When I was young, I spent a lot of time looking at the tiles in one part of my house. They had a sort of smoky texture and I tried to find faces in them. In Lima, we can’t see faces in the clouds because the sky is grey and flat! When I “found” a face, I would draw it on the wall. The first few times, I saw my mother wondering what were these marks, that looked like flies, and when she got up close, guess who had drawn these small faces. My mother didn’t protest against the paintings on the wall, so I carried on painting them with skill! This clearly didn’t lead me directly into design, but it made me realize that I liked to draw and paint, and that’s what my general interest in art started. After that, I spent my time making posters in my school. We used to draw and cut letters out of colored paper. The teacher would always put me in charge and I could choose my own helpers; my friends used to love me for getting them out of class just so we could cut and stick paper in the playground! I think that is when I decided to study design and not just art in itself.
I am convinced that it is not only very valuable, but necessary coming from a creative point of view. Taking on an intern creates a very interesting exchange of experiences and freshness. Furthermore, it’s motivating to be able to share your knowledge with someone who has just started to develop themselves in this field and receive, in exchange, a novel point of view, one that is less jaded by experiences, less structure, with other forms of freedom; it turns out very valuable when you’re designing creative solutions. At Fibra, we have had interns from Brazil and Mexico, which is an even more rewarding experience because of the cultural exchange as well. At the moment, Luis (Mexico), who is an industrial designer by profession, is helping us develop a plastic bottle for a drink; we’ve never done this before in the studio! And now, we’re all learning from him.
I love to work with passionate people who are looking to give something positive to society, who want to improve their surroundings with what they know how to do and that, as a consequence, creates business. For the most part, I look for entrepreneurs. People with a start-up, dreaming big, with lots of passion in order to do things right and positive energy. Optimism is contagious and it makes us get involved in a closer, more personal way with our clients’ projects. We also look for people who know how to listen and have an open mind in order to maintain good communication and achieve a long-lasting relationship; but that’s something we discover along the way.
In Lima, we’re in the process of learning and understanding the industry of graphic design; an industry that has grown substantially alongside the gastronomic boom. The necessity to create brands with strong concepts for restaurants that work at an international level has meant that design is being valued more as an important factor in the success for the expansion and popularity of Peruvian cuisine all over the world. As a consequence, other industries such as pisco, coffee and chocolate are ever-growing and are starting to understand the necessity of finding a branding studio in order to add value to their brands through packaging design, brand communication and identity. At Fibra, we have been design various products that highlight their Peruvian origin and this has made us look further inside and search for our roots, our history, our millennial culture and find our graphic and visual legacy which has turned out very motivating.
Design can contribute in a very positive and important way in our society. For example, during the summer of 2016, we had to travel to Piura for a month to encourage people to consume an artisanal brand of chocolate. We stayed in a beach house and during the weekends we saw how people who were holidaying were leaving all the coast full of rubbish and trash of all sorts, with no respect for the conservation of species and marine life. The next summer, we created the campaign “No seas basura” (Don’t be trashy in English) with the aim of leaving the Máncora beach impeccably clean after New Year’s Eve, and not sorrowfully dirty like in past years. With the idea of creating awareness, we organized a clean-up of the beaches and to invite more people to join in the clean-up, we designed posters that tried to imitate the artwork that is used to promote Chicha music concerts, a very popular music genre all over Peru. We stuck the posters in restaurants and tourist areas all over the town. On New Year's’ day, various people showed up and we managed to collect 500 kg of rubbish. On top of this, two famous surfers, Javier Swayne and Gabriel Villarán got involved, who after the success of the clean-up in the north, organized 3 clean-ups of beaches in Lima. After, brands such as Uber, GoPro and Mitsui, just to name a few, thought that it would also be a good idea to contribute to the campaign and in Lima, they have achieved a total of 900 kg of rubbish collected. I think that as designers, like anyone who works in communication, we can use our talent to better ourselves as a society.