EMPLOYEE SPOTLIGHT: PLAMEN STAMATOV
WHAT'S YOUR ROLE AT VAPOR95?
Hey! My name is Plamen Stamatov, I'm 25 years old and from Sliven, Bulgaria. I've been living in Plovdiv, Bulgaria for the last four years. I am the Lead Graphic & 3D Design Specialist at Vapor95.
WHAT DO YOUR DAY-TO-DAY OPERATIONS LOOK LIKE AND WHAT'S YOUR SCHEDULE USUALLY THROUGH THE DAY?
I coordinate the design department of Vapor95. A big part of my day-to-day is launching new designs and collection products, creating mockups, and making sure all print files work correctly with the printing machines. I also manage the products and collections on the website and create 3D renders for site graphics like sales banners, special pop-ups, and photo edits. In addition to this, I work on ads for our massive social media ad campaigns.
We recently launched an iOS and Android app, and are working to make it even better. Front and Backend. I'm responsible for the pitch deck presentations and wholesale catalog that we share with our partners. In my spare time, I'm also trying to create new designs, exclusively for Vapor95, but it's not a priority because we are collaborating with the most amazing artists around the world.
WHAT DID YOU DO BEFORE VAPOR95?
Four years ago, I was working as a freelance graphic designer. I didn't have any web, 3D design, or marketing knowledge so I had to find a way to do what I love in the right way. I came up with the idea to create something super cool for Photoshop. You may know about the Photoshop Actions, but for those who don't, Photoshop Actions are like macros that perform predefined functions. You just upload a photo in Photoshop and run the Action, and with zero knowledge you can have a super cool edited photo.
That sounded kind of boring for me. I wanted to do an Animated Parallax Tool Kit Photoshop Action. I successfully created it and sold the Action in a large marketplace called Envato. It became a bestselling Action in its category, was trending, and got featured in a lot of articles in Envato's forum.
How it Works:
So basically, you just upload the photo and with a few clicks and zero knowledge you can have a super cool Animated Parallax photo effect in .gif or .mp4 format, ready to post for Insta or Facebook. The effect is easy to do in After Effects, but it was a hell of a challenge for Photoshop. I figured it out and made it, and then a lot of people copied my idea and created their versions of this effect. I can say this Action is first on the market for Photoshop. It didn't get a lot of sales, of course, because I didn't have any followers and popularity, but it reached number one and all ratings were 5/5. I didn't continue to develop my account to create other sick actions. You will find out why in the next question.
Here is the trailer I made in After Effects about my product for Photoshop:
HOW DID YOU END UP WORKING WITH VAPOR95?
First of all, I want to say that I'm a big fan of sci/fi games and movies. My favorite sci/fi movie based on proven physics is Interstellar. I love Hans Zimmer music and Matthew McConaughey as an actor. I'm also a fan of old school movies like the Back To The Future Trilogy. Every autumn/winter, I do a movie marathon with my lovely girlfriend and we watch Back To The Future (in one day) and Harry Potter (in 3 days).
Furthermore, I found the Vaporwave/Synthwave movement which is not very popular in Bulgaria yet, but it's evolving. So with my modest skills, I created a vaporwave/synthwave artwork featuring my favorite car from BTTF: The DeLorean.
I shared this on my FB profile and it went viral. A lot of big Facebook art pages and groups shared my work, including Vaporwave Sadposting and it got thousands of likes and shares. It was featured on a lot of websites doing Top 10, also Android/iOS apps for inspiring arts and wallpapers.
The CEO of Vapor95 saw that the post was super popular and messaged me that he wanted me on the team for a test period and I got paid per task done. I actually started at Vapor95 maybe a couple of months after Vapor95 launched. Six to ten months later, I got the full-time job and four years later, we are here: the most popular Vaporwave clothing brand in the world with the very first vaporwave physical store in Los Angeles.
COULD YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT WHAT YOU'RE CREATING/WORKING ON RIGHT NOW?
Right now, I'm working on expanding the designs throughout the collections, as well as launching new creator collaborations. I have the honor to work with the most talented artists in the world like: Vektroid/Ramona to launch my design called 'Macintosh Plus Limited Edition', as well as Vinne Art, Tokyo Direct, Seerlight, Nemupan, Mizucat, Chronos & Vermillion, Legion Trash Art, Beachghost, KO, Lordess Foudre, Elias Bracho, Virtual Plaza, Caleb Finn, Virtua Apparatus, and Mr. Melville. One of my favorite projects I have done is launching the officially licensed Pink Floyd designs. Insane.
