Designer Talks Podcast

Designer Talks podcast Ep. 5 -Vicki Lovegrove MCSD

December 01, 2021 Chartered Society of Designers Season 1 Episode 5
Designer Talks Podcast
Designer Talks podcast Ep. 5 -Vicki Lovegrove MCSD
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Show Notes Transcript

Based in Staffordshire, UK, Vicki Lovegrove is a graphic designer and creative confidence coach.

She has worked in the creative industries for over 30 years, 18 of which have been in her home-based design consultancy. Vicki is a Member of the Chartered Society of Designers

Her design clients range from small businesses to global brands, and she has guest lectured in universities as far afield as Dehli.

Vicki successfully works her design and coaching business around her family, husband and two children, and Rocky, the studio dog.

My three main online links are:

Design: https://www.seventy-three.co.uk

Coaching: https://www.vickilovegrove.co.uk/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vickilovegrove/



Follow us at @csdminerva
Read our latest news on Linktree
Membership csd.org.uk

Lefteris Heretakis:

Hello, welcome to design talks podcast from the charts side of designers. I'm your host, Lefteris Heretakis and our guest today is Vicki Lovegrove. Welcome, Vicki.

Vicky Lovergrove:

Hi, nice to meet you.

Lefteris Heretakis:

It's fantastic to have you here. So tell us about you.

Vicky Lovergrove:

Oh, all right. Okay. So I'm a graphic designer. I'm based in the West Midlands of England. So I'm in a small town called Burton on Trent, which is just below Darby. And sort of across a bit from Birmingham. I've not lived here all my life. I've only lived here 15 years prior to live in here lived in Northampton, which is where I did where I went to college. And I grew up in Milton Keynes, hence, why excellent,

Lefteris Heretakis:

that's thick. So when did you realise you want to become a designer.

Unknown:

Um, I was about 14, when I realised I wanted to become a designer. And there are photos of me much younger with sitting there drawing with pens. I think I've, I've always had a bit of an obsession with pens and notepads and draw in, and Lego, and all those things. But when I was about 14, I, I was doing a GCSE course called CDT design and communication. And it was a technical drawing. Basically, with a little bit of design involved. We designed a record cover, things like that and had to go with airbrushes and a few markers. There was a, one of my teachers asked me if I wanted to take part in a logo design competition, which was an inter school competition. And it was for a youth writing scheme. So it was called young writers in action. I remember it now. And I did this logo, and I just sort of bashed out, you know, just drew it. And it got sent off, and I won. And that was, that was amazing. I've still got it on a t shirt. I guess they presented you with a T shirt with it on. And yeah, obviously, you know, looking at it, now somebody redrew it. So that they could reproduce it. But it was my idea. And that was just brilliant. And then, late, about year later, our school had a logo design competition. And I went for that, and I didn't win it. And I was furious. And, but that was it, then I just knew I wanted to do more of it. And at our school, in art, I was doing a lot of textiles. And I'm not great at drawing. But what one of my art teacher spotted was that when I drew I drew more shapes and shade in and rather than blending, I drew more in a more of a blocky way. And him and my design teacher, they both sort of said round about the same sort of time, you should maybe look at graphic design, because your work is just graphical anyway. And they spoke to my my parents and said, you know, Vicky should really go into graphic design. And that was it then. And then I spent my summers. We had to find work experience when we're about 14 as part of your GCSE. And I went and got work experience in a local, they would like a trade directory. And I found around I went down the yellow pages, and I found some places and found them. And they had a design department, which was just two people and two drawing boards. And I went there and did work experience. And then after that I went back to them a few times and went in my summer holidays and Easter holidays. And then I found another design advertising agency locally, who would let me go in in the summer as well. And I was just a bit obsessed with it by that point. And very, I'm going to be a graphic designer and that's that.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Yeah. Fantastic. So what was the contribution of your education towards this

Unknown:

is huge, huge because I would never have heard of it. I mean, the careers talk you went along to the careers person at school. And I don't know, I don't remember how they did it. But they just told me I should be a secretary. And I guess it's because I'm female. I don't know. I have spoken to other people. My age, just networking generally. And women that I've met, were told by the school, they couldn't be graphic designers. And they have same sort of ages May. So I think it was just maybe just something that wasn't very well known about in every school, I don't know. But my, my CDT teacher, he had trained as a graphic designer, not enjoyed it, and gone into teaching. So he knew loads about it. And obviously, he could see something.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Okay, so tell us about your, your university or what happened after after school.

