Transcript for "Design - with Hernán Braberman"

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00:00.00
podcomm
Hello I’m Craig constantine.

00:04.15
Hernan Braberman
Ola I’m Ernan braberman.

00:05.43
podcomm
Um, oh thank you I Never I never even attempted to learn any spanish and I can’t even roll an r correctly. Um, but but anyway, um, I’ve heard enough. To know that I’m not even going to attempt to slaughter. No no, no anyway craig off on his self. Um, what do you call that self-aware. Oh god I’m well bad at languages. Ah but hey welcome. Thank you for taking the time i. Do as everybody knows by now we do a little pre-discus and I have certain ways that I start but I don’t always go where the guest thinks I’m going to go after so I but I also like to pitch curveballs. Um, 1 of the things that we were talking about before we hit Record. We actually started touching on design and. I’m going to say people people who are in the venn diagram that know both you and me they probably know you from being a remarkable or maybe they were with you in the first podcast course that you took. And you’re probably best known in that group for doing or helping with people doing cover art for their shows and cover art is really hard if you’re not a designer Maybe if you’re a designer It’s hard but fun. Um, and you and I started talking about um I said well. Does doing cover art for podcasts scratch the same itch that doing package design does and and what I was kind of myself curious about there was package design sounds like a really specific although it’s everywhere. It strikes me as a very specific type of design. It’s like. Somewhere between visual design or like it involves visual design but also involves user interface like if we’re designing a package for peanut butter like how is all these things. Um, so tell me a little bit about what about cover art design. Do you think. Is like your unique experience with package design. How does that play into or like what is it about cover art design that you see parallels package design.

02:18.43
Hernan Braberman
Yeah I think there there is certainly a parallel and regarding storytelling because you want your audience your potential audience to be drawn to to your show. Um. The first point of contact. Um, mostly that would be like this little thumbnail of that cover art and yeah and and that tiny little thumbnail must come convey something regarding your show.

02:46.42
podcomm
Tiny little thumbnail.

02:58.29
Hernan Braberman
Something that will draw attention towards it should beasible. That’s something very similar to what happens with consumer goods on a supermarket in these cases. Supermarket shelf are these pocats directories. So you have to to have.

03:11.81
podcomm
Are.

03:18.20
Hernan Braberman
Visibility and like a kind of shopability something that you have to tell a story like a visual trailer kind of visual trailer like and androns to to the narrative um story of your podcast. So It’s like a. Very tiny story in a square footprint and of course it should reflect you and then also once your your audience gets used to it be like a shortcut to finding your new episode. So It’s it’s. Very interesting because it’s it’s although it’s special. It’s not audio it. It’s it’s like and it should match that story. It should be yours Um, also be very attractive.

04:01.41
podcomm
Um, ray.

04:16.42
Hernan Braberman
For for your potential listeners.

04:18.24
podcomm
I love the way you you make the point about how it’s supposed to tell a story like because now I’m going. You know what? I really didn’t think about that I have a couple of different shows and they all have cover art and pretty much the cover art for the things that I have done has been well. Need to put art on the cover and that’s like the limit of what I’ve thought about and so those if you thought I’m just going to make it a white square you know and I’m just gonna go and they like all the beatles did that right? you know? So it’s like oh all the good things have been done and I’m I’m wondering like what? What do you think are some.

04:50.60
Hernan Braberman
If that.

04:56.78
podcomm
Suggestions like how do I to me I always think about how do I break a problem down so that I can figure out like where are the edges of the problem space like what are the things I could possibly do and I’m just wondering like okay if I don’t have any clue what story I’m even trying to tell with my podcast. Even with 1 episode let alone with the whole thing. How do I how do I begin to figure out what would be a good um mini story to try and tell like with the cover like how do I even figure out where to get my hands on. Do I start with. Trying to convey a particular emotion and then built a story or do I try and start with a color or do I start with I throw darts and the first thing that comes to mind and then just riff around that like what are some ways and I know there’s probably not 1 right way. But what are some ways to begin to crack that.

05:44.20
Hernan Braberman
Um, I Guess you could you could start with like ah an idea map for… For example, let’s say you’re this podcast um start thinking about is it about like a casual conversation. Yeah, it’s about you. It’s about Podcasters. So. There You can start find start to find like visual metaphors to convey that and do you want it to look casual. Do you want to look it quite formal that that and attributes emotional and functional. Could be expressed by shapes by colors by Typography. So I will start by by tracing just with words these different ideas and then try to of course design has ah limitless alternatives in terms of how you can.

06:37.89
podcomm
Um.

06:42.24
Hernan Braberman
Find a solution. There is not said of course you have you you should take into consideration that and the finally the cover art has to be very synthetic to to convey everything in like 1 per 1 centimeters or.

07:00.86
podcomm
Right? so.

07:01.96
Hernan Braberman
Ah, very very tiny image and some colors. But for example in I guess this this podcast has a like a p in in the and it’s a p but it’s quite standard So and.

