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Q&A Tilman Solé

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It seemed interesting to us to make you discover the profiles of our guests. Discover Tilman Solé‘s interview.
Biography Tilman Solé is a specialist in finding the meaning of companies and institutions and transforming it into direct communication creating unique brands. For this, knowing and working with the client in a team is essential “to get it right the first time.” He is a strong believer in sharing knowledge through different platforms such as the Master “Postgrafica” which he co-direct with Marc Català or the “WHY TALKS, where the speakers listen” which he organizes since 2016 at the Soho House Barcelona and the OFFF Festival Barcelona. Tilman has been sharing his voice as Mucho’s third partner since September 2010. Tilman has been teaching Design and Branding in different Universities since 2010 and has given master classes and conferences in Barcelona, Stavanger, Torino, Ciudad de México, Fortaleza, Antwerp, Qatar, Oslo, Bergen, London, Cincinnati, Bratislava, Madrid, Vienna…

Interview

What is your favourite way to start a day?

Tilman Solé I love to go out for an early morning run from my home to the top of Parque Gьell and see the sun rise over the sea and the whole city in orange tones. After a shower, I love to prepare and have a nice breakfast with my daughter Nora. I don’t open the computer since I arrive at the studio at 9.30, to check the emails and organize my day.

What is the best way to work?

Tilman Solé I love to be in the studio. We are 30 people from around the world, and I need people around me to share ideas and knowledge and make the project grow. I am a firm believer in Collective Intelligence. If you learn to do it, it is an incredible way of learning together and archives great results in less time and it gives you much more happiness than doing things on your own. It has to do with leaving the ego beside and embracing the ideas of others.

“Type is the voice of any graphic identity.”
– Tilman Solé

Mucho studio's group photo

Do you enjoy music?

Tilman Solé I love music to the point that I want Monday to arrive to listen to the Discover Weekly list from Spotify. I always hear music. I hear different kinds of music depending on what I do or my mood. For running I listen to electronic music, to work I have my favorite music list that I build each year or a more relaxed music list to listen to before going to bed or hangovers.

Do you read news?

Tilman Solé I decided some years ago to skip all this. I see news as a control apparatus that usually keeps us upset or worried. I have learned that I live happier without it. If there is an important issue that is happening I will read different newspapers to have a more accurate understanding of what is going on. As a graphic designer, I also don’t read or watch blogs. I follow the people that interest me on Instagram. That’s more than enough. I get more ideas by reading interesting books than by looking into design blogs. For me, design is related to ideas and sometimes I have the feeling that design can be like porn. There is too much of it on the internet and nothing really is interesting or fulfilling. Because it lacks meaning.

Do you practice any sports?

Tilman Solé Yes. Sport is very important to me. It will seem strange to some people. But when you go running there is a moment of flow where everything is in balance similar to when you meditate. I love running, weight training, cycling, and yoga. Sports give me balance.

Will customers let you jump out of comfort circle??

Tilman Solé Clients do not put the standard of what is good enough. It is oneself that has to raise that bar and it should always be higher than what the client expects.

Are you always on the lookout for new typefaces?

Tilman Solé Type is the voice of any graphic identity. The right choice is key. You have to decide in each project if you want to stand out or fit in. I always prefer to stand out. Like using Tiempos for the tv channel TeleMadrid. Some months ago, I decided to create an Instagram account to mix inspiring quotes with typefaces that seem interesting to me. So I keep an archive of both things I like. It has very few followers. I like it that way. I do it for myself and if someone wants to join, this also is fine :-)

“As a graphic designer, you will learn to speak the most universal language—The visual language.”
– Tilman Solé

How do you think teaching shapes your practice?

Tilman Solé Simple answer. For me, teaching has to be bilateral. As I teach and interact with students, they learn from me and I learn from them. That’s the most important part for me. To learn from the students. How they think, and the ideas they have and enjoy learning.

How did you decide to become a designer?

Tilman Solé It was the contrary. I had a clear vision of what I did not want to do. And this was monotonous work. I wanted something creative, where I had to constantly learn new things. And that was design. Also, an environment like a studio was something important to me. I can not imagine myself in a suit and a normal office.

Do you sketch–draw on paper?

Tilman Solé Totally. I always have my Leuchtturm notebook and my Caran d’Ache pen with me. Sometimes I write down an idea with text or I make a drawing. It is an extension of my mind and less forgetful. Later I will go to the computer to see if the ideas work.

Do you have words of wisdom for young practitioners?

Tilman Solé As a graphic designer, you will learn to speak the most universal language. The visual language. And like all languages, they are alive and constantly evolving. You will always have to learn and keep learning. If you like that challenge, it can be a good profession for you.

What the message you want to convey during your talk in Paris?

Tilman Solé I still don’t know. I enjoy a lot working together with type designers to create an ad hoc typeface for clients. Collaboration is key to getting the best results. And at Mucho we always learn working with typographers.

What other speaker should not be missed?

Tilman Solé This is one of the things I like more. To get to know the speakers. So I will try to get to see all the speakers and get to know them all.

Thank you very much, Tilman!


– Interview by Yi Shen

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March 28, 2023
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