About Jan

Jan PersielDesignerArt DirectorHamburgDesignstudio

Zur deutschen Version.

Pleased to meet you. Let me introduce myself and tell you a little bit about myself, since that seems to be the thing you are here for, right?!

I started to do something like graphic design in 1989 when I fell in love with a Letraset catalogue. But instead of ordering the sheets I started to draw my own fonts for illustrations and invitations people asked me to do. Some signs here and there, a cartoon there. When I disliked a product’s packging a drew my own and repackaged it. I even found out that you could increase the price and still resell it with a profit after putting things in a new packaging. That was the moment when I figured that I should probably not study chemistry but follow that passion.

So, instead of pursuing a solid well-paid job as a chemistry super hero like my uncle used to be one, I started to study graphic design. And when I had just started with the studying the internet arrived in Germany. What an amazing opportunity to design things! So many grey pages, so little people knowing how to do it. This was my chance and I went for it, self-training, researching, exchanging ideas and knowledge with people who were just as eager as I was to get this thing to work as good and pretty as possible. The basis for my deep knowledge and understanding of web design and online conceptual work.

My design studio

Since 2004 I run my own design studio (Persiel Design / persiel.com) in Hamburg, with a focus on visual conceptual development, how I like to call this mix of user experience (UX), user interface (UI) and interaction (IA) design. Be it just me or with a set of partners, I design and develop simple and strong solutions for complex web platforms, magazines and e-commerce websites.

Consulting from somewhere between the brand and technology

My studio’s book shelves are loaded, but not only with design annuals, logo books, type specimen folders or print instruction manuals, but quite a few nerds and geeks might find themselves at home when they browse the titles. From the very beginning of my work on web projects I tried to learn and understand as much as possible about the underlaying technologies to get the most out of the platforms or devices. Only when you know where the limits are, you can start to move beyond them by thinking about solutions instead of relying on someone who will somehow make stuff work for you. As it turns out this has not been the typical way of understanding the tasks at hand in the digital space for many designers. For that very reason I found out that I can be of great value for many projects by bridging the divide between developers and designers. So in case you are in need of a designer with the ability to write a bit of code and closely work with your development team, but still making sure the design is at a high level: Get in touch and let|s work on your project, just like I did with and for many agencies, publishing houses and corporations throughout Europe.

Teaching and capacity building

I was very fortunate from the very beginning of my design career to have had the chance to get feedback and advice from seasoned pros who did take the time to teach and tell. I am very thankful for that and always tried to give a little bit back to the next generation of talented young designers. For that very reason I have always spent time teaching and coaching new designers and journalists. Since 1998 I have been a lecturer/coach/trainer/you name it in many schools, colleges and agencies from Hamburg to Berlin, from the UK to Vietnam, from my studio workshops to a staff membership in an Indian college. And yes you might have guessed it, I do train in German and English.

It would be great to get in touch, be it for a partnership of some kind, as a designer, to expand each others networks, or as your next font designer or letterer?! Let’s get in touch!

A few milestone? Here you go.

1991 – First typeface and packaging designed
1996 – Freelance Art Director Online (eg manufactum.de)
1998 – Certificate Designer Art School Hamburg Wandsbek, with distinction
1998 – Trainer for Webdesign Art School Wandsbek
1998 bis 2001 – Art Director with Kabel New Media (Hamburg, Zurich, London, Brighton) for ATPTennis.com, FIFA World Cup and multiple other websites and platforms
2001 – Freelance Art Director and Concept developer for …

Agencies and publishing houses:

HEIMAT Hamburg, (BBDO) InterOne, e-bloc interactive, kontoreins, Jung v. Matt, KolleRebbe, beans-n-bites, freibuero, iconscreen, Gruner+Jahr, BurdaMedia, Jahreszeitenverlag, Macnews.de, talentformation.com GmbH

Projects and clients:

BWM.com, MINI.com, Telefonbuch.de, German Media Pool, FIFA Marketing, Ribbon & Partner, Greenpeace, facebook, SysEleven, JurForce, Tubuk, Classische Osteopathie, Golfpeaks, MOPO.de, stern / stern.de / stern eMag, breuninger.com, Galeria-Kaufhof.de and various training assignments …

Trainer and Lecturer

  • International Institute for Journalism Berlin (Germany, India and Vietnam)
  • Asian College of Journalism (ACJ) Chennai, India
  • Ev. Journalistenschule, Berlin
  • Akademie für Publizistik, Hamburg
  • TYPO Berlin
  • Vietnamnews, Hanoi/Vietnam
  • Akademie Sankelmark
  • Henri-Nannen-Schule, Hamburg
  • Multimedia Campus, Kiel
  • Kunstschule Wandsbek, Hamburg
  • Kunsthalle, Kiel
  • CouchSchool

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