Maximilian Bufardeci

Graphic Designer
Alphington, AU
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Hey! My name is Maximilian Bufardeci and I am a self-motivated creative individual. I am studying Communication Design (honours) at Swinburne University in Melbourne, Australia. I am currently interning one day per week at Studio Ongarato, a multidisciplinary design studio in Melbourne. Through design I aspire to curate culturally informed brands and ideas by utilising branding, typography, image making and art direction techniques. My research and inspiration often stem from 􀃕ne art and other Australian and international design studios. For me, design is a perfect medium for implementing positive change in our society. In my spare time I like to create 􀃕ne art concepts inspired by graphic design strategy and based heavily o􀃠 experimentation. I 􀃕nd these projects help broaden my design thinking and creative output.

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Work Experience
Studio Ongarato
Intern
Feb 2019 – Present
Bang & Olufsen
Student Collaborator
Oct 2018 – Jan 2019
Freelance
Designer
Feb 2019 – Present
University
Swinburne University
Skills
Branding, Typography, Art Direction, Branded Environments, Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, Premier Pro, After Effects, Glyphs, Microsoft Programs
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You should select me because

I think I could be the best candidate for WGI for a number of reasons. My skillset is broad in knowledge; I am competent in most of the Adobe applications. I also use the Glyphs application to create my own typefaces, and Blender to 3D render. I think I bring a young and fresh perspective to the design and art world. I pride myself on being engaged in current social, cultural and political issues, as well as having a broad knowledge of design trends and styles. Certainly, I have proved to myself that I am capable of living in a completely different city over 15,000 kilometres away from my home town. That experience alone would certainly assist me in the extensive travel and cultural emersion that the WGI requires. Outside University I have completed numerous freelance projects and created brands from scratch. In terms of real-world experience, I have interned at Studio Ongarato for over a year whilst studying. I think I would be able to efficiently apply the skills I have learnt as an intern to the studios involved in WGI. For example, I am educated in the professional design process, how critical feedback works, and how you need to be emotionally intelligent to survive in the design industry. For me, most importantly I would always keep an open mind and be very eager to meet new people and make new connections.

1. Why are you interested in wgi?

I am super interested in WGI because of the opportunity to expand on my creative knowledge. Period. The experience would not only allow me to develop my design competence, but also foster my interest in multi-disciplinary creative pursuits. I have previously had the opportunity to study in Copenhagen for 6 months, and I really appreciated how much design changes from city to city. Indeed, when I returned to Melbourne, I felt like I had really broadened my understanding of design and promised myself I would strive to continue this. If I was chosen to participate in WGI, I believe it would be the perfect experience to feed my appetite for design knowledge. Cities like Chicago, New York, Berlin, London and San Francisco all have an excellent design reputation, but, more importantly, all have their own unique style and way of thinking. Learning from such a diverse palette would expand my brains capacity for design thinking, hopefully allowing me to respond to design issues in a more dynamic manner.

2. What are you looking to gain from an experience such as WGI?

Primarily I want to develop my skills by learning under some of the best design studios in the world. Whilst doing this I certainly want to create friends and mentors that I will keep in touch with for the rest of my life. Finally, I would love to experience the culture of the various cities that I would be working in. For example, I have always wanted to explore Chicago’s art scene, (such as going to the MCA) and I have always been interested in the fashion culture in Berlin.

3. What would be your goals after completing WGI if you were selected?

Currently, educating myself is my primary goal. Whether it’s working as a junior designer at an established design studio or completing a masters in either communication design or contemporary art, I want to keep learning. Eventually, I want to use this learning to start my own studio/artistic movement. My dream is to be the Creative Director in my own studio, a space that focuses on cultural contribution and all things creative. The studio would engage in multi-faceted collaboration between fashion, audio, art and spatial practices. This, in turn, would aim to push the existing boundaries of design, leading the industry to exciting new discoveries and solutions. Undoubtedly, if I participated in WGI, the friends and mentors I would make on the journey would be able to advise and assist with my aspirations to create such a space.

4. How did you hear about wgi?

As an intern at Studio Ongarato I love to chat with the other designers. A particular freelancer at the studio mentioned WGI to me and encouraged me to apply. She has also been a mentor to me over the past year.

5. Share an example of a time you were most motivated and a time you were most demotivated.

In Copenhagen I studied at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Art and Design for six months. We collaborated with Danish tech brand Bang & Olufsen. I was most motivated when the senior art director encouraged our experimental approach to packaging design for their headphones. It seemed the directors encouraged creative thinking and experimentation the most, which was something I had not experienced from tutors or designers in the past. The time I am least motivated is when I help the accountant at the studio I intern at. Although I am an intern sometimes, I have to do data entry. This is quite creatively unstimulating. (although I am grateful for the intern opportunity)

6. In your opinion, what creates a great culture at a company?

I think when everyone is friends and has a common creative motivation. I feed off others creative output so it’s great to have everyone inspiring and encouraging each other. In addition to this I think a good work/life balance is super important. Designers often have a tendency to work long hours and ignore other parts of their life. Although I love working hard, I believe healthy and balanced life is key to being able to consistently create great creative output. I have a friend who runs a studio in Berlin… basically everyone he works with are his friends. They all have this common motivation and love for each other, it seems like they’re having a lot of fun and creating awesome work at the same time (they’ve just finished a film job for Vogue Ukraine.)

7. What brands and companies do you admire and why?

Bureau Mirko Borsche – They were one of the first studios where I sought inspiration from. I think their publication and art directions conventions are so interesting. For me they strike the perfect tension between pushing new grounds and being professional. Furthermore, they work with a broad spectrum of clients, both large and small scale. For example, they redesigned the huge fashion house Balenciaga’s logo, but also art directed Tunica Magazine, which is more underground (and cool in my opinion.) Experimental Jetset have also really inspired me throughout my design education. They adopt the mantra of ‘turning language into objectives,’ which I find really relevant to communication design practice. They also encourage me to do what I love without being concerned about financial status or being ultra-successful. For the first five years of Experimental Jetset’s existence (1997-) they barely broke even. Now they are one of the most influential graphic design studios in the world and hold solo exhibitions at respective galleries. Last year I had the opportunity to see their exhibition ‘Superstructure,’ at the RMIT design hub in Melbourne. I was blown away by the way they combined graphic elements with digital and environmental structures. For me, it’s this ingenuity and lateral thinking evident in their work that I really admire.

8. What do you do to stay sharp and improve your craft?

Most days I ride to work or uni. I find cardio exercise helps clear my mind and keep me healthy. I also make sure I find time to socialise with my friends and work colleges. I think once a designer cuts of their friendship network, they are disengaging with their own society, which I think can be really detrimental to their work. Apart from studying full time, to improve my craft I watch a lot of tutorials on LinkedIn Learning and YouTube. Usually these tutorials are about things that perhaps my university doesn’t cover, like Aftereffects and Glyphs (typography creation program). Documentaries and magazine articles also help to develop my interests and broaden my knowledge. I recently watched the McQueen documentary and found that super inspiring.

9. What’s your favorite quote?

‘La Percepcion Requiere Participacion’ – from the publication ‘Looking at Europe.’

10. If you could solve one problem in the world what would it be?

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