Design Splat | Interviews with Awesome Designers and Creatives

KAYLEIGH BLACK – GRAPHIC DESIGNER

Posted May 16th by Design Splat in Graphic Designers

Hello and Welcome to Design Splat Kayleigh!

How did you get into Graphic Design?

From a very young age I have always had an artistic/creative talent. I knew I wanted to go with that interest somewhere within the art/design fields, just never knew where. To be honest I never knew anything about Graphic Design until I read the blurb for an Introduction to Graphic Design course at my local college (Edinburgh’s Telford College). I was very intrigued by it and that basically opened my world to Graphic Design for the past few years.

When creating graphics, what to you is the most important aspect: planning design or implementation? and why?

For me I like creating things by hand. I love going crazy with sketchbook work, finding ideas/concepts and improving them. I like getting messy, using different materials like paints, paper etc. I do like using the Adobe Software programs – InDesign, Photoshop and Illustrator but it’s not as fun as going back to basics using pencils and paper and creating things from scratch – that’s what I like the most but also seeing the final pieces of artwork in the end.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

I hope to finish my HND (Visual Communications in Graphic Design) course near the end of June. To then find more placements/internships to gain more experience in the industry and to hopefully find a permanent job. But I’d rather take each day as it comes and see where it will take me.

Own Business or working for a company?

I would say both. I would like to work for some companies first, to gain more experience, to be part of a team -that work together, that feels and looks like a big family, which seems great! You also have your own boss and a person that deals with the finance aspect and finding clients for the company, but you might not be happy working on certain projects which could be the downside. On the other hand having your own business seems also fun too but it’s got its downsides on the aspects of finding clients and those clients sticking with you throughout and also the financial side of things – have you got the money or not to create the business, but you get to be boss and decide your own work hours etc which is a good point too – I think It’d be something I’d do in 20 years time once I have gained enough experience and knowledge that makes me feel strong enough to run my own business.

Any specific company you would like to work for?

I haven’t found a specific company that I’d like to work for just yet. I would like to find some more placements and figure out what area of graphic design I feel best suited at.

Does fame attract you?

It does attract me a wee bit. It would be nice to meet singers/bands, artists/designers, actors/actresses, directors/producers because they all seem interesting people and it’s because they are all creative in their own ways. I’d like to know their stories, how they got there, what inspired/inspires them, what are their goals for the future. Having my work noticed by lots of people would be a plus, but I am just as happy if it inspires just one person who thinks they can’t draw, to at least try too because art and design can be anything. A straight line on a piece of paper is art, even a scribble!

How do you rate yourself as a designer?

I would probably rate myself a 5 or 6, I am half way there to getting better. I normally rate myself as average on about everything, that is just who I am!

What makes a good graphic designer?

Someone who has a passion for art & design related areas and also having a qualification in Graphic Design would help make you be a good graphic designer. Your belief that you’re good enough is a really important thing to have as well – you need to believe in your work, if you don’t, how will other people.

Where do you go for inspiration?

Once given a brief (project), I pick words out of it and my imagination tends to run wild. Those words then leads to inspiration that I find almost everywhere, it can be art & design books or films/TV shows, just generally meeting people and talking to them about your ideas and that can bring more ideas to the table, going for walks in the countryside, listening to music on a long bus journey home. Seeing other artist/designers artwork also inspires me to do better. Using a dictionary or thesaurus can help to understand words better and you might find inspiration from them too.

What obstacles – if any, have you encountered along the way?

I personally find it hard to pick one idea/concept and just go with it and develop it even further. I also go a bit too crazy with research. So hopefully I will limit my time on those in the near future and its gives me more time to develop the final outcome.

Do you think the Graphic Design Industry is difficult to get into?

I do think it is hard to get into, depending on how the country is; having recessions and cut backs at the moment means fewer jobs for people. If you find the right course that adds placements/mentoring programmes then you might be in for the chance to get somewhere within the industry – try internships and placements they might be unpaid work, but by building yourself up in experience and you could get offered a job you deserve.

What do you think it takes to become successful in the Graphic Design industry?

Having a good qualification in Graphic Design, a good portfolio – work that you believe in, and also some good references from previous work experience placements are some of things that would help you become successful in the graphic design industry. I also believe that if you have a lovely personality and willing to learn would come along way too.

Favourite Typeface?

I don’t have a favourite one just yet, but I like hand written fonts or scripts fonts, calligraphy is an interesting thing that I would like to get into.

Software you couldn’t live without?

Probably InDesign, I love magazines and figuring out how to create them is fun!

Three words to describe yourself?

Smiley, laughable and artistic!

Hobbies and Interests?

I like doing things with my friends on my spare time. I enjoy watching TV shows such as Glee, 90210, The Vampire Diaries, Gossip Girl etc. I love movies and being at the cinema is like my second home!  I like my chick flick – romantic comedies but I am getting into the guy films – sci-fi and action thrillers. Art & Design related areas such as Photography, Illustration, Interior Design, Paper crafts, Graphic Design of course. I also like Art & Design based books, surfing blogs online, going for walks in the countryside, and visiting art galleries. I love colours – especially going into the John Lewis store near where I live, they have all the towels colour coordinated, it’s like a mini pantone colour chart – it’s brilliant! I like home ware sections in department stores as well. I love lots of different types of food such as Italian, Chinese, and Indian. I have an obsession with buying too many magazines and DVDs. I also like listening & dancing to music when nobody is watching!

Favourite Designer?

I don’t think I have a favourite designer, they are all great at what they do, I get inspired by almost every artist and designer there is – famous ones to up and coming ones.

Tools of the trade?

I love going back to the basics, paints, pencils and paper and making a mess!

Best and worst piece of work?

I like most of my work that I have done throughout the years I have been at college. If I had to pick one, it would either be Creative Type magazine or the front covers for World Music magazine. I had fun on those and felt great confidence after receiving good feedback from classmates and tutors. I don’t think I have an exact piece of work that is the worse but there’s a wee bit that I could improve in some of them.

Any Tips or advice to share with aspiring designers?

To be yourself, have fun, enjoy every minute, take each day as it comes, don’t stress, be positive, smile and laugh even if you’re having a bad day. Do what you think is best.  Try your best at everything that’s all we can do. Take every opportunity you get, you never know what it will lead you too. The more experience in things the better. Keep in touch with people in the creative field, as they might come in handy in the near future.

Contact Details:

Email: kayleigh.black@live.co.uk

Tumblr: http://blackdesign.tumblr.com

http://inspirationoverdose.tumblr.com

Behance: http://www.behance.net/kayleighblack

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/kayleigh_black

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/_kayleighblack

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/black.designs

Here are a couple of images of Kayleigh’s work, most of the work below is based on “made up” college briefs, apart from the Anti Racism Poster and the Monster Much which were live “real” briefs taken on throughout her college course.




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