Designer Profile: Terry Bogard

November 4, 2009

Terry Bogard

Designer Profile

S. Riz – Toronto, Canada
99designs handle: Terry Bogard
Projects entered: 594
Projects won: 54

How did you get started in design?

Well I remember in school, my classroom’s bulletin board was filled with my drawings. My mom did quite a bit of drawing and my father was a very good poet, so I think I was born with the artist genes. Plus, I was lucky enough to have a lot of creative friends. One of my friends and I used to sketch fighting game characters and made storyboards for games just for fun. The first creative competition I ever entered was to design (shape) a game console for a worldwide contest. Later in 1993 when ATARI Jaguar (game console) was launched, I was happy to see that the design actually had a little bit of the angles I proposed. This alone felt like an achievement and motivated me to do small identity design projects from time to time. Later on I started working with a design studio where I learned more about identity design and market dynamics. That was the start of it really. I have no formal design education or background- I am self-taught.

Park Avenue

How do you get your inspiration?

I think inspiration can come from anywhere – from an individual atom to the entire universe and everything in between. It’s all about observation and bringing your memory of visuals together FOR the right brand, AT the right time, WITH the right combination(s) and WHEN the need arises. But that does not mean that I’m just another creative junkie who is waiting for his next design hallucination. There is a process that formulates this creativity.

I think a product has both functional and emotional attributes. The functional attributes are the brand’s promise to its consumers, while the window to its emotional attributes is what design is really all about. Although design process will vary depending on the project, my most basic practice is to do a 20 second visual check where I brainstorm the keyword(s) that best describe the business or project I am working on. The idea is to know what emotions those keywords generate and what image those emotions translate into from a consumer standpoint.

What led you to start using

I was at my office desk randomly looking at designs on to pass some time, when I came across I thought it was a great idea for both businesses and designers to come together on a platform that offers creativity from around the globe. I participated in a few contests just for fun and noticed that my designs were getting a lot of attention. I pretty much felt the same as I did when I entered the video game console-design contest back in my teens. After my first several contests I won one, and that’s when I started doing it more and more. Since then, the experience has been phenomenal and there has been a huge learning curve throughout. Watching the world design has helped me improve and deliver better each and every time. 50% of the projects that I won ended up with follow-on work. In fact there were times when even though I did not win, I was contacted and offered work. It helped me build a great portfolio and understand market dynamics. I have also made many friends from all over the world who have been extremely helpful and very appreciative. These are all very talented people with very respectful and professional attitude for the trade. I think 99designs is the only site that I have seen with so many contests running at the same time, so it’s a big opportunity to make money too.


What are the three most important things that designers can do to have success at

I get asked this question a lot via private message but nobody ever asked about three things…LOL! Well, success for me is an ongoing process on, and it’s hard to close the box with 3 things only. As I mentioned earlier, it’s important to deeply consider brand & consumer psychology. Here’s my advice for those who have recently joined 99designs:

  • Enter as many projects as you can to get a firm grasp on the whole process, from presenting a design to evolving it as necessary. This not only increases your chances of winning but also puts you in a design-groovy-mode and helps you to consistently generate creative ideas. It very soon becomes a chain reaction and everyone else tries to deliver better and better.
  • Do a little research before drafting ideas and look at other designs to make sure your draft is not similar to anyone else’s. This will help you to not waste time on a design that someone else has already made and allow you to invest your time in something unique.
  • Explain your thought process if you do something outside of what the client described in the brief – After all, you might be able to produce and envision something that the client did not. Have a positive influence on the community by being appreciative of others for constructive criticism. It has always helped me learn in one-way or another.


What do you love most about being a designer?

I think I’m no different than other creatives in terms of enjoying their work. I can simply put it this way – I love being paid for doing what I enjoy. Imagine being paid to have fun, eat and sleep. Designing is my passion and every creation of mine makes me feel great regardless if its sold or not. But getting paid to be passionate is just great.


38 Responses to “Designer Profile: Terry Bogard”

  1. gabi Says:

    Great interview!!!
    I´m glad you´ve let us know something more about one of the BEST DESIGNERS in the site.
    We should learn from your successfull carrier through 99designs Terry.

    Thanks ;)

  2. Hi there Terry, you’ve always been a great help in the design community and I learned a lot from you. Keep up the good things and principles you have and I am sure you’re getting bigger and bigger by the day – not physically, LOL. you know what i mean.
    Ps: I admired you a lot, dude.


