NANDO COSTA

PEOPLE

A Brazilian artist, Nando Costa produced the cover design for this month’s issue. He is a 24-year-old young artist but his talent has bloomed after gaining many experiences in a printing media, an interactive media, animation and web designing. You will get many chances to know his works through a book and a DVD, which will be released from a Germany publisher “Die Gestalten Verlag” in the next spring, and “Resfest“, which will start from the 18 of September in San Francisco. His energy is powerful to let more people know the arts in Brazil.


Please introduce yourself as well as your background.

My name is Carlos Fernando Faria Costa but since friends and family called me Nando, my name as and Artist became Nando Costa. I was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and have been painting and drawing since little. During High School I studied drawing in Art School and after that went to College for Graphic Design for 3 years. I have been working constantly as a Designer since my first year of University since and have jumped from printed media, to interactive and nowadays I am perfecting my skills in animation as well. It’s helpful to have worked in all mediums because one can always feed of the other. My skills as a print designer have evolved immensely since I entered the web environment and my skills as a web animation have evolved as well since I started working on projects for television and DVD. After living and working for 3 years in the USA, I am now moving back to Rio de Janeiro to pursue my own projects and start painting again.

You are originally from Brazil but you have got experiences of working in Atlanta, NY and Chicago in USA. Why did you leave for USA? Also, where are you based in now?

Since little I always wanted to become an Artist and live off my paintings and drawings. With some experience I noticed that it’s was it was going to be harder than it seemed. After Design School and a few years working in the field the USA became a lot more interesting than hard Design market of Rio de Janeiro. The fact that Designers with intermediate Flash skills were in high demand at Design Studios in the USA was also an important reason to convince me of leaving my family, friends and home town. But now that I’ve acquired a few interesting names to my client list and learned as much as I could in the States, I feel that going back to Rio and working independently is the best option. My current location is Chicago, USA and I’m moving to Brazil in the beginning of September.

Typical ideas about Brazil that people have must be samba, coffee and the kingdom of soccer. That’s a shame that the artistic image in Brazil is not clear for you. How is the current art scene in Brazil? Please tell us the difference between the art scene of Brazil and of America?

I think that the basic knowledge that people in general have about Brazil is the media’s fault. Television rarely explores other aspects of the culture and what’s shown is the usual Carnival, women, soccer and social problems and etc. I’m currently starting to work on a project that will help minimize that in some way. It will at least introduce the work of amazing local Artists of Rio and other Brazilian states to the public that has access to the web. The site brasilinspired.com will inform the public about local art, design, music and entertainment. The content will all be in English though so both local and international public can enjoy it.

You are a 24-year-old young artist but you went to USA on your own, gained the experiences of designing, participated many conferences and did loads of client works. You seem to be very brave and energetic person for me who am in the same generation that you are. Where is that power from?

I have to confess that I haven’t been attending many bars of parties, although I do have fun with friends quite often. My goal while in the USA was to learn and achieve as much as possible. Since I don’t smoke, use drugs and rarely drink, it was easy to stay up and focus on my work that acts as therapy to me. There are many Artists in my family like my mother that is a sculptor, my brothers that are in the Advertising and Design fields and Grandfather that is a painter besides other members of the family from other generations that have achieve quite a lot in the Arts. I believe that this must have something to do with the energy that drives me to work hard on personal projects. And when client projects a give me with trust from the client it becomes just as personal as a self-promotion piece.

Your site “hungryfordesign“, which was launched in 1999, works as your personal showcase and introduces your visual ideas. Please tell us more about this site.

The initial idea of the site was for it to be a large resource for Design and Art students as well as professionals. Besides showing the work of Brazilian Artists, it would also inform about Art, Design History and the latest events and exhibits. Since my site became a personal portfolio, I am just now having the chance to develop a site with this content which will also be called “Brasil: Inspired“.

I have heard that a book and a DVD called “Brasil: Inspired” will be released in this spring of 2003 by the German publisher “Die Gestalten Verlag“. What sort of role did you take for this book?  Please explain the contents of this project as well.

