Young designer that he is, Bjourn Smith of SG Designzz runs his busy studio just a little further up Main Street at Pineapple. You’ll see examples of his work all over town.
Welcome, Bjourn. We usually start by asking: what made you choose to do what you do?
Art is something I have always loved. Growing up I always used to just sit drawing and scribbling. Then animation became my thing until one day in high school when I got to play with Photoshop. That was the point at which I knew what I wanted to do — Graphic Design — and my art teacher told me I had the necessary creative mindset. There is something about design that always drives me, whether for work or play, something I enjoy doing every day.
How long have you been working for yourself?
I would say for 4 or 5 years from home but we recently moved the business into proper premises to improve the workflow and eliminate distractions.
Are you self-taught (if so how did you learn the trade) or qualified (where did you study)?
I'm proud to say I am largely self-taught — in learning something new about Photoshop or other chosen programs, internet tutorials can be your best friend. So I suppose you could say that YouTube is my teacher and mentor!
In what areas of graphic design does your company specialise?
We specialise in whatever area of graphics is required… though we mainly produce flyers, posters, stationery and brochures, just tell us what you want and we'll bring it to life.
Graphic design is never boring, but what are your work loves and your work hates?
Yes, as the question suggests, each day is different and no two jobs are the same.
My hates? Doing a job according to the brief but, on completion of the work just as the files are about to go to print, the client will come back with additional info or make drastic changes.
There are far more things I love about the job… I love it overall, but my true passion is working in Photoshop for it is a never ending learning curve, mastering the filters and effects. And it is so encouraging to see the client’s positive reaction — it always drives me to continue to learn and improve, and to push myself more.
Being of creative mind, are you able to switch off at 5pm and resume domestic life, or are you being constantly driven nuts having to come up with solutions?
It used to drive me nuts sometimes when I worked from home because I could find no time to switch off, having my Mac right there! Working from a dedicated office gives me a clearer head. If there is a particular design problem to be wrestled with, then yes, sometimes it is difficult to switch off. But having my wife around to keep me in check, I can live a normal life away from the computer.
Any future plans to expand your business, put together a Mac operator team, your own private island?
With God’s help, expansion would be ideal — and to have a well organised team of a Mac operators would suit the business just fine thank you! But to have my own private island… I don’t know about that part lol, I’m a simple ‘down to earth’ person who just wants to live reasonably comfortably, pay the bills, and take care of my family.
Ocho Rios… what changes would you like to see?
Much improved entertainment and nightlife for young and old. Perhaps building an arcade that includes exciting things like a bowling alley, skating rinks, games, whatever, etc. Things that will occupy people’s leisure time… and keep them out of trouble lol.
Do carrots scream when you chop them?
I do not know but if someone made a big enough pencil sharpener, that would give these carrots something to scream about.
SG Designzz (SG = Smith Graphics) are a just short trip away from the centre of Ochi at Shop 4, 126 Main Street, Pineapple (it’s above the Chinese supermarket should you lose your way). Call Bjourn and Rodaina Smith on 876-417-6851 or view samples of their work at Facebook and Instagram.
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