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Featured Design Studio

Savvy Studio

August 2018

Rafael Prieto Founder and Creative Director of Savvy Studio is big on the How and Why when working through their creative process—and we can see it come through in Savvy's amazing work! Rafael fills us in on what he focuses on through that process as well as some ace advice we should all listen to!

What was your plan for graduating and what actually happened?

My plan was to start my own studio and luckily it happened. I had a clear idea of what I wanted to design and wanted a direct interaction with whomever I would work with—and I pursued it from the very beginning.

Give us the elevator pitch on what you do.

I founded Savvy and lead the creative direction.

I work on designing experiences by creating concepts, condensing ideas, emotions, words, images before translating them into actual graphics. It’s important that we have a greater understanding on what and why we are designing and giving it a purpose. From there it’s easier or friendlier to create as long as you feel related and curious about giving it shape.

Who are your top five design crushes right now?

I’m generally more inspired day-by-day by art. I love design and there are so many talented people and colleagues that I try not to look too much in order to create my own thing.

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Compromising creativity and functionality solely for a client’s satisfaction only leads to a lack of concept and reason. It’s harder to get the satisfaction and project organically when there is a lack of strategy.

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What do you look for in a great portfolio?

Concept, coherence, technique and art.

What do you look for in a great client?

Intelligence, passion, empathy and openness.

Any passion projects/collabs you would like to share?

Working with Mast Books in the East Village, very interesting.

Developing the identity of a building and designing its whole communication.

A fashion label based on the philosophy of Usonia, a project from Architect Frank Lloyd Wright.

What have been some of your biggest disasters and how have you learnt from it?

Compromising my creativity and functionality solely for a client’s satisfaction. It only leads to a lack of concept and reason. It’s harder to get the satisfaction and project organically when there is a lack of strategy.

What career advice would you give your 16yr old self?

Be passionate with design and yourself. Understand your skills well and work around them, don't just copy people whom make things you don't really feel. Maintain an ethical purpose of good design as a base in order to create things that will improve the experience of people as they interact with them [the design]. Nowadays, despite things are moving into the digital world, people whom [still] work offline to illustrate and create are making a greater impact since it shows technique, personality and thoughtfulness.

Website: savvy-studio.net

Instagram: @savvystudio

Twitter: @SavvyStudio

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