  3. R_A_J Says:

    Great words from the great man himself; your work is truly epic man, keep it up!

  4. endro Says:

    wow.. greatt..
    I love artist interview session like this..
    very inspired and give a lot of motivation..
    Thanks Terry

  5. thearslan Says:

    thats great Mr. Rizvi, best of luck for future

  6. undrthespellofmars Says:


    It´s known that man´s skills and determination would help him accomplish a dream, but it´s his heart and virtues the ones that will take him beyond…

    …you´re beyond

    You´re not only a GREAT DESIGNER, you are a Pro, and also a great human being.

    Thank You

  7. Terry Bogard Says:

    Guys! You all have been too kind. Thanks alot for being nothing but “Great” yourself. gabi, Ink49, R_A_J, endro, thearslan and underthespellofmars. You’re all inspirations for me and I keep the doors open for learning more from you all. All the very best!


  8. logoslav© Says:

    The one and only! ;)

  9. soulmate Says:


    I wish I could become your “reflection” someday. I could only strive for it. Even though you have share your knowledge it´s going to be difficult to follow the steps of such UNIQUE SOUL.
    You´re GREAT in everything you do and I know you will go further than your own expectations.

    Always remember that I will be here for you.

  10. Pegatinas Says:

    Wonderful interview Riz! Your kindness matches your extreme talent! Your designs are so beautifully executed.

    I’m so proud to be a friend of yours. You are always around for a bit of help, laughter and insight.

    Thanks a ton and congratulations on all that you do.

    P.S. Yikes that looks cold where you are.

  11. april7 Says:

    “If life is sustained by instants, and an instant is a moment to exist….all these centuries, all this world, all this space and it just take an instant to coincide”

  12. Ab! Says:

    Ahh there you are Terry, It was really great to read this. Its one of the best Interviews 99designs has given us :). You are indeed the best designer and your experience and words in this interview will definitely help us to grow :) Thanks Riz and 99designs :)

  13. Terry Bogard Says:

    Thank logoslav, soulmate, Pegatinas (yes it was -20 when I was snapped:)), april7, and Ab! You all are very talented people with supreme attitudes :)

  14. Kelly Taylor Says:

    Great work Terry! I have entered a few contests with you one I can remember was for an Italian eatery and you always have great work and are a good sport.

    Regards, Kelly


  15. getgraphic Says:

    I have been very busy with other projects the past 6 months and not able to work at 99designs much, but actually getting to put a face to names and friends who have helped one another here is just wonderful. When I seen the first issue came out, I got very excited about 99designs again, just as I did when I came across it for the first time. Great job with these newsletters guys!! Very inspirational!! I will be finding the time to get back into competition with you great people!

    Hey Terry!!! Been a while again!!! I think I still dream about that Park Avenue design ;) Keep it up and see you soon!


  16. Soud Muhammad Says:

    Good luck, wishing u more success as much as I wish it for myself, I guess as designers we share the same feelings :D

  17. Fabian Says:

    Congrats Big Fella! Great interview:)

  18. Jevoy Says:

    Dude…I love your designs!!!!!!!!! It’s people like you who make me want to give up, but at the same time try even harder. Being as I am probably the youngest on this site (im not sure), it makes things difficult and i get discouraged at times. But your work is definitely an inspiration.

  19. Nalapraja Says:

    Nice Interview, Terry Bogard is one of my favorite designers at 99designs and his designs always give me inspiration, good luck brother. :)

  20. starworks Says:

    I really learned allot to these interview I was about to ignore this email when I suddenly saw Terry’s name, I really spent time reading this one because Terry has been a good friend of mine and as what I have said I really learned allot from him. I think I am the youngest designer in 99designs (LOL) and I really find it very good joining every contest without having any strategies(hehehe).

    As what I have written on my 99designs profile “I’d rather make designs that gives me fun than just playing online games” ^_^ I really agree to what terry said “I love being paid for doing what I enjoy” I submit my designs as if I am playing. When I read the brief on the contest, the first image that comes to my mind will be the entry that I will submit..

    I say “I love 99designs and I am addicted to it”!

  21. Karosta Says:

    All The Best Though, already given.
    Bottom line…Great Design come from Great Personality.
    That’s The Terry DO!!!

