September 3, 2019

WS Adds ACAD Grad Neil Smith to Creative Team

Neil Smith believes it’s too much pressure to ask people to follow their passion. His advice? Follow your curiosity and you’ll be led to your passion. That’s how he became a designer.

Neil got his Bachelor of Design with a major in advertising after realizing that the business courses he was taking didn’t quite resonate. “I always took art classes and stuff in high school,” he says. “My friend was taking design at ACAD and I was like, ‘oh my god, I love what you’re doing,’ and then I quit and started with ACAD.”

Like a true designer, Neil loves art but while he appreciates how accessible it is on social media, he strongly dislikes social trends. “I love being able to see really interesting work. You get to see more of people’s personality through Instagram, and they’re posting all of that.” He adds, “I try to kill trends, because they’re so quick. I like things that are drawn from the past and merging stuff from the past with the new. But I don’t really follow trends, because I feel like they just come and go.”

“Neil brings a different perspective to our team,” says Ric Fedyna, Executive, VP Creative. “He’s always looking at a design, or a piece of art, and thinking of the thought process that culminated in the end result. He’s also very talented. He had one of the best books at the most recent ACAD portfolio show. It was inspiring; we knew he’d be a great fit here at WS.”

When Neil isn’t using his design to inspire, he’s motivating others by teaching spin classes at YYC Cycle. “I was just there all the time, and they’re like, ‘you know everyone, do you want to just come work for us?’.” At both jobs, he values the connections he makes—seeing the people, hearing their stories, finding out what drives them. “I think my sole purpose is just to make small connections with people and slightly change their day or their thinking—just putting light in dark places when I can.” Please join us in welcoming Neil to the WS team! Connect with him on LinkedIn and ask him what it was like to grow up in Drayton Valley, a town of 7,000 people