Ioana Negulescu, also known as “the Happyholic graphic designer” in Bucharest, collaborated with me on the making of the Bucharest Lounge logotype and visual expression. I got into contact with Ioana through Facebook, when I saw her page Romanianology. As I have a soft spot for language and people playing with language I got curious. The name drew my attention.
– Romanianology, what was that?
It happened to be Ioana’s place where she basically is working with similar goals as I do.
Brand and market Romania. Change peoples’ attitudes towards Romania. Showing the world the good parts of Romania, as the image is so blurred these days.
Here is the result of our collaboration.
This is how Ioana decribes it :
So who is this young and talented graphic designer ?
I asked her to tell us a bit about her background and why she is so passionate about graphic design.
This is what she said.
Tell us a bit about yourself?
Hi, I am Ioana Negulescu and I am a happyholic graphic designer, with a big interesting in marketing, passionate for gastronomy, happiness fanatic, colour maniac, absorbed by the science of dreams with an ardent craze in capturing all the beauty of the world.
And oh, yes, I am 22 and I was born and raised in Bucharest.
I am a generally happy person, always energetic and always optimistic. And this is what I am trying to do through my work as well. I know that I cannot make humanity happier, but I aspire to make at least a small number of people smile through what I do.
I have always lived in a multicultural environment which made me passionate about people and excited whenever I meet new people, from different places, with different stories to tell.
What drew you to graphic design?
I finished the Lycee Francais Anna de Noailles in Bucharest with distinction in sciences. Nevertheless, I always had an inclination for the arts and humanities. I took theatre lessons, I played at Teatrul Mic in Bucharest Racine’s Esther, I sang at some concerts organized by the school. But when it came to my career and what I wanted to do afterwards, I was always a little bit confused. My dad finished Polytechnics and my mom finished Physics. I had always lived in a family that was drawn to sciences, even though none of them was working in that field anymore. When I was 16 I was thinking to study architecture, because it was somehow a mixture of art and science. Later on I switched to interior design. But I liked drawing and painting in my spare time. I was trying out loads and loads of Photoshop tutorials, trying to learn more and more on my own.
In the last years of high-school I realized that I wouldn’t like to continue any science-related university studies – I felt like I needed to take a break from all that. I knew it would help me further on, even today in my projects I like mixing my knowledge in physics, biology and sometimes even mathematics.
One day my parents asked me whether I would be interested in studying something like graphic design. I reflected a lot upon it. I applied in the UK at five different universities, then I chose the one that had the course that interested me the most – Graphic Design and Marketing. And three years later I realized I couldn’t have taken a better decision, because I love what I do, and most importantly, every project I work on makes me happy and gives me positive energy.
What is Romanianology?
Romanianology is a project I am slowly working on. Last summer I took a trip to rediscover Romania. I took loads of photos, talked to loads of wonderful people, found loads of beautiful places. And when I came home I kept wondering “why don’t foreigners come to Romania?”. I mean, yes, there are tourists and foreigners, but they’re just a small niche.
I thought about the fact that in the past years there was no real initiative in rebranding and promoting Romania. As it is – with good and bad. Because hiding the negative aspects would be hypocrisy.
The project is still in an incipient phase, and unfortunately because of my job (I work as an Art Director in an advertising agency in Bucharest) I seem to have less and less time to spend on my personal projects. I aim to create a campaign promoting Romania and its values. I aim to promote its culture, its language, its people in a very quirky and playful way. More graphic design related than advertising related.
At university there was something I’ve learnt – no matter the job, no matter what you do be responsible. Try, with as much as you can, to make a change. And graphic design is usually seen as purely artistic or purely commercial. But I believe that through graphic design some mentalities can be changed!
What are the 3 key points in the Bucharest Lounge logotype?
When I started working on the logotype, I asked myself two questions – how to combine modern with traditional and how to make it human.
I used a Romanian blouse inspired motif – the Romanian blouse has become a trend that’s been spreading everywhere, and here we have to thank LA BLOUSE ROUMAINE (the Facebook initiative in promoting it). That’s the traditional aspect.
In order to give it a modern look, I added the circle – it is the shape that’s considered to be perfect. It depicts modernism yet humanity.
And the third key point is the red. Yvette asked me to use red. In the end I used blood red. It gives it the warmth with which Yvette promotes Romania; it represents the humanity of Romanians. Red was an absolute necessity for the logotype.