Getting Under the Hood… Peter Radich

1 year ago by

Ahead of our next  Under the Hood event, (May 26 @ 12:30 pm1:30 pm) we learnt more about one of our presenters: Peter Radich an accomplished commercial designer based in the Bay of Plenty. We spoke about Peter’s background, the catalysts for his founding PRD, his personal design philosophy, breaking up the work week, the work he is proud of and his favourite paper stocks which coincidentally are from our event partner G.F Smith!

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Can you tell us a little bit about who you are, what your background is, and how you first got started in the industry?

I live in Papamoa in the Bay of Plenty after having moved here around 5 years ago for a change of scene and pace of life. In that time my wife’s home staging business has flourished and I find myself now moving furniture a couple of mornings a week. 

In the early days I completed a one year design certificate, mostly as a lead in to a degree, but went straight into a working environment and this was really where I learnt my craft. I have been very fortunate to have great mentors, bosses and colleagues to learn from – across a huge range of specialities in both large and small design and advertising/marketing agencies. In some ways the best background for becoming a long term freelancer. Through these connections I have been able to work on some amazing projects with some really passionate peeps.

What lead you to founding PRD?
PRD has been around since 2015 as a vehicle for me to work freelance with the type of people and clients I like the most and also focus on projects that allow me to be creative and crafted… most of my current work is in the packaging and branding categories where I can include strong uses of paper craft and print finishes. PRD has also been a platform for me to reimagine and visualise a number of conceptual ideas and fresh designs without the normal client briefs or restraints.
Prior to the COVID-19 break I was a partner in a design and creative studio called Society based in Tauranga. The enforced break gave us all the opportunity to realign our time and commitments and back to freelancing it was.

What insights to your methodological approach or philosophy can you give us?  

My personal approach isn’t always the most methodical and I like to be able to follow instinct and gut feel sometimes to see where this can go… although this is always balanced against being able to work on the finer details for intricate print production or taking the time to craft type and logos. My philosophy is around understanding that my designs need to have a purpose and that clients are often needing more than just what they think is wrong.



What project will you be presenting in Under the Hood? 
The project was for a local honey producer BeeNZ and one of the first that was completed by myself and Tom Lear as Society. A special mention has to go to our clients Julie & David at BeeNZ for believing in us and for going on the journey with an open mind and seeing it thru to the end. 

What was the most challenging part of the project and what lessons did you draw from it? 
I think the biggest challenge was bringing all of the many parts together in a cohesive and consistent way. We needed to find a way to maximise the overall experience while working thru so many unknowns and communicating the product story with authenticity. The key to this was having the right people in the right places adding their knowledge and skills as needed. It was a true collaboration from the concept and writing right thru to the final making of the boxes and delivery. A project outcome that was greater than its individual parts.

Was there an ‘Aha!’ moment in the project when things clicked and feel into place?

I think one of the main moments was connecting with Dave from Logick Print and being able to understand the capabilities and opportunities that we could play with in terms of paper function and effect as part of the overall concept. His knowledge, attention to detail and patience was what really held a lot of it together.

Now that project has finished what are you working on?

I am currently working on a number of brand and packaging projects for a diverse set of clients including a school and a skincare company. I have also completed a number of other projects in the honey category.

Do you have a favourite paper stock? If so why/what about it stands out?
I have become a real fan of the Colorplan papers and used a number of these in recent projects. For me it is the combination of colours and subtle effects that come standard but also how they work and feel with specialised print finishes. I’ll often touch base with Papersource and Logick around options that may work early in the design process and see if this adds to the final solution.

Outside of work hours what creative projects and/or hobbies are you involved with?

At the moment there isn’t a huge amount of downtime to indulge in other creative projects so a weekly quiz night with friends really helps to break up the week. 

And finally, where to next for you? What areas of your work or personal development are you hoping to explore further?

I am really enjoying where things are at right now, although with a son at university in Auckland and a few other things on the horizon, it is likely to change. If nothing else the last year has meant that change is always around the corner so being flexible is great. I love some of the intricate stories and printing within the liquor packaging category and would love to do more in this space but otherwise whatever the next design or creative challenge comes my way.


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