LEGENDARY INTERVIEW

Design Legends ("DL") had the distinct honour to interview legendary designer Artur Konariev ("AK") for their original perspective and innovative approach to design as well as their creative lifestyle, we are very pleased to share our interview with our distinguished readers.

DL: Could you please tell us a bit about your design background and education?

AK : I have two educational degrees that help me interact with design - philosophy and cognitive psychology. My first design education is in the Product Interface Design Course and after that, I was studying the UX and Human-centered Design. The idea “to change life for better” is the part of design thinking. I'm a perfectionist by nature. Therefore, I feel passionate about each of my projects. I’m a Product designer specializing in design thinking, user-friendly interface, and creative direction.

DL: What motivates you to design in general, why did you become a designer?

AK : The most obvious reason is that you get paid for being creative. Although sometimes design can be a procedural discipline, it does allow you to flex your creativity on an ongoing, daily basis. One of the very best things about the design world, in general, is that it's constantly evolving and redefining itself. Every day is different and interesting when you are a designer.

DL: Did you choose to become a designer, or you were forced to become one?

AK : I’ve never really had a career in any other field or seriously considered another one. I was fortunate to grow up with computers and the internet at home and knew I wanted to work with them as a career. The design seemed like a good balance between complex problem solving (science and technology) and the open-ended activity (arts) that I enjoyed. Despite being an introvert, I am incredibly fascinated by observing how people and communities think and behave and I knew the design had a huge influence on that.

DL: What do you design, what type of designs do you wish to design more of?

AK : I like creating web and mobile app in general. At first, I work on the overall idea. I like all the process on the way of turning this idea into something meaningful and functional at the same time. I never get bored with this routine.

DL: What should young designers do to become a design legend like you?

AK : As for young designers, my advice is 'be dedicated to what you do'. Explore, learn different technologies, follow the news, read the blogs by seniors, read a lot. Now there is a lot of information and literature, audio, and video content. These are sources of insider information in the public domain. Use it if it is available. The best way to test and improve your skills is to work. Do not be lazy, and you will be rewarded. Find an agency of your liking, where you can work in a team, ask a lot of questions to senior and experienced who have already gotten bumps. It will be an invaluable experience.

DL: What distinguishes between a good designer and a great designer?

AK : To my mind, great designers understand that it takes creativity plus an understanding of business to create great designs. They understand that design is 80% research and 20% execution - and that often the best solution is one that a competitor or similar company has already invested in solving.

DL: What makes a good design a really good design, how do you evaluate good design?

AK : Design is really good not just when it looks good. It also needs to fulfil its purpose. To my mind, all the process contribute to the overall success of a design project. A good design cannot be measured by a finite way – multiple perspectives are needed. But if the design solves the business tasks, this is half the success. Of course, it is necessary to accurately formulate at the beginning of a business task, because the right goal should be clear to everyone at the beginning. After the research that we conduct, we develop a strategy and determine all the factors and business tasks that need to be solved. Someone can also add if the design is profitable - this is a success. I agree with this because one of the business tasks is to make a profit. Otherwise, what is the use of all this?

DL: What is the value of good design? Why should everyone invest in good design?

AK : It is quite difficult to communicate the value of good design in a quantifiable way. Traditionally value is often looked at as ROI, meaning, the difference between what you spend and what you get back is your direct value. I guess, the value of good design is the opportunity to create meaningful first impressions, helps you differentiate yourself from your competitors, can solve problems.

DL: What would you design and who would you design for if you had the time?

AK : There are many areas of activity that appeal to me and in which I would like to increase my presence. For example, government installations, hospitals, transportation, education, retail, they all use old-style software applications. They are not functional, not convenient, challenging to use, and terrible in appearance. I would like to solve these problems with a practical, user-oriented, visually pleasing design. The work of these employees would become much simpler and more convenient; this would solve many problems that exist in many countries.

DL: What is the dream project you haven’t yet had time to realize?

AK : Create a flamethrower, launch a car into space already done. Colonize Mars; I just do not have time to prepare everything faster than Ilon. I'm not sure what it will be, but there will be something interesting.

DL: What is your secret recipe of success in design, what is your secret ingredient?

AK : Keep it simple or 'genus is based on simplicity' Why do we think simplicity is good? Because when we are dealing with objects, it is vital for us to feel that we are controlling them. By ordering chaos, you find a way to subjugate the subject. Simplicity is not only a visual style. This is not minimalism or lack of clutter. It is necessary to dig a tunnel in the bowels of complexity to achieve simplicity. To be truly simple, you need to get to the very depths. For example, if you are missing some cogs, you run the risk of creating something overly complex and confusing. But it is much better to focus on simplicity, to study it, to figure out its components. To get rid of the secondary, you need to penetrate the essence of the subject. Jonathan Ive

DL: Who are some other design masters and legends you get inspired from?

