NDO Podcast – Ep. 061 – Joschka Sawatzky – "STUDY THE CRAFT"
On the NDO Podcast, we interview creative entrepreneurs on the story behind their particular craft, including their why, their how, their creative influences, and much more.
This is a snippet of Episode 061 from the NDO* Podcast with Joschka Sawatzky, a graphic designer, hand letterer, and award-winning art director operating out of Waterloo, Ontario. On this episode, we discuss Joschka’s winding path before going to design school, the surprising impact design school had on him, and dive into the stories of some of our favourite designers like Aaron Draplin, Paula Scher, and Virgil Abloh.
Ryan: Pre, say right before design school with some of these notions of what design is, knowing Photoshop and knowing the landscape from freelance design, what would you tell Joschka going into design school?
Joschka: I’d say check yourself before you wreck yourself – if you go into school thinking you’re the shit – which I didn’t, but I had pre-conceived notions – you’re in for a shock. I came into school with a chip on my shoulder from my previous work and was humbled at the experience of being in design school.
I’d tell pre-design school Joschka to never stop learning. Learn your craft and don’t stop learning – and don’t get too comfortable at what you’re good in.
I would tell post-design school Joschka to chill. Relax, because things will come.
J: Many people who finish design school are nervous about the future because they don’t know what will happen or where their career should be. I was one of those people.
I was working as an art director in a sweet co-op: I had every intention of working at an agency and going overseas potentially to do so, but when I graduated I realized there was so much awesome work in the area.
I didn’t know whether I’d freelance or work around town but the truth is, as long as you wake up every day and you’re doing what you love, you’ll go somewhere great.
You might work jobs in your 20’s – or 30’s – and you just have to know that [developing] your craft takes time. Things will come as long as you keep learning, keep working, and stay humble about the process. Macro patience, micro execution on a daily basis.