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Carlos Loaiza | IE University

Carlos Loaiza

About me

My name is Carlos Loaiza, but everyone calls me Charlie. I’m from Quito, the capital of Ecuador, where I was born and raised. I am passionate about design and I feel that my background has meant that color, culture and vibrance have always been a big part of who I am, not just as a designer but as a person. I have been in touch with my creative side ever since I was a child, and I’ve always known that I wanted to be a designer. The combination of the vibrance of my Latino heritage and my desire to create and experiment has been one of the biggest factors that turned me into the designer that I am today.

Carlos “Charlie” Loaiza
Undergraduate student
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Bachelor in Design
Carlos Loaiza | IE University

"An open and creative mind will always be the best tool for a designer."

Carlos Loaiza

Driven by a creative mind and a passion for design

Bachelor in Design student Charlie Loaiza hates labels, but if he had to choose one for himself, he would call himself a creative. Inspired by his pursuit of experimentation, he always finds ways to look at life in unique and weird ways. He is passionate about transforming ideas into narratives and loves exploring areas of work that others might be too afraid to look at. But most importantly, he thrives on bringing creativity to life.

Charlie’s reason for choosing the Bachelor in Design at IE University is simple: “It just felt like the right thing to do.” Now, coming toward the end of his bachelor’s journey, he reflects on the things he has enjoyed most about his time here. He highlights the vast range of experiences that he’s had, including attending Madrid Design Week and Madrid Fashion Week, which allowed him to immerse himself in the world of design and proved to be great sources of inspiration to him.

Charlie also had the opportunity to travel to Singapore for an exchange semester at Singapore University of Technology of Design (SUTD). This, he says, not only allowed him to immerse himself in a new culture, but introduced him to new ways of thinking and allowed him to expand his horizons and how he perceives the creative industry.

He has had some “amazing” internship experiences, too. He spent some time working with Relajaelcoco, a Madrid-based design studio; and he has worked in the marketing department of the IE School of Architecture and Design. He also does freelance work outside of class, as he loves collaborating with brands and other creators like himself. All of these experiences have taught him a lot. “Being a designer is something that happens inside and outside of the classroom. Throughout these experiences, I have been able to complement and expand my knowledge into real working experiences and design projects.”

Charlie has kept busy during his four-year program, both inside and outside the classroom.  He has been a writer and designer for Prologue, a student-driven magazine that shapes the built environment, throughout his time here. He has also been involved in IE Theater Club, IE Film & Television Industry Club and IE Eco Club, among others. All of these extracurricular activities have helped Charlie to develop and grow his portfolio. “They have allowed me to work and develop design experiences in multiple disciplines,” he adds.

Carlos Loaiza | IE UniversityWhen it comes to his program, Charlie says that his favorite subject has been Design Studio, a course that he and his peers have taken in each year of their studies. Each time, the course has different topics as its focus, ranging from industrial design to graphic design, spatial design and speculative design. It’s this variety that Charlie has enjoyed so much: “The amount of work and flexibility that Design Studio provides is one of the best learning experiences of the program. It forces designers to expand on the areas of study they know and explore the industry in big projects and assignments.”

Charlie highlights two other projects that have stood out to him: Creative Coding, which was part of the Programming for Designers course, and Beyond Packaging, a project from his Design Skills course where students aimed to put an end to the abuse of plastic packaging. He has taken full advantage of the facilities available to him at IE University, such as the Design Studio, an open-plan space in IE Tower for designers that fosters creativity, collaboration and innovation, and the Fab Lab, a space for both digital and physical handcrafting.

When he’s not studying or working, Charlie loves exploring and is always looking for inspiration. You can often find him at one of Madrid’s many museums, exhibitions or cultural centers—one of his favorite things about the city is the amount of culture it has to offer. He also spends a lot of time focusing on mindfulness, through walking, meditating, working out and doing yoga. These practices allow him to feel grounded and are an important escape from the routine of his studies. 

Creativity is at the heart of everything Charlie does. “I have always felt like creativity never ends,” he says. Outside of his course, he enjoys experimenting with digital design and engaging in any other kind of creative practice, such as making posters, taking photos and sketching. Reading and writing are two other activities that allow him to express himself: “When I read and write, I feel like I can get in the zone and escape the craziness of the world.”

When Charlie considers his advice for future Bachelor in Design students, he shares three principles: “Failure is an essential part of learning and growing;” “Effort and passion will be what sets you apart from the rest;” and “An open and creative mind will always be the best tool for a designer.” Combining these insights with his unstoppable passion and enthusiasm for what he does, it’s clear that Charlie is poised to take the world of design by storm!