The story of
Ariel Di Lisio, or how good timing is essential to success in business and in life.
Time is of the essence, people say. Only time will tell, we all believe. But in this case, it’s absolutely true. Time has always played a big part in Ariel’s career.
He always knew the right time to switch jobs. When the time was right to move to Mexico to teach at CEDIM University in Monterrey. And even when to partner with a former of his students there to create a new studio and work on that very same university’s branding and design system.
I always take some risks to help the project grow and go further. But the most important thing is to realize how far or how big a risk you can take, without falling.
- On His Process
Yes, time. Time is a constant in Ariel’s story. Like the time he was having lunch with his parents and a friend asked if he would go to Europe with him.
A week later he was landing in Madrid. Was it an impulsive decision? Some might think so, but the truth is, the time was just right. And he knew it. That trip shaped him in many ways. As a person and as a designer. It shaped him as a typographer.
He also knew when it was the right time to create his own studio. And that was very early in his career. From the very beginning, Ariel knew he did not want to depend on someone else’s luck or business skills. Having his studio was his way to be in absolute control, to rely only on his own talent and efforts, to feel safe. So, he started his own creative business.
I was always afraid of getting fired. Having my own studio was the perfect way to prevent that from happening.
- On His Motivation
But having his structure was not only offering him a safe environment. It also gave him the chance to try new things, to shape his product and to create a personal style.
“The kind of design I do is very modern, but at the same time, quite clean and simple. That does not mean I don’t take chances. I always take some risks to help the project grow and go further. But the most important thing is to realize how far or how big a risk you can take, without falling.”
One of those risks was to put his passion for typography to good use.
I started designing entire font families for each project. Not for the logo, for the project! And clients started noticing that, and that became a trademark of my work.
- On Typography
He always loved drawing letters -as he puts it- and it all started from a certain sensibility for the shapes, the symbols, all that a letter embodies. “When I was young most of my friends were looking at cars and sneakers all day, I was looking at letters all the time.”
But his love for letters was not the only thing that made him go that way, having designed a great number of logos at early stages in his career gave him a certain typographic training, experience. And that made him realize it was something that just came naturally to him. As natural as the paper and pencil that kick off all his projects, or the old school not “inspiration focus” approach to everything he does.
I don’t believe in inspiration, I just believe in the work.
- On Inspiration
“I’m not inspired by music or the street or anything like that. I just look to create new stuff all the time. Basically, I don’t believe in inspiration, I just believe in the work”.
An old-school approach that his clients love when working with him, clients like Nicolas Laisné, Alricgalindez Arquitectos, The Tea Atelier, Design Suites or Discovery, whose projects helped him be selected for the Lubalin Now Exhibition Center of Design and Typography at Cooper Union, New York. Or for the ID Magazine special edition as one of the 40 designers from around the world to be followed.
That’s the kind of work he does. That’s the kind of work that was published in several design and typography books and magazines from around the globe in the last 10 years.
At some point I stopped looking at what others were doing and they started looking at me
- On His Professional Growth
But time is not only key to his career and achievements. It’s also a huge part of his story with Macramè.
And this part of the story takes us way back in time, when Ariel was commissioned to work on a logo. A specific logo, for a specific client. A client he had not met. A client that was sitting 11,000 km and a few hours away. Today that would be fine. Almost regular, boring. But at that time, it was something new. It was groundbreaking.
The brand he created: Shado. And it was his first project for Macramè. A project that started a relationship-non-relationship that lasted until today.
“There was always a relationship between us, with no relationship…“ That’s how Ariel describes his relationship with Macramè. Something we feel but cannot explain. Time now tells us all how important that first job was, because 15 years after that first job, Ariel and Macramè are back in business together, developing the brand identity for Imprendibili. A project that aims to launch new generation editorial projects on social media. A project that makes the most of the time we live on. Just as Ariel has done his entire life.
BRANDS HE HAS WORKED WITH
2009 - Lubalin Now Exhibition Center of Design and Typography en Cooper Union, New York.
2009 - Featured in the annual edition of ID Magazine as one of the 40 designers of the year.