Friday Fives: Steven Xue, '19

Every Friday we give #highfives to a different designer from our extended family of PNCA students, faculty, alumni, and guest lecturers. 🙌🙌🙌 We ask them five questions.

This week we talk with graphic designer and photographer Steven Xue, '19.

Follow the series @pncadesign.

Q: What or who inspires you?

A: I get a lot of inspiration from art and how artists think. Right now, the work of Ulises Carrión, Lee Ufan, Robert Irwin, and Etel Adnan, all means a lot to me.

[There are] two kinds of knowing, two ways of going. They’re both true, and both who we are.

Robert Irwin

Q: Is there anything you wish you had known when you started school, that you know now?

A: In a way, it’s all an experiment to learn from. There are always more things to learn. So the most important thing is learning how to ask the question and pursue it on your terms.

Q: What do you do to get “unstuck?"

A: Be curious about everything. Everything is important.

Design shouldn’t just be feeding people a narrative to buy into. It should help people live better lives and be more responsible individuals.

Steven Xue

Q: What's your design "superpower?"

A: Seeing, feeling, and nudging things into its place, to where it seems like it had always belonged.

Q: What feels vital to the future of design, to you?

A: A sustained exploration and practice in design's potential to make people see/think in new ways, and do so with a critical lens. Design shouldn’t just be feeding people a narrative to buy into. It should help people live better lives and be more responsible individuals. Design has this transformative power, maybe more so than any other discipline.

Q: What are you listening to?

A: Recently I’ve been listening to a lot of European musicians: L’Impératrice, Parcels, Therapie Taxi, Clea Vincent, Clara Luciani. I don’t even know most of what they’re saying, I just like how they sound. It’s inspiring just to listen.

Q: What is your favorite trick for “keeping it all together”?

A: Care about it.

(Portrait of Steven by Tony Vue)

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Steven Xue is interested in how design informs people’s perceptions and behaviors. As a person, he tries to be genuine, and to find ways to share a piece of what he stands for through photography and design. He is always looking and observing, maybe because he is curious, or maybe just because through everything in life he hopes to find who he really is.

See more of Steven's work at stevenxue.net and behance.net/stevenxue, and follow him on instagram @stevstevenxue_.

Follow along with our #fridayfives on instagram @pncadesign.