Unknown:

I went to college in Northampton, and I did a National Diploma, and go graphic design, I had applied to get on the foundation art course, which was a year thinking, I'll do that, and then I'll do a degree or, or hnd, I wasn't sure. And I didn't, I didn't do very well at my interview for the foundation course. And they suggested, I did a graphic design National Diploma, again, it just kept getting pushed down this route. And so I went along, and had an interview there, and I got accepted straightaway, based on my portfolio, so I sort of intended it, but went down a different route in the end, but national deployment was great. It's, you had short projects, not a lot of dynamic writing or anything. It's very, it's very creative. Looking back at it, you were given a lot of time to experiment. And then that led me into my hnd. Again, lots of short projects, which is, you don't notice it at the time. But that's great training for working as a graphic designer, because you do have to think quite quickly. And I know the degree courses, they worked on much longer things and I don't know how that would have helped them. But yeah, he was, I think, perfect for me.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Perfect. So do you come from a creative background is your family creative?

Unknown:

My, my dad was digger driver. And my mom didn't work. My mom painted. She painted horses. And she also did some pen and ink drawings of like villages nearby. And they were really, really good. And she hadn't they she just didn't do anything with it. You know, she didn't sell it. She just did it for her own enjoyment. And then she eventually stopped because we had a small house so she didn't want to keep getting stuff out. And then putting it away she bought she needed was a room just for her stuff. But she didn't have that room. So that sort of petered out for her. But when I was really little, I used to often see her sitting there with her easel painting, and she's just really, really good at it. I mean, great eye for it. My dad was pretty creative, too. Although he didn't really do a lot of it. He he liked. He liked to enter competitions, slogan writing competitions. And one time he it was all usually for Guinness. And one time he read out, he's like inside, sent off and they were really good. I was like, wow, this is so good. And then he, you know, if you'd had the opportunity, which he didn't have. He could have been really good in advertising.

Lefteris Heretakis:

He was a copywriter.

Unknown:

Yeah, yeah. He didn't learn to write until I was a child. So it was it was a huge deal for him to enter those sorts of things. He was in hospital most of his childhood. So he Yeah, he didn't he didn't have formal schooling as But he used to often. You didn't do it in front of you, you'd occasionally find that little sketches. He had an interest in birds, you'd find little sketches of birds dotted about maybe just really good. So I think they both had it in them. My mom wanted to be an architect. And she was told that you couldn't become an architect as a female if you went to a secondary modern school. But that was the 60s.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Yeah. So you kind of had a smaller agency in the house? Could. So how do you see the future of design?

Unknown:

Oh, yeah. Well, it was lovely. And it's lovely and frustrating is that lot of a lot of people are having a go. So that's lovely. And, but unfortunately, I'm seeing a lot of people hinge all their creative efforts in software like camp. And that's not really being creative. But you know, people are having a go. You can't knock people for that. I think I talked briefly, college about 10 years ago, and the students there. We're more concerned about software than about the ideas. And I still see that to a point. But that's, you know, I don't want to lump everybody in the same boat, because there's a lot of creative stuff out there. I mean, it's just more accessible, I think, for people now to be creative. And more people feel that they can, they can have a go, which is she's great.

