Eliane Cadieux

Creative director and cofounder of BESIDE

8+ years

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Eliane is Cofounder & Creative Director at BESIDE, a biannual print magazine in French and English. BESIDE aims to bridge the gap between humans and nature—with high-quality editorial content and immersive experiences.

At what point in your life did you learn about design, and what drew you to it?

When I was in high school, I wanted to become an artist. But in our society, we are pushed to have a 'real' job and make money. We had a class to help us to find a job and a school program. With the carrier guidance, I looked on the internet 'graphic design' and came across Origin, which is a strategy and branding agency based in Montreal and Whistler, BC. They focus on outdoor clients like Jay Peaks, Whistler Blackcomb, and the only thing that goes to my mind was: I will work for them one day. After that, I studies 6 years in graphic design (CEGEP at Cégep de Sherbrooke and University (Université du Québec à Montréal).

Describe the first office where you worked as a designer.

When I moved in Montreal, my first job in design was for Elliot. A small design agency founded by Jean-Daniel Petit and Sébastien Legault. Fun fact, I met JD there - my actual partner in BESIDE - at that time, he was my boss, haha. Two tattooed guys, listening heavy metal music, in an all-white studio in Montreal. It was a little bit intimidating, but soon I learned that I preferred to work with men.

What’s the first thing you do every morning to start your day?

Unfortunately, I snooze a lot. Before, going out of the bed, I check if I received an emergency during the night (emails, phone, notifications). After, I feed my dog (Walter) and then coffee. Very annoying morning routine, haha. I think I need to change it for my mental health haha

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Who do you consider to be an inspiring female (alive or otherwise)?  

I’m a big Jane Fonda fan. But all the strong women do their business, is very inspiring.

Describe your design process.

I work very well under pressure. (I don't know if it's a good or bad process.) My best projects are the ones that I didn't have much time for.

What inspires your work (professional or personal)?

I try to stay up to date with all the trends, design blogs, and stuff. But I try to think outside the box and get inspired by architecture, nature, everything physical around me.

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What project are you most proud of?

BESIDE & abitibi&co are two projects that I designed the entire brand, and I'm very proud of it. I think BESIDE is one of my life projects. Each day is different, and it puts me out of my comfort zone. I learn so much about having a business with employees, office, administrative tasks, up and down situations. It's a big challenge to keep my mind focus on creative projects between all of this and different projets like the print products, web platform, events and architecture projet. But I love challenge!

What is your personal or professional motto/philosophy?

If you know you can do better.. then do better. Take the risk, or lose the chance.

What’s the boldest thing you’ve ever done in your professional life?

Listening my intuition. But seriously, if I had a bad intuition on a project or a client, and I did it in spite of myself. I will regret it.

What does success mean to you?

When you're proud of what you done, and also, get time to do other passion. I believe in a balanced life - Work hard for this! One day.

As a female, what sacrifices have you had to make in your professional life?

My boyfriend is also an entrepreneur so our reality is the same. We don't have kids, and Walter comes to the office. We work a lot and try to make space in our life to play outside, see friends and family. I try not to sacrifice anything, but sometime it's hard to make a line between work and private life.

What advice would you give to a young female designer?

Don't be shy, just do it. Be curious, and humble.

How would you design the ideal creative workspace?

Dogs dogs dogs! The perfect workspace needs to have dog. Clean, and design space.

What are your plans for the future?

For the next years, I will focus on BESIDE, we have a lot of projects to set up. In long term, I would like to teach design, and maybe do a project with my hand. Let see in few years!

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