Interviewed on 15.01.2019
3 minute read

Denislav Jeliazkov

Product Designer

Short intro

Self taught digital product designer. I like pizza, cars, football and dogs.

What do you do for a living?

I am a product designer at Toptal Core team. I focus mainly on the talent experience in the company. A big passion of mine is also interaction design, how it evolved on mobile/web from being this clunky thing to this smooth iOS/Android animations we have.

When did you find your passion for Product Design?

There were this cool magazines from Austria and Germany that my grandpa always brought when he came back from his trips. I always admired how clean and simple they looked, and never understood how they made it to look and feel so good with so little. Now I get it. However my background is a bit weird, I started doing some manipulations in photoshop, and after I finished High School I wanted to get into building websites. I had no idea how to do it but I took the challenge to start and learn how to code as I thought this is essential of building it, I spend 1 year trying to learn to code. Didn’t enjoy it at all, so I decided to focus fully on design. At that point I had no idea I can make a living from design and design thinking.

How long have you been doing your craft?

I have been at Toptal for a little more than a year. Product design fully focused the last 3 years.

Describe the beginning of your day

I usually wake up at around 5. The first thing I do after I get out of bed is to get my breakfast out of the fridge. I eat and give my dogs to eat. Take them out on a short walk. At around 6 I do some meditation and some stretching and I tend to go to the gym around 7. I workout until 8-8:30 shower and after that I start my work day.

What’s your workspace?

What’s your source of inspiration?

Nature. This has always provided me the biggest source of inspiration. The thing that there is nobody there and everything is so peaceful.

What works are you most proud of?

Shebah. The impact it made in the community and the traction it got was pretty wonderful and this was at a time I started focusing more on building products.

What are the tools you use in your day to day life?

Fork and spoon. Sketch, Principle, Lightroom, Zoom, Spotify.

Do you follow any set of principles for your work?

Create with simplicity in mind.

What’s your favourite movie?

Hm, a favourite one is hard to say. I would say Forrest Gump.

What’s your favourite book?

I like all books as you can get something from each one. However a turning book in my life was Think and grow rich by Napoleon Hill.

What advice would you give to people that start out with product design?

Don’t rush it. It will take time to get to the stage of a designer you are admiring. Also don’t get focused on the numbers on social. Enjoy the process.

Have you ever thought of empowering your creative community in any way, shape or form?

I am actually starting a podcast very soon, where I just chit-chat with people from the industry. Hope it can empower younger designers.

Meet Denislav on the Social Media

Dribbble Instagram

Thank you for the interview, Denislav. Your openness towards the world of design is really inspiring. Keep being so inspiring and keep us posted with those 🔥 Instagram posts of yours.