For many designers, where they live becomes an integral part of what they do, dictating everything from clients and commissions to the daily routines and culture they surround themselves with. And while design capitals like New York and London offer plenty of opportunity, they often trap creatives in a bubble of their own making – one that can feel too comfortable to break out of. So what’s the answer? If you’re Leta Sobierajski, an art director and designer who’s spent the last eight years living and working in New York, the answer is obvious: buy a one-way ticket to Tokyo, and worry about the details later.
“No [one] design culture is superior to any another, but sometimes I feel like, being in New York, [the idea that it’s the only place to be] can fester,” she says. “There’s this feeling that everybody is obsessed with their work, and that’s helped me so much in creating this drive and passion. New York is a great place to manifest that, but you don’t need to be there your entire life.”