AK : I like the design by Jonathan Ive. Everyone should understand that the point here is not only in design as a visual component but also in user experience. His work is functional and thought out to the smallest detail. This is what I call excellent design.

DL: What are your favorite designs by other designers, why do you like them?

AK : I like the design by Jonathan Ive. Everyone should understand that the point here is not only in design as a visual component but also in user experience. His work is functional and thought out to the smallest detail. This is what I call excellent design.

DL: What is your greatest design, which aspects of that design makes you think it is great?

AK : Design is really good not just when it looks good. It also needs to fulfil its purpose. To my mind, all the process contribute to the overall success of a design project. A good design cannot be measured by a finite way – multiple perspectives are needed. But if the design solves the business tasks, this is half the success. Of course, it is necessary to accurately formulate at the beginning of a business task, because the right goal should be clear to everyone at the beginning. After the research that we conduct, we develop a strategy and determine all the factors and business tasks that need to be solved.

DL: How could people improve themselves to be better designers, what did you do?

AK : I never stop exploring myself. Every new tasks open up new sources in me. Each project is a news story. Explore, learn different technologies, follow the news, read the blogs by seniors, read a lot. The best way to test and improve your skills is to work. Do not be lazy, and you will be rewarded.

DL: If you hadn’t become a designer, what would you have done?

AK : I would become a businessman and client. Design is the same business. The business has many directions, art, paintings, finance, retail. All of them have stages, regardless of the field of activity. Before starting the project, it is necessary to do a study. Study the market, products, users, competitors, write a business plan and, following the steps, implement everything that I planned— the same as the design processes.

DL: How do you define design, what is design for you?

AK : For me, design is about communicating feelings through visual sensations and unique experiences. Design provides an opportunity to create distinction, in visual communication, service or product design by adding your personal touch.

DL: Who helped you to reach these heights, who was your biggest supporter?

AK : Unfortunately, I did not have a mentor whom I could rely on and count on help. I had to achieve everything myself, and I am happy that I went this way. I met many interesting people, visited many places, solved complex problems that made me who I am now.

DL: What helped you to become a great designer?

AK : It doesn’t matter how good you are. Fields like design are always changing, shifting and growing. The only way to stay on the edge is to constantly learn and improve your design skills. I think one needs to make progress and improve design skills despite the level of expertise. Learning from the greats is the only possible way to become great.

DL: What were the obstacles you faced before becoming a design master?

AK : Designers must stay attuned to the fast-changing trends and preferences within audiences of different generations, cultural backgrounds, and tech-savvy. Besides, feeling a lack of control and ownership over your work can be the most difficult thing for a designer or any creative professional. Unfortunately, it is a reality of doing work for hire. The client or employer gets to dictate the art direction more often than not, and very early in your career, you’ll likely be little more than an executor for someone’s creative vision.

DL: How do you think designers should present their work?

AK : It depends on the object complexity. At this time, when the world is changing rapidly and dictating its own rules. From my perspective, I would advise approving ideas with clients, even at the level of thoughts, without a long preparation of presentations. It is better to understand that you and the client are on the same wavelength at the beginning of the project at the stage of brainstorming, drafts, prototypes. It will be worse if, after the end of the project, you presented to the client all the genius of your work, and he says that this is not at all what he wanted and expected. Include your client in your work process, so they will be in the know and feel responsible for the steps taken since he signed up for the proposed concept, prototypes, then he will not be able to say that the structure is not the same.

DL: What’s your next design project, what should we expect from you in future?

AK : It’s too early to say that due to the pandemic, many of our clients suspended their work, and it violated plans. But we are also negotiating with new customers who have managed to adapt to new working conditions and are ready to develop. I tell everyone that this is your chance. At the same time, your competitors are frozen and take no action, you can use this minute to improve yourself, your brand, your product, enter the market with a new offer when everything works again, and this will happen anyway.

DL: What’s your ultimate goal as a designer?

AK : My goal right now is to make Wadoo. agency the one that enables young professionals to work with people they can learn from. Later down the line, I would like Wadoo. agency to hold a strong position on the market and an excellent reputation among the customers. I hope for continuous improvement and growth.

DL: What people expect from an esteemed designer such as yourself?

AK : Well, the clients love a little extra sugar in their coffee, therefore they expect many things at a time. They expect perfect understanding and an eternal stream of ideas, Besides, they often expect you to know their preferences and needs as soon as they walk up. In case you are an esteemed designer, there is no place for mistakes in your work. The standards and expectations get even more sophisticated each time.

DL: How does design help create a better society?

AK : Design provides solutions to cater to the individuals' needs. Well-designed products improve how people accomplish tasks and as a result, the operation of a society as a whole. Thus, our main sphere of responsibility is efficiency and comfort. We can convey complicated things in a language that is easy to understand, and also, through trial and error, improve existing principles and things. For example, a designer can create a universal type of bottle which, during production, will use 50% less plastic but remain convenient and functional.

