Each of our 2019 Ascenders spoke with us about their design inspirations and work. Here is our interview with typeface designer Fernanda Cozzi of Buenos Aires, Argentina.
What schools did you attend?
I completed a degree in Graphic Design and a postgraduate specialization in Type Design at the University of Buenos Aires.
Did you have a teacher, past employer, client, or colleague who was instrumental in your career?
I am especially grateful to three people who taught, encouraged and – above all – stimulated me to improve (and still do) – Darío Muhafara, Alejandro Paul, and Guido Ferreyra. Each one of them changed my way of thinking, doing, and seeing typography.
Did they have any specific advice/words of wisdom that you remember?
I remember when I was a student, Ruben Fontana once told me that when I got older my letters would grow up too. That changed my way of thinking about typography, I started understanding letters as living things that grow, change, modify each other just like whoever draws them. I’m not sure if that was what he meant, but it was a great advice for me.
Which of your design projects are your favorites? Why?
I must say, Síncopa. It was my first type design project and I learned so much, but it also made me cry a lot. The whole process took several years of crisis and doubts, but it made me grow and realize that I really love to do this.
Where do you work now? In a studio, independent, other? What’s a typical workday like?
I work as independent graphic and type designer. My typical work day is an endless successions of lists (hahaha!). Every morning I make a list of what I need to do during the day, separating it into columns by work, administrative tasks, and other stuff – reminders just because I love to cross out things. It makes me feel like I’m moving forward.
What are your hobbies besides typography or design?
I love to drink wine, eat cheese, and dance. I don’t know if any of that applies as hobbies, but it’s a great way of living.
Do you know any of the other Ascenders personally? If yes, whom ?
No one from this year. But I know, admire, and love Guille Vizzari, who won last year. We have a long history and unintentionally, it was Guille who gave me the news that I was one of the Ascenders 2019, and that was an amazing twist.
Do you have any favorite designers and/or artists? Who are they?
I have many people that I admire, especially type designers. But in a short – very short – list I must say that favorites are Oldrich Menhart, W.A. Dwiggins, and Vojtech Preissig.
Do you think you have a design philosophy or methodology? If yes or no what is it?
I’m not sure, but a quote that I said a lot is “fake it ‘til you make it”. It does not mean to cheat or lie in what you do. For me it’s about wanting something so much that you have to convince yourself to do it despite anything and work really hard until you get there.
Now that you have had some time to think about it, what does the award mean to you?
I think that it serves as an impulse to continue doing, learning, and improving. And it is an honor to be among so many people who do wonderful things. It is a great incentive to continue working hard on what I really enjoy doing.
To see the list of all the 2019 Ascenders, click here.