Lefteris Heretakis:

So what does the passionate except

Unknown:

I, I have quite a big interest in records. I, I collect records for myself, I read a lot a big set of books, actually. I've got young kids, so I don't spend a lot of time on myself, trying to learn the guitar. When I coach people, I always try and encourage them to have a creative outlet outside of work, and doesn't really matter what it is. But we shouldn't just confine our creativity to our job. So I'm trying to practice what I preach.

Lefteris Heretakis:

If you would start again, or would you do something different?

Unknown:

I've thought about this, quite a lot of my clients over the years have been in engineering and manufacturing. And I love going to an engineering plan. I would have liked to have done engineering, I think I didn't know you could. So you know, I think engineering when I was a kid, I probably just thought of mechanics, but engineering so much, so much more than that it's there. And I do find that side of things really interesting. And it's definitely how I like taking things apart and putting things back together. It's definitely how my brain works. And graphic design is a type of engineering in a way. It's just visual engineering. Yeah, I would have really liked to have done that I saw something on a TV a while ago that they were talking about an engineering scheme for girls. And it was I think it was like ba EE systems or somewhere like that. And it just looks so exciting. Oh, God, I'd love to do that. To do aeroplanes or something.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Wonderful. So what has been your most rewarding experience?

Unknown:

In design?

Lefteris Heretakis:

Just around design, but if you want to link something else, I mean, yeah, sure.

Unknown:

I, I've had some really nice projects over the years. My business is just me. And I've I fortunate I've been fortunate enough to meet some people who will let me just have free reign. And I have worked on a few rebranding projects. And there was one in particular which was a merger so it was a company in Ireland merging for company in the Netherlands. And they needed a new name and new identity and everything that went with it. And that was a quite a challenging time for me If I was, I'd been pushing to try and get some teaching work at the local college. And so I'd finally got that. So I was doing this massive project. I was teaching part time at the college, I had a toddler, and I got a puppy. And I'm so rushed off my fate. But that was one of the best jobs I've ever done. It was it was great.

Lefteris Heretakis:

You were asked to copy the name as well.

Unknown:

Yeah, we didn't do it on my own. I, the industry, it was an IT company. And I, just by chance, months before, I'd met this woman on Twitter, who had, who used to be marketing director and McCone. And she lived fairly close to me, we met and we had coffee, and we got on. So when I got off with this project, I asked her if she wants to get involved. So we worked on all of that together. She actually came up with the name. It was really clever. But yeah, we're a team. So it's just the two of us. Brilliant. It was lovely.

Lefteris Heretakis:

How does design affect your everyday life?

Unknown:

It's just always there, isn't there? It's you're just constantly spotting stuff and rearranging stuff in your brain? Yeah, it's, it's just, I don't think it'll ever not be there. I did contemplate pushing my role more into coaching and doing that full time. And it wasn't until the pandemic. And when my work my design, what dropped off? Did I realise how much it would hurt me to lose it. So I do have to keep designing, because it's just never stops, doesn't your brain just never stopped. So it's got to have an outlet. I'm surrounded by books and images and records. I mean records. So that's because of graphic design. You know why I got into that? And? Yeah, it's, it's called Life would be really poor without it. I can't. I can't imagine doing a job, which didn't involve design. Or you can be creative in any job. And you meet some people and they're like, Oh, I'm not creative at all. And then they tell you what they do. And you think well, you will you are creative. Just your brain just moves at a different way to mine. But to not do something visual, visually creative every day. It's just awful. And yeah. Yeah, I couldn't imagine life without it.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Who your favourite record cover designer?

Unknown:

I wouldn't say it's my favourite. But one that always stands out to me there was a band in the early 80s called Asia, okay. And when I was doing my GCSE, CDT, we had to, we had to experiment with these airbrushes. And this cover had been done with airbrushes, and it is of a dragon coming out of the seats proper fan to see sort of like soft rock album cover. And it was just, you know, I just desperately wanted to create like that. And that one whenever I think record covers that one was done goes in my mind and album covers by Boston. There's a rock thing going through here. Basically, rock and metal album covers. In my mind, I don't know who created them. Okay.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Was it has been your biggest mistake.

