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Meet Adriana Avendano

Today we’d like to introduce you to Adriana Avendano.

Adriana, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
My passion for the arts is rooted from when I first learned how to paint landscapes and still-lives, at the early age of nine. Fine art continued to be my main hobby throughout middle school and high school, where my priorities were to expand my artistic skills, find a voice and build a portfolio. Fortunately, I attended a high school – Design and Architecture Senior High (DASH) – that exposed me to the foundation of fine arts, art history, and more specifically, Architecture. I liked this track because it allowed me to visualize and conjure up my two-dimensional skills into a three-Dimensional landscape.

Of the ten design colleges, I applied to. I initially decided to attend Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and expected to work under their Architecture program. There, I studied charcoal figure drawing, spatial dynamics, performance art, projection mapping, painting, and more. During my first year, I built a solid foundation of conceptual brainstorming and ideation. However, I did not see myself continuing into their rigid major of Architecture. So, I began my search for a more emotive and dynamic realm of spatial design. This shift forced me to make the decision to transfer to the Art Center College of Design (ACCD) in Pasadena, California. There, I studied Environmental Design, which focuses on building spaces from the inside-out instead of outside-in. This form of spatial design requires a more narrative and emotive approach, which I thrived in. This program fuses elements of architecture, interior design, and furniture design to focus on the total spatial experience.

In exploring my sources of inspiration, I found that the elements of my work are largely influenced by empathy for the human condition, exposure to different cultures, philosophies, and perceptions of space. Since Graduating in December of last year, I have been actively searching for freelance work and permanent positions around the globe in experiential marketing, interior design, 2D/3D experience design, graphic design, and much more. In the meantime, I have been exploring digital painting and going back to my roots of fine art, as well as experimenting with new 3D Modeling and rendering programs.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The struggle I deal with is very internal, both as an artist and designer. It’s difficult to explain the type of designer I am or aspire to be because I’ve come to realize that I am a sort of “inbetweener” in the design realm. The essence of what I do is to create spatial experiences that harmonize elements of architecture, interior design, product design, lighting, furniture, graphics, and interactive media. I’ve designed projects ranging from branded retail spaces, themed dining to new hospitality, exhibition, and residential design. Having a wide spectrum of skills in different strands of design makes it difficult to focus on one since I love them all. It sounds like a good problem to have but it can also be a bit overwhelming and confusing.

However, I have found that “Experience Designer” defines me best, since it includes all the fields of design that I’ve immersed myself into. Although it may seem like a broad definition of what I do, It instills a general sense of my experience and shows I have the tools to create limitless opportunities to explore in the design world.

We’d love to hear more about your work.
With the awareness that the element of design influences a person’s sense of being, wonder, and emotions; the concepts of my work are largely driven by empathy. My focus shows how a 3Dimensional design can suite a story, idea, or perception. It can also enhance the human experience by stimulating all the senses and immersing the viewer into new realms outside the structures of reality. My main focus is to be empathetically aware of the persons I design for. Whether it be an individual, a community, or even a natural environment. Empathy helps enrich my designs and uplift the entire spatial experience. As a designer, I find it crucial to be able to listen, understand, and relate to the personal needs of any viewer. This helps build a more emotionally engaging relationship between my work and the people experiencing it.

In addition, My friend, Alejandro Jimenez (Product designer) and I are currently working on opening a potential Design Studio by the name of SALT. We hope to focus on reimagining and challenging the concepts of space, art, products, and much more. We’d also like to begin collaborating with local businesses in Miami by providing design assistance in branding, graphics, product design, and experiential marketing. Currently, we are exploring our personal design interests and hope to build projects together that will captivate the imagination in a world with limitless inspiration.

Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
I believe true success stems from determination, discipline, consistency, and trust. Trust in the process and trust in yourself. I find this to be the most important value since its what builds confidence, and self-compassion during challenging times. Anything that is worth conquering will demand a lot from you physically, emotionally, and mentally, causing many people to break. It is much more admirable to fail a hundred times and move on than it is to quit on your dreams because there lies no potential for success after giving up. My advice is to find authenticity in the things you wish to pursue and live life according to your own integrity. Protect your dreams, learn to teach yourself, travel the world, and expose yourself to new landscapes, cultures, and unique experiences that suite your life goal. Continue searching for inspiration outside of yourself and find enriching experiences that will develop into surprising revelations for the future.


  • $25-$35 an hour for assistance in Branding, Graphic Design, Product Design, Illustration, website design, and 3D Modeling/Rendering.

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