What made you want to go into your career path?
I always knew I wanted to do something creative from an early age, as art & design were the subjects I was good at and actually enjoyed.
Did you always think you’d go into this career? How does it compare to how you thought it would be?
No I originally wanted to be an Architect at school, which later evolved into being a Product Designer after finding out I needed to know physics formulas which put me off as I was never good at science. Once I worked out what I wanted to do, being a designer / illustrator I had this glamorous idea that you’d get paid loads of money to do really exciting work. More often than not the reality is you’ve got a client who wants something to look a certain way and it’s always the safer less exciting option. That’s part of the challenge though, trying to convince someone that doing it a certain way is going to work. So there’s a lot of uphill battles.
How was life at school?
I grew up in a town in the North West, the only jobs I remember lads talking about were either joining the army or marines. That wasn’t really me, luckily I had 2 or 3 mates that were into art and design & technology. One of them was obsessed with mountain bikes and would design bike frames, I sat next to him and he got me interested and we’d compete to see who’d draw the coolest frame. I remember later he got into calligraphy too, annoyingly he was way better than me. I think having that person to compete against at that early age on something I thought was good at was important to push me to do better.
How did you get into your career?
I made the mistake of applying for University during the end of A Levels for courses that had the words Art or Design attached to them without really knowing exactly what they were, mainly as that was what everyone else was doing and the only option I was given at the time was ‘apply for a course’.
There wasn’t really much guidance during college for me, which of course meant I didn’t get into any of those courses. It was during applying via UCAS that my art teacher last minute suggested applying for a foundation course with a hastily put together portfolio at Leeds College of Art & Design to help figure out what it was I wanted to do. So I spent a year on a foundation course and figured out I wanted to do visual communication, which then lead to applying for a Graphic Design & Advertising BA at Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College. After that I still felt I needed more time to develop and applied to do a Communication Design MA at Central St. Martins for another 2 years and was lucky enough at this point I was already working freelance on commissions.
What do you enjoy most about it?
Completing something really difficult.
What are your ambitions?
To keep building on what we have achieved here, and develop the next generation of art lawyers.
Tell us a fun story about your work
I had an idea for a typographic project which involved using a lighter and a deodorant can of Lynx Africa I got as a xmas present one year. In my head the idea was simple, spray the flames through type laser cut into a sheet of metal. I got in touch with a photographer mate and he was up for trying to capture this, on the shoot day though it didn’t quite work as the flames weren’t quite as clear as I’d hoped. In the end we used orange photography gels and dry ice, which was a lot of fun and much safer too.