Tomasz Błokowski

Featured Interview ~ Tomasz Błokowski

About:

Please share a summary of yourself and your career "in a nutshell" to help introduce you to the community.

I have always liked to turn ideas into reality. I am a man who is constantly looking for inspiration in all sorts of things and thanks to that I can try to create various solutions for clients. My working career includes several agencies and currently I'm working both as Senior Designer in the interactive agency Webidea (4+ years) and as freelance Art Director under the brand Graviomedia (10+ years). Through different responsibilities I have developed as a designer and a creative consultant and lastly, the sales of our services.

In The Beginning:

1. Can you remember who or what gave you the idea to begin a career in design?

Actually, it was me and a couple of factors and opportunities that appeared in my life. First projects were­ websites from scratch I made about 15 years ago. The turning point occurred a little over 10 years ago. It was during graduation and I was thinking about my future career. At that time it became possible to undertake the first commercial project which contributed to the decision to create my own freelance personal brand called Graviomedia.

2. What was the first website you were involved in designing and / or developing and how well did it go?

The first websites I built were for a company engaged in the rental of pneumatic equipment, my own website (as a musician) and my own localhost "portal" with hot links to interesting things. These first commercial projects were the beginning of my career. I always took care of each customer and many of them from those back then still work with me today.

3. How would you describe your career thus far? Is it all going to plan or is there no plan?

I think it's a plan without boundaries. I am still learning and working hard to be better designer and human being, even if it is just one percent every day. I'm setting goals from time to time as small steps to a larger whole.

4. What career advice would you give to yourself if you could send yourself a "temporal text" 10 years into the past?

Work wisely and be patient because if you give your all, then everything will be just as you imagined.

Favorite Things:

1. What are your favorite aspects about working in design?

Creating and engaging in the process of developing a brand for my client. Sometimes I have a ton of thoughts which I must sketch and write down and immediately start creating, designing. I can capture then the most important, valuable and productive thoughts. As a result I can feel something I can call "the flow state". Typically, in these circumstances there is the phenomenon of the Pareto principle ­whereby I spend 20% of the time to get a 80% of the effect.

2. If you could pick only one favorite project from your experience thus far, which would it be and why?

There were many favorite projects, but I think it might be a website for "I To SiÄ Ceni" vocal band. This website has won many awards and recognitions, it was presented in many blogs and the like. I created it almost five years ago and it has opened new opportunities and in a certain sense changed my approach to web design.

3. What would be your favorite trend in web design and development from the last 5 years?

For me it is a storytelling in interactive websites engaging users to explore them.

4. Are there any favorite trends you would like to see more of in 2016?

I'd like to still be evolving my own style and applying timeless principles rather than follow trends. Design should be timeless and useful primarily. I'd like to see more websites which are beautifully designed but balanced with user interface. Of course, the web experiments are exciting, but to be honest it can show great idea and creators' skills but necessarily may not be an effective sales tool. Everything depends on complexity of such work and the question "can I show it in this way, or is this only art for art's sake?”.

Life Hacks:

1. Did you always want to work in the creative industries or did you consider any other career options?

I have always wanted to work in the creative industries. If not as a designer then as a creator of something. I have an inner need to give the world something that come from me, especially if it can help someone, for example, in building their own business or just bring them a smile.

2. Do you have a good work and life balance or is it a work in progress? Any tips?

Differently a work in progress. But I think that the balance will come with time. Independently I'm always trying to have time for important people around me.

3. What advice would you give to younger professionals wanting to find success in design?

Give your all. Learn. Practise. Try to new things. Be curious about the world. Listen to others. Draw conclusions. Let the problem be a challenge. Think like a client of the client. Be patient. Surround yourself with experts and wise men. And never stop to develop. At first it is a sowing time, later it is harvesting time.

4. If you had all the money you would ever need, what would you do with your life?

I would like to keep doing the same in different places of the world.

Projects:

1. What type of projects and what industries do you prefer to work in?

I believe that every industry can be shown in a curious way. But of course we have to be careful in the use of non-­standard solutions and keep the balance between UI and UX. Another case is the artistic website focused on spectacular effects. This is to show products or services in different ways and you can show your skills too.

2. What memorable challenges or highlights have you experienced from the projects you have worked on?

Many projects have their own challenges. One of them I think might be The Olszanska Art Studio website which I designed while at an agency. My crazy visions came true. Among other things thanks to a capable web developer.

3. What are your, or your company’s, greatest strengths?

I'm constantly evolving and I'll never give up.

4. What is the latest project you worked on or what are you working on right now?

Recently I worked on several projects. Among them was Odnowa, a­ website for a Fitness& SPA business in Poland in the Kraków­CzÄstochowa Upland. It's located in the Stara WieÅ Relax Centre. That was freelance work and I created the vision and design of this production in cooperation with a photographer and a web developer.

Another project was Vanguardo, a men's hair removal gel. This product was created with a talented team from the agency where I'm working. It was work from scratch from the first concepts through copywriting, designing, development and marketing. I was responsible for overall visual concept, logo design, packaging and website design.

The latest project over which I had the opportunity to work on was Palace ­Luxury Rooms in Pobierowo. It is hotel located in Poland, on the Rewal Coast. Six years after I created the previous website, it came time for the new fresh idea. This freelance project I created again in cooperation with a photographer and a web developer.

Thank you for sharing an insight into your world. Any last words?

Thank you for interview. I'm proud to belong to the JPanel as a Judge and I'm really pleased to observe the interesting community of talented designers and developers which are giving us an everyday inspiration dose on CSS Design Awards.
I wish you all the best!

Tomasz is a Freelance Art Director at Graviomedia & Senior Designer at Webidea. He's an award-winning designer & creative consultant with 10+ years experience.

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