Originally from Mexico City, I was raised in San Francisco, California; I grew up in two cultures that taught me valuable life lessons such as respect, and to be open-minded. Over the last four years, I’ve worked as an interactive visual designer, and I was comfortable in my environment until I was accepted to my master’s program in Florence, Italy. It was here that I learned the importance of playing as a team.
Connecting with others
When I started my master’s program, I was surrounded by talent from all over the world. We’d all moved to Italy with the same goal of becoming stronger designers, but we shared the hardships of leaving our countries behind. However, one thing brought us together – it made sense to move to Florence, where art was born, and it is an honor to live in such a timeless city.
So far, my master’s has taught me a lot, and I’m not talking purely academically. Many of us turn to technology to look for ideas, but to be honest, the answers could be the person sitting next to you. When you build that interaction and learn about their stories; you learn about yourself too. Inspiration comes from people, places, and things.
And yes, there is a language barrier. English isn’t their first language, but that’s no excuse to not work together. I’ve met professionals and young designers from Latin America, Western, and Eastern Europe.
Studying in such an international school filled with different creative skills and cultural backgrounds is more inspirational than it is competitive
Playing as a team helps us all to get the very best out of each other. We speak different languages, but we share the universal language of visual communication. We are young designers who have a passion for creativity.
Collaboration is essential
I thought to myself, “how do you become a stronger designer?” Keyword: collaboration. When you collaborate and play as a team, you will see results faster than if you were to try and work on something alone.
Win or lose, your team is there for you, but only if you allow yourself to work with them. I highly encourage everyone to connect with their foreign peers, and to learn from them.
It’s amazing what you can create when ideas come together, and you learn who they are as individual creators.
But for collaboration to work, you’ve got to make a deal with yourself to be adaptable. The best teams, both in sports and in business, are adaptable. When things don’t go as planned, the team has to change course, and together find a way to come out on top. Our lives don’t always follow what we envision. You can’t let it slow you down, so find a way to adjust and believe in your ability to overcome challenges. One option leaves you in last place; the other keeps you moving toward your goals.
When you step outside your comfort zone, and fight for what you love, whether in sport, or in the workplace, remember that you’ll have to jump over hurdles.
It’s important to continue asking questions, be curious about the world, respect everyone around you and be humble.
Together, we made a difference for ourselves, and the collaboration project we worked on allowed us to go beyond our limits. I’ve learned that it’s important to have a strong vision, and to share it with someone who is actively pursuing personal career goals.
When you achieve the development of your creativity, you begin to see the truth. You are capable of making a difference for yourself, but most importantly you’re a team and you got there together.