03 Jan Interview with Daniel Coutinho Ferreira
Brazil lost an inspirational designing guru when thirty-four-year-old Daniel Coutinho Ferreira moved to the concrete metropolis of Los Angeles, California, in search of a career in design and a partnership with a company called Buck. Within the enterprise a collection of artists, designers and storytellers work together to provide their clients with only the best in advertising, broadcast, film, and entertainment. Fortunately, Ferreira certainly wasn’t a newbie in the fast-paced jungle of L.A., as from a young age the artist found himself drawn toward art and illustration. According to the designer, when the time came to buckle up and choose a path, “I decided to pursue a degree in graphic design,” he says. “During my college years, I developed a passion for the field of motion graphics. [First] I started in Broadcast Design and 5 years later in the year of 2006, I moved on to advertising,” says Ferreira.
With a strong desire for digital illustration, Ferreira’s work has always been a combination of design and animation. His approach when designing an animated peace involves many factors, he claims. For example, “the work usually comprises of a sequence of boards, each one having a connection with the next. Aside from the well-known design principles, there also must be a continuous visual thread through each; next, a good motion graphics piece must flow as the transitions from one scene to the next become natural,” Ferreira says. “Animation does bring the work to life, but planning in design is essential for the success of the piece,” he adds.
The key to the designer’s thought process comes through inspiration, and the single biggest influence on Ferreira’s journey has been a myriad of mentors who shed light on directing aspects of the trade. “When you receive good feedback from a director, you carry that with you onto your proceeding tasks. From this, you’ll then be more likely to challenge your own work each time, with more scrutiny before presenting it. You’ll know what mistakes to look out for,” the artist states. “As far as prominent names in the field of graphic design that inspire me– Saul Bass and Paul Rand are names that I always mention, due to their visual style as well as their innovative spirit,” says Ferreira.
Fascination fuels passion and such creative inspiration seeps in Ferreira’s work. According to the designer, social media has played an influential role in the success of the motion graphics industry. Apparently, as upcoming artists are using it more and more through promotional efforts, Ferreira claims that clients strive to reach their intended audiences through social media platforms as well. “It’s affecting many aspects of the trade: the way we work, and how fast things change; but, what will our industry look like in the near future? That’s a fascinating question,” he states.
The Brazilian designer finds passion in other realms besides work. When asked what that might be — “nature,” he says. “We live in such a fast-paced era surrounded by so much amazing technology, that we sometimes forget about the big picture: where we are, how much we depend on the planet we inhabit, and how much all living creatures are affected by our way of life. If the comfort we create for ourselves detaches us from our real roots, then we will never be able to find peace and fulfillment,” says Ferreira.
When it comes to advice from others, the artist stays humble. He says: “Learn the first and last name of everyone you work directly with! I learned this from my supervisor during my internship more than 10 years ago, and it was actually more of a lesson than a piece of advice,” Ferreira states. “What’s funny is that I can’t quite explain why this is so valuable to me– maybe it has to do with professionalism; maybe it has to do with feeling more involved with the team you belong to; maybe it has to do with the ability to report situations to your superiors with more accuracy.
That’s not the only piece of valuable information the designer swears by. According to Ferreira, it’s imperative in business to continuously “talk to your peers in person as opposed to using online chat. In my view, this builds relationships and bonds teammates together more strongly.” Wise words from an integral team player. To find out more about the artist’s digital animation, story designs, illustrations, awards, and achievements, visit http://danielcoutinho.net.