Illustrator, Angel Albarran, talks self-care and setting boundaries during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Practice Makes: Designer Spotlight

Angel’s Workspace

In this issue of Designer Spotlight, Practice Makes speaks with Angel Albarran, an Illustrator and Project Manager with a background in graphic design and advertising. Angel’s path with design has led him to art consulting, where he continues to refine his expertise in print, production, fabrication, art creation, and hospital systems.

“I learned how to keep things going even as my world was crumbling around me”

When discussing how to the Pandemic has affected his work, Angel writes, “Our team worked from home for a solid 4–5 months. It was exciting learning new ways to brainstorm and work together without being in the same room. I didn’t realize how MUCH our team collaborated by simply turning our chairs around. Before COVID, I often took the people around me for granted, but going through the Pandemic has made me appreciate the love and support people give me. It sounds corny, but I truly believe that connecting with people helps my dreams grow.”

“I wasn’t in the best headspace when the quarantine happened. My freelance projects suffered more. I procrastinated and delayed a lot of my deadlines, but every project got done and published, and I learned how to keep things going even as my world was crumbling around me. I have struggled with setting boundaries for practically my whole life, and it’s gotten me in trouble before. Going through an emotional rollercoaster this past year has solidified my ways of setting boundaries and focusing on myself.”

“No matter how hectic things get, always make time for yourself,” Angel advices, on getting through hard times. “Always stay hydrated, and practice good skincare! Taking care of yourself should never take a backseat to your work or to anything for that matter. Most importantly, don’t take yourself too seriously.”

A set of tarot cards Angel created

“We’ll see what is in the stars for me”

On the topic of staying creative during quarantine, Angel remarks, “I know it sounds very cheesy, but it’s so easy to get inspired every day from things around you. I enjoy biking through the city and taking in the environment around me. Sometimes I get mesmerized by the shadows and lights shining through building windows, and that’s enough to get my head through the clouds.”

“Doodling on sticky notes also brings me immense happiness, and it’s generally a great way to explore my headspace. Sometimes the sticky notes will have nothing but scribbles and scraggy handwriting, but other times they will be full illustrations. I’ve thought about making little zines out of all the sticky notes I have, but I’m losing them just as fast as I’m making them.”

“I like riding my bike to and from Menil park,” says Angel, on how he likes to decompress. I’ll usually have a small picnic and draw the trees, people, and clouds around me. I’m so glad that the Rothko Chapel is finally back up because that means I can dedicate some time to meditate in that space. I’m hoping to eventually work up the courage to go biking out on Buffalo Bayou, but we’ll see what is in the stars for me.”

Interested in learning more about Angel Albarran? Check out his website!

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