Where did your creativity start and when did it evolve into your desire to become a graphic designer?
My interest in art started from early school days where I was always top of class at art and it was purely something I enjoyed so I used to sketch regularly for the raw satisfaction of creating. My interest in art intensified more by the time I got to sixth form, so I knew I needed to make room for it in my future. Graphic design appealed to me as I felt it was the most direct way of translating my passion into a career, so I decided to study it at university.
Would you recommend university for every aspiring graphic designer?
For me, university was a brilliant opportunity to fully explore my own identity as a creative, as you’re granted the freedom to tackle briefs in your own way. This is great for developing your own unique approach, but it doesn’t necessarily reflect the conditions you’ll be working in as a professional. I think university courses should offer a more intense learning phase with a good balance between teaching skills, experiences as well as project coursework. University is becoming more and more expensive but there are some incredible shorter more intense courses available such as the Shillington design course and I have seen some amazing talent come from these. My advice to designers would be to research and explore the variety of avenues you have and do not feel pressured into following the crowd.
Why did you turn your graphic design skills towards branding specifically?
I actually always wanted to get into branding from uni and I knew it had the most potential to fulfil me and push me as a designer. I started my career working in-house for an architect firm, then for a digital marketing agency. Along the way, I learned that the most successful companies were the ones that had a deeper sense of strategy and identity that manifested across all aspects of their operations. In other words, they had strong brands. I want my work to make an impact on people, so I turned towards branding as I understood its potential. What excites me the most is how widely applicable branding is; everything requires a brand; a park, a building or even an individual, giving them the story and purpose they need to become much greater than the sum of their parts.
Describe your ideal client.
We always develop brands with global scalability in mind, so I enjoy working with ambitious individuals who have a positive message they want to roll out as far and wide as possible. If a client is super passionate about their brand it gets the team fired up and makes it easier to partner with them and grow their dreams.
What do you enjoy most about working in Noir?
The freedom I get as a creative which I think is super important. I love the collaboration within the team across all aspects, strategy, brand identity, paid social. The culture is highly motivating, you’re driven to be the best version of yourself. And there’s a really nice family feeling. I love the fact we don’t want to churn out work, we want to create partnerships with clients. It aligns with my beliefs as a designer. I’ve been here for 2 years because it’s become a great fit for me, as a designer and a person, I’m confident inside but humble outside, and that aligns with who Noir are.
Graphic design is a notoriously difficult profession to break into. What advice would you give to others?
Write your own briefs. A lot of people will come to the studio with no branding work because they haven’t had any experience in branding. But the opportunity to build your branding portfolio is always there you don’t need a professional setting to do it. Write your own briefs or taking existing brands and rebranding them is the perfect start to showcase your talent.