We exclusively interviewed Daniel Álvarez Santín, recent winner of the 3rd Edition of the 2020 EtiquetaNews Awards. A graphic design student from the Escuela Superior de Arte de Asturias, Esapa, who has surprised with an original label in which he wanted to make visible the great benefits of the chemical elements that take part in the elaboration and conservation of the wines.

When and why did you choose to study graphic design; and at what point are your studies?

In high school I didn’t know what I was going to study, but I was clear that it had to be something related to the graphic and visual world. Later I learned about the Higher School of Art of the Principality of Asturias (Esapa) and I applied in the specialty of Graphic Design. Right now I am in the last year and I have to say that I love what I study.

What do you think is the most important thing to be a good graphic designer?

In my opinion, I think that to be a good designer it is essential to have good ideas, be original and have knowledge to be able to carry them out with the maximum enthusiasm and professionalism possible.

<< In my opinion, I think that to be a good designer it is essential to have good ideas, be original and have knowledge to be able to carry them out with the maximum of enthusiasm and the greatest possible professionalism >>

How would you describe the concept behind the label “O H”, with which you have won the Contest?

The concept of “O H” is “Natural Chemistry” where I wanted to make visible the great benefits of the chemical elements that intervene in the elaboration and conservation of wines, such as Catechin, a natural antioxidant that served as my main inspiration.

How did you determine the finishes and the self-adhesive material that your label carries?

The proposal highlights the characteristic of being an organic wine and that is why I did not use any “special” finish. The use of black as the main color tries to minimize possible contamination during production. Regarding the self-adhesive material, I chose Bagasse Premium 110 / RP30 / PET30 from UPM Raflatac, for its natural white color and its pleasant touch, since I wanted to achieve a great contrast that would provide a modern, elegant and simple look.

Did you imagine you could win the best Student Label Contest in the country when you entered?

When you enter a contest like this you always have a certain illusion and the thought of: “What if I get it?”. However, we have been many participants (410 applications) and the level has been very high. In the end, you never believe that the winner is going to be you.

How do you assess the support of the teacher from the center where you study, Esapa, throughout the process of guardianship of the creation of the label?

Very positively. Blanca Prendes, our teacher, who has also been awarded as the Best Label Design Teacher in Spain, was accompanying us at all times during the creation process, contributing ideas, advising on the naming, the concept and possible changes that would help us to achieve a high quality end result.

Who did you remember when they said you were the winner of the Contest?

At the first moment I did not think of anyone in particular because of the surprise, but the first that came to my head were my companions.

<< At the first moment I did not think of anyone in particular because of the surprise, but the first ones that came to my head were my companions >>

How do you think this important award with a 2000 € prize can change your professional life?

On the one hand, it is going to be a forward momentum and, on the other, I think it can help me to have more confidence when presenting my work.

How would you define your way of understanding design?

I would define it as “Functional”. A tool that helps to communicate different messages, be they ideas, products, events or feelings.

Do you think you can become an expert in packaging and label design or do you think more about being a generalist designer?

I think that it is becoming more and more important to specialize, although I am not yet clear in what field. However, I would also like to be able to do general work.

How do you imagine the labels of the future?

Currently, the level of labels is going up a lot. I imagine an evolution in the use of more powerful concepts and new aesthetics that describe the products better by themselves.

How do you think the contest sponsor label converters are going to help you make better and more competitive designs when you are professionals?

Love it! I think it will be a great help to work with them to keep improving and making better labels.

What would you say to graphic design students to present themselves to the 4th Edition of the 2021 EtiquetaNews Awards?

Take advantage, imagine and participate! It’s a great opportunity to learn and learn about projects that in the future could be your colleagues, friends or even rivals. Also, someone can get a pleasant surprise like the one I took this year.

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