This week, we caught up with Wellington-based Andrea Pardo, who spoke to us about digital design at Squiz, her love of latin dancing, and what she loves most about New Zealand.
Squiz: Can you tell us a bit about your role at Squiz?
Andrea: As a digital designer, I’m in charge of creating the wireframes, sketches, and designs to help solve our clients’ website needs. I work alongside our great experience design team to develop beautiful, responsive, user-friendly sites.
What attracted you to Squiz, and what’s been your experience working here so far?
I remember visiting Squiz when I was first looking for a job and just being so impressed with what I saw. I especially loved the Squiz DNA and the existing portfolio of work. Instantly, I thought that Squiz would be a great place to work.
I was right! It’s been an amazing experience so far. The culture here is fantastic, and the collaborative way we work means that I’ve already learned so much from my colleagues.
What’s your typical workday like?
My days aren’t always the same, but I like to start the day with a warm cappuccino (a group of us gets coffee every morning) and then put on some music. After that, I start planning out my day, seeing what meetings I have scheduled and what I need to be researching. Then I’m ready to be inspired!
What’s been your proudest achievement at Squiz so far?
It’s probably remembering the names of everyone in the office by the end of my first week!
In all seriousness, I’d have to say that it was working on the slides for a big workshop we were organising. We were working to a very tight deadline, and it was a real challenge. But in the end, I was able to deliver the goods!
How did you first get into design?
I’ve always been creative and enjoy solving communications problems using design. I studied at the University of Buenos Aires, and while I was there, I landed my first job in design, working on e-learning courses. That was 10 years ago.
In 2013, I decided that it was time to see the world and meet different cultures. New Zealand seemed like a great starting point. I came here thinking I would stay for only a year or so, but it’s been nearly five years now!
What do you love most about living in New Zealand?
It’s such a beautiful country! Living here is honestly like living in a little bubble, separate from the rest of the world.
The people are so friendly, and the landscapes are incredible and inspiring. On top of that, the coffee, food, and wine are all pluses!
The only downside is that my family and friends are 10,000km away in Argentina. But I go back to visit them when I can.
When you were younger, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I really wanted to be an astronaut, but when I told my parents, they just laughed at me. They thought it was a joke! Later, I became more interested in design and decided to follow that path.
What are your hobbies outside work?
I enjoy many activities. Some of my favourites are salsa dancing, trapeze, yoga, and swimming. I’ve just started learning to surf, and I also want to try windsurfing soon – windy Wellington is perfect for it!
On quiet days, I like reading books and magazines – my favourite is Flow – and playing board games, such as Zombicide, Catan, and Pandemic, with my friends.
What music are you currently listening to?
I mostly listen to the kinds of music I can dance to: salsa, bachata, and Brazilian music.
One of my recent musical discoveries is Joey Alexander, an Indonesian jazz pianist who’s just 13 – he’s perfect to listen to for inspiration while working.
If you could be any animal on earth, which would you be and why?
I’d have to say a dolphin. They’re cute, they’re smart, and they get to spend the whole day swimming in the ocean. What more could you want?
Andrea will be tweeting her week at work at @lifeatsquiz from 30 January to 3 February. Follow along to see what she gets up to on a daily basis in Wellington.