I really can’t say how much you know her, how could I? The best I can really do besides recommending that you go get to know her yourself at gracesmith (Twitter), would be to read the following questions posed to her recently, so lets get to it.
Obviously, you are a twitterholic who absolutely refuses to attend the weekly meetings. Who are some tweeple, besides myself, who you think everyone should check out?
Grace Smith: Of course you! A few others I would recommend would be:
- emtaylor (Twitter) – Emma is an awesome designer who I’ve been collaborating with for a few years now.(website)
- AtiKuSDesign (Twitter) – Michael is a web designer here in the UK I’ve had many a conversation with.(website)
- meteoracle (Twitter) Westley has literally made me LOL on several occasions with some of his tweets. One of the coolest, funniest people to follow.(website)
- andysowards (Twitter) My long time developer bud who has to be one of the nicest/knowledgeable guys in the industry.(website)
I could honestly go on and on recommending people, there are so many people who rock on twitter. I’ve probably forgotten some of my favorites here (eek)!
You are stranded on an island and can only bring along three musical albums, what would be the color of your tree on the island?
Grace: Red – so hopefully a passing ship might spot it and come rescue me!
Like most freelance designers, you put client projects first and foremost. If you had more free time, what type of projects would you like to do or skillsets you would like to learn?
Grace: I would love to work more mobile design, I’ve just started my first mobile app for a client which is exciting, but I would ideally like to get a chance to be involved in more projects like this.
I also have a real itch to get into designing apps for the iPad and would love to get a little team together to create an app that would be as addictive as it was useful.
Which of the following would you choose to be your ally in an upcoming Apocolypse? Pirate, Ninja, Zombie, Politician?
Grace: It’s got to be a ninja, because they’re quick, smart and deadly.
What are some ways that you rejuvenate your creative juices, especially in a field that requires creativity constantly just to keep up?
Grace: Just leaving the office and freeing myself creatively works extremely well to refresh my creativity, even for just a short period of time. I usually like to get my beloved Canon 350D out and spend 10 or 15 minutes taking and setting up shots, as I find Photography is hugely inspiring.
After the break I usually go straight for my Moleskine and jot down some ideas and have a short brainstorming session which is enough to give me that spark of inspiration to start work.
When birds stand on power lines and don’t get hurt, it’s most likely because of:
- good timing, they only land between calls
- body materials that are insulated from current
- not touching anything else at the same time
- they do get hurt, they just express it poorly
Grace: they do get hurt, they just express it poorly
What is your all-time favorite project, if you had to choose just one?
Grace: Tough question Michael! I think it would have to be the Web Warrior Tools e-book store design I worked on with Leo Babauta and Glen Stansberry around 2 years ago. It was my first time working with some extremely high profile clients online and it was both an awesome opportunity and an amazing experience, because both Leo and Glen were just superb to work with.
That project has led onto scores of other projects and clients, as Leo and Glen have referred me to other people like Muhammad Saleem and Jay White, to name just a few.
I actually talk about this experience more in my blog post: How one question transformed my business
Have you ever been guilty of using Comic Sans in a serious way, before learning the error of your ways and knowing better? Do you have any other similar design crimes?
Grace: Thankfully I can honestly say Comic Sans has never been seen in my Photoshop or CSS files!
Being a creative type, could you tell us some of your favorite styles of art?
Grace: I studied History of Art at A-Level so I’ve developed a deep passion for Art throughout the years. I have quite a diverse taste when it comes to Art, two of my favorite styles being Abstract and Neoclassical. Two of my favorite artists from these styles are Graham Knuttel, an Irish abstract artist and Jacques-Louis David, a French Neoclassical artist.
I’m especially drawn to art with a story, for instance David’s painting – The Death of Marat (considered his masterpiece), beautifully tells the story of his friend Marat, who was assassinated.
I’ve visited both the Tate Gallery and The National Museum of Art in London and aim to return in the near future.
What color, if you could, would you make “the new black?”
Grace: Blue, as it’s my favorite color.
Do you have any original personal quotes that you’re willing to share?
Grace: When I felt down or annoyed about a situation, my Father (who passed away suddenly 5 years ago), would always say to me – “if its to be, it’s up to me”. I’m not sure if that’s something he made up or a quote he had heard, but it’s always stuck with me. The idea behind is, that while I can’t always control what happens in my life, I can decide how I react and that I have to make things happen for myself.
Roses are #FF0000, grass is #00FF00, design is an art, do you know what I mean?
Grace: I sure do. Art and design surrounds us everyday, as designers we should be more keenly aware of this than most!
What are some of your favorite stereotypes to laugh at, regarding designers and the design community?
Grace: That we are all egotistical, beanie wearing, coffee addicts who hate our clients and spend most of our time deciding if #cccccc beats #bbbbbb.
You have a partially filled beverage glass. Is the glass half full, half empty, bigger than the glass needs to be, or “who stole half of my $*&%^ing drink?!?!” ?
Grace: It’s half empty and I’m already on my way back up to the bar!
What are your thoughts on Creative Commons licensing when it comes to the design community? Surely there’s plenty of resources and knowledge that is better off shared and encouraged to be shared.
Grace: I personally feel Creative Commons Licensing is a fantastic way to take your own intellectual property (perhaps images, writing, videos etc) and share it with the community. It encourages collaboration, re-use and sharing while still protecting the original copyright.
For instance I use the Creative Commons License (with Attribution) on Flickr to find images to use within my blog, it means you have the opportunity to use some amazing resources, which without this, you wouldn’t have access to. Of course the original authors specific requests in terms of their work should be respected at all times.
I want to thank Grace for taking part in this interview, I know that I had fun coming up with these questions and I hope she had fun answering them. I am also hoping that other designers will be interested in partaking in an interview with me in the future, allowing everyone to get to know them just a little bit more.
Please comment below with any thoughts or concerns. Also, if you have any questions that you’d like to see asked in possible future interviews, feel free to suggest them as well. All humorous and serious questions….seriously considered.