Interview with Sherry Kuo from United States

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Sherry Kuo

Sherry Kuo is the co-founder and lead designer of the prestigious andKuo, a studio that started with her sister and dedicates her knowledge and experience on projects that requires art directions for visual solutions which allows her to collaborate with other aspiring individuals around the world!

Interview With The 2023 MUSE Design Awards Winner – Sherry Kuo

1Please give us a brief bio of yourself and your design background.

Hi, my name is Sherry, and I am the co-founder and lead designer at andKuo.

I've been working as a graphic designer for over 10 years, and I am extremely lucky to be able to pursue my passion for design in my career. 2020 was a year of both challenges and positive changes. Alongside my sister, we started our own studio andKuo, we’ve been working on projects on art directions for visual solutions, and collaborating with other talented individuals around the world to create meaningful work.

2What made you become/why did you choose to become a designer/artist?

I drew a lot as a kid so that was part of my identity from a young age. My dad, who was an architect, encouraged me because he was also interested in drawing and painting. I remember hovering around his desk, watching him draw perfect lines and squares for architectural designs while I sketched lines and circles.

Years later, when I moved to New York, I initially studied illustration but as I discovered graphic design, I found it to be just as wonderful. I still love to draw because it was my entry point into the world of design.

3Tell us more about your business/company, job profile, and what you do.
We are a creative collective, and we collaborate with clients to convey their stories through visually compelling solutions. My role as the lead designer is to help them explore innovative options and establish a brand voice that is uniquely their own.
4What does “design” mean to you?
I believe that design is about communicating emotions through visual elements and creating unique experiences. I am always curious about my surroundings and I see my work as a way of reacting and creating. I take situations that are not of my own making and make them my own.
5What’s your favorite kind of design and why?
I am always on the lookout for things or subjects that make me say “Wow! That's well done, I want to have one.”
6To you, what makes a “good” design?

That’s an excellent question and it's something that I've been asking myself all the time.

I’d like to think whether I enjoy the thinking and making process or not, as well as if the design brings joy to the people and creates a memorable experience.

7Describe your design style and its main characteristics.
I think there are always graphic elements and typography involved and I enjoy adding a touch of personality and attitude into the work.
8Tell us about your design process.

The design process can vary depending on the projects. Typically, I begin with background research and gather ideas, words, or images for reference. It's exciting to explore different ideas and possibilities. I usually have two to three concepts in mind simultaneously and then narrow them down to ensure that they are distinct while also answering the questions at hand.

I also believe in being open-minded and flexible during discussions with teammates or clients. Even if some ideas may not work out, there is always a way to find a solution and move forward.

9Do you think your country and its cultural heritage has an impact on your design process?
Absolutely, I believe it's about honesty. We value fulfilling people's needs while also prioritizing their feelings and reactions. I think empathy and consideration for others are critical to good design, and this approach emphasizes these values greatly.
10Congratulations! As the winner of the 2023 MUSE Design Awards, what does it mean to you and your company and team to receive this award distinction?
Thank you! We’re honored to have our works recognized and appreciate the opportunity to share joy with others.
11Can you explain a bit about the winning work you entered into the 2023 MUSE Design Awards, and why you chose to enter this project?

The redesign of Pâtisserie Chez Mikki's packaging is a prime example of our philosophy of good design. Located in Tokyo, this pastry shop offers freshly baked goods and supplies pastries to several coffee shops in the neighborhood. We worked to define a brand new look, utilizing it as a platform to effectively communicate the brand's values and connect with the community.

Since the introduction, it has received positive feedback from both ends, serving as an expressive voice that takes customers on a full tour throughout Chez Mikki's wider world of pastry, instilling confidence in our belief in good design.

12What was the biggest challenge with this project?
Pastry market is highly competitive with a swirl of locally made and mass produced products. The biggest challenge is to create visually appealing designs that can differentiate the product from others on the retail shelf.
13How has winning an Award developed your practice/career?
We are honored to have received recognition and won an international award which reinforces our belief in our ability to continue doing great work.
14What are your top three (3) favorite things about our industry?

Acknowledging different experiences.
Confidence in good faith.
Collaboration with talents.

15Where do you see the evolution of design industry going over the next 5-10 years?

The design industry is constantly evolving in tandem with technology. As a result, people are becoming increasingly creative, thinking beyond the confines of two-dimensional design and exploring the new, such as 3D and beyond.

I believe that the future of design will continue to expand and stay at the forefront of innovation, but at its core, the focus will always come back to helping people and communities move forward.

16If you were a student entering this industry or an aspiring MUSE Design Awards submitter, what advice would you give them?
Work hard and play hard.
17What resources would you recommend to someone who wants to improve their skills in the design industry?
Go out and participate in a show, play or exhibition that interests you. Spend time with non-designer friends; they can be a source of inspiration and help you see things in a different way. You might be surprised!
18Who has inspired you in your life and why?
My family are the heroes behind my success. Their encouragement and support have been the driving force that brought me to where I am today.
19What is your key to success? Any parting words of wisdom?
Show up for the challenges, if there’s a will, there is a way.
20Do you have anything else you would like to add to the interview?
Thanks for having me!

Winning Entry

Katsuno Embroidery Starter Kit | 2023

Katsuno Embroidery Starter Kit | andKuo

Katsuno, a family-owned business dedicated to heritage crafts in Japan, has been promoting the art of embroidery for …
(Read more at MUSE Design Awards)

Pâtisserie Chez Mikki | 2023

Pâtisserie Chez Mikki | andKuo

Chez Mikki is a sweet delicatessen located in Tokyo, dedicated to baking high-quality treats with a touch of love. While …
(Read more at MUSE Design Awards)

Sherry Kuo

Sherry Kuo is the co-founder and lead designer of the prestigious andKuo, a studio that started with her sister and dedicates her knowledge and experience on projects that requires art directions for visual solutions which allows her to collaborate with other aspiring individuals around the world!

Read more about this interview with Maggie Chen of Chenbro Micom, the Platinum Winner of the 2023 MUSE Design Awards.