Tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do.
My name is Charles Rivers and I am the creative force behind SCD ( Salvador Charlie Design ). I have done design work for clients like : Circle Management, Red Bull, Jay Z’s 40/40 Club, and several nightclubs all over the world.
When and why did you first become interested in graphic design?
I have always wanted to be an artist. When I was in the 3rd grade I was featured in a gallery for a pastel drawings I did on parchment paper. That was the spark that ignited everything.
The funny thing is I ended up getting a corporate job when I was 21. Nothing to do with design at all. I had a family early and worked as a sales manager. I had sort of shelved the idea of doing design and art full time. One day , after 8 years at a job I didn’t like, I decided to go for it. I started Salvador Charlie Design and never looked back. SO its never too late to go after what you really want.
Who or what inspires you and why?
Salvador Dali has always been a major influence early on ( Salvador Charlie). Right now my daughter Alexa is the biggest inspiration. Kids have the most amazing imagination and do not have the worries of paying bills etc. They can just sit and create all day.
How do you assure your design stays fresh and interesting?
You always have to be aware of the world around you. Look for ideas in everything. From TV , to magazines and blogs. Sometimes I grab my camera and just take random pictures. Everything from textured to architecture.
What are some problems you run into, and how do you overcome them?
It comes back to the question about staying fresh. I try to keep on top of what I am doing but sometimes I hit a wall. That’s when you need to step back and take a look at what you do. Look around, become aware and move in a new direction.
What is the most frustrating part about being a graphic designer?
Time. It is never on the side of graphic designers because we have to sleep at some point. I work as much as I can. I love what I do so it is not really work.
What attributes do you think an exceptional graphic designer should possess?
Listed to the client no matter what. Yes we all have a certain style but when we are creating something for a client you have to listen. As a designer you are asked by the client to bring a vision they have to live.
Where or how do you get most of your work?
Most of the work comes from referrals. I found early on if you take care of clients they take care of you. I do some adverting but its limited.
What is your process?
I start with a blank canvas every project. I jump right in and I just put it together as I go. In the past I tried to map out the projects before but it didn’t work for me. When I do projects I like to try different things.
What advice can you give those who are interested in becoming successful graphic designers/bloggers?
Follow the passion that is inside you. No matter what happens you have to believe in yourself.
How does it feel being the featured member of the month?
It is an honor and really amazing to be in the magazine. I follow the site and the community of artists on illustrati is a collection of some of the best work around.