Interview: Creative Professional Chad Mueller of Inspiredology & Projekt19

Today we offer up an amazing interview with fellow design magazine writer and all round creative professional Chad Mueller. A Canadian boy (we always love the maple leafs) and well know creative web professional Chad can be found on several sites on the web. With Inspiredology recently undertaking a real exciting re-branding, incorporating all kind of new features.

1. Hi Chad, I would like to extend my thanks for taking your time out for this interview for the design juices community. Could you please quickly introduce yourself to the Design Juices readers.

I am a 25 year old Canadian boy, I have been a creative professional for 5+ years now. I am the creator of the design inspiration lab, Inspiredology. Recently I decided to take things to the next level, I found a partner and opened up my own design studio called Projekt19. We have successfully launched the site a few months ago, and haven’t looked back since.

2. We know you from Inspiredology, How long has that been running and what first brought you to be a part of this great design site?

Inspiredology started almost 3 years ago, and it all came about from trying to organize design elements that I used as inspiration. I collected logos, business cards and site screenshots. I had no way to organize and quickly view them, so I looked into adding them into a WordPress blog.

3. What does the day to day running of Inspiredology consist? Do you have a definitive routine for running the site?

Well, we post 3 times a week, so my main duties are managing content, I will write a post here or there, manage any guest posts coming in. Also promote all the blog posts that are posted. Andrew handles all the marketing – contests, giveaways.

4. What inspires your creativity the most, do you find your inspiration the most online, in print, in the world around you?

I would have to say online, the Internet is an endless pool of inspiration. I think more and more I am spending time online looking for inspiration. When I am off my computer, I try to shut down and enjoy life away from the Internet, that’s not saying I don’t get inspired, but I tend not to look to much into it.

5. As a recent graduate myself I wanted to know how did you get your first job once leaving formal education? What would you recommend is the biggest factor in getting your first design gig?

My first job was at a local print shop doing vehicle graphics and wraps. I had to go look for a design company, I am from a small town — so design companies weren’t super popular. Portray yourself as a professional, and be confident in what you are talking about.

6. In another aspect of your working life you also freelance, what aspects of freelancing appeal to you the most?

Freelancing has always been fun for me because of the freedom. I enjoy being a leader, and I enjoy having the freedom that my creative vision isn’t altered too much. Freelancing has given me the tools and skills that have helped me get this far in life.



7. Has freelancing lead to work with any notable clients? What would you say has been your most successful freelance work?

Most of the clients are within Ontario like FM96, Sundance Balloons and some small business websites. My most successful freelance work would have to be FM96, I was able to brand a concert a few years ago – logo, posters, stickers, website and etc… Since starting Projekt19 we have dealt with some great clients like Gentrac Homes, Girls of Glam and Waste Solutions Canada.

8. Going back to Inspiredology, You recently undertook a major re-design of the site. Which parts did you find to be the most difficult? & What aspects would you encourage new readers to check out?

The biggest challenge with Inspiredology was finally creating a branded site. I have never branded the site, just always created themes and went with them. I wanted to finally create a site that was well branded, unique and creative. With the name Inspiredology – we introduced the science lab theme, tag-line – Design Inspiration Lab, and naming the new design “The Lab”. We hired a great illustrator from Montreal Mathieu Beaulieu to create the killer header graphic.

One of the more difficult elements of the site is trying to find ways of adding the illustration elements through out the design. This is something we are still working on! Inspiredology has a lot of great things to offer, unsure of when this interview is being posted but we are working on a Switch Views functionality that really kicks ass.

9. I see you have moved away from the Buysellads system and onto the carbon ads, what advantages does carbon ads offer? and why do you use design-newz over your own community news system?

With Buysellads we were having a problem of filling consistent ad placements. We would go a few months with them being filled, and then empty. We were told about Carbon from our friends at Fuel. We really liked the idea of not worrying about filling an ad spot. As well, the ad looks fantastic, and as a user, the sidebar is not overloaded with ads.

With Design Newz, I thought I could create our own community newz section but with the design industry having so much aggregated information, why try adding something new when someone already does a fantastic job of it. So we contacted Design Newz and they were great to work with. We love to collaborate, and with the new design of the site, we have over 5 different companies/designers that have had their hand in making “The Lab”.

10. Which people in the social media community such as twitter, do you enjoy speaking to on a weekly/daily basis?

Great question, I try to talk to a wide range of users, @Signalnoise is a good friend, @iBlend, @andysowards and I am trying to engage with more local twitter pals.

11. Could you recommend any design sites/blogs which our readers may not have found before? which you read on a weekly basis.

12. Where can we find you in the social networking circle and across the web?

In 2010…
I have yet to take a trip.
I will not quit until I reach my goals.
I would like to create more creative side projects.
I wish I could have more time in a day.

In 2011…
There will be big things happening for Projekt19.
I hope there will be no more security issues/virus attacks on some of our sites.
My biggest achievement will be Projekt19.

13. If you had no work in your to-do pile and had a months vacation booked with no limit on expenses. What what would you do with your time?

Probably travel with my wife, we are actually going to India, Nepal and Goa for a month in October.

14. What do you find most relaxing to do when not designing or being creative? Do you get enough of this time?

I love watching movies, spending time with my wife, socializing with friends, playing any sport – hockey, baseball, ultimate frisbee, volleyball and even working out. I feel that I have a good grasp of time, so I really try to allow myself to have free time, it’s tough when you work a day job, come home mange a blog and run your own design studio.

We would again like to extend a big thanks to Chad for taking his time out, and we would welcome and future interviewees who are interested in taking part.

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