Hello, I'm Ali.

Hello, I'm Ali.

A Creative Art Director

A Creative Art Director

from Germany.

from Germany.

My passion is imagining and reimagining ideas and brands.
See how I’m doing:
portfolio

I chose the above works based on the brand’s popularity. To see more creative works, please view my portfolio on Behance.

Looking through my projects might be a good start, but creating your identity takes collaboration. I would love to talk to you about my work, what I do, and how I can help you.
alireza ataei photo

About

me

I’m Ali, a Germany-based Freelance Creative Art Director with the objective to create iconic brands with bold personality. Designing an identity, a package, or a campaign that carefully balances timelessness with distinct visual expression is the focus of my design process.

Over the last 20 years, I’ve developed a variety of identities, campaigns, packages, and promotions for many types of clients, from local start-ups and small businesses to international companies.

Working within the considerable diversity of clients from the Middle East – where I am originally from – to Europe – where I’ve lived since 2010 – has enriched the quality of my communication design and has taught me how to think with pure creativity and see the far-reaching ideas my clients want and need.

Prior to founding ataei⊙studio, my career journey brought me to be the Creative Director at Pahnke Markenmacherei, an advertising agency based in Hamburg and founded by the late Otto Pahnke. But my journey was one of big leaps, so follow me “All the Way Up.”

I speak:

German

English

Persian

Arabic

All the way up

Creative Director

Pahnke Markenmacherei GmbH
2018 – 2019
As a Creative Director, I was responsible for launching a Corporate Design department, which turned out to be a strategic and profitable decision for the agency. We hired extra employees and started to work on various parallel projects like developing style guides and brand books for some well-known and traditional brands like Crunchips, Naturals, Saltletts, Monster Munch, and Erdnuss Locken (Curly). These Lorenz Snack-World brands were already some of the biggest savory snack brands in Germany. In conjunction, we developed company portfolios, style guides, and corporate magazines. The whole process felt like working at a start-up, so I decided to do it all again, but this time for my own studio.

Some of the clients that I worked for during this year:

Design Director

Pahnke Markenmacherei GmbH
2015 – 2018
Just as I started as a Design Director at Pahnke, the Board members decided to separate all 50 Creative Crews into departments called Trade Marketing, Design and Packaging, and Campaigns. I knew a lot about identity and packaging design, so I decided to collect more experience as a team leader in Trade Marketing. After one year I asked to move to Campaigns to be able to work with Jan Rexhausen, a creative and iconic genius. I again moved teams, this time to Design and Packaging to get more involved in corporate design, but there was an opportunity to build a new department, so I took a chance.
Some of my clients during this period of time:

Senior Graphic Designer

Pahnke Markenmacherei GmbH
2011 – 2015
Prior to Pahnke, I had been working for two years on the client-side and I had a good insight of how clients think and how an advertiser can best support them. But a new agency provided me the ability to be agile in my thinking. I was lucky to get involved with the top German Fast-Moving Consumer Goods clients in different categories while at Pahnke. I worked on several different creative teams, getting to know new clients and learning how to stay fresh and creative. My German was improving, so I was able to keep up-to-date with the technical tools and software, learning the basics of CSS and HTML, as well as UX and UI. I was given the responsibility of building an in-house photography studio and built my awareness of font design, both of which were vital to me wanting to become an identity designer. With that, I was ready for the next level.

Some of the clients that I worked for:

Member of Marketing Force

Lorenz Bahlsen Snack-World GmbH & Co KG
2010 – 2011

Prior to Pahnke, I had been working for two years on the client-side and I had a good insight of how clients think and how an advertiser can best support them. But a new agency provided me the ability to be agile in my thinking. I was lucky to get involved with the top German Fast-Moving Consumer Goods clients in different categories while at Pahnke. I worked on several different creative teams, getting to know new clients and learning how to stay fresh and creative. My German was improving, so I was able to keep up-to-date with the technical tools and software, learning the basics of CSS and HTML, as well as UX and UI. I was given the responsibility of building an in-house photography studio and built my awareness of font design, both of which were vital to me wanting to become an identity designer. With that, I was ready for the next level.

