• Andreasengelbreckt-lead

    Introducing: The studio of Andreas Engelbreckt

Graphic Design

Introducing... The meticulous portfolio of Danish designer Andreas Engelbreckt

Posted by James Cartwright,

Andreas Engelbreckt is a young Danish designer currently completing a Masters in visual communication at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. We were first drawn to his work having seen his Panneau typeface – a font that evokes the decorative letterforms of 1940s French typography – but quickly discovered an impressive body of work focussing on classic type design and branding projects. We got in touch with Andreas to find out a little bit more about his practise and have a good old snoop around his desk space.

  • Andreasengelbreckt-1

    Andreas Engelbreckt: Studio

  • Andreasengelbreckt-5

    Andreas Engelbreckt: Process

  • Andreasengelbreckt-4

    Andreas Engelbreckt: Process

Where do you work?

Most projects start with me sitting in the corner of my apartment with a notebook and my laptop. I guess you could call it my studio – it’s basically a chair, a lamp, two shelves with books and magazines, and a big box full of paper, art supplies and even more books. It’s not much, but it works out well. I can spread out inspirational material on my floor, and look at it from up high on my little throne. Later on, when I start producing the actual work, I work wherever there’s a surface – at school, a friends apartment, a cafe and sometimes just on my own floor or dining table. It really depends a lot on what kind of printing facilities i need, unfortunately I don’t have a plotter at home – yet. 

How does your working day start?

If I’m working at home, I always leave my apartment for a little while before I start working. I’ve found that I work better if I trick my mind it into thinking it has left home and arrived at work. Otherwise I get stuck in a limbo where I’m not really sure whether or not my working day has begun.

I have to admit, I envy people who are good at getting started. I used to be very bad at starting the day, I would sometimes spend the first half of the day procrastinating, especially in the early stages of a project. Now I start working right away, then after half an hour I break for a little while, to make coffee, answer mails and check random internet stuff and things like that. Then, since I’ve already started working, it’s easier to get going again. Well begun is halfway done I guess.

  • Andreasengelbreckt-17

    Andreas Engelbreckt: Kulturnatten

  • Andreasengelbreckt-18

    Andreas Engelbreckt: Kulturnatten

How do you work and how has that changed?

I always start with words, I write endless lists and notes, as if I think I can solve the problem by writing about it. Of course, I never can. Then I collect inspirational and informative material – books, quotes, definitions, images and things like that, constantly organising everything I find and taking more notes. I’ve also found documentaries to be very helpful (there’s a documentary on almost everything) and I think that allows for a submersion in the subject that I find very stimulating.

I always try to visit places or do things that are somehow related to the subject or client of the project; museums, stores, parks, factories, sports events and things like that. It’s often here the really good ideas pop up, rarely when I sit hours on end in front of the laptop trying to force it. I always try to have a notebook near my bed, I get a lot of ideas right before I go to sleep, mostly they turn out to be completely moronic when I go over them with fresh eyes, but every once in a while, an idea survives the night and turns out to be gold.

When I started out a few years ago, I sketched a lot by hand, but I didn’t really care for it. Everyone around me would go nuts with pens and brushes and liquid ink, filling out page after page. I never really found that it worked for me, maybe because I am not at all good at drawing. At a point it almost made me feel self conscious – it seemed you had to work like that if you wanted to be a great designer.

Now I’ve realised that it works better for me to sketch on the computer. I can work fairly fast, and the level of accuracy compared to my dodgy hand drawings makes it much easier for me to see what works and make decisions. Now when I draw by hand it’s mostly just to test out concepts. So I’ve become the kind of designer who has one notebook and one art liner – luckily I’ve found out that I’m not alone. I still think it is important to work big when I’m producing though, its hard to do a good poster if you don’t work at full scale, or a good magazine if you can’t see all the spreads at the same time. I’ve only recently realised the importance of this.

Where would we find you when you’re not at work?

