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Caroline Cook, graphic designer

Caroline Cook, graphic designer

Published by Leonardo Calcagno

Your current job : 

I’m a graphic designer, just finished my studies and currently looking for a new job, that challenges me and where I can really make use of my creativity. In the meantime, I try putting my 1000 ideas to use and work on my individual projects

In which city are you located? 

Vienna, Austria

A word to define what kind of worker you are : 

passionate and experimental

What tools are essential to your life (app, software, etc..) 


What does your office space look like?

Usually, it’s my kitchen (as I work from home) or any other place where I can smoke, haha. I don’t like to do breaks during work, because it completely disrupts my workflow and if I have to get up to have a zigarette – well that’s a break. Generally, I work for eight or ten hours straight, so my kitchen, or balcony in the summer, or my living room are a mess, which doesn’t bother me up to a certain point, where there is no possible way through the room anymore. 

I’m actually looking for a co-shared working space, because I love to work beside or together with people, who design or do similar kind of work as me. Also, I love to paint, and for that, I’ll be needing way more space 

What kind of music do you listen to when you are working? 

always old-school hip-hop. I know all the songs on my laptop already, so I don’t have to pay attention to the song itself, so I don’t get distracted and I love hip-hop, so it’s always good to support. I usually have like 10 albums running up and down on repeat, so I don’t realize how long I have been working and it keeps me going on tough projects

Do you have a way to organize your day to maximize your work? 

no. I’m too much driven by inspiration and spontaneity. So my motto is always: “You have an idea? Get up and do it!” Even if it’s in the middle of the night – when I have an idea I can’t sleep, so I have to get up and start working on it or at least write down the concept or something. Usually, with great ideas, I think it’s never beneficial to wait until “it’s the right time” because if you don’t start, you eventually lose interest in it and the idea would go to waste. 

What tips would you give to improve productivity? 

as stated above! 

I personally find it difficult to take long breaks from work because I lose my routine, but they’re necessary otherwise there is never room in your head for new ideas and new ways of seeing things. I think every designer knows that phase where everything you do seems rubbish and you just can’t figure out a certain project and you lose motivation. In that case, I always say to myself “better done than perfect” (was it marc Zuckerberg?). If everyone worked until it’s perfect, no one would have ever finished a single project.

You’re better than your colleagues to :

go up a mountain on my bike whilst smoking

What is the best advice anyone has given you? 

you can transform even the most boring job or briefing into something that interests you and you will make the best of it – my typography teacher in college.

Sounds obvious, but I think many forget that because they are too stuck with their heads in their usual working routine. For instance, you get a briefing that you find boring or you don’t like the company. It doesn’t sound like a “creative” job, where you can use neon colors or turn typography upside down or whatever it is, that you would like to do. When I think of what my teacher said back then, it does seem like a creative job in the end and I will figure out a way, to do the job in a manner that I can say, that the client and I are content with it. I will even manage to add the neon colors in some way if that is what I think looks good. I would never design something I can’t stand for because it will never sell.

What is your best tip for saving time? 

work hard

What is your routine start and end of the day? 

Get up, drink A LOT of coffee and cigarettes in the morning, get an overview of what I got to do and decide if I do it or not, haha. End of the day – well, try not to think about what I still got to do, otherwise, I don’t sleep, watch friends, brush my teeth, lie in bed and fall asleep two hours later

Aside from your computer and your phone, what gadget can you not you go without?

my bike, Hercules. |