We had the good fortune of connecting with Chérie Chan and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Chérie, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I’m always drawn towards visuals or concepts that are aesthetically intriguing. I’m not that kind of type A Asian kids aligned with the doctor or lawyer-to-be stereotypes. Being a teenager, I knew that I would never want to bore myself with routine jobs and tedious tasks. But back then, I didn’t know what it means to have a creative career. Although my parents were being open-minded enough to support me through college and graduate schools, they had expected me to live a “stable” life. I made my “compromise” to study advertising in college, anticipating a safe path in the creative field – agency life. But soon enough, I realized that my introversion can’t make its way into the make-believe world. In the second half of my college life, I grew my interests in film and graphic design. Through years of explorations and constant self-doubt, I’ve become more aware of my passions for arts and my creativity in design. There are still times when I need to fight with procrastination and uncertainty about myself. But there are also times when I’m proud of using my creativity to solve problems. I think this fluctuation in self-esteem is what makes an artistic career the opposite of tediousness and why I enjoy it.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I’m a digital product & graphic designer. Before coming to the design world, I studied film production and media studies. I almost took the production design path in LA but chose the Film & Media Studies graduate program at Columbia. It was a sharp turn from the practical to the theoretical. When I was in doubt, I devalued the past few years I spent figuring out what I’m good at professionally. I recently completed a graduate program at Parsons School of Design. As I’m still new to the design field, sometimes I’m still not confident enough to negotiate rates as a designer. But I’m learning to reconcile with myself, hoping the past few years I spent in different spheres will pay off and my interests in various art forms could fuel inspiration into my creative thinking. I’m proud to hear people saying my approach is eclectic. And I hope to provide multidisciplinary solutions that are aesthetically interesting and socially engaged.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I’m grateful for my parents’ financial and emotional support throughout the years. Sometimes I feel like I failed their expectations of me having a stable life and career. But they are always there when I feel depressed, stuck and lost.