Interview with Motion Designer Sergio Saleh

I had a chance to interview Sergio Saleh who is a motion designer and co-founder of Lumbre. The work Lumbre does, for clients such as Fox and National Geographic, is really inspiring so make sure to check out their work. Big thanks to Sergio for taking the time to share with us!

Did you go to school for motion graphics?

Not exactly. My degree is Audiovisual Designer from the School of Design and Planning at the University of Buenos Aires. It is the film career of the UBA and is separated from the Graphic Design career.
There wasn’t a specific career in motion graphics in Argentina.¬†Everything I know about motion graphics I learned it in my career, but also taking specialized courses, classes in graphic design in the same university and mostly working.

How did you get into your first job in the industry?

My first job was as electric at a film company best known here in Argentina as POL-KA. Along with 4 other students, we were summoned by a teacher who worked there. I work only a few months there, but it was an important experience and made my CV somehow appealing.
A few months later I sent my CV (in fact my grandfather sent it!) to the sports channel TyCSports and I was called for an interview. I was thinking that I would be hired as an electric or as an assistant cameraman or as a replacement, but they were actually looking for videographer operators at the in-house graphic department.
That was in 1997 and I could hardly turn on a computer! I worked there for 3 years, one and a half as videographer and one and a half in the promotion department. In 2000 I started to work at Medialuna Studio where I started as an animator in After Effects and Jaleo and end up working 7 years and became creative director.

Tell me a bit about where you work and what they specialize in. Are you at a studio? Freelance?

After my 7 years at Medialuna Studio I worked 3 years as a freelancer, particularly providing creative direction services for TyCSports and Fox International Channels and NatGeo. (,
In 2010, along with my partner and executive producer Paul Encabo, we founded Lumbre (,, I am currently the creative director and owner of Lumbre, working for clients like Fox and NatGeo International, Zee Channels in India, Carburando Argentina, Endemol Argentina, Canal Encuentro Argentina, etc..

How long have you been in the industry?

Since 1996.

What software do you use?

First: MY HEAD.
Second: Mail from Mac. :S
My team: After effects, Maya, 3D Max, Cinema 4D, Final Cut, Photoshop, Illustrator, etc.

How would you describe your style?

Classic. Excentric. Smart. Versatile. Functional. Risky.

Are there one or two things you wish you had known when you were just starting out?

That the design process always involves anxiety and a great effort and never ever will I get to finish a project idealistically.

Do you have any websites or books that you turn to regularly for inspiration and training?

What are the most important things you need to do or be to excel in our industry?

Patience, perseverance, humility and learning to listen.

If you could have a dream job in the industry, what would it be?

To be hired to solve any creative need and to be able to choose the team for each project.

Make sure to check out if you want to get some serious inspiration! Thanks again to Sergio. I’ll leave you with the Lumbre Reel 2011:

4 Responses
  1. Yeah, Brett, I love the part where he said: “That the design process always involves anxiety and a great effort and never ever will I get to finish a project idealistically.” That is so true in my experience also! It’s great to hear that other people go through these things as well.

  2. top notch interview! Ive noticed that most ALL of the professionals hit up motionographer. Its great to know that the pros use the same sources as the rest of us. Just goes to show the difference in what a person can do with the same knowledge.

  3. I’ve been checking out Lumbre’s work on Vimeo. Really amazing stuff. Pushes me to do better every time I watch their material. What I like best is that the motion and design in their work tends to have a purpose. It wasn’t just done to look cool even though it usually looks pretty cool.

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