Unknown:

Biggest mistake workwise was working with some suppliers who were not insured. Yeah, I didn't realise it was my fault. I didn't check. I used to take on website work. I didn't design the websites myself, but I had a couple of people that I worked with, who did. So I do the I do visuals and they build them. And we had a we had a year where it was sort of about this time of year actually. All of the websites went down, and none of their backups. are okay, they would all corrupted. And I've got professional indemnity insurance, which I learned it straightaway. And then I found out they didn't. Oh, it's just awful. It's just proper pit of the stomach sick me then. And, yeah, I, after that I decided I wasn't going to get involved with being somebody who passed on work to web developers, again, I will recommend them. They can work direct clients and work directly with them. But I'm not going to be this middle person anymore. I'm not going to try and pretend to be an agency. That's, it just didn't sit right with me after that I had no control. And it was just horrible. I recommend people now but I won't. I won't get involved. And it went on for months. Because once you learn your PII insurance, it just, it goes on for ages. I was fortunate in that I didn't have to claim. But it was, it was just such a horrible experience. Their values didn't sit with mine. You know, I'm, I'm dead professional. And I just assumed they were being so to write. And they weren't. So it was disappoint in and quite frightening, I have to say, because when it's just you in the business, and yes, working with some quite large clients, you just don't know what's going to happen.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Which leads us on to our next question. So what are the values you adhere to? As a designer?

Unknown:

Integrity is a big one. I really do try and choose clients who have the same values as me. And if if they don't, if I'm, I have, I've had to learn over the years to trust my gut. Whenever I've ignored my gut, it's bitten me. So I've ended up with with my with a debt, or you know, somebody's best me around in another way. And it's always when I've ignored that feeling. And often those opportunities come along when you're a bit quiet. And you think, Oh, I'll do it because I'm quiet. And there's a bit of you going, don't do it for you that but there's many. So you do it. And that's when it goes wrong. So yeah, I, I always try and meet clients, I don't like to work remotely with a lot of clients, but I'd like to have met them first. Because then you get a real feeling whether they're right for you or not. And I have turned down work because I've thought no, this person is really going to mess me about just got a feeling. So that then I've just sort of maybe recommended to somebody else, or just sort of said, I don't think we work, you know, and when I do recommend them to anybody else I sort of said that I can't, I've got a feeling about this person. See what you think. Because we might be that we're just not right for each other. But I wouldn't work with companies, which do anything that will get people into debt, or things like vaping or cigarettes, I wouldn't work with companies.

Lefteris Heretakis:

So who has been your biggest influence in life?

Unknown:

In design is definitely one of my teachers, a couple of my teachers from school. So I had the first teacher I had on my design and Communications course he was he was lovely. And he left he moved back to Scotland. And when he left, he gave me a portfolio. And he said, You know, I really, really want you to try hard in this and you'll need a portfolio so I bought your portfolio and I just really choked me up. It was just so kind of him. He was just such a lovely man. He really used to push me out of my comfort zone there and challenge why I'd done things. And then the guy who replaced him again He was the one he was the one who had a graphic design background. And he also did that. If you did something, it's it. Well, he say you've done it well, but had you considered doing this as well, you know, constantly pushing you. And it was him, who really did sort of support me going forward. Things weren't great at home at one point. And he was just always there. And even now, I still know him. I'm still friends with him. And the project I was mentioning earlier, he rec, he was chatting to somebody by the side of a football pitch or rugby pitch or something. And they just got talking. And he's, and he recommended me. And that's how I got that job. So yeah, huge influence. Yeah.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Great. So what other skills are needed in design, like, finance and management? Would you? How do you feel about all that?

