Web International Awards

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JUN 2007 1

Interview with Bjarne Christensen, talented graphic designer from Denmark

arnii.dk screenshot

Webia: Hello Bjarne. Tell us something about yourself.
Bjarne: I'm a graphic designer, based in Denmark. Mostly I work with digital media, but now and then I get my hands in some print jobs as well!

I'm 25 years old, and have been working with graphics and the Internet for about 6 years. The last 3-4 years as a living. Every day I wish that I had discovered my passion earlier in my life.

Webia: What do you do for a living?
Bjarne: As said above I work as a graphic designer, mainly with digital media. Currently I'm employed at JaHallo. It is a new media agency based here in Aarhus (the second biggest city in the small Denmark). I love my every day at JaHallo. I've been so lucky to have spent the last 3 years at the agency. And because of the company's relatively small size (we're only 5 persons at the moment), I have my hands in a lot of different things! I prefer to get around. In that sense, I would be bored if I should do web design EVERY day. I love designing for the web, but not for every day.

And therefore I spice it up with XHTML / CSS front-end development, motion graphics, client management, print designs, brand identities, etc.

Webia: What is your specialty ?
Bjarne: I would go with the Web in general! I mean, I started designing for the web. But after a couple of "destroyed" designs because of half- hearted coders, and my fascination of the creation of web sites, I decided to teach my self to code... That's was a pretty good decision. If you as a designer know exactly how "the web works", you deliver a much better design. And of course, not to forget, no one fucks up your lovely designs, because you can make the front-end yourself. Or at least tell what is possible and in which ways...

In some way I must admit that I've always been fascinated by the web. See, I grew up surrounded by the famous LEGO toy, and already back then I liked to create (like many other children). I've always seen the design process as a brain-thing. Of course you use your hands, but much of design is going on inside your head. But when you leave Photoshop and get your hands in the codes, the architecture of a site, you actually build something literally. And you publish it to the whole World.

I like the short way I have between my laptop and the rest of the World. It's the way I think of it though.

A quite long answer to a short and simple question. My speciality is no doubt the web.

Webia: What was the most challenging project you were (or still are) on?
Bjarne: Many. And these projects keep on coming... I think that because you develop in a certain pace, and tries different projects, get in touch with bigger and bigger clients, then the challenges also has to be bigger and bigger. It was a big day when we landed the whole Fobazo project at JaHallo. We're still working on their head-portal, but through the project I've been working on the Official websites of some of Europe's biggest soccer players, among others Ronaldo, Robinho, Seedorf, Rafael van der Vaart, John Heitinga, Marta (FIFA Best female player), and got my work seen by Nike, Adidas, Carlsberg, bwin, etc.I'm looking forward to finish up the more corporate part of the project.

Webia: Tell us about your website arnii.dk
Bjarne: Hmm, I'm the person who always have some kind of ongoing personal project. Partly to learn new things or just for the fun of it and developing my skills. Arnii.dk was actually born because of the challenge I gave my self.

I had just discovered WordPress. I thought it was phenomenal! Now I could not just make front-end development but also build back-ends so that clients could update their websites on their own... So I decided to make my first entirely WP powered site, my portfolio with a custom- made WP CMS to control content.

Now Arnii.dk is working as my online portfolio and my blog. But I wish I had some more time writing my blog though, but other projects are waiting...

Webia: Your portfolio shows websites, DTP, animations. What do you enjoy most, and why?
Bjarne: I think I partly gave an answer to that in question number 3. I like to create, and it just makes me feel even better when I create across medias and platforms. But agian, I enjoy the Web the most.

Webia: How spread around the world are your clients? Do you consider easier to pitch someone in Denmark or "around the world" works too. What will be the next major step in your career?
Bjarne: For now I only have clients through JaHallo. I'm employed there and doesn't really do any work besides that. I think if your portfolio is speaking for itself, it doesn't matter a bit how long away you are from your clients. Luckily the World isn't that big anymore because of email, phone and services as Skype.

Webia: Any advice for our audience?
Bjarne: You can never learn to much and you are never guaranteed an 8-hour workday in this business. Get used to it! I've always believed in obtaining at least basic knowledge about everything you will potentially be in touch with. That has helped me a lot.

Published on Friday, June 29th, 2007 at 6:32 pm in 2007.

About Bogdan Pop

Bogdan Pop is a young Romanian entrepreneur who runs WebRaptor. He is a web developer with awesome design skills, who enjoys writing about everyday's work and usability. He relaxes by taking photos every once in a while and by mixing french electronic music. Connect with him via Twitter.
  1. Past interviews round-up says: April 12th, 2009 at 8:41 pm

    […] Interview with Bjarne Christensen, talented graphic designer from Denmark […]

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