Making Visual Stories with Graphic Artist Collin Cantes

Cris Antonio |

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People are naturally attracted to visuals. Whether it’s a product photo or a meme, it will instantly draw our eyes. That’s why businesses spend thousands on creatives who can deliver their brand message through aesthetically-pleasing visuals.

From fonts, illustrations, and comics, to photos, color schemes, and personalized design elements, someone has to make them.

You need to be efficient, a team player, and a critical thinker aside from being creative. Woah, that sounds tough! This is the incredible job of Collin Cantes as a graphic artist.

Getting To Know Collin

You might be wondering how a graduate of Business Administration with a major in Marketing Management would find himself in graphics design. The truth is, even Collin himself was a bit surprised! But he has zero regrets. He did whatever he could to excel in unfamiliar territory.

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“Back then, the facilitator from my school told me that my grades from high school suited this program. So I decided to take up Marketing. I was planning on taking up something related to music though.”

A self-professed introvert, he says that decision turned out well as the program helped improve his confidence. He found out that he was great at advertising, too.

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“Thanks to my degree, I’ve learned that every business has goals. As a graphic artist, I should be able to create something that’s not only visually attractive but can also properly convey the brand’s message.”

God-fearing, selfless, and passionate, Collin has plenty of hobbies to keep him busy and inspired. When he’s not illustrating fantasy lands or drawing portraits, he plays FPS games like Valorant, writes songs, and plays musical instruments. He loves spending time with his family and considers them the most important element in his life.

“My family is the reason I keep on pushing forward in life…” 

On Being a Graphic Artist

It’s not easy waking up every day knowing you have to create something original, fresh, and relevant all the time. Collin makes it look effortless though. I was fascinated by his ArtStation portfolio so I inquired where he gets all that energy to be imaginative and artistic.

“My dreams, my loved ones, and my own future family…They are my main sources of motivation since the beginning. I want to be the kind of son that gives back to my parents after all the hard work and sacrifices they’ve done for me. And of course, I want to be a responsible parent someday.”

Sowenscale is lucky to have him. He too appreciates the opportunity and loves the flexible schedule!

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“This is my first time experiencing work-life balance. I’m thankful to get frequent breaks to reset my mind. Most especially, I’m grateful to spend more time with my family.”

Despite challenges such as having no mentor or graduating from a course that’s far from graphics design, Collin perseveres through constant learning. He does this by exploring the Web and watching YouTube tutorials. He recommends Pinterest and Behance for those searching for inspiration online.

“I always do things with love and enthusiasm. I’m eager to learn and be better at what I do…”

On Confidence, Creativity, and Misconceptions

Being in front of a digital screen all day can take its toll, even for highly creative people. Just because an artist or graphic artist can finish a logo in a few hours doesn’t mean it wasn’t difficult.

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“The biggest misconception about this job is that it’s too easy. Most people would say that I can finish a layout within a short time. What they don’t know is that behind it all are years of experience, days and nights of studying, lots of research, and practicing different techniques. We need to be efficient as well.”

Collin has a mood board to help expand on his ideas. However, just like everyone else, there are days when he feels uninspired or out of sorts. How does he cope with this?

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“I think that’s normal. I deal with it by stopping for a moment, then I think about the goals I want to accomplish and how to do it. The fact that I enjoy what I do helps because I don’t feel pressured about anything…”

Still Finding His Way

For now, Collin doesn’t have plans to switch to a different career. He’s still reveling in his current progress at work.

“The best thing about being a graphic artist is expressing your ideas. We can help various brands send their messages in a creative way.”

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This young and super talented artist has plenty of dreams. One day, he plans on establishing his own business that will make use of his skills. At present, the demands in the industry keep him preoccupied.

“Design standards are changing. Good graphic artists should adapt to various trends and approaches. Nowadays, trends are leaning towards modernism and minimalism. I’ve seen different brands changing their logo into something more simple yet impactful.”

Collin suggests aspiring designers to never stop learning and to handle criticism well.

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“Some might like your design, some might not. Know that every person will have their own opinion. You must also be knowledgeable in various editing software. There are times that a graphic artist will have to work with limited time and resources. So it’s a good thing to be flexible and resourceful, too.”

“Never doubt yourself. There will come a time when you’ll question your own work or even your capabilities. But you have to believe and trust in yourself. Always take it as a learning experience and a chance to do better. Most importantly, enjoy and pursue the things that will spark your creativity.”

Check out Collin’s creative yet personal side on his social media and art account. Ig:  @collincantes_ Artstation: collincantes Behance: cantescollin


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Author Portrait

Cris Antonio

Cris Antonio is a freelance Copywriter, Editor, and Speaker. If she’s not writing or editing, she helps business owners and young adults build their presence on the Web.