Davor Butorac is a 38 year old designer from Croatia, a beautiful little country in Europe. Davor is a self-taught, independent graphic designer, passionate about logo and brand design.
He is working as a freelancer, helping his clients to achieve their goals and to elevate their brands to the next level.
Before starting his design career, he worked as a back-end Java developer, also doing programming, web applications, and web services.
As a designer, he still uses logical thinking, and loves to use geometry and grids to achieve perfect visual balance. He shares his work daily on social media platforms like Behance, Dribble, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Last year Davor became a father to a beautiful little boy named Leon.
The Logo Creative – Hi Davor, I am pleased you are taking part in the Designer Interview.
Davor Butorac – Hi Andrew, Thanks for including me, it’s a pleasure to be featured.
The Logo Creative – What was the turning point in your life when you decided to become a designer and how did you proceed?
Davor Butorac – I was creating websites and playing around in Photoshop as a youngster and it was my real passion. Then, circumstances led me away from graphic design to a different job for a decade. A few years ago, when my wife was looking for logo design options for her business, I decided to give it a try. I discovered Illustrator and started creating concepts until I made the final logo. I haven’t stopped creating ever since.
The Logo Creative – What does your day consist of?
Davor Butorac – Coffee, Social Media, Design, My Family, and more design. I like to spend my free time outside, if possible, whether it’s hanging out with friends, family, taking a walk, or any kind of activity as long as it’s in nature.
The Logo Creative – Are you a morning person or night owl and is there a reason why?
Davor Butorac – Night person forever. But as I get older, I like mornings more and more.
The Logo Creative – What was the first logo you ever designed?
Davor Butorac – The first logo I designed was the logo for my wife’s business Inked Translations. This is the concept 1000, the others are not for public view 😊
The Logo Creative – What is your favourite logo you have designed?
Davor Butorac – I don’t really have favourite logos. I like logo sets like the one I made for this year’s 36 days of type challenge.
The Logo Creative – What’s the best logo you’ve designed that clients DIDN’T go for?
Davor Butorac – I designed the concepts below for a company that completely rejected the whole set and changed the directions to something that has nothing to do with the initial brief.
The Logo Creative – What is your favourite logos of all time?
Davor Butorac – I like the World Wildlife Fund’s panda and FedEx logo.
The Logo Creative – Can you describe or give us an overview of your logo design process?
Davor Butorac – I always start with a brief, followed by research, sketches, vectors, and finally presentation. You can see my detailed process at https://dbworkplay.com/process/
The Logo Creative – What brands do you most admire and how do they influence your creative thinking?
Davor Butorac – The Youtube channel The Futur & their founder Chris Do shaped the start of my design career. I learned a lot about design and business in general.
The Logo Creative – What do you consider your most successful design project, and why?
Davor Butorac – The logo project I worked on for one of the best known companies in my country, Rimac Automobili. Their first car model, Concept One, is known as the world’s fastest production electric vehicle. I was very happy when their lead designer contacted me to help them develop a new logo for a new project. I’m under NDA, so for now I can’t say more.
The Logo Creative – How long does it take to complete the average logo design project from start to finish?
Davor Butorac – Depends on the complexity of a project. The average logo project lasts one week, from the initial brief to the final file transfer.
The Logo Creative – What are your recommended design books to read?
Davor Butorac – My go-to books for inspiration are:
- Trademarks and symbols of the world volume 1 & 2 by Yasaburo Kuwayama (Review) –
- Logo Modernism by Jens Muller – (Review) – Amazon UK – Amazon US
Books I recommend reading are:
- Feck Perfuction by James Victore – Amazon UK – Amazon US
- Pretty much everything by Aaron Draplin – (Review) – Amazon UK – Amazon US
The Logo Creative – Which software do you use frequently and is there any you would recommend to designers?
Davor Butorac – I use Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and Adobe InDesign.
The Logo Creative – What is your favourite style of logo design? And why?
I like to create simple flat shapes, using geometry and grids. I try to avoid any type of layering in my work to make it timeless, and to avoid problems in print phase. My choice is to make something clean and precise, it’s the way I think and operate.
The Logo Creative – What is your daily inspiration when you design?
Davor Butorac – History inspires me, then books, and all the visuals I see every day from the best designers in the world. Behance is a great source of inspiration for me lately.
The Logo Creative – When you’re not designing do you have a favorite free time activity you like to do?
Davor Butorac – I like to go out to enjoy the sun and a good view. I like reading about history, to watch tv shows, travel, to skate and have a good time on weekends, go to the theatre, or just relax.
The Logo Creative – What was the biggest challenge you ever faced on a project?
Davor Butorac – When the brief points on abstract stuff only, and yet you have to create something meaningful, that’s a huge challenge every time but at the end the harder it gets, the results are more rewarding.
The Logo Creative – In your opinion what’s the best and worst part of your job as a designer?
Davor Butorac – I really enjoy the creation process. As a freelancer, it’s the possibility to organize your day as you like. The worst part of designer’s job is to work on multiple projects at the same time, as well as short deadlines. The worst part of a freelance designer job is to manage everything, including marketing, sales, and accounting.
The Logo Creative – Who is the most inspiring person to you and why?
Davor Butorac – My wife and her attitude towards business and self-confidence in our abilities as freelancers. It’s great to have such a wingman in the same freelance shoes. She is not in the same industry, though.
The Logo Creative – Who is your favourite graphic designer and why?
Davor Butorac – I like Swiss-style designers from the past like Josef Muller Brockmann, Massimo Vignelli, and Wim Crouwel, and I like reading about their adventures.
The Logo Creative – What’s your favourite design quote or quote in general, and do you have a mantra or saying you live by?
Davor Butorac – I like this quote a lot, “The supreme accomplishment is to blur the line between work and play” by Arnold J. Toynbee. It emphasizes the philosophy that you should do the work that you love, which is super hard to accomplish. My mantra is to keep trying and to find balance in everything I do.
The Logo Creative – In less than 10 words what is graphic design?
Davor Butorac – Making beautiful and functional designs to fit the purpose.
The Logo Creative – What steps did you take to start your graphic design business? Did you have to make any sacrifices on your journey?
Davor Butorac – I focused heavily on designing and thinking about design almost every day, the entire day for over two years working on another job, that I wasn’t satisfied with, until it became serious enough to start thinking about going full freelance.
The Logo Creative – Do you have any regrets? Is there anything you would have changed early on in your career?
Davor Butorac – I wish I’ve started much earlier, but then again, we all do things when we are ready for them.
The Logo Creative – If you could go back in time, what would you tell your younger self?
Davor Butorac – Follow your dreams and listen to no one. Move away from the things that are not making you happy because you will regret that later.
The Logo Creative – What’s the most important piece of advice you have received as a designer that’s helped you?
Davor Butorac – Look at the failures as advantages, because when you fail, you have an opportunity to learn from your mistakes.
The Logo Creative – What would be your advice for new Logo and Graphic Designers?
Davor Butorac – First, you need to figure out if you have a sense for balance, contrast, shapes, symmetry, and other visual aspects of design. It’s a feeling, something that you can’t learn. If you’re good at it, work, live and breathe design every day and you will get there.
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Also published on Medium.