We see the world differently, we are Designers

Hi, my name is Anouk

— I am the Student of the Week ;)

Hey Anouk! Tell us a bit about you?

Hej! I am Anouk, a Dutchie who returned to Amsterdam half a year ago after a couple of amazing years in Melbourne. Life in Amsterdam is lovely, but I also miss my life and friends in Melbourne. Feels like I have 2 homes now, so I hope to return to Melbs for a (long) holiday soon.

I have 2 kids (Lasse and Mijs) and am married to Kees. He is a great strategy director (in advertising), lots of fun to be with and a great support while I was juggling work, kids and TGDS. When we got back to Amsterdam I decided to juggle a little less and I focused on finishing the last modules of TGDS before looking for a new job. Felt like such a luxury!

I love traveling, hanging out with friends (with some food & drinks ;), doing fun stuff with the kids and enjoy exercising a couple of times a week (a healthy habit I developed in Melbourne).

What or who inspired you to be a designer?

I have always been interested in design. But being the generalist I am, I never really focused on it and ended up studying and doing work that was not really about design. I have worked as a qual market research director for years and years and I was always obsessed with the look and feel of research reports. Mostly these were quite bad (although I do see a shift these last years).

Anyway, often I would rather spend time on the design elements of a report, while deadlines were approaching fast and I still had to do so much work on the analysis. Our move to Melbourne somehow gave me the confidence and final push to do something about my longing to change my career and learn all about design.

What is your favourite part of the design process?

Probably that moment when the first good ideas start to kick in and you feel you are getting there… and confidence is growing that you might actually succeed.

You were really into all sorts of design disciplines at TGDS, branding, campaigning and even packaging. Have you got a favourite?

I enjoyed all of them! But yeah, of course there are some favourites. I guess I mostly enjoy logo and corporate design. And I really enjoyed designing the magazine spread and would love to further develop my skills in infographic design.

A couple of projects really stand out to me, because I personally feel connected to the subjects. I also took a lot of time to develop an interesting and good brief for these projects.

Like the corporate identity for Daedal, which is a fictional shop I made up. It is a furniture manufacturer & retailer that provides a twist and new purpose to depreciated furniture and items. The result is not 2nd hand, in stead it is about using the materials and turning it in something new and unique: ‘the new new’. I would love it if a shop like that existed in Amsterdam.

For the magazine spread, I wrote a review about a mind-blowing book on the future of our planet. This book also inspired my campaign project, about the impact of our purchases on the planet. It is such an urgent but complex subject, so it is interesting to find ways how design can help to trigger people to be interested and ideally change their habits.

The logo with the giraffe is about the silent extinction of these animals (!), which I had no idea of before doing research on the subject.

The process of designing my personal identity was great. It took me many steps and phases, but with the support of Lee-Anne and Simone I really got there.

The JavaLove logo is special to me, as it feels like my first real ‘design project’. And I’m still happy with the result. Looking back at my projects, I do not feel that way about all my projects ;).

What did you love about studying design?

Probably the whole process. Realising how much I was learning along the way, that I was actually able to design and be a designer… that was just great!

You finished your design course, this week! What’s your dream design job? Don’t hold back!

I like variety, so in my ideal world I would do both corporate design for companies as well as helping (research or other) companies to tell their story and messages in a more visual way. I have a lot of experience with analyzing information, so I would also love to combine that with design; for example, to be involved in developing content and structure for a presentation or infographics and then to do the design of it as well.

I just scored my first project on a freelance basis! Which is actually my ideal combo of analysis and designing the presentation and some infographics. Very happy!

Anouk has just launched her portfolio online, an initial mockup. You might want to contact her for work here: www.anoukmoller.com/