Magic-E founder and CEO Eduard Smit is a walking contradiction in the best possible way.
With his muscular physique and strict training regimen, he might not fit the mold of the stereotypical creative personality. But Ed, an accomplished graphic designer who has worked with a number of notable brands, considers being in peak physical condition every bit as important as his design work.
His home gym is his happy place, a sanctuary for self-reflection that feeds his ravenous creativity.
What strikes me most about Eduard is how remarkably humble and soft-spoken he is, despite the fact that he could definitely beat me up in a fight. I’m hoping it never comes to that.
If you follow Eduard on Twitter (and you really should!), you’ll know that he starts each day with a motivational and inspirational thought borne from his own brilliant mind, a positive message to set the tone for the day ahead. He finds wonder and beauty in everything, from the complex geometry of nature to the minutiae and beating heart of the city he calls home. He takes inspiration from the magic of this secret world that the rest of us only get to visit fleetingly in our dreams.
It’s clear that behind the 36-year old’s slightly wistful blue eyes resides a gentle, compassionate soul with an intense appreciation for life and all that it offers.
I was fortunate enough to get to interview Eduard about his unique and refreshing outlook on creativity and life in general, and the short discourse is submitted below for your delectation.
Charl Mijnhardt: What role, if any, does working out [in your home gym] play in your creative process?
Eduard Smit: I believe that the lessons learned in training applied everywhere leads to great successes, not only in keeping my work methodology top of mind but training acts as energizer to my constant long hours and provides a diversion from the design and marketing work.
CM: What inspires/motivates you? And how do you stay motivated?
ES: I am inspired by everyone that has ever done something that people thought they couldn’t. I also find inspiration in the successes of others. Motivation is a topic I can really carry on with for quite a long time; However, yes, I have a few passions that pull me through most hard situations. These dreams and goals are what motivate me. I look through dreams daily, work towards them.
CM: What made you want to become a designer?
ES: I love creating. I was more art-orientated when I started but have felt so deeply for the creation of art and magic through design. It has just always made sense since the day I started.
CM: How do you balance work, studying and being a dad? Doesn’t it get overwhelming?
ES: Yes, indeed it gets pretty overwhelming – the training helps – but because I am doing what I am really passionate about I don’t feel overwhelmed or pressured. It is very hard to find a balance but I find it essential to include family time, me time and study time into every day in little bits, and these bits accumulate to make a big whole after a while.
CM: Finally, what advice do you have for freelancers who are just starting out?
ES: Whatever you do just don’t ever quit. The day you quit could be one day away from the contract that will change your life! I believe success has three requirements, namely consistency in applying your skills over time, challenging yourself each day with new tasks and improve and lastly spend time with what you wish to achieve, improve yourself every day and you’ll soon find yourself mastering a great amount of skills that will definitely get you what you’ve always dreamt about.
What an incredible dude. Check out his work at http://magic-e.co.za/.