Meet Stephen Zubricki III! Zubricki is the Principal Designer at Mystic View Design Inc., a company specializing in graphic design and photography. Zubricki is one of our incredible BC arts alumni guests attending….
Career Night for the Arts 2016! Come join us on Thursday, November 16th between 7:00pm – 8:30pm in the Heights Room to meet tons of BC alumni working in the arts to network, ask questions, and get advice about developing your own creative career! Check out the Arts Council Career Night for the Arts website for more info, or look at the Facebook event page! This event is a collaborative endeavor between the Arts Council, the Career Center, and the Alumni Association, bringing together all of BC’s best resources to help BC students turn their creativity into a career.
Interview by Rachel Lee
Stephen Zubricki III earned a Marketing Degree from Boston College, CSOM. Since 1994, he has worked at Mystic View Design, a family owned graphic design and photography firm that produces corporate collateral and websites for public and private clients. He runs the day to day operations of the business, is a photographer and also a web developer. He has enjoyed meeting people from many industries and traveling to shoot photography for his clients.
- Could you tell us a little bit about your time at BC? What was the most helpful experience here that led to your career path?
I am actually a graduate of the Carroll School of Management and majored in marketing. I had focused on a business track and covered the range of subjects I was exposed to at BC. The overall experience prepared me well for the business world and I had been learning at my first job at a jewelry manufacturing company where I had positions in production, marketing and product engineering. My father who was an artist founded Mystic View Design in 1986 and had asked if I was interested in joining him as the company was growing. I was willing to give it a try and told him I’d give it a year. Now, 22 years later I am running the business. I realize this is not a direct answer, but it provides the proper background. Our firm specialized in annual reports, so my business experience was invaluable working with large publicly traded companies to tell their stories with visual design and communication, often working with the top management directly. Having a strong understanding of business enabled me to understand the stories we were telling and relate to how business in the real world was unfolding.
- As a web developer and photographer, where do you get most inspired from or how do you manage to stay creative?
As a photographer, it is engaging to be able to capture the subjects for our clients and provide them images they can get excited about. Many of the clients rely on our creativity as they do not feel they are creative themselves, so for me personally, it is fun to offer creative solutions that are appreciated. We also have a team of designers, who are much more creative than I am, and working closely as a team, we pride ourselves on being able to provide creative options, often making it a difficult choice for the client to choose just one to go with. The web development is a much more technical skill set, and I would not call it creative. I went back to school to master the behind-the-scenes code so we could offer more web solutions in-house. It was a challenge to learn, but was well worth it as I now put it into practice. One thing I always liked about the business is that we have to come up with new designs and creative for each project, so things don’t get stale. We are always challenged to offer fresh thinking and design and that is inspirational as you can’t get stuck in a monotonous loop, you have to keep moving things forward.
- For BC students seeking career opportunities in a design firm, or a creative industry in general, what do you think are the top 3 qualities or skills?
I think that firstly, being creative and having talent carries the farthest. Unlike in business, a resume of words on paper alone cannot tell the story and convey talent. Putting together a portfolio of work showcases how a designer solves the creative process of visual design and communication. As they say, a picture is worth 1,000 words, so having one speaks volumes and can be the ticket to open doors. Next, developing the technical skills is important. Knowledge of computer design software, how to use it and how it acts as your tools to be creative prop up the portfolio. In our case, it is not fine art like painting or pottery, so computer skills are important. Finally, being a good listener and communicator are key to being able to craft a client’s words into a great visual that everyone can be proud of in the end.
Thank you, Stephen!
BC Students: Don’t forget to check out all of the amazing artistic alumni attending Career Night for the Arts 2016, and make sure to read our interviews with Maureen Donovan, the Deputy Director of Harvard Art Museums; Eric Butler, Theatre Producer; Erin Dionne, Author; Karen Stein, Art Director and Principal Designer at goodgood; and Daron Manoogian, the Communications Director of Harvard Art Museums. Meet these alumni and more at Career Night for the Arts, Thursday November 17th, 2016 at 7-8:30pm in the Heights Room!