Unknown:

I hate it. I really liked it. I think the main skill is listening. You can design unless you listen. That that's, that is the main, the main thing, things like accounting, and oh, God, I, you know, if you're not good at it, and you don't enjoy it, outsource it. That's what I say. So I outsource that. I hate new business as well. I hate trying to find new business, which is just terrible, isn't it? Because you, you need to find work. I like networking. So I like to do that and meet people face to face and get to know people and hopefully get business referred. But obviously that doesn't keep going for long. But doing anything cold. I wouldn't do cold calling. I've tried stuff like that. No, I will I'll go around the houses and do everything. To avoid doing that. Which isn't the best I guess for business, but it is just maze. I haven't got mouths to feed in the business. I just have to find enough work for me. So it's not huge pressure. Yeah, accounts in new business, horrible.

Lefteris Heretakis:

What is the value of research and design

Unknown:

is really valuable. You can't I mean, you can't design until you know who the person that is the end result in the design, you know who the customer, you got to get really get to understand them. Got to understand competitors in the industries that you're working in as well. And also find out more about people that you're designing for as well. I'd like to know how they think what their opinion on design is as well. And that's hard for people because you're sort of say to them, what have you seen that you really liked? And what have you seen that you really disliked? I like to know, the polar ends of what they've seen in design. And people come to you to get something designed. But when you ask them those sort of questions, say a bit? Oh, I don't know. I don't know if I've ever noticed design and then they have to really think about it. And

Lefteris Heretakis:

it doesn't come up in, in the collaboration during during your collaboration.

Unknown:

Yeah, it does. And that's part of the research, isn't it? Some people do find that incredibly difficult. Yeah. But I think that's really important to find out all about the people who are going to be making the decision in the end as well, because I guess a lot of designers who are not more man bands that may or might not get to meet the client. So research might be something different. So be all the other elements like research in the market and competitors and end users like I said, but because I'm working I'm often working with owner manager businesses. And I need I like to know all about them as a person because once you start finding out about them as well. They will make they're making the decision ultimately. But you can start to design just by talking to them you know, things pop up in your mind and I As really, for me, that's a really important part of the research process. But yeah, it's part of the briefing. But the to go hand in hand, I don't think you can write a brief without doing decent research.

Lefteris Heretakis:

What do you do is continuous professional development.

Unknown:

I'm doing quite a bit at the moment, on the coaching side of things. Last year, I trained in a technique called haven in, I'd been to see a coach myself, and I experienced this technique, and it was brilliant. It just completely unlocked my mind. So I trained in that last year. And it's, it's a touch technique, which is used to help people overcome trauma. And I'm finding it quite useful for people who have experienced bullying. So that's how I will use it going forward. Also, if you've got something that you can't get over, it really helped with that. And next year, I'll do some more coaching training, as well. And design wise, I just try, try and keep on top of what's going on, you know, I subscribe to campaign. I'm always looking, I find advertising. Pretty interesting, but I don't do any of it myself. So I've watched and read a lot about that. I'm always reading books. So it's, it's just constant, isn't it? You just got to keep yourself abreast of what's going on, even if you're not involved in it.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Absolutely. How do you maintain your enthusiasm?

Unknown:

It's hard. It's hard when you work, I work at home on my own. I've worked at home Ryan for 18 years, it is hard to maintain that enthusiasm. But you just pre pandemic, I would just get out, go and visit places and things that once you're out and about, even if it's a walk, it's things just pop up, you know, and you just, it's just sort of topping up that mental creative battery as it were. But I'm always on my husband's a designer. So we talk about it a lot. He's a creative director in a events company. So he does very different things to what I would do. And we have that sort of chat that I guess that you'd have in a in an agency Studio. I do miss that. I do miss the banter. Even now 18 years old, I do miss the banter. But just keep networking and just keep abreast of what's going on. That's the only way you can do it. I think I think if you get tired of it, you have to take yourself out of it for a bit. And within no time. You just need to be doing doing design again, you know, but it does. It is useful to take yourself out of it for short bursts. Definitely. And just get out and experience things. Which she obviously has been quite hard. Yes, recently. Yeah.