07:10.87
podcomm
Yeah, big red big Red p.

07:19.75
Hernan Braberman
I Don’t feel this podcast to be standard or it it has something different like a different flavor. It’s like cash. So that’s ah like very and standardar p it’s it doesn’t convey what? what’s this is about it’s like ah but.

07:32.68
podcomm
Generic Maybe? yeah. Um, I’m hanging my head in shame you’re right? You’re right.

07:37.94
Hernan Braberman
It’s it’s something like yeah yeah, um, so I guess there are opportunities to to has it but it could be started but with that conversations casual conversation. The name of the podcast your name.

07:45.12
podcomm
Um, yeah.

07:56.41
Hernan Braberman
There are a lot of ways to to understand what this is about and try to convey just a little. It’s impossible and the final product. It’s this conversation but it’s it should be at least ah do honor.

08:06.51
podcomm
Um, right.

08:14.43
Hernan Braberman
With the conversation and not look like what like this this was just an afterthought and just 1 minute like iping happy I’m not saying it’s a bad. No.

08:22.47
podcomm
I’m so Busted. Um, you know I know I’m I’m like I’m laughing I’m laughing self-aware you know at myself. Um, when you do Um, this is like a bit of a left turn when you do designs like. You know in your day job. Um, how often do you find that you you come up with something and then I’m assuming you’re like a review process internally where you show it this Um, and you get like feedback how often do you go in with an idea and and and then go no that sucks like how often do you just like scrap it. When somebody else’s when you get somebody else’s input versus how often does it become like their input improves it and the thing is like an upward spiral where it gets better and Better. You know versus how often do you chuck it and the the reason I’m asking is because I feel like I want to chuck like everything all the time like. I don’t like it I want to like throw it all out and start over and I’m wondering if that’s the right instinct or whether no I probably should try to continue and so I’m I’m wondering if you have a feel for how often your first instincts tend to carry you to the finished thing versus when you completely shift entirely.

09:33.23
Hernan Braberman
I Guess if if you start with a conceptual methodology. It will be easier for you to take that kind of decisions if you state the the main objective of of what you want what you want to what you want to convey. Little easy to translate it at least it like a kind of brief very small, very and brief and and then start exploring and ask your asking yourself is this like ah didn. Is this conveying what I want to to convey if it’s like if there is like a a chance to to hit the nail I guess it would be interesting to refine the idea or try different colors or but if if you feel that that’s kind of. Away from where you started I will start again. But also I would advise you to to work with at least 3 different routes from just from the beginning. Not not try to get try to get their idea and then. Refine Refine Refine refine that it would be better to to to bet to 3 at least 3 different ideas and and move forward in parallel and then stop perhaps get some feedback from from your peers or or. Your potential audience and then move forward refining.

11:12.57
podcomm
I don’t want to turn this into the Craig learns how to fix his cover art. Um, so I want to be mindful of like where we are do you? Um, do you find that right? so. The thing that you’re kind of known for in podcasting circles like the people that are going to be listening to this is is around design and that’s sort of your wheelhouse right? This is this is what hernan does normally um, do you do you wish that you could break free of that sometimes like do you do you wish you could like I want to go just be the completely different.

11:39.64
Hernan Braberman
Yep.

11:48.15
podcomm
Person than I am in my Workaday life or do you just you just so love design that you’re happy to just do that in every context.

11:52.53
Hernan Braberman
Um I think I do it in every context I fell in fell in love with design at 15 years old at least around that age. Um. I’m I’m still in love with that profession I I like translating things into images or into shapes or virtual virtual world. So um I like to think that designists liked. It stripes to embellish the relationship with you people and product brands podcast. So it’s about abellishing andishing is not just about Beauty. It’s about like thing functional could it’s also ah Beauty. So it’s about like streamlining that that relationship and so in in that way. It’s like never ending and very challenging.

12:58.78
podcomm
I Think that’s all fascinating. Can you tell me can you tell me about either a designer or a particular design like my brain is leaping to like I’ve seen some amazing Subway Map designs that are just right and there’s there’s the.

13:00.68
Hernan Braberman
He.

13:17.63
podcomm
The 1 from new york city I think is a ah classic example of of design. Um, but are there any particular designers. Um, or so you know somebody’s particular design that really um I’m going to say.

13:18.51
Hernan Braberman
Yeah.

13:31.78
podcomm
Like change the way you look at design so you know you’ve maybe had an idea of what design could do and then you saw someone’s work or saw someone and realized that there was whole nother space to design that you hadn’t been looking for like a real mind-altering.

13:48.50
Hernan Braberman
Um, ah yeah, yeah, and it has to do with podcasting because when I was 15 years old I I saw an article about an spanish designer who is.

13:49.40
podcomm
Experience that you had with someone or someone’s work.