  22. Terry Bogard Says:

    @Kelly Taylor..yes I remember the Italian Dining contest your designs were great!.
    @GetGraphics..yea man! that park ave contest brings lots of memories back.`re dang right we are all alike.`re the big man dude ;)
    @Jevoy..dont quit buddy…you`re too young for that :D.JK.
    @Nalapraja..its a chain reaction`re an inspiration too.
    @starworks..your work is great pal..specially the codejock one ;)
    @Karosta…you`re more than kind man…im no greater than you all.
    Thanks everyone for taking the time to write and all the very best.

  23. intrinsic Says:

    Your Logo work blew me away when I saw it! I was inspired to keep entering contests even if I didn’t win, I learn more and more every time. congrats and best wishes to you and yours. Michael :)

  24. artmart Says:

    A true gentleman on 99Designs. Never a bad word to say to anyone on the site and an inspiration to us all. Good on ya mate.

  25. cooljaz124 Says:

    Terry Brooo ,

    Great interview and luv your photo – never imagined this was how you look like ! Yes indeed the rarest of rare Gentleman in 99D – and the master of many including me :) Al the best bro

    nb : waiting for an interview with Grade :)

  26. Terry Bogard Says:

    @intrinsic (Michael)..Thanks alot!
    @artmart ..thanks pal… I cant forget your astsmart contest and most importantly the winning design :D. we should get his interview up on the blog ;)
    @cooljaz (aka “Oh My Jazz!!!”)..thanks for your kind words but you’re yourself too talented to have a master like me. Im a learner like you.

  27. Circle7 Says:

    Terry Bro :)

    your work is inspiration to become a great visualizer like u… i love to see you win win win…

    and why your work so Good because to help designers if someone ask u something :)

    Cheers OV||

  28. Heiz,

    Before i came to know about the work of Terry, I know the way he Think, he Execute, and he Achieve… I am pretty much sure he is Genetically Designer… as you all guys already seen his work…

    He is designer in every expect of life not only in the paper or any websites. He is Extraordinary Creative…in many things… i saw his work in his childhood. And Discussed many Different Things. He is found off games as well as me… and lemme tell you his one secret. he is very good poet too ;) … and i learned a lot from him as many of other friends he have.. i proud him and wish him success in life.

  29. ANgryPuppy Says:

    HAHA. I knew i liked you for some reason other than letting people have it when they deserve it!

    We are practically neighbors over the border. Keep up the good work TB!

  30. fiqi Says:

    WOW, you are great Terry, Nice to hear your story. Will follow your tips. :)

    Thanks to 99 who interviewed Terry…

  31. antoniagoga Says:


    You are an inspiration to all of us. Your work is amazing and you’re even a more amazing person.

    Thank you for taking time to share your thoughts and knowledge with us, and thank you 99designs for the interview.

    I wish you all the best.
    Antonia – Ants :)

  32. MINDSTER Says:

    Terry Bogart really rocks. He keeps on rocking. Your one of my idol here…

  33. Tim Says:

    Hi Terry,

    I had already spoke with u through 99 design abt the designs u did, it happy to see u again, I know you are a Fantastic Designer, I like all your works, which is really awsome.

    All the very Best for all your Future Plans,

  34. Terry Bogard Says:

    @Circle7,..OV|| thanks so much for your kind words.
    @8 bits of I.N.S.A.N.I.T.Y.. I know I am not as good as you in video games ! I have loved your nick since it was born at 99d.
    @fiqi…Thanks fiqi.
    @antoniagoga ..Im really honored to know people like you.
    @MINDSTER…I wana be your idol…:) your skills will make you far better than me or anyone else.
    Tim…Thankyou Tim…All the best to you too.

  35. bhanu Says:

    You got “Really” impressive work .. born creative … grown talented .. a must and most impressing idol to upcoming designers. I wish ur work gets finer and finer each day making on top of fame list .. :)

    I wish i could do something least compared to u .. but don’t know feeling pushed back seeing lots of pros on this site .. I took break from visiting 99designs cause it was making me feel give up now but reading ur interview and comments which included people like me felt really encouraging to try more ..

    I like you .. I LOVE ur work ..

    Keep it up



  36. VB20 Says:

    Hey Terry, good to know a little bit more about you. Love your creative approach in design and can only hope to be on your level some day. Man, your like the Springsteen of design — you rock!

    P.S. Love the PE jacket :)

  37. Terry Bogard Says:

    Thanks Bhanu. Never Give man… Giving up is NOT an option ;).
    lol VB20….thanks for your kindness…’re the real sprinsteen man… I just pretend to be one ;). The Perry Ellis jacket was a gift from my sweetheart :).

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