The Hochschule Augsburg graduate designer draws on everyday inspiration from frozen pizza packaging to the old masters
Having always gravitated to paper and pencil, learning early on to question everything, Fabien Franz’s determination and passion for design quickly makes itself clear. Although originally unsure of what area of work he wanted to direct his studies and practice towards, Fabien drew on his ongoing interest in art and what he had learned about the framework of design from his teenage interest in graffiti and chose to study communication design.
Embracing the opportunity to move to a new city, the course at Hochschule Augsburg encouraged Fabien to use an array of mediums and was an integral step in the evolution of his craft. “What I really enjoyed at the university was that the objective was not to master the adobe software, but to find your own way of creating” he tells us, “I learned a lot about my own ability to work as part of a team and independently and became acquainted with my own functioning”.
Whilst studying Fabien secured a spot as an intern at one of Germany’s biggest advertising agencies and after graduating cemented his position there as a junior art director. As a young and ambitious designer, adapting to the “conservative” and often rigid briefs of clients was initially hard, but working in a high pressure, fast paced professional design environment has taught Fabien a lot; “To listen and ask, work under pressure, use shortcuts (learn them!) work clean from the outset and specify files” he explains. Recently though, his drive and creativity has forced him to ask if working within an agency was really right for him. “I’ve always worked on self-initiated graphic design projects and freelanced for different clients away from advertising and had a lot of fun while doing this, so I decided to quit” he reveals.
Fabien’s love for tangible objects and print is vividly apparent throughout his work. He effectively combines his interests in art history and inspiration from eye-catching everyday details within his vibrant and bold graphic work. “I really enjoy to work on and with paper” he effuses, “to me, the look and feel, the smell and special print and bookbinding effects are incomparable”.
Using his notice period at the agency as a springboard to rearrange his practice, Fabien is looking to escape the corporate design world and focus more on projects within arts and culture and is looking for clients who are open to a more experimental strategy and approach. We have no doubt that there will be no shortage of people willing to work and collaborate with him and we’ll certainly be keeping a close eye on his next move.