14:06.23
Hernan Braberman
Call javier marisal and he’s ah, a designer who doesn’t ah put a sar nameme to design. It’s just design he he does graphic design product design Media design film sculpture. So.

14:22.28
podcomm
Um, who.

14:25.84
Hernan Braberman
He he taught me about that design has no surname. Um I I wanted to as soon as I saw that it blew my mind and I wanted to to become a designer and he was I managed By. By starting my podcast I managed to interview him and it was like mind-blowing of course to to to have the chance because of this like to have the opportunity and the excuse to reach him and have and talk with him and even like.

14:49.18
podcomm
Um.

15:01.87
podcomm
Um, right.

15:01.88
Hernan Braberman
Feel friend to him so that that’s that’s fantastic and that’s the power I think of of podcasting.

15:09.66
podcomm
Ah I would definitely agree. Um, um, my questions are getting harder and harder when you were interviewing him for your show was there anything that surprised him about podcasting because I’m Guessing. He’s probably not a very frequent podcast guest. Anything about podcasting that surprised him.

15:30.47
Hernan Braberman
Um, he’s like ah he’s kind of politically incorrect. So I guess he he and yeah, he’s he enjoyed the the opportunity to to to insult and.

15:39.49
podcomm
I Know exactly what to be.

15:46.85
podcomm
Um.

15:48.53
Hernan Braberman
Say whatever he wanted to say and he was like kind of surprised when I published the episode because I didn’t edit some parts that usually in like an in formal interview would have been left out so he him said that.

16:00.10
podcomm
Um.

16:07.77
Hernan Braberman
It was like a great job.

16:12.60
podcomm
It’s I I’m glad to hear you say that because I I often wonder you know it’s tough as a podcaster to really find out what other people really think about something you’ve created because if you’re you know, like if. You know afterwards if I say to you hey what’d you think of the episode It’s so hard for you because your experience you can’t separate your experience from like when you hear it. It’s not the first time you heard it and it’s so it’s so neat to hear.

16:36.95
Hernan Braberman
Now.

16:41.36
podcomm
You know to hear him say that it was really fun to hear like the thing that I felt that I experienced it actually came out the other end that’s me, um, anything else spring to mind that you want to talk about now that we’re a little further afield and I’ve been pulling us all over the place here on the on the mind map.

16:58.67
Hernan Braberman
No I I think that podcasting is is there are so certain aspects that of course overlap design in terms of thinking ahead. Ah um, like projecting. The like the the structure or the script or or designing the the moments moments within the the episode the the music so it’s also of course it’s a design activity in its own terms.

17:36.26
podcomm
It’s I didn’t realize it was well. It doesn’t have to be creative I guess I could could do it really bad job of it. But I didn’t realize how much opportunity there is for being creative within in the medium and and hindsight right like up.

17:47.82
Hernan Braberman
Yeah.

17:53.39
podcomm
Course there is because it’s a completely blank canvas. So yeah, if you’re going to cover it with something it has you’re going to have to be creative and I think that’s 1 of the things I enjoy not just being creative myself because I don’t do any I do almost nothing that’s just me talking on a microphone. Um, but the opportunity to. To start with a blank space and have a second person join me. Um it gets really fun when there’s 3 or four people total those can be really fun because the people on the other side I’ve had them just like take control and I’m like this is great I won’t do anything I could just sit here for half an hour and enjoy.

18:18.10
Hernan Braberman
And.

18:30.44
podcomm
Conversation that they’re creating. So I really think that that creativity is something that I really enjoy as a big part of what I enjoy about it.

18:36.43
Hernan Braberman
Yeah, yeah, also sound sound is incredible. It’s power on on podcasting. So Yeah there there are a lot of tools that we should use in favor of of this story that we want to tell even though it’s. Perhaps it has a conversation or or something more formal but it’s it’s an endless medium.

19:02.28
podcomm
Yeah I’d agree. Um I would normally say that’s a great place to stop but I want to do 1 more thing in the beginning I asked you about podcasting and you had a beautiful metaphor for it and I’m not even going to set it up i’re just going to say can you unpack that metaphor for us because I think that was.

19:07.69
Hernan Braberman
Um, yeah.

19:21.76
podcomm
Really an interesting way to look at it.

19:22.30
Hernan Braberman
Yeah I um I think that there is like ah an analogy with Scuba diving. It’s a different medium you you it’s a mess looking just looking at the disease mesmerizing and and fearful at the same time. Once you enter you can explore your voice will sound different because it’s a different atmosphere the time moves in like in ah in a different pace and in your Oxygen tank. You should find what moves you to to. Dive now in my case, it’s about learning sharing curiosity like a control exposureure that I get and it’s also an intimate connection within that space once when when you are. Right now talking with you and then also an intimate connections with the audience. Especially if if the audience is drawn to to the episode but that’s magic.

20:35.70
podcomm
Terrific Ernan. Thank you so much for joining me this evening. It’s a pleasure.

20:39.35
Hernan Braberman
Good I see us greg.