Saju Thomas Paul or Paul as we call him is our Creative Designer, who is as dreamy and lost as a creative person could get when he is in work mode. He is an expert in graphic designing with an extensive 10-year career, boasting a prestigious line of work with international brands such as Macmillan Publishing Solutions Germany, Break design Milan, Erideon Singapore and much more.
As simple and reserved as Paul is, one will definitely not miss that simplicity and elegance in his body of work as well. Being a tech savvy, for him, technology and creativity go hand-in-hand when it comes to work and that does show off in his designs and creative thoughts as well. On a lazy afternoon, we sat down to discuss more his professional life and creative line of thoughts. And what day could be better than his birthday to share his story with you all. Yeah, it’s Paul’s birthday today and this how we, the ICCA Creative Team decided to celebrate his birthday. So, let’s see what Paul’s story is like.
Shruti: What made you want to become a creative designer?
Paul: It made sense. I mean my dad is an artist and he’s into fine arts. Sculpture, painting, and photography are something he does on a regular basis as a hobby. I grew up seeing him doing all these, so I guess creativity chose me not the other way around.
Shruti: Tell us a bit about your career so far.
Paul: I started my career with Macmillan Publishing house as a graphic designer. I could say it was a great start for me as I got international exposure working with clients from different countries. After working with them for some time I joined my dad’s publishing house, Print Links, and that’s where I started doing professional photography along with designing for our company.
Later, I started travelling a lot and had the opportunity to meet several interesting designers from the old days when graphic designing was still a booming technology. Meeting them was a great experience which encouraged me to work as a freelancer for quite some time with clients mainly from Europe and Asia. Then I came to Dubai during one of my travels, ICCA happened and I am here now.
Shruti: What’s your approach to designs?
Paul: I would say I am a minimalist designer. Not that I haven’t worked with loud colors and details but I prefer to convey the message with as fewer elements as possible.
Shruti: You do both photography and designing, what would you say your strongest skill is?
Paul: I will have to say designing because I’m more professional in that and I have been in the industry for more than 10 years now. When it comes to photography I have never learned the basics so I am sure I lack something there but again, I would say photography and designing go hand-in-hand it’s not either or the other, so I think I am well trained that way.
Shruti: Is there any particular ideas or project you enjoy working on the most?
Paul: Projects that involve a lot of travelling or anything to do with travelling such as travel photography, travel blogs, travel based ads etc. I love travelling which I am sure you pretty much understood by now. (Grins)
Shruti: Has travelling helped you in your work?
Paul: Yes, very much. When you go to different places, you are dealing with different approaches towards creativity. For example, if you’re in India or Japan they prefer more colourful and vibrant designs with a lot of detailing where in Europe, they prefer a mild tone. So working with different clients from different places by visiting them personally lets you understand their requirements in a much better way.
Shruti: How is your experience working in the culinary industry?
Paul: It’s interesting and insightful I would say, and as I expected there is more creative freedom in this industry.
Shruti: What are you currently fascinated by and how is it feeding in your work?
Paul: I am always fascinated with technology and I try to keep myself updated with it. My work pattern and interest are very much correlated to the changes in technology. 360, virtual reality, augmented reality, are some of the new technologies I am looking forward to work with.
Shruti: What is that you enjoy the most about your career?
Paul: Ability to translate other people’s thoughts into a proper visual body. Everyone has ideas and interesting thoughts but they can’t convey the message in a digitally creative way like I do. I sometimes feel that’s kind of having a super power.
Shruti: Besides designing what else are you passionate about?
Paul: I am not a foodie but I like exploring street food from different places.
Shruti: I know you don’t plan much ahead but any idea what’s in line next?
Start a creative agency which is different from the traditional ones. Probably a mobile one where I can keep travelling and work as I go by because I really don’t think I would ever settle down at one place so might as well work around that idea.
Shruti: So, any birthday plans?
Paul: No plans as such, just a usual “Thursday night” with friends on a Sunday and cut the cake that you baked for me.
Shruti: Thank you for your time Paul and once again, wish you a very happy birthday.
Paul: You’re welcome and Thank you for the wishes.