We had the good fortune of connecting with Elias Armao and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Elias, how do you think about risk?
I believe that risk taking is central to any success. When you take a risk you have to believe that you can pull it off. That mentality, the “I can do this I can make this work” mentality is pivotal to building your career. As a art college dropout I took a risk when I left school, I took a risk when I decided to quit the coffee shop I was managing and do design full time. Taking risks and living with the fallout, good or bad, has helped me to realize that whatever the situation I can react and adapt and to be honest taking risks is just more fun. You end up in situations you didn’t expect and that keeps life interesting.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Growing up I went to Denver School Of the Arts for middle school and high school. From a very young age I was in the arts. These formative years cultivated a love of technique but as I grew older I realized that visual art was not an emotional process for me. In my early twenties I began touring a lot in bands and I noticed that so many bands had a horrible branding and merchandise. I realized that I could use my technical expertise to bridge the gap between these folks vision and the novice execution. It was just something I fell into. Over the years it has become the aspect of my business I am the most proud of. My goal is always to get as close to executing the clients vision as possible. Feedback and critiques don’t really hurt my feelings if they serve the goal. Throughout the years I have faces the challenge of not having an undergraduate degree. Due to this I have felt that my work must be good enough to quite those thoughts in peoples head. The beauty of creative fields is that it doesn’t matter your credentials if you can deliver. I have gotten where I am today professionally by focusing on relationships with people not relationships with station. As my community of clients expanded from bands to small business to large business I have the same motivation, clients are just people wanting you to help them realize a dream. Doing that successfully makes me so proud.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
To start I would finding out who was playing in the wonderful music venues in this city. As for the days we would start by visiting a different coffee shop in the morning such as Corvus, Little Owl, or Metropolis. After we were fueled up we would take a walk in the City Park Zoo/City Park area ending with lunch at Spinellis Deli in the Park Hill neighborhood. One of my favorite things about Denver is the spirit of the people. I would end most of the evenings just with friends at my house. Cities are really just concrete without the people that live there. Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would credit my parents and specifically my Dad. From a very young age he impressed on me that “everything is a series of steps”. If you wanted something you just had to figure out the path to get to it. This mentality has given me the confidence to start and run a business in an incredibly competitive field without a degree. He also always reminds me that the most important thing for your business is to have a quality product, In my case that is executing there vision in a meaningful way. To put it simply let your work speak for itself. My Dad has always encouraged me to reach and push myself and my business and has always been there to tell me I can handle it while maintaining my quality and keeping my relationship with clients as honest as possible.
Josh Kern (Portrait Image)