Kaashvi Kothari : In Conversation With A Graphic Designer

Kaashvi is a visual designer based out of nowhere specific. She works full-time at Studio Ping Pong and is a part-time freelancer. She works in both print and digital mediums and enjoys branding, typography, data viz, illustration and editorial design. In her free time, she likes to window shop fonts, play with recipes, thrift clothes, read books and browse supermarket aisles for hours. You’ll most likely find her making long lists, cleaning obsessively and thinking about her next meal. She takes a lot of photos, without any permission from fellow humans. She gets bored too quickly and needs constant change.

Why are you a Graphic Designer?
I was quite sure I wanted to pursue graphic design since high school.
I have multiple interests and design does give me a lot of freedom to explore and learn new things everyday. I love the nature of our work too. No day is ever boring, it has a lot to offer.

Did you attend school for fine art or design?
I completed my graduation from MIT Institute of Design, Pune in Communication Design.

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You have a distinct style of Design. How long did it take you to develop your style?
I love to experiment with different styles and mediums, and just simply create. It’s important for me to take out time for practice every now and then- let it be lettering or drawing florals or studying color and composition. I think over the years, working on a variety of projects has really helped me apply these skills and develop my style

How did you focus so much on graphic illustrations? When did you realise you loved doing it and wanted more of it?
I find it very fascinating how something, for eg. a fish- might have been drawn differently a million times in the past, but we still come across an illustration of it which leaves us in awe. There are new ways of seeing and newer ways of communicating visually what you see. Everyone has different influences and perspectives. And I think illustration gives you so much room for experimenting and creating, I really enjoy that. It gives me a lot of joy.

Were there any particular role models for you when you grew up?
Can’t recollect anyone specific but I’ve always looked upto female designers running their own show.

When did you start freelancing?
First year in college. I did small gigs I got through friends and the college in the start. I had reached out to a couple of places for internships in my first year and I eventually started freelancing for them.

Was there any time when you wanted to quit graphic design?
Nope never. There are some days when the motivation is low and sometimes when I feel burnt out, but I’ve never wanted to quit graphic design. There are a lot of other interests I’d like to explore though. I’d love to study/ learn more about behavioural economics, child psychology, food science, nutrition, natural medicine, photography, textile to name a few. I do hope to possibly work at the intersection of these + design in the future.

Are many advertising agencies hiring graphic designers? Do you work more with agencies or publishers or direct clients?
I have worked with agencies/ studios previously but lately I’ve been working more directly with clients, brand managers or collaborating with other designers.

Do you have clients who give you steady work or do you advertise for new clients often?
I do have a couple of clients who give steady work or direct me to newer clients through word-of-mouth. I also get new ones through Instagram and Behance sometimes.

How do you market yourself?
For Illustrations, Lettering, Wedding Invite Design- Instagram works well for me.
For Branding, Packaging, Editorial- its through word of mouth and past clients.

Any other Indian graphic designers who you admire?
Kriti Monga, Shiva Nallaperumal

What advice do you have for aspiring creative professionals? Would you advise them to take on graphic design as a career option?
I’d say if you enjoy it, don’t give up easily or switch to other professions. Stick around for a bit, it’s quite fulfilling.

Do you think Clients are opening up to keeping aside a decent respectable budget for design work? Do you think clients are understanding that they need to invest in Design as a communication tool and also to cut the clutter, and that good design comes at a price?
I think there’s definitely change and more awareness now than ever.
There are lot of clients who understand the value of good design.

Mac or PC?
Mac.

Who would you like to take out for dinner?
Hmm so many people. But I would call them home for a themed pop-up dinner.

What’s on your iPod? Spotify?
Lotsa podcasts.
Freakonomics, Unexplainable, Sporkful that I can remember on top of my head

Whats your Twitter Handle? Instagram? Behance?
@type.nerd
www.behance.net/kaashvikothari

Kaashvi Kothari
Kaashvi Kothari
Kaashvi Kothari
Kaashvi Kothari
Kaashvi Kothari
Kaashvi Kothari
Kaashvi Kothari
Kaashvi Kothari
Kaashvi Kothari

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