About Julia Subbotina

Julia Subbotina is a magnificent designer working hard to make the World a better place with their original and innovative award-winning designs and creations.

Interview with Julia Subbotina

Julia Subbotina ("JS") interviewed on Thursday, 5 April.

Could you please tell us about your experience as a designer, artist, architect or creator?

JS : I have been in architecture and design for 11 years. If you add training in art school and universities, then it would be almost my entire life. It is very important for a designer to be a creative and an interesting person, because only such a person can create original project designs. However, to do beautiful work it is important to have an understanding, to base it on experience. My experience is my knowledge base.In my practice I had to work on many major chain objects such as “Magnit”, “Pyaterochka” and other retail chains. Those projects gave me the experience of working on large-scale objects, allowed me to study the regulations of evacuation procedure, technology and many other things. I also worked on several projects of machine cosmetology, beauty salons and barbershops in downtown Moscow and on Rublevskoe highway. I had to pay special attention to health and safety regulations. Working on an investment bank in the downtown Moscow led to new challenges, solutions and approaches. It was a very important and interesting experience as I had to make the object attractive but at the same time practical and economic since the bank has VIP and client departments. I must mention my experience of working in the hotel industry. I even created some projects of Hungary. Residential space design is not a commercial area, in this field I must also consider rules, habits and values of people living there. I already have loyal customers in this area, including some in Hungary. Thanks to my experience of working on architecture objects I can create maximum possible comfort inside and outside of the building. I had some competitions in my life too. I addition to experience they let me feel more confident when I win. I participated in some international competitions and won some awards. I was nominated for the international A'DESIGN AWARDS &COMPETITION and in Como, Italy I received a personal golden award in the "FURNITURE, DECORATIVE ITEMS AND HOMEWARE DEZIGN" category and a bronze A'DESIGN AWARDS WINNER award in the "INTERIOR SPACE, RETAIL AND EXHIBITIONS DESIGN AWARDS" category.I participated in the international ROSAТOM competition. “Office”, Object A, “Innovation” interior concept, “Office project for Akkuyu NPP in NIAEP-ASE” was exhibited in the Gostiny Dvor which makes me incredibly happy as it was an exhibition of selected works.Experience in various fields allows me to broaden my horizons. It is important to understand that for a successful work you also must pass the design review. The design review requires you to explain to the client not only the design itself but also materials used, functional zoning and so on.

How did you become a designer?

JS : Working on architectural objects I understood that it's important to not only think about how the building looks on the outside and architectural regulations, but also about the internal comfort. For me comfort is the keyword of my professional work. From the 1st year of school to 11th year I was studying in an art school. I must say, I didn't think about becoming a designer during that time. I planned to become a lawyer, an attorney or a journalist. I went to introductory courses and even published an article in the school newspaper. But soon I realized that it did not inspire me. One day I told my teacher about my doubts over a cup of tea. He suggested me to enter architecture institute. That was when a breakthrough occurred in my mind, I exclaimed, “how did I not think of that before?!”. I was happy that my teacher set me on the right way because I love to be useful to people and make their life beautiful.

What are your priorities, technique and style when designing?

JS : In design you need to find the optimal balance between what the client wants and the professional vision of the designer. We live in a world where a new generation is now beginning their careers, the so-called millennials. They are the people with the optimal balance. They have the harmony between the outside world and their inner world. They know how to make money, they can travel, they have free time and you should not try to limit them. I am trying to think and see as they do. They help me improve. I keep an eye on them when I design offices, coworking spaces, banks, homes…The style I create is the one the client wants. It could be a loft or a classic design – that is not important.When designing I use newest software which helps me to work faster – BIM technologies.

Which emotions do you feel when designing?

JS : I enjoy designing immensely because I create comfort. Especially when I have very limited time to do a project. In such extreme conditions wonderful and rational solutions come to me because I’m completely concentrated and composed. I like the stage of first presenting the project to the client when I’m explaining my decisions. The more representatives of the client participate in the meeting the more interesting it is.

What particular aspects of your background shaped you as a designer?

JS : All my work is structured, however unusual it might sound. The creative process must be structured otherwise it can go on endlessly. This comes easy to me because of my personality. This quality helped me to shape myself as an architect, and then as a designer, although even in architecture I began to express myself through design. During my school years I loved painting and painted in oil using large brushes. Even back then I was aiming for harmony and brevity.

What is your growth path? What are your future plans? What is your dream design project?

JS : Design is a vast field! I am always growing as a designer! In the future I plan to launch my own lineup of office furniture, floor tiling “Volk” and lamps “Arlekino”. I have already started designing those. For the time being I do my day to day work and I dream of creating a project for a major DNA lab, and I’ll put all my experience and creativity into it!

What are your advices to designers who are at the beginning of their career?

JS : Designers, do participate in competitions! It encourages not only you yourself, but also clients thinking of hiring you. It is always difficult in the beginning of your professional career. Life requires from professionals to give it their all, so at first it might seem like this is not for you. But do not give up. After 30 you’ll usually start to see good rewards. Before that I was getting more experience, did work which was interesting to me and which could further my development. Financial rewards were secondary to me, the knowledge was the important part. My advice to young millennial designers is to immerse yourselves into different kinds of work. Create an Instagram page and put up a digital portfolio where you could show off your interests. This portfolio will serve to communicate your identity and the clients will have an easier time to analyze your dedication and competence.

You are truly successful as a designer, what do you suggest to fellow designers, artists and architects?

