Today the Design and the Market students presented our findings on the various business we had been researching.
Sitting up top, i was growing steadily more nervous about having to speak to a room full of people, so naturally distracted myself by paying really good attention to what the groups before has had learnt about their topics of research.
First off, a group of illustration students talked to us about Black Hearted Press, who are Scotland’s leading independent comic book publishers.
I liked the use of comic books strewn across the tables in front of us to peer into as a visual aid to show what the business was all about. Also the video the group had made of a hand-drawn comic book style invitation was a great way to get a company interested as well as start off their presentations.
The main piece of advice i took from their presentation was that after university is the best time to be creative and the best time to start a creative business. “Do it while you’re young” do it at a time when making mistakes is more of a learning curve than a massive disaster!
Next, a second group of illustration students talked to us about Timorous Beasties, who are a design company best known for their provocative textiles and wallpapers, and based in Glasgow.
I liked how these students used an illustration from Timorous Beasties to create a background image and flow for their presentation to run on.
The main pieces of advice i took from their presentation were to do what you want, Timorous Beasties have gone as far as to set this ethos in the ambiguity of their name. And they also talked about the reality of employability: the business side, the finance is HORRIBLE but the designing and the creating is wonderful and worth it in the end so the two balance each other out.
Next, a group of graphic design students talked to us about Elastic Creative, who are a creative agency specialising in brand development and application to web, print, advertising, exhibitions and packaging.
I liked how these students sent a video invitation to Elastic and got a reply back in a video format, a great show of creativity as well as a light-hearted and good hook to start off the presentation.
The main pieces of advice i took from their presentation were that branding is in the heart of everything and your reputation as a branded designer starts now. Also, as a quite big company, that made sure it was important to realize that “people work with people, not companies” which is a key point for any size of company.
Next, a group of textiles students talked to us about Mairi McDonald, who is a textiles based fashion designer.
I liked how these students shared equal amounts of information between the group when it came to presenting, and had clear-cut sections that each individual spoke about.
The main piece of advice i took from their presentation was that your CV doesn’t start to until after your first internship, getting a job and starting your own business is all about experience.
Next, a second group of textiles students talked to us about Isolated Heroes, that is the luxury ready to wear label by designer Samantha McEwen.
I liked how these students made great use of the colourful and bold fashion images from the business to fill their presentation with fascinating photos and videos.
The main piece of advice i took from their presentation was to acknowledge where in the world your sales are coming from and to increase advertising and marketing towards those targets. Also, that i need to get me one of the fancy jackets shown in one of their slides!
And finally it was our turn!
The presentation went well, my group was wonderful, and although i spoke a little faster than i should have i did okay too! Even with a minor technical glitch and some tricky questions at the end we sailed through with our unique styling and intersting quips! For more on what we learned from our interview check out Interview with Concrete Wardrobe or Our Gift to Concrete Wardrobe or Concrete Wardrobe Field Trip and Concrete Wardrobe to see what we discovered!
There were a couple of themes and pieces of advice i noticed that ran through all the presentations:
– a lot of the successful businesses had no official business plan and they let their companies just grow organically.
– take risks!
– communication is key to a business partnership, as well as within yourself.
– be adaptable, keep an open mind and diversify as a designer.
-stick to your own vision. Believe in yourself and believe in your product.
Now on to developing my own business!!!