experience opened my eyes about new business opportunities in the Web Design.

There are a lot of business that rely on the web to power up their selling possibilities, but at the same time those business don't know how to put in practice their ideas or using well know web communication strategies to achieve incredible results. It is incredible that at the same time there are a lot of professionals (like me) that are looking for bright companies to give us opportunities to develop solutions for them.

A man going out from a screen of a computer is looking in a binocular We (employers and employees) are looking in the wrong place, and I feel that there is a need of a website, a newspaper or a magazine to give the right amount of space to meet those people, just even for discuss freely about making business on the web.

I am quite disappointed to don't find out in Spain interesting source of info about creativity/design/web communication relate to job hunting in my expertise. I always find to be a big waste of time looking for job in generic job hunting website like Monster, Jobinfo or Loquo. Writing your already prepared CV inside long form to just apply a job, be stuck with job agency that are in between you and the company looking for your profile and requests about jobs without a clear definition of the salary or the type of contract offered.

It feels like that I should work to build a website about "finding work in the creative field"!

I think that web designer shouldn't search any more for jobs related to just web design, but to look for companies interested in enter in the web. The future is the web and how your company will communicate to their audience to promote their products or service in interesting ways.

A great example is the last advertise on the web about T-mobile. It mix the social meetings born on internet like the Flash Mobs and the Viral marketing of youtube (all the people that were that day during the performance recording and showing on internet what they saw). It just shows how much is easy to create an incredible, unusual and powerful tool of communication with the right ideas.

I think that businessman should start to ask me what I can do it for them. Because there is always a way to project their business on the web targeting people already interested in their products.

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How to choose where to live, to rise your creativity

23 July 2008

Around 2003 I read an interesting book about creative class and how locations can influence a good quality of living based on the right amount of creative people living in a specific area.

The concept of the theory is easy: the economy developments depend on the human knowledge of the people that live in that specific city, and this is strictly related on the number of creative people that live inside that city.
It happens specifically when some factors that improve the quality of life are in the city: investment in techonology; culture that push to develop creativity; people open minded to diversity and to the new because is more tollerant; society that value the already exitent resources.

So when I decided to move away from England in May 2008 (because I started to feel uncomfortable with their society and rhytm of life) instinctively I chose a country that was more open minded, more multicultural, warmer (climate and people) and creative. That country for me was Spain.
Thinking at the time of that decision, I didn't wait more than one day to put wheels in motion to move away. Between all the city of Spain, Barcelona for me was the only one, and casually I anlaysed the same factors that the book was talking about.

The book is called "the rise of the creative class" of Richard Florida, and I found that he wrote more about his theory. One in particular attract my attention "Who's Your City?", and It was pretty clear to me what it was about.
Before look at his new book, I tried to search at the old one. So I took the book out from some abandoned boxes in Italy, and I removed dust, and started to read again some book's chapters.
He said that immigrants and gays where some of the big factors in the growth of creative cities, because they carry with them a different way to think and to approach to live. In Spain gay marriage is legalised since 2005, and with the big amount of travellers in Barcelona immigration is sure a constant. Considering that spanish is one of the most spoken languages in the world this will push a great melting pot of cultures all it sounded as the perfect place to live.

Even so I had my worries, the spanish language catch the attention of a particular segment of people of not high developed country such as South America.
Landing on Spain and looking at cities like Barcelona and Madrid or villages like Cadaqués and Figures did have a really good impression, I could see that advertising, and graphic appearance of the surrounding wasn't as impregnated of quality as it is in England.
I couldn't even find a proper magazine about web or graphic design.
Luckily this meant that when something is missing it could lead to new opportunity in that sector. I see the economy in Spain being better than Italy, and with the big immigration of rich people from England, Belgium and Germany, money keep moving in. Should I consider moving maybe in Gibraltar? Only if I am interested to do some gamble :)

After these thoughts I looked around at his website and I read a bit of his excerpts and I even found a very long and interesting speech at GoogleTalk
It was clear that it was a wise choice have a look at it. I had a new way to look at the world and society.
What are the biggest decisions of all in our lives? What you want to do (your job), with whom you want spent your time (your partner) and where do you want to live (location). Even so, it was pretty clear that the location define directly what are you aspiration for what kind of job, and even what kind of partner mentality you would find. So at the end location IS the real fundamental factor.

During this globalization era, jobs are becoming even more specific to do in particular cities, for example if you want work in fashion in Italy your only location is Milan, same thing if in America you want to work in entertainment or filmmaking business you must be in Los Angeles for Hollywood, other ways you just need to give up immediately on any aspiration of career.

So now I need to find not only the book, but analyse for a web/graphic designer like me where I can find the best place to carry on my job. I am sure that Barcelona it will be a really interesting place to live and growth. Learning a new language and culture are always a big buzz for me. Luckily I know where it is the biggest survey ever made about web design business worldwide
Results speak clearly, America and England.

The majority of the business it seems to be in the north east America where there are New York, Philadelphia and Boston, instead in England it's clearly London.

If in Barcelona anything will not go so well for me, New York or London they'll wait for me, other ways I can always run to Japan or Australia :)

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The inspiration process

20 July 2008

I always think that travelling with the eyes of a kid is the best way to discover what inspire people around the world.

Inspiration boardFor any creative person there is always a fear, when you get to the point to find inspiration for your next piece of work and you feel that your creativity is totally dried up. Staring at the blank white page it's like death upon us.
It happens to everyone when we start to grow accustomed to things that we do or see in everyday life. We start simply to unnoticed them, losing sense of the new and interest too. Therefore when we seek for something different to experience it, we search for something never done before or something that we like with a nice twist of "experiments".

Everyone of us has several tricks to stimulate the imagination, we can keep fresh in designs and creative ideas because we know that it's better shut down our computers and just walk away to give some rest to our minds. In those moments I play the part of being a little kid, looking at everything like if everything it was new. I look at the pattern of the tiles, the style of houses and skyscrapers, the decoration of the cars, the cover of books and music albums, the look of the shoes of the people, the advertise on the buses and billboards, the type used to name shops, the packaging used in the supermarket, anything that in any shape and style that carry a bit of design.


Tools that a creative designer should always take with him are a sketchbook, a compact camera and an audio recorder. You shouldn't wait for the moment when you need the inspiration to go and do your walk out from your office, you should have already have accumulated a good quantitative of info to play with in everyday life. Moleskine notesSo all that you need to do it's just open these inspirations that you have stored, and search it for the creative enlightenment.

For a web designer it's even easier to keep such inspirational archive. You can create a zipped file of downloaded resources uploaded on a private ftp, you can have a list of links to web tools on delicious and you can have a big amount of screenshots of cool web pages uploaded on Picasa or Flickr; all those stuff need to be accessible online, so when you will need them you will not need to carry with you on a disc or hard drive, but you can access it and use it from anywhere.

The process of "remoting" information and application in the next years it will be really relevant, in the future, graphic softwares such as adobe photoshop they will be able to run on the web. It's a good idea to get used and organise yourself to this kind of creative process so you will be able to work really from everywhere in the world and get inspired from everywhere. All that you will need it will be a connection to internet and some web account.

A last, but not least things to do, and this is valid for any job and even more for web designers, it's to keep reading blog once at week that talk about the matters that you are interested in. It's best to use some kind of blog aggregator on the web to save you time to look at the hundreds of blog that you wish to follow.

To keep a fresh mind, keep it informed regularly.

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