*Source: www.handelsblatt.com / Anja Müller / 15.03.2017

Member of Marketing Force / Art Director

Behara Food Industry Co.
2009 – 2010

Due to some pretty big shakeups just as I started my job, the company decided to launch a new brand for their savory snack production. I began working directly with the CEO and had to be agile to propose some brand names, hence Chuckles was born. My team also created the character named Chuckles and featured him on the first package design. We then managed the foil printing production as well as the brand’s POS materials and print campaign. It was only eight months from the idea of Chuckles to the brand hitting Iranian supermarket shelves. But it was time for me to take an even bigger step.

Founder / Art Director

ARAT Design Studio 
2005 – 2009

Besides the credit of being a senior designer at Shahdiran for 3 years as well as the experience and know-how that I had collected, gave me the confidence to start my own design studio. Soon afterward, I gained some prominent clients like Khoshgovar (Coca-Cola Bottler in Iran) and Behara (joint investment with Lorenz Germany). The amounts of clients increased rapidly and I had to expand. At the end of 2006, we were 7 and had to move to a bigger place. Managing a compact and agile creative team, writing appropriate concepts and strategies in cooperation with brand managers on the client-side as well as building long-termed trustful relationships with them were the tasks with which I was involved at ARAT studio. In 2008, my studio was well-known and well-positioned in the Mashhad-Khorasan FMCG market and we were able to choose our clients depending on their portfolio and reputation.

In 2009 Lorenz-Iran (Behara food industry co.) asked if I could imagine supporting them as their in-house Art-Director. I had a hard decision to make whether to sell the studio and join Lorenz or reduce the crew and fight with a lack of financial backup from the client’s side (because of international sanctions on Iran at the time). I chose Lorenz and moved to Tehran. With a heavy heart, I gave up the studio to see what new opportunities were waiting for me in the capital.

Some of my clients at ARAT studio:

Senior Graphic Designer

Shahdiran Inc.
2002 – 2005

Shahdiran is a food technology complex in the Khorasan Province (Iran), that processes various fresh fruits into juices, concentrates and purees. They took big steps to develop the beverage industry in Iran, and thus contributing to the nation’s economic development. Working there as an in-house graphic designer directly under the marketing manager gave me the chance to understand the marketing as well as the advertising processes of an international company. At the time, their brand Goldis was the market leader in the Iranian juice market and they were about to launch two new brands. I will say that this was one of the most beneficial periods of my career. Besides talking with high-ranking professional strategists about brand positioning and all aspects of marketing, I learned how to propose various identity and packaging design approaches. Thanks to their in-house printing department, I learned the principles of gravure printing, from prepress and engraving the cylinder to color proofing and printing on a variety of foils. I also managed their TV and radio commercials. For me, Shahdiran was an all-in-one marketing, advertising, and design academy.

Graphic Designer

Ara Atelier
2000 – 2002

Ara was well known for its legendary graphic t-shirt designs. While with Ara Atelier I had to learn how to transfer a message using graphic artwork as simply as possible. When I look back, working at Ara taught me how to create simple but effective designs by removing all impractical extras to grab viewers’ attention quickly. I became confident with forms and flat colors, spot colors, vector graphics, color separation, and all the combinations therein. I learned the principles of graphic design but that was not enough to be a great graphic designer. I had to move on.

Junior Graphic Designer

Katibeh Institute
1999 – 2000

I had started studying engineering, but it was what my parents wanted me to do. I left engineering and applied for an illustrator job at Katibeh. I had some know-how because of all the illustration courses I took in high school, and I loved them. Fortunately, the vacancy actually had nothing to do with illustrations but with graphic design. At the end of the first year I felt a new power because I could translate the colors, typefaces, forms, and ideas that were running in my mind to the screen. It was just the beginning.

Let's Talk
Design

Feel free to write me
in German or Persian

or reach out to me on:

alireza@ataei.studio

+49(0)176 - 444 50 895