Frustrated in his work, Dana Blouin took the decision to change countries and direction and has never looked back.
What’s your story?
A decade ago I was a telecom engineer, unhappy in my dead-end job, and working in an environment and culture that actively suppressed innovation and creativity. I quit my job, sold everything, and moved to Thailand, began to expand my design knowledge, which led to me starting my own design studio which focuses on everything from product design to graphic design to UI/UX design for our clients. Over the past five years, it has grown into a successful small business through hard work and constantly pushing the limits on design for clients.
What excites you most about your industry?
There are so many unique and exciting design challenges, how could I not be excited. We work across a number of industries on product design and a range of other design projects so there is always something that is going to push the limits and excite us.
What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?
The challenge of solving unique design problems for my clients is one of the biggest motivating factors for me that keeps me pushing the limits.
What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?
Two things I learned early in my career were the importance of always learning, and learning as a way to improve, and to always be willing to do what it takes to get the job done.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
If the game is stacked against you, redefine it. This single lesson has allowed me to reframe issues over the years and find a unique approach and solution.
Who inspires you?
My partner and wife, Jib inspires me and pushes me to the next level on a daily basis. We approach our design projects collaboratively and that working relationship has allowed us to challenge each other and deliver amazing results to our clients.
What have you learnt recently that blew you away?
I strive to learn something new every day. I set aside time daily for learning and reading so that I can always be working on expanding my mind and thinking. A lot of my learning also comes from my clients, learning about their needs and how their industries work so I can better serve them.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
Nothing at all. The journey to get where I am now is an experience I would not trade for anything. You have to embrace the journey itself and grow from it.
How do you unwind?
A hard workout is the best way for me to destress after a long day. I start my day with a light cardio workout to help me wake up, but the afternoon is when I hit the weights and swing the kettlebell around. Then post-workout it’s a relaxing meal and conversation with Jib.
What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?
When I first started my journey into learning design and being a practitioner, I discovered that many of the methodologies and frameworks I used as an engineer applied across the board.
Everyone in business should read this book:
The $100 Startup. by Chris Guillebeau
This book is a fantastic look at how to take a passion and bootstrap it into a legit business.
The 10 Year Overnight Success. by Ashkan Karbasfrooshan the founder of WatchMojo, is the most honest and real telling of an entrepreneurial story.
Shameless plug for your business:
SuperVillain Design Studio is a Bangkok-based, multidisciplinary design studio specializing in product design, both physical and digital. From garment design to app UI/UX.
While we are designers, our first priority is our customers and ensuring your design goals are achieved.
If you have questions you can reach out to me directly or get in touch via our website www.svds.co.
How can people connect with you?
You can reach out through my studio website www.SVDS.co, you can find me on Linkedin or on My Idea Studio YouTube Channel.
Social Media Links?
Idea Studio YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/ideastudioxyz
Company Website: www.SVDS.co
This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.