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Episode
87

Designing Logos for Celebrities with Ibby Tarafdar

An interview with
Ibby Tarafdar

Introduction

Ibby Tarafdar is a young designer from Cardiff, UK. Two days a week he’s working at Starbucks as a Barista, but the rest of the time he’s travelling the world, hanging out with and designing logos for famous celebrities, including world champion boxers such as Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davies, famous golfers such as Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston and even Jay-Z.

After seeing him featured in a BBC documentary, Ian reached out to Ibby to discover how it all started. We learn how he got the opportunity to design logos for celebrities, why he still works at Starbucks, racism and the lack of people of colour in the design industry, and a discussion around Ibbys logo design process.

Ibby Tarafdar Interview Transcription

Ian Paget: I found out about you through the BBC series, and what I love about your story, and you can correct me if I'm wrong, but you seem to have this kind of domino effect, and based on that video I think the one thing that really made a big difference for you was the logo that you did for the boxer, Gervonta Tank Davis. Hopefully, I said that name correctly. You did that logo and that seems to have been your big break, and then there's a whole domino effect from there, so how did you go about getting that opportunity at the beginning?

Ibby Tarafdar: This opportunity had come up in, it was in 2017, so that's when I'd done the design, but before that this boxer, Gervonta Tank Davis, he signed to Floyd Mayweather and he's the highest paid athlete. He is the pinnacle of boxing and he's retired now, but at that time Floyd just started Mayweather Promotions and Gervonta Tank Davis was his prize fighter. And before any of this situation happened with Tank I was a big fan of Floyd Mayweather and I really wanted to meet him in person, but all of his fights were in America.

And then in 2015 they announced that they were going to be doing a UK tour and one of the dates on the tour was Cardiff, my city, so I was like, "Floyd's coming to Cardiff. I'll be able to meet him. This is amazing," and I was really disappointed in the promotion of the event, because I asked a lot of my friends, I was like, "Floyd's coming to Cardiff," and nobody knew. I was like, "Hold on. This is one of the biggest sportsmen, and he's coming to a small city and nobody knows. What's going on here?"

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