Fabrizio Efficace

Dissecting 12 years of design experience . A Q&A session with the Art Director from Italy .

My name is Fabrizio Efficace and I am an Italian dreamer, a pizza lover, an Art Director with a passion for design and communication. I have had the privilege of working with some of the leading companies in the field, which have built their empires thanks to the innovation and passion demonstrated in each one of their projects. 

1. Tell us about your graphic design education. How did you decide to study graphic design?

Ever since I was a young boy, I have always been more creatively and artistically inclined, rather than interested in classic subjects related to the sciences. I loved art, drawing, illustration, and I was a very curious individual. As I got older, these passions of mine evolved, in addition to my extremely sociable demeanour, and I felt the need to discover some career that would have been able to blend these elements together. Therefore, at the age of 14, I enrolled in a technical high school for graphic design and advertising. Following this, I pursued my undergraduate studies at the University of Rome La Sapienza in Multimedia and Graphic Design, obtaining a three-year Bachelor's Degree. I then concluded my university studies with a two-year specialized graduate degree in Design, Visual and Multimedia Communications. Admittedly, beyond the influence that my academic experience has had on my career, so too has Rome¾ the city where I was born and raised, with its many artistic and cultural treasures¾ played a fundamental part in developing my artistic sensibility.

2. In retrospect, what do you know now that you wish you knew before you pursued your graphic design education?

 I would have enjoyed understanding the importance of travel and discovering new cultures earlier; I discovered it when I was 25 years old and moved to Madrid for four years. Travel opens your mind to a constant flux of new material to be inspired by¾ material that is obviously different than that available in one's hometown. All these new elements and "inspirational data" are the lifeline of creativity. If I had known this earlier, I may have had the chance to pursue my university studies abroad.

Fabrizio Efficace

3. What led you into the area of brand identity and illustration? 

As we all know, the world of communications is vast and multifaceted. My work usually consists of handling multiple projects at once, ranging from editorial design, to web design, and even app design. Each of these fields is fascinating in its own right, but in order for them to exist freely, they all must rely on brand identity, which is the beating heart of any company. In recent years, logo design has become highly underestimated. Oftentimes, companies do not fully understand the role that the logo plays. Brand image and logo are what the client first comes into contact with, with regards to the company. Therefore, companies must carry out accurate, in-depth studies to be able to create a logo that will allow the client to remember them and choose them over the competitor. In order to create a successful brand identity, we must first understand who our audience is, then why we want to reach them, and then understand how we will communicate what we need to through a graphic symbol that incites empathy while transmitting our values and intentions as a company. It's like when you shake someone's hand for the first time; you want to be decisive, make a good impression, and be sure that this person will recall you. This is a good brand identity.

4.What were the biggest inspirations for your career?

A huge inspiration of mine is Armando Testa¾an Italian advertising pioneer from the first decades of the 20th century. His designs have remained current and timeless, and are an essential part of the childhoods of several generations, including my own!

Just ask anyone in Italy who "Pippo", the blue hippo from Lines diapers is, or "Caballero and Carmencita", the cone-shaped dolls from Lavazza's Paulista coffee. Some works of art have become immortalized, and still to this day manage to put a smile on people's faces. This is my goal, and to achieve it, I look to none other than the best in advertising for inspiration.

“I'm constantly anxious; what I like today, I don't know if I'll like it tomorrow. But when I'm feeling down, I doodle and my bad mood goes away; creativity is a marvelous thing...”

-Armando Testa-

Fabrizio Efficace Italy

5. What are some favorite projects you’ve completed and why ( 2 or 3)?

I have been collaborating with the Accademia Costume & Moda in Rome for two years now. During my time there, I created their corporate website (www.accademiacostumeemoda.it), their 50th anniversary book, as well as promotional and communications material. Working with the Accademia Costume & Moda has been a very stimulating experience that has allowed me to work in the field of fashion design¾ a field in many ways similar to mine, yet of course, in many others strikingly different.


Here are some projects that I've worked on at the Accademia Costume & Moda

Accademia Costume & Moda website: Art Direction + web design

Prj description: http://www.fabrizioefficace.com/portfolio/accademia-costume-moda/

Website: http://www.accademiacostumeemoda.it/

Accademia Costume & Moda 1964_2014 – 50 yers book : Art Direction + editorial design

Prj description: http://www.fabrizioefficace.com/portfolio/accademia-costume-moda-1964_2014/

Accademia Costume & Moda Talents 2016: Art Direction + Branding + editorial design + web design

Website: http://www.accademiacostumeemoda.it/talents2016/

Accademia Costume & Moda Talents 2014: Art Direction + editorial design

Prj description: http://www.fabrizioefficace.com/portfolio/accademia-costume-moda-talents-2014/

Another project that is near and dear to my heart is SSSTENDHAL Magazine, an online magazine that is just over one year old and for which I created the brand image and website (www.ssstendhal.com). Understanding what was in the minds of these young people and being able to create a product that mirrored their emotions and feelings was both fun and highly gratifying.

 “For the future” is the title of an animated short that was the result of a graduate project in the Multimedia and Graphic Design program at Sapienza Università di Roma. The video, created in collaboration with my good friend and colleague Lorenza Lancia, showcases and brings together three techniques including frame-by-frame animation, stop motion (which is a series of photographs edited in rapid sequence to create the illusion of movement), and live shots using a green screen.

 In For the Future, the main character and the designer interact with each other continuously, recalling the history of energy, from the discovery of fire to new sources of renewable energy. Designed in light tones that are accessible to everyone, this short doesn’t take precedence away from the importance of the subject matter. During the creation of "For the Future", I learned so much and if I could I would do it all over again!

6. Describe a typical day of work for you.

 What's great about my job is that each day is different from the next. There are days during which I spend most of my time answering e-mails, or in meeting after meeting with clients, and others that I spend creating, isolated from reality. In all honesty, these latter ones are my favourite! Although my days are composed of several different tasks, there are obviously some constant variables as well. For example, I am an early bird and love waking up early to go exercise. Working out helps me awaken my mind and better organize my day. I work approximately 10 hours per day, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., a time during which I work on a variety of projects that I have chosen to dedicate myself to.

7. What are the most challenging aspects of your job?

 The most difficult part about my job is understanding the clients' needs and wants, and understanding how to guide the client to achieve their goals. More often than not, clients tend to make impulse decisions based on whether or not they like something. However, it's not that simple. There are several other criteria to take into consideration when making a decision, such as "does it work"? Does it properly communicate the message I want to communicate to my target demographic? I've often encountered clients during briefs whom have suggested ideas themselves, and it isn't always easy to dissuade them and convince them of a more efficient alternative.

8.  What are some of your personal and/or professional goals for the future?

It may seem like a given, or even slightly cliché, but ever since I was little, I was always mesmerized by Coca Cola ads¾ an unarguable source of inspiration and an advertising epitome for anyone in this industry. Creating an ad campaign for a big brand such as Coca Cola, and being able to subtly enter both the hearts and homes of people across the world, I believe, is the biggest aspiration any communicator may have.

9. Tell us your higher purpose for choosing design as a career.

TT This is a tough question to answer. I chose design as a career on account of my personal beliefs with regards to ambition and goals. Ambition is the driving force that pushes us to do more each day, in the sole hope of achieving and surpassing the goals we set for ourselves. Ambition is therefore, perhaps, what has pushed me to pursue this career, keeping in mind of course that although the road is long and winding, with the right dose of enthusiasm, passion and curiosity, I will able to achieve and surpass my goals.