We've asked our brilliant designer Emily Morrish to give us a run-down on what to expect as a graduate designer here at Amarelle.
What kind of projects do you work on?
All sorts! Over the last year I have worked on projects for brand and marketing companies, tech companies, solicitors and accountants, recruitment agencies, a cheese factory and a charity. We are involved in a huge variety of sectors, which makes office design super exciting! There is also a surprising amount of cross over between design for office, retail and hospitality.
What does your average day entail?
I always start the day with a cup of tea!
A lot of our work is office based – using AutoCAD for drawings and Adobe applications for rendering, graphics, layout and presentations – but we do still go back to pen and paper when working on block planning and brainstorming ideas.
We do get out of the office too; we usually go to site to meet new clients and to take a brief. This is one of my favourite parts of the job, as you can pick up so much from the client’s body language and their reactions to your suggestions! We will also do a survey of the space to check dimensions. Being inside the space rather than just seeing it on plan always gets my imagination going, and my mind is usually full of ideas on the way back to the office!
What skills do you need?
I think communication is the most important skill to have when being a designer. Not only must you communicate and collaborate with the rest of the design team, but also with the account managers (who are dealing directly with your client) and pre-contracts who have to know exactly what you are thinking, to be able to price and build to your specification. In addition, liaising with suppliers and sub-contractors is important, to create your desired finish with suitable products, and to understand how your design can best be constructed.
You will also need good problem solving skills, when something that you have envisioned simply cannot be constructed; or if something goes wrong on site, it’s up to you to think of a solution!
What perks do you get as a designer?
As cliché as it sounds, being able to do my hobby as a career is the best perk! There are few days where you are stuck on a computer filling out a spread sheet – almost every day is a creative day! I also love being able to go to site before, during, and once the build is completed. Seeing your design in the flesh is amazing!
Having the opportunity to go to networking events and meeting others in our industry is lots of fun; we’ve been invited to graffiti art classes, a life drawing session, a cycle race and a stand-up paddle boarding event this year, to name a few! It’s great to be with colleagues outside of the office too – our team is full of characters and they are even more fun to be around, without the pressure of work!
Other events and visits such as Clerkenwell Design Week and 100% Design are great ways to discover new trends, technologies and products, and keep your creative juices flowing!
Was it what you were expecting?
It’s more than I had hoped for! I knew from my very first interview, that I would love working here. Working in such an inspiring and inclusive environment makes each day different and exciting, and being part of such a great team has also really boosted by own confidence. I have learnt so much over the last 12 months, and continue to learn each day with the help of Aaron & Sarah’s experience. With the support of the team, I’ve never felt like a dummy for asking silly questions or just not knowing something!