You can expect to see additional collections and design growth from Vapor95 in the near future.
Do you like the new Vapor95 home page desktop banner? Here's how it looked like when I was working on it!
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE PART ABOUT WORKING AT VAPOR95?
Since I'm working remotely from Bulgaria, the best part is the communication with the rest of the team. We all work so smoothly and with this new and modern era of technology, it doesn't matter if you manage the servers, printing machines, website or everything in between, we communicate well regardless of where we're located. Without good communication, this wouldn't happen.
WHO OR WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO GET INTO DESIGN?
I have always been interested in web/graphic/3D design, marketing, social media and more.
WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF & VAPOR95 IN FIVE YEARS?
We should try to expand to have manufacturers in Europe, for faster delivery outside of the United States but maintain American handmade quality.
More Vapor95 Physical and Virtual Reality stores. 🤫
I also have the ambition to develop a V95 Cryptocurrency Token. 🤫
CAN YOU TELL US THREE THINGS YOU WOULD CONSIDER "INSPIRING ART"? IT CAN BE ANY MEDIUM (PHOTOGRAPHY, 3D DESIGN, FILM, MUSIC, WRITING, ETC.).
Recently I love the work of the following people:
Dizzy Viper, a 3D/Graphic artist
SNTHWVRS, a Music Producer
Andrew Kramer, a VFX Motion Designer
WHAT ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR SOMEONE WHO WANTS TO WORK IN A CREATIVE FIELD LIKE DESIGN AND ART?
Never count on school and university 100%. They only provide you with the basics of what you need to know. They show you how to be social and teach you to talk in front of an audience and work in little group projects. If you really want to be a successful artist, it doesn't matter in what genre or area of development, just believe in you and make other people believe in you, but not just in your words.
Get things done and do what you love to do. It is a myth that people who work on computers are paid highly. There are a lot of parents forcing their kids to start courses for specific careers because they "have heard they pay well". Please future moms and dads: never force your kids. Please future artists: do what you do the best and do it right with a smile on your face! Things are going to happen for you. I promise.
IF YOU HAD TO CHOOSE, WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE DESIGN AT VAPOR95, WHY?
I like the Nemesis Hoodie because it's black and has an Alien head on the back side. Maybe we should launch more cyber-alien-vaporwave stuff?
Anguis Mortem is a cool and weird shirt. I love it.
I love Cybervision and all Vinne Art stuff because I love dark and energetic cyberpunk/synthwave/vaporwave designs.
YOU WORK REMOTELY AT VAPOR95, AS DO OTHERS ON THE TEAM, IF YOU HAD TO PLAN AN EMPLOYEE GET TOGETHER, WHAT WOULD WE DO? WHERE WOULD WE GO?
We can do a teambuilding experience on Mars. Just wait for Mr. Elon Musk and his workers to finish the Starship. It's going to be extraordinary and cool.
IF YOU HAD TO LISTEN TO ONE SONG FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
I can't choose between No Time For Caution or Stay by Hans Zimmer. Okay, maybe I like No Time For Caution a little bit more.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO IN YOUR FREE TIME?
In my spare time, I love to hang out with friends. I love to travel, but that's a big problem, especially this year. I love to watch sci-fi, mind-bending movies and play PC games with friends. Still waiting for Diablo 4, but it's not coming anytime soon, not even Blizzard soon. I also like to listen to Dubstep-Riddim music when I'm working. I love to talk about conspiracies, the future, Artificial Intelligence (the positive side of it), Tesla cars, SpaceX, and the upcoming mission to Mars. Love everything related to Aliens. I love to explore new stuff.
How do I have time for all this? Actually, I don't know. Maybe the right work with the right people taught me the best way to schedule and manage my tasks!
WHO IS THE PERSON YOU ADMIRE THE MOST?
Elon Musk, for sure.
IF YOU HAD ONE LAST WISH, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
When it becomes a widespread and accessible practice, I would like to have the opportunity and the necessary funds to take my girl to Earth's orbit. I'm sure it will be a normal thing in the next ten to twenty years.
Here are some of Plamen's favorite artworks he's created: