We chat with Katarina Matic and Petrea Dickinson, editors of Melbourne magazine The Young Ones. Whilst both work full time as designers, they fit their side project/main squeeze TYO into those after hours and long nights, and it has paid off. With Issue 3 in the works, the girls have just won the RMIT New Enterprise Initiative Fund to take it to the next level. Can’t wait to see where this heads next, nice one!
When did you fall in love with design and how did you get started?
We have both always been creatively minded, but had found ourselves working in unrelated sectors (politics and commercial law are about as far away as you can get from creative industry) seemingly in the blink of an eye post school/university life. During this time we lived vicariously through our obsessions – illustration (Katarina) and craft (Petrea) – before finally deciding to jump head first into a proper design education and open a door to a second career of sorts. As you can imagine, we approached our studies with the kind of gusto typically exhibited by ‘mature age’ students (we hate that term) and here we are!
What does a typical working day include for you right now?
We both work full time as designers (Petrea at Local Peoples and Katarina at Leo Burnett), and manage TYO in our spare time, which is often limited and in short bursts. A typical day for us involves commuting to work (either by public transport or bike) and seeking out a necessary caffeine fix before settling in to work. Once our workday has finished, we will head home to start work again, this time on TYO! After hours is when the bulk of our TYO work takes place – we use this time to meet and discuss general business matters, or we work separately from home taking care of emails, orders and enquiries. There often feels like there are just not enough hours in the day, but we love TYO and work hard to make sure that it never feels like a chore.
Who are the members of your team and their roles?
We started TYO in our final year of university and work as the editors and creative directors. For Issue Two, we bit the bullet and called in our lovely friend and colleague, designer Laura McLean, for some extra muscle, which has been invaluable. Having Laura to assist with a growing number of queries, sales and events has really given us all some breathing room to give proper attention to editorial and design. We also work with an amazing group of people – our printers, finishing specialists, photographers, writers and copyeditors – that help us create each issue. If we cannot do something ourselves, we are not shy in turning to the best in the business to help us out – they help get us over the line each and every time.
What is the design landscape like on your city and where do you fit in?
We are proud to be born and bred Melbournians, and we love our city. Melbourne has a creative community that is so welcoming and supportive of emerging design, and an arts calendar chock full of creative events. We are so lucky to be surrounded by design and creativity. We suppose that is where we fit – we may be surrounded by good design in Melbourne, but what do we know of who creates it? There are so many brilliant forums in Melbourne that allow creatives to showcase their work, but we wanted to provide an opportunity for those creatives to talk about their pathway to success; something so important to understanding any creative’s work.
What has been your highlights since you started out?
We were lucky enough to travel to the London Design Festival and AtypI conference in Barcelona last year as part of the Collie Print Trust Scholarship which was amazing. It gave us an amazing opportunity to get an international perspective on design, and absolutely inspired TYO Issue Two. The biggest highlight for us though has simply been getting TYO out into the world and watching it go from strength to strength. We could never have guessed that we would have sold out of Issue One, launched Issue Two and be working on Issue Three. It’s pretty crazy!
What’s on the cards professionally and personally in the next 12 months?
We were lucky enough to successfully pitch for the RMIT New Enterprise Initiative Fund recently, which means we have now officially have a workspace (in the RMIT Design Hub, no less!) and sufficient financial and business support to take TYO to the next level. We’ve worked with business mentors who have pushed us to consider how to expand TYO in a fast moving digital world whilst still honouring print. With that being said, stay tuned for some very exciting news from us in 2016! Aside from that, we are excited to have started work on Issue Three which we hope to launch in April 2016. In the meantime, jump online at theyoungonesmagazine.com (free shipping Australia wide), or visit one of our lovely stockists – Happy Valley (Collingwood, VIC) and Kunstler (Fortitude Valley, QLD) to grab your copy of TYO Issue Two!