Figure 1 Publishing

The Newsroom

Q&A with Creative Director Naomi MacDougall

What is your favourite stage of the design process?

The conceptual stage where all the visual research begins to formulate into a concrete vision in my head and in my sketchbook. I gather folders of type, colour palettes, suitable imagery, and comparative visual reference material for each project before I begin designing and slowly these components merge towards a composition.

What is the biggest difference between when you started as a designer to now? 

I’ve learnt the importance of taking breaks and walking away from the computer. Sometimes a walk around the block, a visit to the bookstore or art gallery does wonders to refresh my creativity and productivity.

What are you currently reading/watching/listening to? 

Reading: I forgot my book on a recent camping trip so borrowed one from a 13-year-old friend—The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline. It’s superb and I can’t put it down!

Watching: Yellowjackets. Great plot, cast and soundtrack.

Listening: These days a lot of indie psych rock/post punk/darkwave . . . and disco!

Have you been to any art galleries/exhibits/museums lately? What was it like? 

The recent Spring 2022: Collected Works exhibit at the Rennie Museum was such a stunner I went three times. I was particularly enthralled with the large format portraits by Katy Grannan. Check out the virtual exhibit here:

What do you like to do in your free time? 

My life outside of work revolves around airing my dog Fawzia. We have fun—most recently I’ve got her on the paddle board with me and much to my surprise she seems to enjoy it. Otherwise I try to get out to see live music, theatre, art shows, and film as much as I can.

What’s your favourite fall activity? 

Foraging for chanterelle mushrooms. One of my go-to fall recipes is a savory pear and chanterelle pot pie by Vancouver’s John Bishop from a cookbook I designed early in my career. To this day it’s one of my favourite dishes I make year after year.

August 31, 2022
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