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A day in the life of graphic designer Pete Reisner

How would you describe your work?

The art of imperfection! Roughed up, hand illustrated graphic design & art. Everything is hand drawn, traced in the computer and coloured/ distressed/ centred/ blown to pieces. I’ll take every job and have designed anything from product labels to logos & branding, beer badges, clothing & apparel, marquee gables…the list is ongoing.

How did you get started?

I guess in my early teens. I was designing album art and merchandise in MS Paint for fantasy bands I’d dreamt up, because I couldn’t find anyone to jam with. Eventually I found some friends and started making records and touring. The designing (amongst many other things) took a backseat up until around 2 years ago when my band Max Raptor required last minute t-shirt designs for an upcoming tour, and I was the guy with little know-how, a copy of Illustrator and some micron pens. These days I get to freelance as a graphic designer full time. No longer will you catch me working stupid hours behind a bar!

Do you have a daily routine? Can you describe it for us?

My partner and I wake between 6:30-8am and I try to get up and out swiftly. Breakfast, walk dog, then I’m sat at my desk 9-10:30am. If I’ve got a number of projects on at once I’ll try organising my day into chunks, biting off little bits at a time. Usually it just goes email, email, ema-coffee on, email, Pinterest, email, podcast, sketching concepts….Then there’s lunch in there sometimes…then draw, scrape, doodle, squint..maybe I play some guitar….Walk dog again, make dinner, more emails and eventually bed. The best days are spent drawing the damned things, eating good and hanging with my fiancé.

What keeps you going every day?

Getting ahead. There simply aren’t enough hours in the day to cram every client and personal project in whilst trying to function like a healthy human – but I do try. I’m so incredibly lucky being able to create daily. While I still have a long way to go, I am seeing progression and improvement reflected in my work every time a project is signed off. That’s an amazing feeling.

What are the main challenges that you face in your work?

A big one is knowing when to just STOP. Sometimes I can murder a piece cause I just wanna keep pulling that one letter or pixel back and forth…or I keep on tracing over an illustration again and again, thinking that i’m ‘refining’ what is there, but I’ve then lost all the expression and energy of the original pencil sketch and those first marks on the paper. All of that plus back problems and clock watching.

What three pieces of advice would you give anyone wanting to do similar work?

Practice practice practice. Whatever your art, practice it daily. These days many of us struggle with the need for instant gratification. We want fulfilment now. We want more Instagram followers NOW. Such bullshit isn’t it? When I first started playing the drums aged 11 I really sucked. At 26 I still suck! No but really, it’s all about practice and the journey. I’m lost. I’ll move on.

What would you like to work on next?

I have a really cool project on at the moment redesigning wine labels for an Illinois based wine importer. I’m also branding beer, lettering wedding invitations, printing banners and many more things. But, I really do miss drawing skulls for bands to throw on merchandise! If you need bones throw me one!

Check out all of Pete’s design work on his site: pymns.com 

and follow him on Instagram @pymns

Thanks Pete for sharing your excellent work!

Top photo of Pete by Thomas Brooker, all other images are Pete’s work.

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