About Ximena Ureta

She is a designer who can harmonically communicate, with an artistic and aesthetic sense, while meeting the strategic objective of her clients.

Interview with Ximena Ureta

Ximena Ureta ("XU") interviewed on Tuesday, 29 March.

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

XU : I've worked as a designer for the past 27 years. My initial clients were Chilean wineries, for which I created projects involving wine and sparkling wine packaging. Wineries such as Viña San Pedro, Viña San Helena, Viña Indómita, Viña Errázuriz, De Martino, Cono Sur, Spumante Limarí, and Concha y Toro, for whom I worked with in two separate areas. Fine Wine Collection features Marques de Casa Concha, Gravas, and Amelia, while Premium Wines promotes brands like Trio, Frontera, and Casillero del Diablo. My most recent clients have been wineries such as MontGras, where I began by altering the winery's corporate image, eventually creating Day One, Handcrafted, Organic, ANTU, and De Vine. I've also worked with Santa Ema producing Rivalta, a renowned wine, and De Martino who will soon release an out standing wine, Cuvee 2020, in 2022. I'm also finishing Andante for Viña Maola in China. I enjoy what I do and hope that my clients continue to entrust me with the development of their packaging.

How did you become a designer?

XU : I've enjoyed drawing with a pencil and charcoal since I was a child. Things like analyzing, creating highly detailed drawings, and drawing the human body (particularly portraits in black and white), were one of my favorite things to do growing up. I quickly learned that pencils come in a wide range of sizes, from 9H to 9B, that removing the tip releases a wonderful aroma of wood, and that the roughness and varying thicknesses of paper fascinated me. Then I learnt about watercolor, chalk and oil pastels, oils, acrylics and then, as an adult, metal engravings. I've always enjoyed trying to make sense of figurative shadows. I would find faces in locks on gates and doors. I'd look for shapes in the clouds and draw gorgeous long gowns in inverted wine glasses. I've always like exploring stains with my eyes closed and then letting go of my consciousness when I begin painting. I have been a perfectionist and a hard worker since I was a child and my commitment to whatever I do is part of my rigor and discipline.

What are your priorities, technique and style when designing?

XU : There are many things that I like about design and art. A design in the formal world must have fonts that are harmonious one with another as they help to create the personality of a project. Letters in themselves are wonderful illustrations. It is my absolute priority to use them correctly and delicately. It is also interesting to address a design from the artistic point of view, to explore different techniques in order to find the appropriate language. My favourite tool is always a brush with black ink on great quality paper. I love paper and its textures. Everything becomes more beautiful on good paper. All I have ever designed finally ends up on paper. A good seal and folium always touch me deeply. Digital tools are help ful to represent ideas and this way I can explain to others what I'm designing. The mock-ups in Photoshop are very useful and can express really well almost all the technical resources and colours that I want to use.

Which emotions do you feel when designing?

XU : It feels like an energy that rotates internally. It commences soft and light. I think that it feeds from my breathing because they both march to the same beat. Eventually, one learns how to surrender peacefully. An inner strength that seeks light.

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

XU : What I value most in me is my perseverance - even more than I value talent. I don’t know if I am talented but I know that I am disciplined. I like to see my ideas grow thanks to searching until I find them.

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

XU : I have numerous projects in mind that will present significant hurdles. This year, I have a number of client projects to complete and designs featuring global themes that can be enjoyed by people from various cultures all across the world. These include peaceful, sensual, and intimate designs that can speak for themselves which encourages the viewer to take a break and simply observe. I adore combining typography with art, photography, and engraving (drypoint), and I prefer working with watercolor and inks. Each project is unique, and I try to enjoy each step of the creative process. I am delighted with my work. So far, I've enjoyed the creative flexibility I've been able to attain. It has been a very satisfying process for me to know that my clients trust me.

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

XU : Perhaps I could say that technological tools are very important but nothing compares to what I can do with my hands.

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

XU : I don't consider myself successful. Perhaps I would just like to say that I strongly believe in randomness and when I design I often do so with my eyes closed and find things in places where my consciousness would never let me go. The same happens with gestural typography or colour spots. It's funny what happens when I do it. The laws of harmony do not always act in a predictable way. Perhaps these laws already exist and the only thing we must do is to decipher them. But they don’t always have a rational or logical order but one that is unconscious and unknown. Perhaps a designer is an encoder or a decoder of something superior and prior. It is interesting to find more than the predictable. Nothing worse than common places.

