Interview with Graphic Designer Kathryn Loveday!

This morning we bring to you a recent interview with talented and ambitious creative in the form of Kat Loveday. Having graduated from Salford University, she returned to the classroom shortly after to assist in teaching other up-and-coming designers. Here, Kat explains more about her background, education and experiences and gives advice on breaking into the design industry:

Who is Kathryn Loveday? How did you first get involved in the creative industries?

I’m a creative individual who loves chinese food, Snowboarding and playing video games. I’ve always been arty growing up and originally was determined to be an Architect. I went to Blackburn college where I did a Btec and foundation in Art and Design but soon found that graphics was for me. So I went and studied Graphic Design at Degree level at Salford University.

We see you’re involved with teaching in university, How did this come about & how have you found things so far?

I’ve always thought about going into teaching but didn’t know if it was for me or not and knew I wouldn’t know until I tried it. Then an opportunity came up at Salford University in the September after I graduated to help out and run some workshops with college students that were coming in to have a taster day at the uni. So I signed up, the workshops ran for 3 days and I loved it. After christmas I was making the most of free time by doing placements in agencies and as one was about to finish I had nothing lined up so emailed my 3rd year tutor Tash asking if she fancied my help in the classroom and she jumped at the opportunity. I love it so much, I get such a kick out of helping the students and it’s nice to be looked up too. Hopefully next year i can afford to do my PGCE and in time teach properly.

What do you think of the local creative talent in your area? Are people doing enough to help and nurture these people?

I think there is a lot of good talent out there. So much that its hard for creatives to stand out anymore. I think a lot people are doing their best to help students and graduates get to where they want to be, but the people they really want to impress are just struggling so much themselves that its hard to get into a solid job in an agency and going freelance is scary and uncertain. I just think the economic climate at the moment is making it hard for people to get the jobs they want, not that there isn’t the help out there.

What were your design inspirations growing up & who are they in today’s world?

Well after doing Art at college I was looking at the likes of David Foldvardi, Kate Moross and Shepard Fairey for inspiration but there are so many sources to get inspiration from that its hard to name names over collective websites and studio groups. Manchester’s Made by Shape Design Studio is a big source for web inspiration for me and more recently MmDesign but you can’t get better than the inspiration of talking to other creatives and browsing sites such as site inspire.net and dribble.com. You need to see what’s out there as a whole, not just what a certain person is doing, and pull it all to make something new.

What work are your completing professionally outside of your teaching? Do you work exclusively in freelance?

In my freelance work at the minute I’m working on first Ecommerce job for Amethyst Moon crafts, a handmade jewellery and craft store as well as starting a portfolio site for Manchester Artist Ian McKay. I have a part-time in-house design job at NSI Nails which gives me a stable income.

How do you use and interact on the new wave of social media and networks? Are they a hinderance or benefit for creative businesses?

For me I use twitter as my main source of sharing my work and news with other creatives and prospective clients but I also use LinkedIn, and Dribbble and recently set up a tumblr blog. I did have a Behance but if you have too many you just end up uploading the same work to possibly the same audience. Social media undoubtably makes it easier to get your name out there but only if you use it in the right way. You can’t just upload and tweet your work you need to comment on others and share other creatives work but we have the same problem as i described before, there are so many of us now and not a lot of jobs so it’s easy to blend into the crowd even if you’re doing it right.

How did you get your break in the design industry? What advice would you give to someone looking for the same break in today’s world?

Placement after placement after placement got me the experience I needed to get a paid job. My job at NSI actually came through as they are one of Made by Shape’s client’s and asked them if they knew anyone after a graphic design jobs and they put my name forward and I got the job instantly. They say it’s who you know but the people you know are only going to recommend you if they know you’re good, but there’s no denying that the more people you know and impress, the more chance there are for a recommendation for that dream job.

Thanks Kat, all the best for the future :)

Follow Kat Loveday on her Website, Tumblr and Twitter @kat_loveday.

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