DL: What are you currently working on that you are especially excited about?

AK : Many of the projects we have been working on have stalled due to the impact of the pandemic. But we are currently negotiating and will launch new projects shortly.

DL: Which design projects gave you the most satisfaction, why?

AK : With each new project, I am becoming a little better than yesterday. I always try to implement new technology in a project, create a new concept. In this way, it gets possible not to stop and develop all the time. One such project was the development of an AR application for LG Uplus along with the EyeCandyLab team from Augmented Reality. Then it was my first touch of Additional Reality not as a user but as a designer. This project gave me deeper knowledge and skills in using new technology in practice. Now I use this experience to make new projects more successful. By adding new functionality, applications become better and more popular as they solve even more tasks.

DL: What would you like to see changed in design industry in the coming years?

AK : I like the tendency of Bio design; unity with nature is now more relevant than ever.

DL: Where do you think the design field is headed next?

AK : To my mind, in the near future design will get more paramount. It will address even more complex problems. Design is not only a beautiful cover; the design is a problem-solving tool. Technologies like AR / VR / MR / XR will change major industries like medicine, architecture, transportation, space, and the automotive industry. An excellent example of Elon Musk with his ideas.

DL: How long does it take you to finalize a design project?

AK : It depends on the object complexity. It may take from several days up to several months, actually. At this time, when the world is changing rapidly and dictating its own rules, I cannot develop some projects for months. Business needs to offer quick solutions that are relevant now. We killed a perfectionist. We took maximum responsibility and decisions on ourselves. For us, the speed of response, relevance, and strength of an idea are more critical than a licked creative. We have narrowed the deadlines: from the brief to the finished materials - one, two weeks, instead of 3 months.

DL: When you have a new design project, where do you start?

AK : Design process turns out to be pretty much the same in all cases. I would describe it in 10 simple words (at the same time steps): Understand, Discovery, Research, Mind mapping, Low-fidelity wireframe, Analyse, High-fidelity prototype, Design, Launch, Analyse (again). Thus, the very first step is to Understand.

DL: What is your life motto as a designer?

AK : 1“Have no fear of perfection—you’ll never reach it.” –Salvador Dali 2 “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.” –Steve Jobs 3. “Draw the art you want to see, start the business you want to run, play the music you want to hear, write the books you want to read, build the products you want to use – do the work you want to see done.” ― Austin Kleon, Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative 4.“Plagiarism is trying to pass someone else's work off as your own. Copying is about reverse-engineering.” ― Austin Kleon, Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative

DL: Do you think design sets the trends or trends set the designs?

AK : I believe that trends sets the designs. Changes that occur in the world, in society, in science / technology affect the development of design.

DL: What is the role of technology when you design?

AK : Because of the development of technology, designers are not just all about art any more. They are also now becoming more knowledgeable about data sciences and mathematics. The rise of artificial technology and the Internet of Things, are just some examples why there are now more kinds of skilled designers that can serve the world today.

DL: What kind of design software and equipment do you use in your work?

AK : Over the years, I got a considerable number of tabs with ideas and inspiration. I look through them often. I’m also subscribed to different news portals, so new designs skip through my newsfeed all the time. Mindmeister, Sketch, and InVision are the main tools in my work. They cover 80%: the remaining 20% - Google Analytics, Usertesting.com, Wrike management tool for work and planning. A major role is played by research and the search for solutions to new problems, Dribbble, Behance, Pinterest help me in this.

DL: What is the role of the color, materials and ambient in design?

AK : The correlation of colours is essential to their impact. The appropriate combination of colours expresses thoughts in efficient without words and influences audiences. Selection of specific colours by an individual or a company should reflect their brand mission along-with strength and clarity, so that it will attract prospective customers.

DL: What do you wish people to ask about your design?

AK : Can I have the same cool design? I really liked how you solved these problems with the help of design solutions.

DL: When you see a new great design or product what comes into your mind?

AK : Usually, I experience delight and fulfilment. Every completed project brings even more satisfaction to me. I understand that all efforts were not in vain. Each project has its idea, and when it reaches the goal of realization, then magic happens.

DL: Who is your ideal design partner? Do you believe in co-design?

AK : It is already difficult to work in a large team to create one project. But with proper management, planning, defining roles and deadlines, you can work on a large project with several departments. For example, a team of brand strategy, web design and mobile applications. If you use the resources correctly, you can succeed. If you ask about two design agencies, this can be, but only if they use the same workflows and focus on one result. This is difficult to beat, because the agencies are different and they all have company policies and their goals that often do not coincide with each other. To all this, add more software skills to managers who will need to be done by processes, information and delegate tasks.

