1. Tell us about yourself: Name, age, location, current professional status etc.
My name is Francisco Javier Vega Ramirez but everyone calls me Pacho. I’m an industrial designer and systemic designer working in illustration and graphic design. I’m 24 years old and originally from Colombia. I currently live in Milan, Italy where I am interning at a studio called Pnsix while working on personal projects to keep learning and gain more experience.
2. What are the (design or general) topics you’re most passionate about?
As a designer, I am really interested in illustration and animation. Everything about these two topics inspire me, especially when they make a strong and meaningful impact on society. I really find it fascinating to see how art and creativity can be used to make society better, while simultaneously showing someone’s passion and skills.
3. Tell us about a project that got you excited lately.
The project that got me most excited lately was actually designing my portfolio. It gave me the opportunity to work with and get feedback from a lot of people that helped me not just on the actual portfolio, but also on a personal level, to better understand my work and what I want to do.
4. Tell us about a collaborative project you worked on in the past.
During my masters degree, I worked alongside a group of really talented people on a fictitious project to create an innovative and futuristic service using a different and really interesting methodology based on story concepts. It showed me how creative people can be when they are having fun and sharing with each other.
5. How was (or is) your first year after school?
It has been really crazy with a lot of changes. I moved to another city, worked as a freelancer and started to work at a studio. It has been great, especially because I took the time to work and explore what I really like, which is illustration and animation. It has pushed me to take on a lot of new opportunities.
6. What's the best advice you've received (and from whom)?
If you ever have to decide between an idea that might be risky but it excites you or an idea that’s safe but it doesn't get you that excited, just take the risk. If it works it will be much more rewarding than just playing it safe.
7. What are you looking for in your first (or next) job?
I think I’m looking for a place that’s not afraid of trying new things. Somewhere where they have fun and are confident to pitch crazy ideas.
8. Which projects did you decide to put in your portfolio? What was your selection process?
I decided to go for my passion projects (most of them are illustrations or animations) and those I had the most fun doing. These projects better reflect who I am.
9. What are you working (personal or professional) on these days?
I’m working on some new illustrations as a personal project, trying new things and applying some of the things that I learned during the program.
10. What is the most exciting step when you start a new project?
I think it’s that moment when you just finished looking for references and played for a while. You start to get that feeling of being on the right track and you get this kind of creativity rush that makes you work for hours without even noticing. The fun you have, sometimes leads you to more ideas.
11. What book had the biggest impact on you, and why?
Blindness by Jose Saramago. I read it a long time ago, while I was still in school and it really gave me a different perspective on how I should see things and the behavior of people.
12. As a Wix Playground Academy alum from the 2022 Europe cohort, what couldn’t you have done without?
I think that I wouldn’t have done what I did without the people who were a part of the program, from the organizers, the people at Wix, and the other alumni, who throughout the whole program gave me a lot of useful feedback, insights and kept me inspired until the end.