JS : To succeed you need to be dedicated and be able to imagine the result. It is important that the creative process has a logical conclusion and that the designing process has stages. My work is structured. When you operate on a certain system the client understands what to expect and when. When I finish each stage on time, the client has a peace of mind, understanding of the whole picture and confidence in you. My advice to my fellow designers is to structure everything!

What is your day to day look like?

JS : My work day begins with reading mail and answering it. When I'm in the middle of designing an interior, I start with that. During the day I design, write tasks for my assistance and answer phone calls of subcontractors and clients. I think my daily routine is similar to my fellow designers. At the end of the day I go running during which I come up with the right decisions and new ideas.

How do you keep up with latest design trends? To what extent do design trends matter?

JS : The most important task for me is to realize the client's wishes and focus on that as much as possible. Usually I can foresee the trends. Still, I prefer to design based on my professional vision of what the client needs.

How do you know if a product or project is well designed? How do you define good design?

JS : A project is successful when both the designer and the client are satisfied by it and when there’s harmony and balance. That is my goal number one.

How do you decide if your design is ready?

JS : The time to create the design is specified in the agreement. My job is to use that time to identify the future interior that would suit the client’s goal. If it’s a commercial space, then the interior design should match the company’s function. If it’s a living space, then it should be express what the owners of the house are like. Therefore, before starting work, I study the company’s brank book, if it’s a company, or the family’s psychology, values and interests. Then I integrate this image into the future interior. After the design is complete, I continue with my own creative vision.

What is your biggest design work?

JS : My biggest design work (aside from the one that I won with at the adesignaward contest) is the work to which I dedicated a whole month of my life. In 2013 the concept of a transformable office space has not been quite developed yet, but there were ideas in my head that I wanted to share. That was when I saw the international contest pitch from Rosatom which required to offer innovative solutions for their spaces. There were multiple categories. The category that I knew well was Office, and I set my mind to win in that category. I have to say that other participants began working half a year before the deadline, so I had to work extra hard to develop a worthy design. In the end my work was among the few that were exhibited at the Gostiny Dvor on the Red Square. It was a big victory for me and I'm proud of it. I was not afraid to see into the future and find a new solution to improve the quality of workspace. Now the designs I have suggested are being used and fully realized in office environments. Except for one thing that I am dreaming to use, but I will show it only to the client for which in my opinion it would be the most appropriate solution.

Who is your favourite designer?

JS : My main teacher and my hero my art school instructor Abaturov Vitaly Petrovich, a Distinguished Artist of the Russian Federation. His art helped me to develop as a professional for 11 years. He loved to go on hikes and then paint pictures of places he had been to. His pictures were exhibited all around Russia. One of his pictures is Meeting at a mountain pass. Polar Urals. 2004.My second idol is Zaha Hadid which gave this world many wonderful pieces of architecture which became treasures of mankind and the objects of study for students. She was ahead of the times. I admire her bravery. Unfortunately, Zaha Hadid passed away, but she left her mark even in Russia, it's the residential house in Barvikha built in 2008 and the Dominion Tower, 2015. I was in that building and it impressed me both inside and outside.Even though those two people are no longer with us, they play an important part in my professional activity. Vitaly Petrovich set me on this difficult but interesting path of a designer and Zaka Hadit continues to inspire me with her ambitious vision of the future.

Would you tell us a bit about your lifestyle and culture?

JS : Design shapes our life and culture in general. Looking at design you can see the humanity’s history and the history of life of each person. I am inspired by nature, its peace and harmony. I wait for summer to hear the birds sing and in fall I wait for winter to see picture-book-like snow banks. It is important for me as a creator to change up the environment but as I have many objects I work on, primarily in Moscow, I’m limited to the city. We have many interesting scientific and educational museums opening which exhibit new technologies and which I gladly visit.

Would you tell us more about your work culture and business philosophy?

JS : Although designer is a creative profession we must remember that the success in reaching understanding with the client is dependent on your work being structured. Therefore, my business is built on clear stages, clear deadlines and expected results. For now, I only work with a small team of visualizers which are committed to their job and do it well. I make designs myself and Revit helps me to do it. Me and my team do not have schedules, we have deadlines we need to meet. If my colleague needs time to solve personal issues, I do not monitor their day, the only thing important for me is that the work is done on time.

What are your philanthropic contributions to society as a designer, artist and architect?

JS : Currently I’m discussing several interesting projects with my partner which he wants to do with my support. I haven’t done that before so right now I’m helping him with design and constructive issues for free. I hope in the future I’ll be able to say I worked on those designs.For the second year in a row I’m being invited to be one of the judges at the nationwide competition of architecture and design for student design projects and graduation projects. It is an honor and a huge responsibility to me. Fledgling specialists submit their work, they're confident in themselves and their projects and expect high scores. It takes a lot of time and effort to assess each work, but I like it despite that.

What positive experiences you had when you attend the A’ Design Award?

JS : Both the designer and the society need those competitions. They allow us to-go beyond one's own boundaries-kickstart new ideas -find designers with most potential and find our clientsThe awards are an appreciation of my effort and my professionalism. Thanks to the competition I made acquaintance with professionals from around the world and I stay in touch with them to this day. They are very talented and passionate people. It is very important for me to be the Designer of the Day! Thank you!

Julia Subbotina Profile

Shanghai Multifunction wardrobe

Shanghai Multifunction wardrobe design by Julia Subbotina

Passion Bathroom

Passion Bathroom design by Julia Subbotina


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