I came up with the idea for the project after I received a few curious questions from people in the States. My experience was that not many people were well informed about foreign cultures. It’s not tradition for Americans, in particular, to travel abroad, so their perspective of countries like Brazil is that it’s merely a large jungle.

So I approach DGV with the idea of inviting other Graphic Artists to illustrate their impression of what Brasil is like. The Artists chose several different aspects of the culture. Some actually traveled to the country to do research and other just relied on the few bits of information they had ever heard about the place. The print and animated material is amazing and turned out into a great project that will be released in the next spring. So my role on this project was to develop the idea, invite the Artists and manage the delivery of their submissions as well as to edit the content along with the Die-Gestalten staff.

This project sounds very interesting because it focus on one country “Brasil” that is also a theme of this project and I am curious about the production process of it. Did you go to Germany to deal with this project?

Actually I didn’t go to Berlin to speak to DGV. We have several conversations via e-mail and phone for about 6 months even before we had a final approval to move forward with the project. Dealing with all the Artists has all been done over the internet as well.

And this “Brasil: Inspired” will be put on the screen at “RESFEST” that is coming to Japan in this November. Are you going to join “RESFEST tour” to visit various cities around the world? Also, how do you feel about your work will be feature in Japan?<

It's very exciting to know that all the motion pieces done for the project will be show at Resfest. I have always wanted to have my work shown at the Festival and this is definitely a very good opportunity. Unfortunately I will not join the Festival on its trip around the world but I will attend the event when it reaches Rio de Janeiro next year. I have always been interested in working with Japanese clients and have had a few opportunities to do so. I am very interested in finding a new business developer to work with hungryfordesign on getting more projects on the Japanese market.

There are many links between Brazil and Japan such as many Brazilian of Japanese descents are in both countries. What sort of impression to Japan do you have?

Yes. I believe that Brazil has the largest Japanese Colony which is mostly based in Sao Paulo. When in High School, I had several friends that were descents of Japanese people and that played a big role my impression about the culture. The families I met were extremely polite and welcoming, although some parents had quite strict rules with their children. The culture as a whole really amazes me and Tokyo is definitely on my list to visit in the next couple of years.

There are many links between Brazil and Japan such as many Brazilian of Japanese descents are in both countries. What sort of impression to Japan do you have?

Yes. I believe that Brazil has the largest Japanese Colony which is mostly based in Sao Paulo. When in High School, I had several friends that were descents of Japanese people and that played a big role my impression about the culture. The families I met were extremely polite and welcoming, although some parents had quite strict rules with their children. The culture as a whole really amazes me and Tokyo is definitely on my list to visit in the next couple of years.

Please tell us the cover design for this month’s issue. What did you imagine when you were creating this piece? What sort of message did you put there?

This animation was made with the intent to illustrate the shift between life and death. This cycle is shown by the illustration of a heart that is revealed and again covered by layers that allow it to live. I chose QuickTime player because I wanted a smooth and fast animation and effects that weren’t available in Flash. The message I wanted to give is just a reminder that life is brief and it needs to be enjoyed. I have been working too hard lately and sometimes feel like I’m wasting my time. I will be making an effort to do other things from now and on besides working on my artworks.

Please tell us the project(s) that you are currently doing. What sort of vision do you have in order to expand your field through designing?

I’m currently starting to work on a book of my personal work. It will contain not just most of the work I have developed in the past years but also dozens of pages of new images based on the theme of this publication. I’m working on the “Brasil: Inspired site that will focus not just on the publication by DGV but on making the Brazilian Design community stronger and informing Graphic Artists from other countries of what is below the Equator.

One of the most important projects I’m also working on at the moment is a store on my site that will deliver my artwork to anyone that is interest. Typefaces, posters, clothing and other products will also be available for sale.

Please leave a message to Shift readers.

Follow your instincts. I don’t know if it’s a good suggestion for some people but for me it has always worked. In many situations that I have encountered difficulties, my instincts have never failed on helping me to choose the best way. My work process is based on spontaneity as well so following instincts has been something always present in my attitude.

Nando Costa
nando@hungryfordesign.com
http://www.hungryfordesign.com

Text: Sachiko Kurashina

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