Todd Schilling

Findlay, OH |

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What made you want to become a graphic designer?

“My love of magazines and stickers heavily influenced my life toward becoming a graphic designer. Most all subjects from kindergarten through high school bored the hell out of me, except for art. My dad used to be a wood-worker and had his own shop: when we were kids, we used to go there and play with all the scraps and create things out of blocks of wood-- make things, destroy things, have fun.”

What are your favorite aspects of being a designer?

“I figure I would rather be a poor, happy artist than a rich, snobby drone of the corporate world. Taking things apart: the accomplishment of a finished project when you’re just kind of playing. I like to be able to play all the time and have fun, not have to be stressed out about my work. I think I could find that in graphic design.”

Do you think school has helped prepare you for entering the real world?

“Even though I feel like I struggled with quite a few projects, all in all, after going through the processes and being able to look back and reflect on everything, that’s been my favorite part. It is more about learning and not really about what you make. It’s about how you got to your conclusion and how you learned from it. I like that I've been able to take that on to different projects.”

How would you describe your process when working on a project?

“It depends. Sometimes it starts from sketches that I scan, sometimes I start going to town with the computer. I suppose I just like to play around to see what I can and can’t do. The computer is nice 'cause you can change things easily, and try different options fast without completely ruining a project-- you don’t have to spend two days doing it.”

For designers, do you believe it's more important to work on projects you're passionate about or take whatever work is available?


The graphic design industry is doing more digitally-based work these days: are you excited about the evolution of design, or do you like more traditional mediums?

“I love magazines: I love being able to hold and tear out pages, or cut out images, and take it out and have it as your own: it’s not just something on a screen. At the same time, I enjoy that, with a computer, you can find content and create it a lot faster and get it out to a lot more people. I always feel like I’ve always been a computer nerd-- I’ve always had fun using the computer as a type of canvas and art resource.”

Do you have any favorite designers, artists, or resources you like to get inspiration from?

“I love Ffffound, and grain edit always has great stuff. I just kind of surf around; I like a lot of different things. I’ve always been afraid to commit to a certain style, I guess. I'm majorly influenced by people in snowboard magazines, especially when I was younger. And some of those names-- Trevor Graves, Aaron Draplin-- were people I’ve known about since forever, who I got to meet in Portland. Getting to meet them and hear their views as to what they’re really like-- you can’t get that through a magazine article or from simply seeing their artwork.”

What are your plans for the future?

“Find a job as a graphic artist. I am over crappy jobs that don't include artistic expression.”

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