I can work with everyone from complete beginners to degree level students and base the lessons on practical exercises and additional projects to top-up the one-to-one training time. I create tailor-made, structured yet fun classes that help the student along and work at the student's pace.
I have been trained as a Technical and Medical Illustrator, have worked freelance as an illustrator and full time as a graphic designer for more than 20 years, have taught many students and junior members of staff, helping them to progress to achieve their goals.
• Wide range of skills in many illustration techniques including pencil drawing (graphite and coloured), watercolour painting and computer generated illustraions;
• Provides excellent customer service, a patient teacher of new skills and aware of differing levels of individual’s abilities and work levels;
• Highly competent in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Quark Xpress and Indesign, have extensive knowledge of Microsoft Office products;
• Excellent understanding of print production techniques, fully aware of bleed, imposition, repro size and quality levels of images, proofread to a high level and pay great attention to detail;
• Regularly use mac and general IT trouble-shooting skills;
• Equally comfortable working as an artworker, designer, senior designer or trainer as required, can work alone or as part of a team, and always willing to learn new disciplines;
• Excellent communication skills, have a good sense of humour, approachable, hard working, trustworthy, punctual, flexible and professional.
Firefly Design Services
June 2017 to present
Owner; Illustrator and Designer
Operating as a sole trader I formed my company to utilise my skills as a designer and illustrator. I currently provide branding and design services to small, local businesses and supply illustrations to all sizes of businesses UK-wide. My illustration media include computer-generated vector and raster images, graphite and coloured pencil, watercolours and acrylics.
Pan European Networks Ltd., Congleton, Cheshire
June 2011 to March 2017
The job role was wide but primarily included the monthly publication of B2B books whose titles include Science and Technology, Government, Defence and Horizon 2020. These were high quality, credible documents aimed at UK and international markets, are full-colour, perfect bound and laminated, sometimes in excess of 300 pages. All of the books were available as print and digital versions. Other products included multi-page booklets, belly-bands, bookmarks and exhibition stands.
As well as eventually leading a small design/production team, I continued to create artwork on a daily basis. I was also responsible for the company’s branding and the design of its two websites, liaising with an external web developer during the whole process.
Specific responsibilities and achievements
• Reporting directly to the CEO, I was at the company from its inception, starting as a sole designer but eventually leading a small team of designers and production co-ordinators;
• Typesetting pages, overseeing and controlling the quality of all company products, creating front covers, proofreading, checking clients’ adverts and creating templates and style sheets for the design team;
• Manage the creation and distribution of promotional emailers and newsletters and the distribution of the printed books;
• Solely responsible for the preparation of documents for print, making upwards of 2,000 amends to a high level of accuracy over a 3 day period;
• Support the design team with all daily work, HR matters, technical issues and training;
• Communicating regularly with all departments to ensure that all client requests are fulfilled;
• With the assistance of an external IT supplier, managed the implementation of a Windows-based server and offsite back-up system for company-wide use (including the macs);
• Created complex, yearly web and print schedules, liaising with printers and external suppliers and chairing a weekly production meeting to ensure that deadlines are adhered to;
• Office key holder and contact for any security issues; and
• Undertook any small DIY tasks or general office maintenance.
For further information, please see:
Public Service Ltd., Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire
June 2000 to June 2011
The company published approximately 50 books per year, ranging from a 24-page monthly news magazine to documents containing more than 600 pages. Again, although eventually working at a senior level, I was still creating mac-produced artwork on a daily basis. While working for Public Service, I was able to create a methodology of design and organisation that I was able to apply to my current position.
• Assisted the creation of a completely new company from its early beginnings, setting up the corporate branding, document construction and navigation and the design of the company’s websites;
• Helped create an Events division, supporting it with all banner and stand artwork, events brochures and general promotional material;
• Integrated existing products and staff acquired from a company takeover and developing the publications’ corporate look to be more suitable for its new owners;
• Daily production of artwork ranging from typeset pages to front covers; and
• Training and HR support for members of staff.
McNeill Associates, Haslington, Cheshire
January 1997 – June 2000
This was my first design position and proved to be an excellent opportunity to learn many different design and repro techniques. The company had a 2 colour printing press, large format printers, plate-making equipment and vinyl cutters, so I was able to create artwork and see the end results before they were delivered to the client.
• Produced press-ready artwork for the Lyceum Theatre, Crewe, including their seasonal programmes;
• Training and HR support for junior members of staff;
• Created advertising and packaging concepts and finished artwork for an international wholesale meat supplier and other national and local businesses;
• Responsible for creating artwork and plates for inhouse and external printing;
• Produced artwork for banners, booklets, diaries, corporate identities and other printed matter; and
• Making vinyl-cut artwork for vehicles and exhibitions.
Bentley Motor Cars Ltd., Crewe, Cheshire
September 1996 to January 1997
Development Engineer (contract working)
Due to an immediate shortage of opportunities in design, I commenced work with Bentley on a contract basis. This involved liaising with all levels of staff - from shop floor workers to Director level - to aid the development of existing and future models.
Although working as a contractor, I was asked to continue on a full-time basis, but decided instead to take up the role at McNeill’s to further my career in a creative environment.
Rolls-Royce Motors Ltd., Crewe, Cheshire
August 1980 to October 1992
Special Features Technician; Development Engineer
After completing a 4 year Rolls-Royce training as a Technician/Engineer apprentice, I worked in the Special Features department where I produced design concept illustrations for clients. Following Special Features,
I was offered a position as Development Engineer in the New Model Centre where I helped refine the
Bentley Continental R.
North East Wales Institute (NEWI), Wrexham
September 1994 to July 1996
Medical Illustration course (HND) - passed with distinctions
I had the option to extend this to a degree but chose instead to pursue a career in graphics as I needed to support my family financially.
Whilst at NEWI, I worked as a freelance graphic designer for several small local businesses and as an illustrator for the dental journal, The Probe.
Mid-Cheshire College, Northwich, Cheshire
October 1992 to June 1994
BTEC HNC and ONC in Technical Illustration and Design - passed with distinctions
ONC and HNC in Mechanical and Production Engineering - passed with distinctions, South Cheshire College, Crewe.
BTEC in MS Office Software (evening study) at South Cheshire College, Crewe.
Business German at Bentley Motor Cars
Victoria Community High School, Crewe, Cheshire
GCE O levels: Art (B), Surveying (B), English Language (B), English Literature (C), Mathematics (C).
CSE Grade 1: English Language, English Literature, Mathematics, Technical Drawing, Woodwork and Metalwork; Grade 2: Physics.
Hobbies and Interests
I enjoy spending time with my family. sketching, reading, walking, DIY, fly fishing and fly tying, and cooking.
References available on request
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