I spend a lot of my spare time at a little local strength and conditioning club close to where I live. Here I either coach or work towards my own goals. This is one of the very few places where I’m truly able to put the creative work aside for a little while. As most creatives will tell you, work and life is, for better or worse, pretty tightly intertwined, so I think it’s important to have a place or an activity that can pull your mind completely away from work once in a while. When I’m not there I spend time with friends, doing everything and nothing, tinkering with bicycles, going for walks, watching movies or something completely different. There’s almost always good food and beer involved.

Would you intern for yourself?

I don’t think it would be all that bad. If I had an intern I would probably be so concerned about his/her experience that I would give him/her all the fun projects and be stuck making coffee and answering mails myself. Starting September I’m doing an internship at a studio called DesignUnit, let’s hope they feel the same way! 

  • Andreasengelbreckt-10

    Andreas Engelbreckt: One Nutrition

  • Andreasengelbreckt-11

    Andreas Engelbreckt: One Nutrition

  • Andreasengelbreckt-12

    Andreas Engelbreckt: One Nutrition

  • Andreasengelbreckt-15

    Andreas Engelbreckt: Danske Musikfestivaler

  • Andreasengelbreckt-16

    Andreas Engelbreckt: Danske Musikfestivaler

Jc

Posted by James Cartwright

James started out as an intern in 2011 and is now one of our two editors. He oversees Printed Pages magazine and content wise has a special interest in graphic design and illustration. He also runs our online shop Company of Parrots and is a regular on our Studio Audience podcast.

Most Recent: Graphic Design View Archive

  1. Emptyfilmposters-itsnicethat-list

    Sure this isn’t the kind of thing we usually post, but the sun’s all blazing and glorious outside our windows today, so we thought we’d be kind and give you something to stare at for the next few hours until it’s time to make your way to the closest beer garden available. You know what these images are don’t you? They’re iconic film posters with all traces of branding and characters removed – the bench without Forrest, a sunset with Simba removed and a deep blue sub-aquatic fade that’s one shark short of of a multi-million dollar blockbuster franchise. These posters are the result of hours of hard photoshopping by French art director Madani Bendjellal, and for making our afternoon pass that little bit faster we owe him our thanks. Thanks!

  2. Faber-modern-classics-itsnicethat-.list

    A couple of months ago, we spoke to a number of book designers about whether they felt you had to read a book to design its cover. Whichever camp you sit in, it’s clear that with something as powerful and evocative as a piece of literature, summing up complex and emotive ideas in a single cover is no mean feat, so we were keen to hear more about how the process worked when designing for Faber’s new series of modern classics. The series launches this week with ten books including Look Back in Anger by John Osborne, Ariel by Sylvia Plath, TS Eliot’s Selected Poems and Self-Help by Lorrie Moore. A further six titles are to be released in June.

  3. Production-type-itsnicethat-list

    It seems to me that half the job when you work at a type foundry is finding the best way to showcase your wares. In an industry now bubbling with interactive websites, weird apps and even the occasional trailer, typeface specimens are an old fashioned means, but as Paris-based digital foundry Production Type proves, they’re often the best.

  4. I-give-an-xpentagram-itsnicethatlist

    Where an “x” was once a kiss, it’s now something rather different – a mark that signifies your voice in the election. This little but very powerful symbol is at the heart of a new non-partisan project by Pentagram, I Give an X, which saw Marina Willer and the team create hundreds of different x marks which they hope people will use as their online profile picture.

  5. Wardheirwegh_itsnicethat-list

    Some graphic design projects seem straightforward; a lovely foil, and Bob’s your uncle! Others demand a bit more attention, however, and for those we call in the likes of Ward Heirwegh. Based in Antwerp, Ward specialises in design for exhibitions, translating complex, abstract concepts into coherent, understandable printed accompaniments. In my opinion this branch of design requires a very specific and quite elusive skill for compressing and transforming information.

  6. Hightide-itsnicethat-list

    If there’s one thing New York design studio High Tide knows well, it’s how to brand a luxury startup. Danny Miller and his team have worked with brands like Warby Parker since they were just a glint in the lens of their founder’s spectacles, then subsequently with all manner of high-flying fashion brands. As a rule they opt for effortless minimalism, but the selection of work below demonstrates the studio’s tailored approach to every new client they take on, whether it’s footwear or fragrance they’re peddling.

