The Humans of smrtPhone

Our “smrtie of the Month” crafted our new look, creates designs for in-app, socials, and whatever else we can dream up.


Livia Cepoiu

Title / Role in the Company

I am a graphic designer. I focus on our look & feel and all of our visuals. I mostly work with the marketing team but I have other projects that involve other departments, including creating illustrations inside our product.

How long have you worked for smrtPhone?

Just over one year.

What’s your background? 

I went to university in Brasov where I studied product and environmental design. I specialized in industrial design, so technically I am an engineer. It was really hard for me because I do not like math and mechanics. I really had to learn and focus to finish it all. 

Ever since I was a kid I just liked to draw. Everyone was always excited when I presented my drawings. Even though I realized I could not be happy as an engineer, I knew that I could always draw. 

I was lucky that I didn’t have to work during school, but after graduation I went to work at a packaging factory as a package designer. Things like coffee cups and food packaging. I was there for a year and a half and it was at that job when I realized that this is what I wanted to do. In school, design and colors and visuals was only 2% of what we learned. But it was 100% of what I wanted to do. 

But, don’t get me wrong. I really loved my time at university. I come from a small town, so it was super easy for me to get used to Brasov. It’s a really nice city that is full of nature. I had some great classmates, too. I’m not sure I would have graduated without them! 

What was your first job? 

When I was 12, I had a neighbor that worked in a flower shop. I really liked flowers, so I asked if I could help her out. I worked there for 3 days until she got bored of me. I talked too much and was a kid so she had to supervise me more than she wanted. I made something like the Romanian equivalent of $0.60 in three days. 

Even though I was “fired,’’ it was a nice experience. 

What do you like about working for smrtPhone? 

What I like most about smrtPhone is working with the people, the team. It’s super nice to have people who can encourage you, and they really help me. For the first 3 months, I was super stressed about this job, but everyone was really nice and they helped me acclimate quickly.  

I like that I’m involved with every department, and I can bring some color and joy to my colleagues. I’m super excited to be a part of an amazing team. 

And, even though we are a mostly remote company, I like that we see each other at least two times a year. It’s great to be together, to meet the new people, to hear their stories. Now, after a year, I know everyone’s names. My coworkers are the best part of my professional life.

Describe smrtPhone in 3 words: 




I hope that friendliness and how well we all get along reflects outward.

Is there a particular moment/project at smrtPhone that stands out and makes you feel proud?  

I think the biggest challenge I’ve faced since being in smrtPhone was the past six months when we were designing the new website. We finally did it! It was fun, but hard. I couldn’t do it without my colleagues and I appreciate the help they give me. I’m really proud of it! Everyone should check it because it looks amazing. 

That is super nice about smrtPhone, everything feels collaborative. Even though I’m the only graphic designer, I don’t feel like I’m working alone. I always have someone to ask, “How does this look? What’s your opinion?”  This is very important to me as a designer: to see my work with fresh eyes. 

What do you like to do in your free time?

I like to be outside. I have a big connection with nature. I like to do outdoor activities, even something as simple as taking a walk in the woods. Just being outside. 

When I have time, I recently re-started rollerblading. I used to rollerblade when I was younger, and then I had a 10 year pause. When started with smrtPhone, I bought new rollerblades. Now, in the morning, I like to get out and go up and down the street.  

I also like to paint, even if I haven’t spent as much time doing it lately. I like it because you can freestyle more than with graphic design. I have two unfinished paintings that I need to work on. 

I like to spend time with my family and my boyfriend. And when I have some time I like to play games. Two of my favorite games are God of War and Lara Croft. 

I also spend time with my pets. At my house, we have five cats and three dogs. But I have other animals at my boyfriend’s home: four cats and one dog. My parents both work, and I work from home, so it’s what I do all day. I don’t understand people who don’t have animals. You must be wasting food! I give it all to my animals.  I cannot imagine my life without my dogs. 

It’s not just housepets, too. When I was a kid we had pigs, cows, and sheep, and now we have chickens. Someday, I’d like to buy a horse for myself and buy some cows for my father. 

Name something that is on your “bucket list”

I want to be able to help my father finish his cabin in the woods. He started 6 years ago and hasn’t yet finished it.

I want to buy a horse. That is my big wish. I have never ridden a horse before, but I imagine myself with a horse and a dog and in nature. 

I want to visit the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt and Machu Picchu in Peru. 

In the last days of my life, I want to be a celebrated painter. But I have time for that. It will be when I’m quite older. 

What is a fun fact people might not know about you? 

I have three fun facts. 

One is that I like to go fishing. That is not typically a woman’s activity, but I used to go with my dad and it has stayed with me. 

I graduated from parachuting school when I was 19. I have four jumps on my own. But the time in between jumps was too long so I still get scared to jump. I liked controlling the parachute, and floating down, but not the jumping, so I quit. 

Two years before smrtPhone I participated in a big competition for Milka, the chocolate company. It was a drawing contest and I won second place. Not only did I win 1000 Euros, they printed our designs on mugs. It was all over the stores, and I felt like a celebrity. It was a great time of my life to see my work in every store.