Interview with designer Ximena Ureta (XU), regarding views on design, and for the award-winning design Paper Flight Show of Papers.

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Interview with Ximena Ureta at Wednesday 30th of May 2018: DI: What is the main principle, idea and inspiration behind your design?
XU : My goal was to create a selection of superior papers for Antalis – Chile, showcasing fine materials and designing a visual palate of delicate finishes. The “journey” metaphor is represented by various birds flying. For this project, each bird represents a type of paper. These include cranes, owls, finches, humming birds and doves. This project seeks to break free from the static two-dimensional framework of the printwork, by capturing birds in flight, through a movement effect produced by placing backing sheets below the cover die. This visual effect which plays with the viewers eyes, is also known as kinetic art. The upside on each sheet releases a bird flying, with stars twinkling under a sky with varying papers; while the underside presents birds with different yet harmonious floral palates.

DI: What has been your main focus in designing this work? Especially what did you want to achieve?
XU : I have aimed to achieve a high level in creative and technical design. To work with the best papers available anywhere and showcase their technical potential. Also to produce a novel design that captivates and surprises with its visual effects and overall design.

DI: What are your future plans for this award winning design?
XU : This project has already fulfilled its objective by giving an end-of-year gift to the clients of Antalis Chile, which represents Arjowiggins. It is a leading French paper products firm and is committed to the use of eco-friendly paper and sustainable environmentally development. I would like to continue creating objects that offer interesting approaches like this one. That employ structures that allow graphic design to interplay with animation and motion. Through this, I hope to show the challenges that I enjoy taking on and that reveal what I am capable of.

DI: How long did it take you to design this particular concept?
XU : The concept and envisioning of the bird project, maybe three weeks; the physical tests and mock up to visualize the whole idea, developing the motion for the various birds, the box structure and its operation with the sheets, printed trials on paper types in order to perfect the prototype, printing and supervision of each part of the object, took around nine months, while also working on other projects.

DI: Why did you design this particular concept? Was this design commissioned or did you decide to pursuit an inspiration?
XU : I have a good working relationship with Antalis, and their papers have been part of much of my work throughout my career. That is why I decided to propose an idea that could represent them, and that was related with the idea of importing and exporting papers around the world in a project called “Vuelos de Papel”.

DI: Is your design being produced or used by another company, or do you plan to sell or lease the production rights or do you intent to produce your work yourself?
XU : “Paper Flight” was designed for Antalis. I will create new things along the lines of silent design. I'm quite open to new ways of marketing my creations.

DI: What made you design this particular type of work?
XU : The wish to create something new, and to embrace creative innovation as a challenge for my professional growth. To appreciate and enjoy working with a good paper products. Over twenty years experience designing packaging for premium wines and champagnes in Chile has given me the know-how in working with fine finishes in papers, and combining this with my love of birds.

DI: Where there any other designs and/or designers that helped the influence the design of your work?
XU : I would like to nominate an illustrator from South Korea whose name is Suzy Lee. Specifically a book published by Editor Bárbara Fiore entitled “The Wave”. I am mentioning it because of its simplicity and also because of its pictorial and silent narration.

DI: Who is the target customer for his design?
XU : Any firm wishing to work with quality printing on good papers and with good design, on graphic products like calendars, brochures, art and corporate books, packaging for wine and champagne, etc.

DI: What sets this design apart from other similar or resembling concepts?
XU : While there may be other graphic works that use the flight analogy to represent a brand with birds, it is very unlikely that they offer motion, and on such a delicate piece. Stars also twinkle in unison with the flying birds. This design piece creates a microsystem, where nature is integrated harmoniously. This can be appreciated in the following link:

DI: How did you come up with the name for this design? What does it mean?
XU : “Vuelo de Papel(Paper Flight)” expresses the idea that papers migrate like birds, and I found it to be the natural name.

DI: Which design tools did you use when you were working on this project?
XU : Various graphic design software, such as Photoshop and Illustrator

DI: What is the most unique aspect of your design?
XU : I think "Paper Flight” is very special. It says a lot with very little. It is a visual poem without words, it has a sensitive and essential spirit. A fragment of liberty. A pause. A tribute to simplicity, to the fragile, to the minimum. The small interior space of a visual haiku.

DI: Who did you collaborate with for this design? Did you work with people with technical / specialized skills?
XU : I worked with the designers Angelica Readi and Felipe Estay, who are experts in the use of programs such as Photoshop and Illustration, and with Ograma, which is a leading company in printing and development of graphic solutions.

DI: What is the role of technology in this particular design?
XU : This project was the result of the collaboration between the designer and the printing team. It involved the use of laser technology to cut heavy paper, producing extremely thin windows with very narrow slits, that make up the screen used to capture the flight.

DI: Is your design influenced by data or analytical research in any way? What kind of research did you conduct for making this design?
XU : What kind of research did you conduct for making this design? We researched the way in which the eyes trick the mind. All this research coalesced into one conclusion: our visual perception is still too limited to handle all the information provided by our eyes and as a result our minds take shortcuts. Our brain repeatedly chooses the most likely interpretation of what we see. The quest to understand how we perceive the world continues and offers intriguing insights into our perception.

DI: What are some of the challenges you faced during the design/realization of your concept?
XU : Creative and technical challenges, as well as time management at each stage of development, production, and delivery

DI: How did you decide to submit your design to an international design competition?
XU : As a way of showcasing the excellence of a Chilean graphic design product.

DI: What did you learn or how did you improve yourself during the designing of this work?
XU : The essence of simple things and how I can remain silent and hidden inside a paper box.

DI: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?
XU : No, nothing. I have never answered so many questions in my life. Thank you.