After nearly twenty years of working in various creative fields throughout Serbia and Eastern Europe, the time has come for me to find a new place to grow. I truly believe no matter how old we get, we are on a constant learning curve and there is always room to grow, more to do, and a bigger impact to make. This is what shaped my decision to uproot my life and settle in the United States last year.
So there you have it, a highly skilled and experienced expat. What I may seemingly lack in US experience I more than make up for with my decades of experience in the European market. This, I believe, will bring a fresh new perspective to your company. Please don’t let my Serbian work experience mislead you - my appointments and work put me in leading positions at various global companies. After leaving my first job as a senior designer, I started my own company, a design studio and later a digital publishing company. The idea behind these companies was to pioneer e-publishing magazines in the region, and the results were five monthly periodicals published for five+ years. I also helped secure strategic partnerships with Fox Networks and Universal Channel.
Several years later I was offered the art director position at Playboy Magazine - Serbia, followed by the photo editor position for Esquire Magazine - Serbia. I then left the magazine word for the creative ad world, first with Grey Worldwide WPP (www.grey.com) followed by McCann Worldgroup (www.mccann.com). During my tenure at this agencies I had the opportunity to work for some of the leading global brands such as The Coca-Cola Company, Mastercard, Heineken, Nestle, Mars, Mazda, Samsung, British American Tobacco. I also spent eight years as a freelance literary translator and have translated 16 books throughout my career which helped me become fluent in the English language.
As you can see my 20 years of experience in design and creative fields have made me an expert in my field. I am also self-sufficient throughout the design process: from brainstorming and project development to completion and collaterals (both print and online). I am also someone who can successfully work alone as well as within a creative team.
Ever since I was a child, I’ve felt a really natural inner drive to arts and all things artistic. Pencils and paper were my first touchpoint. My mother was the very first fan (surprise) and so proud to show off her pride & joy’s work. And do you think she ever stopped doing that? She never did.
Being hands-on with materials was my next step. I have no idea how many craft things I’ve made in my childhood (and later on as a true nerd, making models of my favorite Star Trek equipment I’ve seen on the shows).
As I was born in the north, the wonderfully designed country of Sweden, I remember being so amazed with how design affects each society in a different way. Moving back to Serbia with my parents gave me a new look at things - at that time, being 6, I only saw that everything appeared unlike what I was used to - just different. Looking back at it, I’d say the biggest difference was the role of design in everyday life. What I love about my life is that I manage to keep my love for things looking nice. I always saw the world in visual - once as a child, now as a creative professional.
As life moved on, I steered off the path I had always been sure I would take and started studying languages. But, as life likes to play, in the end it put me back on the track. I became a graphic designer. And to this day I love my job. Wanted to be an architect, studied languages, became a graphic designer, translated a lot of books, all the while driven by love for the culinary arts. It’s been a long & eventful road...
Of course, there was no chance to keep being faithful in such a long term relationship. Another interest sneaked in in the meantime.
I love to cook. In a way, design is a lot like cooking - you should enjoy the process as much as the result. And you feed others - the eyes, the stomach, the mind and the emotions. Had I not been a designer, I’m quite certain chef would have been my choice. But being a food blogger is close enough to home.
I don’t want to write a story about my work experience - it’s all in my resume. I wish to share my life story with you. And I just did. The most important part of it.
Do what you love, do what makes you feel like you grow everyday. And my experience has a message for the younger me and all the young designers out there. Keep up with all that’s going on in your line of work, use social media to the fullest, find your favorite blogs and check them out every day. Be diligent, be amazed, try to learn something new as often as you can. Think outside the lines, draw outside the expected. You never stop to grow as a creative person.