Having grown up in the 80’s, my older brother and I didn’t have any iPads or iPhones. We did have a computer eventually with a nice black and green interface, but that never interested me too much.
My mum is really artsy so we always had arts and crafts happening in the house. To keep me busy while mum did her thing, she would always give me a tray of chalky watercolour paints (from Crazy Clarks) and a big pad of paper to occupy me. I loved watercolour painting so was always super chill when I had my paints. In grade 3 at school I did a project on Echidnas and Sharks (good combo I know) which included a large A2 poster that I hand painted of an elaborate highly detailed portrait of each animal. Although my mum only project managed me, and I did all the painting, Mrs Buckley still didn’t believe that I had actually done the work myself, so gave me a bad grade.
I’m a Strategic Graphic Designer. This means I ask our clients a lot of questions and think analytically about the answers. As a result, these answers form a solid framework to the designs that are then created. We build and improve brands.
Really important. Working with great people and continuing to do what I love has helped me to shape a really nice lifestyle. I like golf, but would rather meet people in a more organic way and in their comfortable social circles. A lot of our clients have come from rowdy nights out or sport.
So many lessons…
1. No man is an island. Collaborate with people who inspire you and whose opinions you respect.
2. The more people on the decision making team, the longer the process will take. Always price and schedule with this in mind.
3. The best results come from great client relationships and open communication. Trust your gut. If you feel like the client is going to be a pain in the ass, they probably are. It’s not worth working for them so pull the plug before you go through hell and create a sub-standard result.
4. Try to have a healthy mix of bread and butter work along with passion projects and portfolio builders. Too much of any could kill your vibe and put a strain on your bank account.
5. Information is power. The better the brief, the better chances you have of creating an effective design. Designing with purpose and reason is an easier task and subsequently makes for an easier sell to the client. Step them through the creative process and give reason for the design decisions you’ve made along the way (these should always relate back to the brief).
A big year for learning, decision making and networking.