Do you want to pursue an art career? While some people might think that it is not a good choice, this Filipino art director, graphic designer, and illustrator begs to differ.
Meet Neil V. Fernando. He is from the province of Rizal and is now known in the esports industry. Neil gained influence through his work with the global esports team, Fnatic. In his three years in the esports industry, he has worked with international brands such as BMW, AMD, Lavazza, and OnePlus.
Neil also designed the logo and branding for award-winning weightlifter and airwoman Hidilyn Diaz and sports news correspondent Chino Trinidad. Some of his work has also been recognized and featured in international platforms such as Digital Arts UK, Adobe Photoshop, Ads of the World, and numerous illustration, graphic design, and art blogs. With his story, he hopes to inspire more people to pursue a career in design, illustration, and branding in the esports, sports, and gaming scene – particularly the youth.
Fernando’s love for gaming started when he was a kid. He loved playing PlayStation games like Final Fantasy, Tekken, and Crash Bandicoot. Now, his favorite games are NBA 2K, League of Legends, and Valorant.
Besides gaming, Neil has always had a love for arts, as well. He shared that his parents first gave him a pencil and paper when he was only 2 years old and according to them, Neil would draw all day long at that very young age! The first drawing that they recognized was a picture of Jollibee, and that was when they knew he had potential. At age 4, they enrolled Neil in a free art class where he realized what he wanted to be when he grew up–an artist.
Fast forward to his college days, Neil took up Fine Arts Advertising. After graduating, he worked in the advertising industry for 4 years. He then stumbled upon design and illustration – something that he really enjoyed. However, he was working in a local design studio at the time.
Neil decided to fulfill his thirst for creating something he is really passionate about–something more than what his job requires. He would go to work in the morning and dedicate his nights to creating his own designs. At first, he only posted his artwork on his Behance and Instagram for fun. The same way gaming did, it gave him a good sense of competition while having fun at the same time.
One day, a creative director from Fnatic noticed his designs and approached him to do illustration work for them. This paved the way to even more projects. Eventually, he was introduced to the founder and became a full-time member.
Neil was pleased to contribute to the organization by creating designs that made an impact on people. He believes in the integration of aesthetics, function, and emotion in creating a transcending design. This belief is shown in his approach to different disciplines like branding, graphic design, illustration, and motion design. Neil uses this philosophy in bridging brands, individuals, and organizations to their audience and fans. Neil hopes young designers will appreciate this concept and look design in multiple spectrums.
To aspiring artists, he shares that the key to success is to keep on working on their dreams and never stop learning. Not only design skills but also storytelling and marketing your portfolio. “Learning how to communicate and connect is as important as taking your craft to the next level…and always remember to have fun while doing it,” he said. He believes that anyone can reach a global audience, even a simple boy from the province just like him.
“I heard this common notion that pursuing art isn’t a good choice because there is no money in it. However, people often forget the importance of happiness. When you love what you do and are having fun with it, everything else follows. ” Neil added.
Want to know more about Neil Fernando? Check him out on his website at www.neilvfernando.com