Santiago Cohen, Illustrator, Animator and Graphic Designer – Brand Interview

Santiago Cohen in his Art Studio

How long have you been creating art? Please tell us a bit about yourself, your art, mission and goals.

I studied my Masters in Communication Design at Pratt and started doing graphic design for all sorts of companies in 1985. At the same time, I started to publish as an illustrator in magazines, kids’ animations for TV, children’s books and have been painting since and continue to do that, having shows in galleries and museums in the New York area and Mexico.

My Exvida project has 1150 paintings and was shown in the Hunterdon Museum in 2013 and will be in Galería siglo XXI in Mexico City in 2015.

My mission is to to change people’s lifes through art, one painting or animation at the time.

My goal is to reach out as much as I can to the world and be recognized as a good artist.

Piano Family by Santiago Cohen

Tell us about your brand.

I suppose that my brand is my name, because it is related completely to my artistic activities. The other brand name I am trying to promote is my “Exvida” project because I want to find art shows in museums all over the world to show it . The Exvida project is a 1150 painting project that I fill large galleries with my bio stories. Please look at my website:

How did you know what typeface (font) would be right for your logo?
I like sans serif fonts that are elegant and classic, but I am a graphic designer and I can work on that.

If your logo has an illustration, describe why that art was the right thing.
I don’t have a logo, but I have an illustration style that is recognizable, and I like changing the images for my branding.

How did you decide on the right color palette to fit your company look and feel?
Just by instinct as an artist and designer.

Did you design your own identity and web presence?
I designed my website and business cards and look.

In what order did you present your company to the world? Did you start with marketing and products, or website, blog and social media?
I started by having a product first, which is the most difficult thing to do, then I wrote the description of it and created postcards, website, and later every time I have a show, I post it on social media (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) but I don’t do it regularly because I feel that people get tired of it and afterwards they are not receptive to the changes.

Vida Gallery by Santiago Cohen

How long after the launch of your company did you start pitching in social media?
It took me 7 years to do my Exvida project and I was using social media every time I had a show with it, which happened around 4 times before I finished, and now I use it when there are new developments.

Did you do research or study any software, take webinars, teleclasses, before approaching any area of your marketing or web presence?
No I didn’t do that. I only learn the software that helps me at the moment, and I learn it by myself. My marketing is done by instinct, but sometimes it is not as effective as I would have liked.

Do you advertise locally in newspapers and/or nationally in magazines?
No I haven’t had the budget to do that. I agree that it would help, if I had the means.

Do you advertise online using Google, Facebook or on other company sites?
I tried Google Adwords, but I guess my goals weren’t clear and I didn’t get any results. The same with Facebook.

Which social media site to spend the most time on and how does it help marketing your business?
I don’t spend too much time on any, but if you want to know I look at Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook.
I have “friends” but in order to work, you need thousands of friends, and I don’t like that, because they are people that I don’t know or care for.

When you printed your products, packaging, business cards and other print marketing did you choose an online printer or visit a local vendor?
I have my own printing vendors (online) that I like.

Girls by Santiago Cohen

Have you ever used “green” technology in printing, using FSC certified papers or recycled paper and if not, how likely are you at trying this on a next project?
Depends on the cost…

Do you donate to charities? Tell us about that also and why.
I donate to NPR, the democratic party, Amnesty International, or any social groups that I believe in. I think it reflects who I am and what I want the world to become.

Do you speak at events?
Sometimes with my children’s books I read to children, or when I had my art show in the Hunterdon Museum, I explained my Exvida project.

What is coming up in the next year or two we should watch for?
I want to have my Exvida on “tour” through different museums or galleries in the U.S. or other countries. The next one will be in Mexico in 2015. I will have my book: “The Yiddish Fish” coming out in November 2014 and I will need to promote it heavily, to sell.

Is there anything you haven’t yet tackled, but will want to do soon?
I’d like to have more painting shows in New York City and need to get a gallery to look at my work.

ExVida Project by Santiago Cohen





Learn more about Santiago Cohen by connecting through these links: (Santiago Cohen)
Instagram: elsan1
Twitter: elsan1 (Santiago Cohen)



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