Student Profile: Josh Apostolopoulos


LZ: Can you tell us a bit about yourself and the art you create?

JA: I am a first year Graphic Design student. I’m still in the basic stages of my design work, learning the basic foundations, trying new things and reading lots of design books.

Where does your inspiration come from? What are you really into right now?

My inspiration lately is mostly bits and pieces I find throughout the internet. I cycle through a lot of different art and design blogs and just always tend to take note of something I find that I think is good design. Lately, I’ve been into web design. I started teaching myself HTML and CSS and I find that I’m gradually getting a sense of the difference between a well-designed web page and an over-designed web page.

What influenced your decision to major in Graphic design?

In high school I became aware of and interested in the world of graphic design. I became more aware of the design aspects of my school projects, probably even to the detriment of the rest of the project sometimes. Any opportunity that allowed me to create visual pieces, I got excited about, as it gave me a chance to explore what I could do visually, and gradually improve my abilities.

What are your favourite tools to work with?

I like pencils, X-ACTO knives, rulers, Adobe Illlustrator and Adobe Lightroom.

Where are you most productive? Tell us a bit about your creative space.

I’m 50/50 between the Learning Zone and my desk at home. It’s helpful to be in an environment where people are doing creative work but it’s also helpful to be in your own cluttered room.

What do you feel is the biggest challenge facing (students or artists) today?

Trying to find a unique and meaningful voice within such a huge population of very talented and creative people.

What two art supplies could you not live without?

Pencil and eraser.

What is your working style (do you work on multiple pieces at once, work best under pressure, etc.)?

I work well when I’m under pressure.

Do you set goals for yourself?

In terms of short term goals, I always have an idea of what I want to be working on, what needs to get done – in terms of long term goals, I’m looking forward to where I’ll go after school. My ideas of where I want to go are constantly changing, I don’t really know at this point what city I’ll be living in a decade from now, but I always have some sort of idea.

How would you describe yourself as a graphic designer?

I would say that I’m still at a very early stage in my abilities as a designer. At this point, I try to observe and learn about as much work as possible, in order to develop my own skills and tastes.

How long have you been interested in art? How long have you known that this is something that you want to pursue as a career?

I’ve always been interested in art as long as I could remember. When I was younger I would take drawing classes and draw a lot in my free time. In high school I took a few art classes, but I never thought that I would end up in art school. After spending a year studying English and Philosophy, I realized that graphic design is what I wanted to pursue as a real career.

What are the most useful skills you have learned at school?

The importance of giving and receiving helpful critiques.

What advice would you give people considering enrolling in art school?

When making the decision of what to do after high school, the most important thing I’ve learned was that you should find what it is that motivates you, rather than just an area of study that you feel you should go into. Just because you may have a strength in something, doesn’t mean that it is what you must pursue. Having an interest in something is much more helpful when you are struggling to learn it.

What do you enjoy most about studying art?

I’ve find that, no matter what I’m studying, I always have a drive to create. Writing essays last year never really fulfilled that drive. Studying design this year has been so much more enjoyable since I get to work with my eyes and my hands, in addition to my mind.  I guess that’s what I find most enjoyable, fulfilling that urge to create something tangible that others can appreciate as well.

What is it that excites you most about the material you work with? Is there another medium you would like to work in?

I’m thinking about possibly minoring in photography and screen printing. They can both compliment my work in graphic design, and they would be interesting mediums to incorporate.

What music are you listening to at the moment?

I’ve been listening recently to Sharon van Etten, and among a few other female musicians lately.

What do you do to relax?

Listen to music.

What are three likes and three dislikes of yours?

Likes: Saturdays, silk-screened posters, instructors who actually care about the class they’re teaching.

Dislikes: Line-ups, lazy critiques, instructors who don’t care.

What is your favourite place to eat around OCADU?

My favourite place to eat is Subway.

What is your favourite thing about studying in Toronto?

I like living in the city, it’s got a lot of diverse neighbourhoods, each have their own unique charm, a lot of places to potentially explore.

What are your plans when you graduate?

At this point I think that I want to work for a non-profit, working in-house, building my experience for a few years before I look for a job in a studio.

What is your dream job?

My dream job is working for a small design studio that works on interesting projects, not sure in what city though.


About The Author

Heather Evelyn

Learning Zone Technician at OCAD University Library.

Other posts by

Author his web site


03 2012

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