Lefteris Heretakis:

So what are the qualities of a designer?

Unknown:

From for me, I think it's all about I've mentioned it before less than being able to focus on something that's not you. You know, remove yourself from any ego and try and experience what the person you're designing for experience is. I'm quite introverted. I mean, I can switch on. But I am definitely introverted. And it takes a lot of effort. When you're introverted to you know, to get involved with stuff. But you have to Yes, but that's where we're really good at listening. When introverted people and I think a lot of creatives are you know, a bit better To focus, you know, you really, you do really have to be able to focus and doing graphics, you have to flip a lot around, you don't, you might be working on one thing, and then you've got to switch and go on to another thing and that you don't have days and days and days at a time, not in the level of graphic design that I'm in. It's very much a job, you know, is a career, but it's a job. And people really rely on you. And it's just me. So I have to be able to drop things pick things up. And so being able to focus, I'm not multitask, but be able to go from one thing to another, then go back and get back into focus. That's a serve as a real skill. And it does take time to do that. I worked in a recruitment advertising agency in the 90s. And I, I'd have to design I've got about 100 150 ads a week. I mean, recruit, and ads, it was hideous. But they would just come in and they want it now and want it now everyone's gonna want it now. So that's where I definitely built that up. You know, I'd go cow, I've got a bit of time on that. I'll come back to that. You know. And that is a huge scale. Scale. So Matt, time management, I guess. Management? Yeah,

Lefteris Heretakis:

yeah. So what is your advice will be your advice to somebody who's starting out as a designer.

Unknown:

My advice would be, don't make it all about the programmes that you use, they are just tools. When I was at college, they had always stressed carry a notebook, carry a notebook, do a sketchbook. And it's felt like such a chore at the time. I'm never without one. Now. You know, pen and paper is so important. And you can refer back to them and it's brilliant people, you do need to be a bit analogue. So it must be quite hard for younger people who do everything digitally. But I know of my son, he's 14 he's had sketchbooks, since he could pick up a pen. He, he just ploughs through them, he fills them up. So often. And he's just starting to move on to a tablet, I would say just take yourself back, remove yourself from all the tech every now and again. And you know, draw. Even if it's rubbish, it's still putting your ideas out there. And the more you get them out, the more you have. It's, it's, it's a machine isn't it? It's, you've just got to keep getting them out and, and don't just limit yourself to what you can see on a computer as well. Get out and visit places. And if you've got spare time, a lot of people have go go and see exhibitions, go to museums. It Yeah, museums is full of old stuff, but it's it's everything's old. Ultimately, we're just rehashing a lot of stuff. And we need to see what's been done before in order to progress that way. So and it's not all on the internet. And that trust me my head. You know, you have to go and see exhibitions. I like to go to fashion exhibitions. So there's a really amazing museum up in County Durham called Bo's Museum and it's a good two and a half hour drive for me. And I just have to have brilliant fashion exhibitions on there. So occasionally I got there. Just get yourself out of the cities go and see what's going on. outside of London, Manchester Birmingham, just there's a lot going on. That's creative elsewhere and lots of different disciplines. Go and absorb all of that because it will help your work. If you just look at graphic design and or video animation, you'll become very boring. That's the kiss of death and that becoming boring.

Lefteris Heretakis:

What advice for clients

Unknown:

