Sublight Diaries: A Conversation with Sublight Graphic Designer Tamás Kovács

Adrienn Herendi
Jan 27, 2024
•   Posted:
Jan 27, 2024

On the visualization of abstract ideas, marketing goals, and the future of design

For the past 10 years, Graphic Designer Tamás Kovács has been an invaluable member of the Sublight team, responsible for visualizing creative campaigns for world-class brands. If you don’t recognize his name, what you will recognize is his work: cutting-edge designs and animations that reflect a sense of advancement and technology behind our current reality. From the very moment I met him I knew he was a strong inspiration to marketers, and the world should know about it – not only because of his honest, artistic ingenuity and captivating artwork but because of his unique interpretation of the world that we can all benefit from. I spoke to him on a beautiful, sunny afternoon.

With Sublight, you’ve had the privilege of collaborating with brands that invest heavily in visual appeal. What would be your advice to marketers to who are looking to enhance their ability to visualize and grasp abstract ideas to grow their brands?

Embrace the power of storytelling and leverage the potential of design thinking.

Firstly, storytelling plays a vital role in making abstract ideas more tangible and relatable. Instead of bombarding your audience with complex information, try to frame your brand's message within a compelling narrative. Storytelling allows you to create an emotional connection with your target audience, enabling them to visualize the abstract ideas behind your brand. By crafting narratives that are engaging, relatable, and coherent, you can effectively convey abstract concepts and make them more accessible to your prospects and existing customers.

Secondly, adopting design thinking principles can greatly enhance your ability to visualize and communicate abstract ideas. Design thinking encourages a human-centered approach to problem-solving, focusing on empathy, ideation, and iteration. By incorporating this methodology, you can employ techniques like brainstorming, prototyping, and user testing to explore different visual representations of your concepts. This iterative process allows for continuous refinement and improvement until the most effective and engaging visual solution is achieved.

One thing that I often do when beginning to visualize a concept is using a Thesaurus. Sounds easy, right? Actually, it is. But it works! So, simply, you take a Thesaurus, look up a word that is related to your concept, read the group of words connected to it and let your brain wander using the vibes you get from the meanings and feelings you grasp from them.

Plus, the use of analogies and metaphors is quite similar to the Thesaurus trick and it’s extremely effective too. Comparing unfamiliar concepts to something more familiar, you can create mental images that facilitate understanding.

So, these two tricks are practices that you can use when you need to develop ideas quickly. But overall, if I could give only one advice, I would say live an observer's life. Go out to the world with your senses ready to perceive. Forget scrolling on your phone while commuting and see the world. There is nothing more inspiring than the environment around you.

In your opinion, what’s the ultimate goal of graphic design in marketing? 

Graphic design possesses transformative potential in the realm of persuasion, capable of revolutionizing your marketing strategies indefinitely. I think the fundamental objective of design lies in aiding companies with a commitment to excellence, enabling them to provide value and enhance the lives of individuals. Leveraging our design expertise, we have the opportunity to assist remarkable brands in attracting a wider audience that resonates with their offerings — a task of great significance. Facilitating this process holds substantial importance as it not only fosters business growth but also generates opportunities to improve livelihoods for countless individuals.

In your experience, what are the biggest challenges of creative teamwork?

The key to creative teamwork is effective communication and sharing of ideas within the team. But it’s not as easy as it may sound at first hearing. Creative teams need to work on communication constantly, especially today as tremendous amount of agencies have gone fully remote during the pandemic worldwide. Some of us have been working remotely at Sublight too and I think we've improved a lot in terms of communications compared to the early days. A key to successful team collaboration is finding the right tools that can support this aspiration. Plus, giving the right feedback at the right time is paramount. Our goal should be to reach the common ground so that everyone is happy with their work, owns the given project, and can work on it with enthusiasm. 

Tight deadlines and dealing with the pressure associated with them are another huge challenge. How can you produce jaw-dropping creative content that both the client and the team are satisfied with while making sure that you’re constantly renewing? I can speak from experience that fostering a culture of innovation and exploration within the team encourages the generation of fresh ideas, allowing for the infusion of new perspectives and approaches into the creative content while maintaining a high level of quality.

How do you see the future of design?

It’s hard to predict the future with 100% certainty but I definitely think that artificial intelligence (AI) will take us to a new era, and it’s happening right now. I haven't seen designers being so excited about the future of design in a long time. Of course, there are still several questions open about how the marketing and advertising community can benefit from this technology and what are the best ways to implement it for designers, but we already have access to proven AI tools in both image editing and video editing that can greatly facilitate and speed up certain processes and workflows so creative professionals can focus on the creative work itself instead of spending hours on repetitive tasks. So there’s no reason to think AI is a scary beast that steals our jobs, you know. Design with a marketing purpose will always need that one of a kind human touch that makes it human. And no technical invention can replace that. We should embrace all the juicy advantages AI brings to the table.

I also believe that animated graphics will soon dominate the marketing space. You can already see an increasing demand for interactive animations in various video content types, UX ,and UI designs, and literally everywhere in marketing. Users on social media platforms engage more with companies that create captivating animated content besides static images too. They just love it. And this clearly shows that designers should invest efforts into transitioning between printed and digital content to take full advantage of the opportunities provided by socials in order to build well-functioning communications. We have to adapt to the new social media platforms of the future since they are constantly evolving.

Have a question for Tamás? Fire away! Click here to contact him.

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