What is your day to day look like?

XU : I make lists to ensure that I don't forget anything important during the day. I establish daily goals for myself and when it comes to meeting them, I'm a perfectionist. During the morning, I organize crucial aspects due to the fact that I feel more energized and have more clarity. This allows me to respond to design problems more efficiently. On the other hand, I aim to schedule all of the meetings on the same day so that I can create without interruptions. Music is a factor which enhances the fluidity and interest of my creative activity.I can have moments of greater sensibility and can enjoy what I do every day.

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

XU : Trends have never mattered to me. Nor do I know where my creativity comes from. My nature remains a mystery to me.

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

XU : A good design is an expression in itself, it speaks with dignity and elegance. Its resources are original. It should surprise and may even make you smile.

How do you decide if your design is ready?

XU : My experience and my intuition tell me when the right moment comes. The creative process allows me to see how my projects have matured to the point that they can speak for themselves.

What is your biggest design work?

XU : Several pieces of work have had a significant impact on me. "Paper Flight" has a particularly important place in my heart. It expresses a lot with a small amount of text and it's a wordless visual poem with a sensitive and vital soul. A fragment of liberty. A pause. A tribute to simplicity, to the fragile, to the minimum. The small interior space of a visual haiku. "Butterfly Acrobat"has also been a fantastic project to work on. It was fascinating to write a short narrative in which the photos might tell a tale. A woman who can fly is lifted aloft by the silk threads of tens of thousands of butterflies in a circus act. I find it fascinating that such an idea could have a place in wine packaging.

Who is your favourite designer?

XU : These days I'm observing and reading the work of Shigeru Ban, a Japanese architect of modest, ecological and sustainable philosophy. Pioneer in the use of plastic, paper and cardboard used in his works. An utmost master in lightweight construction. Famous for his innovative work with paper, particularly recycled cardboard tubes. His work with emergency housing as a design solution to house natural or man-made disaster victims is very interesting and creative. The simplicity that characterizes this great architect makes his projects magical. Shigeru Ban, paper, cardboard, and composition.

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

XU : I love and I carry with pride my culture. I live in Santiago, Chile, South America. I think I have a harmonious life, I have managed to achieve a lot in design, as well as in my life as mother and as woman. I like my sensitive nature, my female essence. I love silence as well as working peacefully. I believe that my work has a lot of me embedded in it and of my way of looking at life. I want to go back to basics, to what is essential. To what can be done by hand in detail. To the micro, to the instant. To stop. I wish technology would not destroy paper. I wish that paper would not destroy trees. I appreciate working with certified companies that want to be sustainable and respectful with the environment. I can see that my designs and I are made of the same raw material.

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

XU : I like working with small teams of designers, I like to delve deep into my projects without losing control of my creations. I work in silence and with very good music.

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

XU : I donate my work especially to artists, poets, musicians and photographers who want to undertake a creative project. I have exhibited my work at universities that teach design in Chile and I have worked with students from various universities in my country.

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

XU : “Design Award & Competition” is a human platform and high level technology. It is quite surprising, the impeccable reception and specific classification into different categories as well as its broad multi-disciplinary and top-of-its-class judging panel. Also the possibility for the awardees to get close to a global audience made up by adept and specialized press. Thank you so much for all the work. I want to thank this incredible competition for giving us, international designers, the opportunity to present our work to be dignified by you. It has been a wonderful experience, thank you.

Ximena Ureta Profile

MontGras Handcrafted Wine Packaging

MontGras Handcrafted Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Rivalta Wine Packaging

Rivalta Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Organic Wine Packaging

Organic Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Butterfly Acrobat Wine Packaging

Butterfly Acrobat Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Paper Flight Show of papers

Paper Flight Show of papers design by Ximena Ureta

Day One Wine Packaging

Day One Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Diablo Black Wine Packaging

Diablo Black Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Marques de Casa Concha Wine Packaging

Marques de Casa Concha Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Leyenda Wine Packaging

Leyenda Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Rose Wine Packaging

Rose Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta

Azur Wine Packaging

Azur Wine Packaging design by Ximena Ureta


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