  7. List-innocent-sorcerers-image006

    Posters for Polish film never fail to excite; the strange, b-movie quality they have, the bold cut-and-paste aesthetic and the unabashed melodrama make them utterly captivating. So it’s always exciting when Kinoteka Festival rolls around in London, not just to have a chance to see the movies the posters promote, but because of the ace satellite shows of Polish cinema visual ephemera. This year, the festival boasts an exhibition of posters for director Andrzej Wajda’s films. As well as work by Polish artists, international designers such as Peter Strausfeld, Dominique Guillotin, Otto Kummert, Milan Grygar and Erhard Grutter all have posters on show. It’s a gorgeous spread of work, all on loan from the archives of the Film Museum in Lódź.

  8. List-respect_byd_ad-itsnicethat

    D&AD has commissioned a rather playful campaign to promote 2015’s Judging Week, created by design agency The Oldham Goddard Experience and illustrator Marion Deuchars. Marion’s signature off-kilter typographic approach makes a great counterpart to the instantly recognisable black and yellow of the D&AD brand, used across a number of tongue-in-cheek slogans. All in all, it’s a simple, smart and effective solution to what must be a rather daunting brief.

  9. Milton-list

    “I knew that I was obsessed with drawing as a child, and that it was a source of my greatest pleasure. There was nothing else I would prefer doing than drawing. Actually that is persistent to this very day.” So begins The New York Times’ short film looking at the spectacular life and career of Milton Glaser, and if this wonderful clip doesn’t restore your faith in design (and in the same amount of time you’d spend making a coffee, too!) then I don’t know what will.

  10. Atelier25-vagamodes-itsnicethat-list

    Sunny graphic design for a bright Monday morning? Consider it done. Atelier 25 are a Parisian pair of designers – Capucine Merkenbrack Tercé and Chloe – making work for cultural institutes, festivals, record labels and publishers; always with an emphasis on strong conceptual foundations. The duo take a hands-on approach to their practice, often working in physical media instead of heading straight to the computer. This leads to some seriously tactile results and projects often bear the marks of the process that spawned them. This is particularly true in their work for Vagamondes festival, where a moiré of intersecting diagonals is layered colour by colour, highlighting the physical process of lithographic printing.

  11. Cooperhewitt-howposterswork-itsnicethat-list

    We feature a fair amount of poster deign here on It’s Nice That but in the pell-mell rush for aesthetic appreciation it’s rare to take time out to consider how this particular design discipline works. Luckily the Cooper Hewitt Museum in New York has forced our hand with its new show How Posters Work. Displaying 125 of the museum’s 4,000-strong collection, the aim of the exhibition is to illustrate how poster designers go about maximising the potential of the medium.

  12. Secret7-itsnicethat-list

    The annual Secret 7” show is always eagerly anticipated and this year’s exhibition – which opens today at Somerset House in London – looks like it lives up to our high expectations once again. The brainchild of Kevin King, the format’s success is tied to its simplicity with seven tracks from seven well-known musicians offered up to creatives from around the world. This year’s songs include Underworld’s Born Slippy, Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer, The Rolling Stones’ Dead Flowers and St Vincent’s Digital Witness and the artists and designers taking part range from big names to young talents. For the time being whose sleeve is whose is kept under wraps, but we’ve spotted a few styles that we can immediately identify. After the show all the sleeves will be sold off for the same price with proceeds going to music therapy charity Nordoff Robbins.

  13. List

    South Korean creative Bohuy Kim splits his time between filmmaking and graphic design. Having trained in film, TV and media at the Sungkyunkwan university in Seoul he’s now the proprietor of his own studio, Printlab where he produces visually arresting work for the likes of Samsung, KIA and local creative enterprises. His impressive portfolio is the result of “rigorous creative exploration,” and, let’s face it, a great sense of colour.