Design Director at Engine Digital
Miquel
Pons

Miquel is a Spanish designer based in Canada. He is currently an Associate Design Director at Engine Digital ― a digital agency based in Vancouver, Toronto, and New York.

Calgary, Canada • May 11, 2021

What led you into design?

Being a huge fan of music, especially indie music when I was a teenager, I gained a lot of interest and appreciation for vinyl covers and graphic design. I started developing some basic skills practicing and designing album covers with some friends in Photoshop, just for fun. After that, I started compiling all types of indie magazines, and I became obsessed with art direction, composition, typography and layouts. 

All these experiences made me decide to study Graphic Design. After my first year at design school, I found my first job at a small independent design studio in Mallorca, Spain. During that time, I combined my design degree with my job, and I quickly gained experience in editorial design, designing magazines and books for different artists and photographers.

And digital design came after that, until today.

What does a typical day look like?

I’m not a morning person, but during the week, I wake up around 7:30. Then, I make some coffee, grab some food, check my email, Slack, and browse the news.

My workday starts around 9:00. Since we all work remotely, I try to coordinate with the project teams at Vancouver, Toronto, and New York, managing my time between meetings, doing design reviews, and design work.

At around 6pm, I’ve usually wrapped up my work for the day. I always try to do some activities right after, like working out, shopping, or walking with my dog. Later in the evening, I always make dinner (I love cooking) and then I spend the nights mostly reading, watching movies, or doing side projects while listening to music.

What’s your workstation setup?

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Where do you go to get inspired?

When it comes to inspiration, it never works the same way for me. I’m really into art, fashion and editorial design, where I try to find inspiration everyday. I also have a genuine love for design books and indie magazines, so I’m constantly looking to find new editions. 

When it comes to online and digital, I recently love browsing at savee.it. The content there is very well curated. I like to get inspiration from other sites like Brutalist Websites, Minimal Gallery, or Are.Na.

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I also really like spending time reviewing design work from other agencies and studios like Norgram, Experimental Jetset, Work & Co, Mouthwash, Bakken & Baeck, Heydays, Kurppa Hosk, and others.

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What product have you recently seen that made you think this is great design?

There are such great products out there, but one of the latest ones I have seen is Space Bee from Superlative. I love everything about this product, from their brand identity, website, and the SB01 analog synthesizer.

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What pieces of work are you most proud of?

I have been at Engine Digital for about a month now, so I haven’t completed any project there yet. 

Before working at Engine, I worked at Versett, where I had the opportunity to work with different projects and clients. One of the first projects I worked on was Creative Insights for Getty Images. For this project, I worked with Max Ritt, a former designer. We designed a site that uncovers the latest visual trends and shares stories that inspire the creative audience. 

And one of the last projects I worked at Versett was Almi, a new insurance company for the Caribbean. I worked closely with another designer, Lyndsey Hein, designing a new brand identity and a full digital experience. It was a really fun project to work with.

What design challenges do you face at your company?

Since the pandemic, most agencies and tech companies had to switch to work from home. It's a new era, and we are following new standards. But we are lucky enough to do the same job because we have the right tools to do it digitally. It looks like this will be the 'default' system moving forward.

What music do you listen to whilst designing?

Any advice for ambitious designers?

A designer's career is not a sprint; it's a marathon. There is no rush; take your time, and pay attention to what makes you excited. Build your own path. Also, try new things that make you feel uncomfortable while staying comfortable. 

Anything you want to promote or plug?

My wife, Isabel, who after many years of working as an educator, she is now transitioning to digital design. You can check out her site 

And you can ping me up on Instagram or LinkedIn if you want to chat about design, music or anything else!