DL: Which people you interacted had the most influence on your design?

AK : I don’t have friends who could influence my work and the design itself.

DL: Which books you read had the most effect on your design?

AK : Universal Principles of Design - William Lidwell, Kritina Holden, Jill Butler Designing Design - Kenya Hara Design Elements, Color Fundamentals: A Graphic Style Manual for Understanding How Color Affects Design - Aaris Sherin

DL: How did you develop your skills as a master designer?

AK : Explore, learn different technologies, follow the news, read the blogs by seniors, read a lot. Now there is a lot of information and literature, audio, and video content. These are sources of insider information in the public domain. Use it if it is available. The best way to test and improve your skills is to work.

DL: Irrelative of time and space, who you would want to meet, talk and discuss with?

AK : With many, and not only from the world of design. Many people are doing inspiration for great things when doing their work. I would like to get to know them, chat, understand what motivates them, what drives them. It would be a wonderful experience and time.

DL: How do you feel about all the awards and recognition you had, is it hard to be famous?

AK : I’ve been lucky enough to experience awards from various positions: as a nominee, a judge, presenter. I know that receiving recognition can change a team or individual’s energy, engagement and motivation.I have not reached that level of recognition to start worrying about it.

DL: What is your favorite color, place, food, season, thing and brand?

AK : I am delighted with natural colors, summer green, the color of natural brown leather on products, a combination of black and white in clothes. I love nature, I like to climb mountains, it is incredibly beautiful and inspiring. There I can relax and enjoy forgetting everything. Each season of the year has its own charms, its own characteristics. In autumn there are a lot of fresh food, vegetables, fruits, meat. Winter games in the snow, skiing, winter festivals. In the spring it is warm and cozy, and in the summer the sun and summer rains, warm evenings with family and friends. I listen to rock, rock and roll, blues, soul, classical music, alternative. It all depends on the place and mood.

DL: Please tell us a little memoir, a funny thing you had experienced as a designer?

AK : It was a web design project for a beauty salon: an exciting project but just a hell of a client. I had no experience in communicating with clients, and I thought that "The client is always right." I created my design concept, not according to the brief and vision of the client. Guess what - it was approved by the client right away with minor corrections.

DL: What makes your day great as a designer, how do you motivate yourself?

AK : Establishing business processes in the agency. I make plans for the day, check the work of the team, communicate with customers, search and sell services, emailing/correspondence, set up, structure, and document the work processes. What concerns motivation, I would say that solving complex problems is the main source of creativity. Solving a painful problem - if we know that our work can solve a painful problem we can be unstoppable. The precise understanding of the issue allows us to stay laser-focused. This focus can be the source of the ultimate design quality.

DL: When you were a little child, was it obvious that you would become a great designer?

AK : I dreamed of becoming an actor, this is also a creative profession, so I can say that I was always drawn to create something with my own hands. To knit, cross-stitch, create wood furniture, I tried and did all this, I want to tell you and it worked out pretty well for me.

DL: What do you think about future; what do you see will happen in thousand years from now?

AK : Things like flying cars, sophisticated artificial intelligence, and quantum computers may emerge from science fiction into reality in less time than we think. Thus, a thousand years is a far long perspective to discuss. It's hard to wrap the mind around how far advanced we'll be by then.

DL: Please tell us anything you wish your fans to know about you, your design and anything else?

AK : Follow our updates and subscribe to our channels to be the first to know. I recently launched my blog, so you can find there a lot of useful things for yourself. https://www.facebook.com/wadoo.space https://www.instagram.com/wadoo.space https://www.linkedin.com/company/wadoo https://twitter.com/Wadoodotspace https://www.behance.net/wadoo https://dribbble.com/arturkonariev https://medium.com/@arturkonariev

LEGENDARY DESIGNER

ARTUR SPECIALIZES IN DESIGN THINKING, DEVELOPING A USER-FRIENDLY INTERFACE AND A CREATIVE APPROACH. PROVIDING MODERN CONTENT DESIGN THAT HELPS THE CUSTOMER’S BUSINESS GROW RAPIDLY IS A PRIORITY FOR ARTUR. WHETHER IT IS A MULTINATIONAL CORPORATION OR A SMALL INDEPENDENT COMPANY, HE WILL BE GLAD TO WORK ON YOUR BUSINESS OBJECTIVES.


Flame Dating Mobile Application

Flame Dating Mobile Application by Artur Konariev

Design Legends Logo

© 2020 Design Legends - All Rights Reserved

Design Legends platform highlights valuable insights from the best designers from across the globe; a great resource for all designers to learn, reflect and think about good design and how good design helps create value for the society.

Design Legends website was created by DesignPRWire and A' Design Award to promote truly great designers, outstanding architects and inspirational artists that contribute to the development and advancement of society with their outstanding works.