Interview with Damian Madray

Date of Interview

March 26, 2010

Designer's Website

Designer's Twitter Page

City & Country of Residence

Toronto, Canada

Curently Working For


Type of Design

Graphic Designer

1. Besides the usual online blogs and galleries, from what or where do you draw inspiration?

I draw a lot of inspiration from movies and games. I try to look at designs in context, that is, billboards, menus, magazines, posters, etc. I literally look at everything from a design perspective constantly asking why those choices are made. For example if I walk through the perfume area in Eaton Center, I love to look at packaging and what they do to promote another fragrance we don't need. I'm also always looking at interior designs for restaurants, stores, and everywhere else I walk in.

It's not like they'll influence my next design but being a creative director, you never know when you will call upon those experiences, those inspiration.

2. Design-related or not, can you list up to 3 books that you've found beneficial to your growth as a designer?

Definitely. Three books beneficial to me are:
The Elements of Graphic Design - literally one of the best books I've read where I learned about whitespace and the various laws of design like C.R.A.P.

Designing Brand Identity — A great book I often refer to on branding.

Thinking with Type — Another one that I use for studies on typography, layout, etc.

3. If you could name one tool/application/software/hardware that you can't live without (from a design perspective), what would it be, and why?

One tool that I cannot live without would be Adobe Photoshop. Rarely a day goes by where I do not open this application and that's because it's the tool I use to do all creative work. It's almost like telling a carpenter he cannot use a hammer. He can substitute but it's just best with a hammer.

4. What would be your design "dream job"?

My dream job is running my own creative studio with high profile clients and some of the best talent under the sun creating amazing things. I believe at some point I will achieve that.

5. What changes would you like to see in the design community in the next 5 years?

The design community is great. We share and collaborate easily and are always willing to help each other learn. No other industry operates like ours where everyone is simply willing to help another by sharing their knowledge. Blogs and communities like Twitter has provided the perfect platform to enable this.

Nothing is perfect though so I'd like to see better critique in various design communities. I'd also like to see more designers — the ones who don't know how to promote themselves — get exposure.

Special thanks to Damian Madray for taking the time to answer these questions exclusively for Interviews by Design.

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