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Sander Rietdijk Interview

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Sander Rietdijk is not only an artist with a knack for creating amazing art, but he is also very wise and has learned a lot of interesting things in his few years exploring the world of graphic design.

Sander has partnered up with a friend Thimo Smit to create their own graphic design studio named Edberry Creative. On top of that Sander will discuss the benefits and disadvantages of collaborating with another artist. We'll learn about how he creates an amazing typographic piece. So lets get into this great interview!

1. Welcome to Psdtuts+, please introduce yourself. Could you tell us where you're from and how you got started in the field?

Hi there, my name is Sander Rietdijk. I'm 26 years old. I live in the city Utrecht in the Netherlands and I'm one half of the Amsterdam based design studio Edberry Creative

As a kid I loved to draw and create things, but I didn't hear about Photoshop until I discovered it during my study of Communications; and I instantly loved it. After experimenting for some time, I started publishing some work on the Internet and from there I started getting some exposure and after awhile even some clients. This was when I decided to give working as a freelance designer a try. And until today I'm still keeping myself alive and even own a small studio in Amsterdam.

2. You are an extremely well-rounded designer with artwork in many categories, what would you say is your favorite style to design in?

My favorite style is probably whatever I think looks cool. During my work I'm always searching for new styles and techniques to use within my designs. So I guess that's probably the main reason you see such diversity within my work. The reason why I do this is to keep challenging myself to stay creative and because I believe you should never stop learning.

3. Illustrations like "BADABOOM" and "Music In My Head" are collaborations that you have done with other artists. What would you say are some pros and cons to collaboration with different artists? Should designers be doing this frequently or on rare occasions?

I believe collaborations are a good way to learn new things and to see how other people create things. It's also interesting to find out if you can team up with someone else to come out with something new. But I also learned you should pick your collaborations wisely, because not every combination will work. Some styles, techniques or minds just can't be mixed. I did collaborations that ended up in complete disasters and others that came out really cool.

So today I think about it twice before I say yes to a collab. "BADABOOM" For example was created together with Armen Mnatsakanjan with who I already collaborated in the past. So when we started on this one I was quite sure it would work. So I believe you should get to know somebody a little better before you say yes to making art together.

4. "The Common Paradox" is an astounding mix of typography and photo manipulation. Please walk us through how you made this illustration and what this piece represents.

I started of this piece as collaboration with Saad Moosajee. He rendered me some 3D letters out of abstract shapes and gave those to me. But when I started working with them, the letters didn't really work for me. So I decided to start again from scratch.

The concept behind the piece was to show the word "order" within a chaotic scene, to symbolize the concept order vs. chaos. So when I started, I picked some typography I liked and spelled out the word "order" on the canvas. After that I messed them up a bit using some masking and brushing because I wanted them to look more messed up

After I was done with placing the type, I added different shapes, like lines, triangles and dots, to the piece to make it look chaotic. After that I added the bullet bursting out of the letter "D" to symbolize a loud sound and the numbers "0", "20," "43," "31," "51," "74" that look like random numbers, but they do have a logical pattern. Finally I added the girl that's looking at the scene as the main character of the piece and to give it a human touch.

5. Typography is something a viewer will notice comes up a lot in your portfolio. So what would you say are some skills that a designer should have to be able to create good typographical illustrations?

I believe the most important thing is to create a good composition; so you make sure people will read your typography. So things like balance, focal point and empty space are quite important. Beside that you also need to know how to find or create the right font to put your typo in. Like for example if your artwork is happy, you'll need a font that expresses some happiness itself. Therefore you need to look at fonts and think about what sort of shapes go well with the theme. Like for happiness you could go for round and thick.

And last but not least you need to have something to say, or else it is just letters. Although random letters can be cool as well, but then you still need the right letters to make it look cool.

6. Is the approach to a typographical piece different from the approach to say a photo manipulation illustration? If so how is it different for you and why do you think it is different? If no then why not?

Well I guess some will say there is, because of all the theories and rules there are about using and creating typography. But for me personally there isn't. This is mainly because I create typographical pieces from my background of doing illustrations. So for me a typographical piece is an illustration based on letters. The only other thing about them is that I start of by thinking about a sentence or a word to use instead of an image I want to create.

7. Edberry Creative is a design studio comprised of you and Thimo Smit, could you tell us exactly what you guys are planning to d?. And what do you hope to achieve in the future with this group?

With Edberry we offer our clients a wide range of services, such as illustrations, corporate identities and web design. For us our goal is to be challenged by our clients, by doing projects in which we can put in our love for creativity and colors. We don't want to walk the path of the least resistance; we just want to go where our creativity brings us. This means we're open to all sorts of projects and love to work together with other creative people to offer our clients the best solution possible.

As for the future, we hope to build up a creative network of people that are like-minded and combine different skills. Within this network everybody should deliver what he or she does best and together we should create things that will make us all proud. But that's the dream, for now we just want to do cool things and meet new and interesting people. So if you're interested you can find us at Edberry.net. We also have a blog , with no one visiting at all. So be nice and have a look at it.

8. Thanks again for providing Psdtuts+ with this opportunity to interview you. Any final thoughts for our readers?

Your welcome Emil! Thank you as well for interviewing me and to all the readers I like to say have fun in what you're doing and try to push yourself to be original. If you do so you will stand out from the crowd, which will bring you a lot further then when your just one of them trying to be like every other artist.

Where to find Sander on the Web

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