Interview with Interactive Designer Matt Allard

Matt Allard works with graphic design and web design for both independent and professional clients. During that time he’s found a way to blend the arts and create a niche in the Interactive Design market, as well as gain experience in the professional arena with a highly regarded company. The work displayed in his portfolio is a combination of projects for large professional clients, small businesses, and individuals. Under the wing of COG1 Digital Marketing he’s worked with high end clients such as FHM, SanDisk, People Magazine, Fuze TV, IFC Films, Airwalk and many, many more.

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1). Where did you grow up? Where do you want to live, and why?

I was born in Yeovil, England and moved to the states in ’76. I grew up in Redlands, CA and was subjected to large public schools in a dejected society and culture. I was able to remove myself from the area at 18 and moved as far as I could (in state) for college. My ultimate goal, as of late, is to live in an area rich in culture, good things, good people, and the San Francisco Bay Area suits me just fine. Mill Valley would be a great place to own a home if I can afford to do so one day. Europe, along the Mediterranean would be a dream come true.

2). What’s your favorite day of the week? Why?

I don’t have favorites. Can’t get hung up on things like that. Sometimes it’s Monday. Beat that.

3). How are things going with your life and work lately, any new projects?

Superb. I’ve had the pleasure of moving closer to work and living closer to people I belong with. Work’s very productive and there are always new and exciting projects to work with.

4). What is the first website you visit when you open a browser and why?

Google. I’m always searching and Google tends to satisfy that desire.

5). What are some pro’s of being a designer. Are there any negatives?

Creative expression is the true pro of being a designer. The thought that your work might turn heads, or influence the ideals of the masses. Negatives? It takes time you don’t always get paid right away…

6). The last concert you attended. Why wasn’t I invited?  ;)

Phish. A bit of a reunion with some old friends. You wouldn’t know who they are Dave…wouldya? Ha.

7). Where do you find music? Who’s on repeat?

Everywhere. Every artist in my collection is truly always on repeat. (Again, I don’t have favorites when it comes to music. I am always hungry for new music, old music, music that’s not even been written…) Pandora is good for that. Or hypem.com. There are others.

8). What would you suggest for young designers? Any sites to guide them?

If you’re a real designer, follow your instincts. Find tutorials which teach you what you want to learn. Watch what Adobe is doing and try their new Beta programs always. Get to know the tools, and dive deep into existing work.

9). If you could talk to yourself 10 years ago, what would you say.

Get a degree, get a job. Start designing now. Save every penny that comes your way.

10). We enter a coffee bar – what did you order, why?

Tea. It’s better.

11). How can we find you(social media)?

Facebook, Myspace & Twitter

12). Did you study design in college, and do you think formal education is necessary to become a great designer?

I was an Interactive Design student at the Art Institute of California – San Francisco. I don’t think that it’s absolutely necessary, although many companies require it, even if they think they don’t. I wasted tons of money on college, but in the end it pays off. I say – focus on your goals. If school is necessary to achieve them…go to school.