finance don't feel you have to tell a graphic designer what you want. You have that A creative brief, tell them your problems. Don't say I want this here. I want that there. Could you fill all this? whitespace? Make the logo bigger. Make the logo bigger. I know. Yeah. You know, you don't like something? Also tell them why you don't like something? Because I think sometimes it can be very much. Oh, I don't like that. Why don't you like it? I don't know. I just don't like it. Well, you know, you've got to consider why you don't like things in order to give feedback. I mean, we were we're hard as nails, aren't we as graphic designers? We can take criticism, you know, more than most, I imagine. And you're not going to hurt somebody's feelings. You're going to just help them get to the end result if it gives you no decent feedback. And and oh, god don't. One of my bugbears is when people say, Oh, could you just make it look more funky? Now, no, I can't do that. Because funky to me is purple, and it's flared. It's what's funky to me is not funky for you. More detail, please. So yeah, people shouldn't be afraid to give decent feedback, give, think about what you really want and what you want it to solve. That's, that's the key, you know, it's, it's not going to work unless solving something. It's not decoration. It's not graphic decoration. It's graphic design. And it has to have a function. And that's where a lot of people don't understand. I have had clients come to me in the past, and they've said, Oh, could we need a new logo. And then when you chat to them, they haven't even got a marketing strategy. You don't need a logo yet, you will. But you need a marketing strategy. Let me introduce you to the marketing strategist I work with. And then all of a sudden, they realise that they've got no values, they've got no vision. They don't know where they go in. And until they know all that there's absolutely no point designing anything. There's somebody I'm hoping to work with next year, and she just was lost in her business. And for lots of different reasons. But she knew she needed to rebrand. And I said to her you need. First of all, you need to find out who you are, you know, it's just her in the business. So she's working with a stylist, she's getting some photography done. They'll do most of the unpicking that I need before she even gets to that next stage, and she's getting there. So it's in your need to do all that first as a client. Because otherwise, you're just wasting money. I've seen no end of people, they'll show me all their mark marketing collateral and I say, oh, look done if it worked. And you just glance at and you think well, why did you do it? And did you actually pay for any of this because there is a within graphic design people may not understand you are constantly fighting with printers for work. And people will think, oh, I need a brochure where where do I get a brochure from our go to printers. And a printer will often give the design for free. And they just want it they just want to print stuff. And they don't put majority of the time. Obviously not always, but majority of the time, they don't put a consideration in that's needed. And so then you end up with these clients who've got tonnes and tonnes of wasted collateral because they were trying to do it on the cheap and you can't mark it on the cheap. It will just make you look cheap. It reflect what you put into marketing and design reflects back. So yeah, there isn't is an investment. But if you get a return on your investment if it's done properly, absolutely this this button, why invest in it? So yeah, clients just stop looking at it as an overhead as a cost. It's an investment and then it will work for you. Let's put on your find the right people.

Lefteris Heretakis:

What's the most important thing you've discovered? A designer

Unknown:

I think insurance I had insurance from day one, I will add God you have to, you have to give a bit of yourself away. And to keep clients you have to give, as well as getting what you're paid for. You know, it's all to a point, it's about the extra value that you give. And yeah, it's, that's how you're going to retain them. Clients can go with any designer that they like. But unless they like you as a person, and then you've opened yourself up, and you've let them see a bit of you and you've done, done them a favour, I think there is an element of that as well. Doesn't have to be huge, could be tiny, even dropping them a card and thanking them for their business. People will then feel attached to you. And you do have to give a bit of yourself away. That's that's the thing I've learned over the years. I, I get very fond of my clients. I hate to lose them, I rarely do I lose them. I usually sack them first. But because you you, you invest so much of so much time into thinking about their business and how you can help them. And when they see that, they need to see that. It's more than just delivering absolutely what they asked for. Human.

Lefteris Heretakis:

Is there anything else you'd like to add up at all?

Unknown:

Oh, don't No. Don't. For people who work on their own like myself, I really would encourage collaboration as well. That's something I would add. I collaborate with various people. And we're a great team. For years, I tried to sell my business as a design agency. And then I would go to job, go go for jobs and realise they wanted that some clients wanted the sign agency experience. And they weren't going to get that from me. Because it's me. So now i i send in what I do is I work with other experts. And we're a team. So collaborating is brilliant. And really would encourage lots of people to build up an extended team, which they can call on as and when they need

Lefteris Heretakis:

Fantastic! ell Vicki, thank you so much. t's been fantastic. Very, very, ery interesting. And thank ou, all the best with everyt ing. All the best. Bye