Graphic design grad at Squarespace in New York City
Dec 1, 2016
by Bobbie Stewart
In 2014, Luis Gonzalez had a moment when he realized his dreams might not materialize into the better life he had imagined. His job at a design studio in New York City was unfulfilling, he couldn’t find a new one and the city failed to deliver on its unspoken promise of opportunity.
“I had been hustling, cutting my teeth and working really hard,” said the 2012 graphic design graduate. “I was trying to do freelance work on the side to do my (portfolio) book, but thought, ‘If I can’t get somewhere I want to be, then maybe New York isn’t where I’m meant to be.’”
But soon after, change did come in the form of what Gonzalez calls “a sign.”
“I launched my new website with a company called Squarespace on a Sunday and the next day I was on a job searching site and saw a job for a production designer at Squarespace,” he said.
He applied and was hired. Since then, the company has grown from three to 20-plus employees and recently moved into a 100,000-square foot building in the city’s West Village. This year, Gonzalez was named one of Graphic Design USA’s “People to Watch.”
Finally, he had found his element.
“I honestly can’t imagine being anywhere else,” he said. “Some mornings I just can’t wait to get to work because I’m so excited about what I do.”
As a designer on Squarespace’s brand design team, he works on advertising and communication branding for clients, and helps develop commercials (including one for the Superbowl). He’s also jumped into website template design. Unless one works in print design, he said, the field of graphic design has expanded and requires that designers “work on everything and are not put into one bucket.”
Gonzalez hasn’t always known design would be his career. In high school, his good friend Erica Peters, now his wife, told him he had an “eye” for design and that he should consider applying to Flagler College — a school she knew had a strong graphic design program and that she also graduated from in 2012.
“It was the only school I applied to,” he said.