an interview provided by the redaction team of D’art Duvar
december 2020, Amsterdam
Art Director Gokhan Yeter is the founder behind the creative agency D’art Duvar. With its original “Turkish Cinema Revival Project” it has drawn many attention worldwide. With this interview serie we chat with Gokhan to explore his work, to look at his working process and challenges in his career as the creative mind behind D’art Duvar.
At what time do you start your working day?
I start my day around 09:00am, but always with a freshly brewed cup of coffee. I must confess that I’m not a morning person though. I’ve noticed that I’m way more productive at night than during day. I feel that I’m more flexible then.
What artistic tools do you value most in completing your everyday projects?
Digital design software, but also a digital touch screen pencil. Also, I have been using traditional tools as rulers, graphite and pastel-pencils, pens, charcoal and oil pastels for many years.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
From people. From their stories.
Who do you ask advice?
It depends on the problem, but most of the time I try to find solutions myself first. But if I need to choose, I will say my lovely wife who has a keen eye to detail.
“Yilmaz Güney was far the most controversial, extraordinary figure of his generation.”
And as someone with artistic talent, who is your greatest creative inspiration?
Surely Yılmaz Güney. He was far the most controversial, extraordinary figure of his generation and being one step ahead of other artists with filmmaking. I believe that no other film during that era conveyed the same experience with the chosen pictures and ideas.
How would you describe your management style?
I try to lead with positivity and looking at things in a bright way. I also try to be constructive.
What’s the best place to prepare for leadership: MBA or on the job?
I would argue on the job.
Do you prefer to be liked or respected?
Are, according to you, decisions better taken by just one person or a group?
I think a group is stronger and therefore any decision needs to be carried by a group.
Have you ever made a mistake you wish you could take back?
Sure, but I believe that as long as you learn from it, I won’t regard it as a mistake.
How important is sustainability for you and how do you build sustainable practices into your business model?
At D’art Duvar we show concern for sustainable issues. Action on climate change is one of our top priority. We therefore use FSC marked paper to help preserve biological diversity and help reduce carbon footprints. We do all it takes to offer eco-friendly and responsible products to our customers.
How have the past few months been for D’art Duvar?
Quite challenging as we had to close sales in Turkey. We were unable to travel abroad and therefore unable to keep an eye on the production process. Also, very hard when it comes to gathering inspiration from all of our travels worldwide. Before the outbreak of the pandemic, we used to travel a lot to meet new people, to exchange ideas, to visit museums and art galleries.
For a start-up looking for the next idea or fundraising or a mentor during this time, what tips will you give them?
The pandemic has forced people to go fully remote. I feel that this only works if you are able to organize this correctly. It is good to take all the necessary steps to ensure ideas flow. So definitely incorporate everyone as much as possible. Whether this is via chat sessions or so. Of course, in case this apply to one’s situation, I’d encourage companies to consider some form of (office) space.