At SOY, we celebrate our creatives who bring our clients’ concepts to life. As a remote digital marketing agency across Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines, our team is composed of unique individuals who come from interesting backgrounds, experiences and expertise.
To kick off our Things that Inspire Me series, we talked to our amazing Graphic Designer, Anh Nguyen from Vietnam, about what continues to inspire her in her career, and how she celebrates art in different ways every day.
Hey Anh, could you tell us about yourself and what do you do at SOY?
I have been a graphic designer for about ten years for a couple of agencies, and I joined SOY in 2019. My role as Graphic designer is to conceptualise any type of marketing collateral based on a client’s brief, and create design solutions that meet their specific requirements.
How did you get into graphic design?
My sister actually got me interested in graphic design. When she was a student in the Ho Chi Minh University of Architecture, she saw that I had a lot in common with some of her friends who were studying graphic design. I realised that my skills, interests and personality are suitable for this field so I went for it.
I come from a family of architects – I’m the only outlier! My father was adamant that I become an architect as well. But I remember my sister and I had to argue with him to fight for what I wanted to pursue. During my first two years at the Ho Chi Minh University of Architecture, I learned the foundation of art, human anatomy, and soon after I chose graphic design as my major.
Who or what were your early design inspirations? Where do you get your inspirations from?
One designer whose work has inspired me is Paul Rand, an American designer who is considered as the pioneer of Modernist design. Rand was an art director for different publications magazines such as Esquire and Apparel Arts, which is now GQ. His experience in publishing has helped him create iconic logos for big brands like IBM, the American Broadcasting Company (ABC), American Express, Ford, UPS, Westinghouse, and even Yale University. His work taught me that a good designer values the fundamental knowledge of art. That’s why I thank my university for giving me that foundation that has helped shape my career as a graphic designer in Vietnam.
What’s your design philosophy?
My design inspirations can come from anywhere, but a lot of them are born out of my experiences. I’ve worked with so many clients over the years, but I’ve learnt that a good design is only good if people can perceive your message instantly. It’s not about a beautiful or fancy picture, but how it comes across to your intended audience. And this message, supported by graphic design, should last in your customers’ minds.
How do you usually express your creativity in your own time?
As a mother of two, it seems hard to have any free time, but my kids and I paint with water colour or acrylic paints during weekends. I don’t always have time for myself, but when I do, I often meditate. Mindfulness is how I try to slow things down and improve my mental ability and mental health. The more peaceful my mind is, the more creative I can be. And aside from meditation, I usually turn to piano and guitar music to unwind.
What are some of your favourite projects that you’ve done here with SOY?
My work with Australian clients, Brady Electrical Contracting (BEC) and Repurpose It have been some of my recent favourites because print design is one of my strong points.
BEC is an electric company that has many impressive projects and visuals. Maybe I was interested in their style and what they design for their clients that’s why I found inspiration in their photos to get their website and capability statement done. I am so happy they love the minimalist design that I’ve gone for. It’s such a welcome coincidence when a designer and the client have the same style, so working on their collateral is a very enjoyable experience.
What kind of artistic things are you looking to explore in the future?
I believe art and design are always evolving, and it’s good to keep updated and learn new information or skills that will complement what I have right now, so I plan to study video editing in the near future!