Joe: Doing Your Own Thing

April 25, 2020

At Aquí, we take our cuppa Joe very seriously. Rest assured, because the same applies when it comes to design. As avid coffee drinkers, we often ask, “How do you like your coffee?” And as a creative boutique, we like to ask, “How do you like your design?” Joe is a blog segment where we - #TeamAquí - share our design inspirations.


For the love of Geometry

In this week’s sharing, Maria introduced us to someone special! Sini Salminen is a multidisciplinary designer, art director and mentor. She was also a boss and mentor to Maria from when she was pursuing design in Copenhagen. What Maria was eager to share was Sini’s brainchild - Things I Imagined - which showcases the art that she creates out of her love for geometry, color and composition. 

“I think it’s really awesome that she is doing this because her art is amazing,” Maria expresses.

We got a sense of satisfaction looking at the shapes and colours of Sini’s works. The exploration of her Instagram feed went on for a while because we did not want the therapeutic experience to end. Till today, the symbolism and meaning of shapes still fascinates us. The fact that we are able to feel a certain way by looking at a certain shape really reminds us that there is always more than meets the eye. Sini’s art style is simple and minimalistic. Yet her paintings and prints have a strong presence - affecting the space around and influencing the ambience.

“Just look at her office space! How cool is her wall?” Maria exclaimed while pointing at her screen.


“I promise that you’ll never find another like me”

Note: There are spoilers ahead for the Miss Americana documentary.

The team had recently caught Miss Americana on Netflix, and it kept Evelyn ruminating over the hidden realities of life in the entertainment industry. Watching the documentary took us all on an emotional ride. The common consensus between us was that it is very easy to be oblivious to a celebrity’s life under the influence of mainstream media. “You can never really guess what goes on in their lives,” Evelyn added.

Letting us in on some of her thoughts about the internet, Evelyn told us that it feels exasperating to see that “hating on someone” could easily turn into a trend on the internet. It was deeply unsettling to think that empathy tends to be forgotten when one is behind a screen. We will never be able to understand what it is like to be hated by (what feels like) the world. “It is really admirable for someone (Taylor Swift) to have gone through so much and come back strong,” Evelyn expressed. 

In an industry (or society) where misogyny prevails, we can only imagine the things that female artistes go through in their career when success is anchored on the ability to fit a mould. What we have learnt from Swift is that the mould was never made to fit anybody, and throwing it out is a toast to our differences as well as an opportunity to talk about things that have been swept under the rug.

“I had to deconstruct an entire belief system. Toss it out and reject it.” — Taylor Swift


Constraint-induced Creativity

Everyone is in the midst of adopting new ways of working at this time but for some, the nature of the job might pose a bigger challenge. In this week’s sharing, Nella told us about photographers and models who have found a new way to collaborate while keeping their social distance. 

Alessio Albi and Danny Scottlane were two amongst the few photographers who have started to use FaceTime to photograph their models and keep their creative juices flowing. The photographers essentially direct the models over their video calls and capture the moment by taking screenshots. It made us all laugh when we saw Alessio Albi’s face at the side of the screenshots he took. But more importantly, we respect that these creatives have found a way to work around their circumstances instead of being constrained by them.

“The passion within these photographers is so strong that it has inspired innovative ideas,” Nella expressed her appreciation for the creatives who continue to push boundaries.


Balancing Well-being and Productivity

Youtube channel recommendation alert! 

Yu Ting started off by telling us about a time last year where she had to find ways to motivate herself to start the day right. What she meant by “starting the day right” was basically not to let the day go to waste and to make sure she puts every minute to good use. She wanted to be highly efficient and check off all the tasks she had for herself. A productivity junkie was what she was (which she gladly admitted to) and she is currently working on adopting a new mindset, one that does not make her feel overly obsessive but more balanced.

Jusuf was one of the Youtubers that Yu Ting discovered when she was in search of habits and routines that could help maximize her time. Back then, Jusuf was still a student and was documenting her daily routines and compiling them into vlogs. She gave tips on time management (as a student), bullet journaling and different ways to spend the day being productive. Yu Ting used to play her videos in the background whenever she was feeling sluggish just to give a little boost. 

Recently graduated from school, Jusuf is now a full time Youtuber and content creator. In her recent content, Jusuf has edited her videos in a way that places less emphasis on getting work done and more emphasis on balancing well-being and productivity. She also shares more about her struggles, and documents mundane parts of the day where she has to clean her room or do the laundry - little details of life that makes us look more like humans.

Sometimes we get so consumed with being busy we do not realise we are not being mindful of what we are doing. The quality of life is then compromised because you find yourself not being able to slow down and appreciate things.


Joe: Exploring Details, Motivation, Style & Familiarity


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