I recently met this charming Mexican designer and instantly loved his work. Ivan gives traditional Mexican culture a fresh, young and edgy spin. What I liked most is that Ivan has done an amazing job at establishing himself as a brand - something young artists often struggle with.
He also happens to have the coolest website I have seen in a long time. It's simple and has an unexpected sense of humor, which is perfect for describing Ivan himself. Do yourself a favor and click on "about" to see what I mean. Prints and other novelties are available for purchase on Society6.com/IvanBurguete.
I had the opportunity to ask him a few questions to get to know the artist. I started with the question I start every interview with:
What's your favorite song?
My favorite song is "Como Tu" by Leon Larrigueri
Where are you from?
Im from Mexico, raised in the Southern part of Mexico City.
When did you first discover your creative talents, and how did you get into designing?
I always preferred a pencil and a note pad rather than toys. I always used to ask Santa for toys that involved crafts and doing things with my hands. Since I was little my best friend was a pencil, in any class or any free time I used to draw where ever I was able. What is funny is I kind of knew since then that I wanted to be a graphic designer, without knowing what it really meant. I'm lucky that I ended up doing what I always wanted and what I am still passionate about.
Could you tell us about some of your work?
My work most of the times is based on my feelings and experiences, but I always like to bring them one step farther to disconnect them from reality. To be honest I consider myself an artist with no style because my style always depends on my mood. I also think when you go with a "style" you become boring and predictable.
Do you have a favorite piece?
No. I might have one that I like better than some others, but they're all my babies and I couldn’t choose one over all.
I notice a lot of your culture in your work, why have you chosen to promote this theme so much?
Culture defines our identity, with out culture we are nothing. In my particular case, I started incorporating Mexican elements because it's the way I remember my tradition and my people. I'm proud of the rich culture that we have in Mexico, and the more I dig into it, the more I want to show it off. Also I think it's a kind of nostalgia, the way I remember and show my respect and love to a country that gave me so much during most my life.
What else inspires you?
New art and concepts are always inspiring, to see what going on in other places makes me stay awake and contemporary. Also, a good cup of coffee in the middle of nowhere always works. ("Nowhere" could be somewhere, it's a place you're able to disconnect from reality and let the mind wander to reconnect with your inner you.) That way I get some ideas onto paper or whatever media I'm working on.
What is your approach to design?
Design is made to communicate a message to a specific target. If your target didn’t get your message, you are doing something wrong. Also design is made to make things aesthetically beautiful while still interpreting a feeling or idea, no matter how your audience reacts because every one is able to create their on story of what they are looking at.
Any influences or anyone you look up to when it comes to designing?
I like to browse stumbleupon.com because I always find something interesting and unexpected.
I have a couple of designers that are my favorite: Ogabel and Bob Staake. Lately there are 2 painters that I follow a lot: they call themselves Osgemeos (that means twins in Portuguese.)
Share with us something funny that has happened to you recently.
The funny thing that always happens to me is that I start a piece with a concept in mind and it always ends being totally different at the end but with good results. It's funny how my mind and my hands always play that trick with me.
How do you bridge the gap of the business side of designing?
It's really hard to make them come together, but of course it's possible. Clients rarely give you the chance to get REALLY creative, so when you get the opportunity, go crazy! I always suggest to create pieces apart from work and that way your creativity and your inner kid can still be alive and satisfied.
Describe yourself in 5 words.
Stubborn, ambitious, kind, temperamental, & friendly
Lastly, any words of advice for aspiring designers/artists?
We don’t need more of you the market is crowded! HAHAHA! But honestly, you should be perseverant in a left-brained world and try to manage your right-brain life style and fight for what we are so passionate about. And try to be the craziest you can. Because the world needs a lot of us.