We’d like to introduce our brand new #online series in collaboration with Nuqat: The Social Interview. Get to know the talented individuals who will be conducting this year’s series of workshops. We chatted with Tarek Atrissi, who will be conducting the Designing and Producing Arabic Fonts Using Glyphs App Workshop.
Do you have to be an artist to be creative?
Not necessarily. Being a creative professional can manifest itself in many ways: you don’t have to be an artist to be creative. You can be a designer, an entrepreneur, or an educator. You are creative as long as you are a problem solver, in any context, not necessarily only art.
To you, what does it mean to be creative?
To be creative is to be able to create solutions to problems while being innovative, practical and by maintaining a solid balance between visual form and function.
For me personally as a designer, being creative is being able create brands that stand out and have a visual identity that is well designed, consistent and recognizable. As a type designer, creativity for me is creating new Arabic fonts that fill a certain missing niche and that helps other graphic designers use them in their own creative practice.
Who are your industry heroes?
My industry heroes have always been my teachers. They had a tremendous educational influence on me, not only academically but also professionally, as most of my teachers in New York, such as Paula Scher, Stefan Sagmeister and Louise Filli were working professionals and not only teachers. On a more regional level my heroes are some of the visual artists who had a key influence on the history of Arabic graphic design; such as the late Muhyeddine Al Labbad, who I consider to be a visionary design and art director who was way ahead of his time in his approach of work.
What are the benefits of participating in your workshop as a part of Studio Nuqat?
Participants in my workshop will benefit from gaining an in-depth understanding of the process of designing and programming a digital Arabic typeface. It will add a new set of typographic skills to participating designers, both on a design and technical levels.
Why do you think these workshops are important to the cultivation of the creative economy?
These workshop la stimulate interest in the upcoming creative generation and are extremely important to inspire a new wave of designers and entrepreneurs. Our creative economy in the Middle East and the Gulf has still a long way to go and educational initiatives such as Nuqat truly help developing our creative culture.
What is the most challenging aspect of succeeding in a career in the creative industry?
Balancing the business and creative side of professional practice. Being a great creative does not mean that you are a good business person, and vice versa. I have been educated as a design entrepreneur and this has helped me tremendously set up my design studio and run it successfully. The challenge of success is being able to balance your creative passion with a solid business vision.
If you could attend another Studio Nuqat workshop, which one would it be?
That is very difficult to choose! There are many workshops I would like to attend. But I would go for the workshop with the Hassani brothers as I admire their design career and I relate to their Dutch design approach. And I can always speak to them in Dutch!
Check out Tarek’s work on Instagram @Atrissi. To find out more about this year’s Nuqat conference, follow them on Instagram @nuqat. Register on the website, www.nuqat.me, and be sure to download their app via eventtus to view the complete Nuqat Conference schedule and REGISTER through their new app! To download the app from the Apple Store click here and from Google Play click here. BONUS: GET 10% OFF when you use PROMOCODE bazaarXnuqat!