James Martin is a Logo Designer, Graphic Designer and Author. James is also a builder of brands who runs a design studio in Southampton, England, UK. James has been a designer for 15 years and now specialises in brand and logo creation. Let’s chat more with James about work life in this #DesignwithDot interview!
Meet James Martin: Logo Designer, Graphic Designer and Author. He’s also a builder of brands who runs a design studio in Southampton, England, UK.
It’s such a pleasure to have you on the #DESIGNWITHDOT blog James!
1. What is the most challenging part of being a designer? What’s the best part?
The Most challenging part of being a designer is the need to be “ON IT” all the time – this can be a struggle some days as we are only human and some days we can’t be assed. Personally i have found that sticking to a solid routine Monday to Friday does alleviate the “cant be assed” feeling so i would defo suggest any creatives out their work on their routine and daily structure. The best part for me is the people i get to meet and create work for… their dream and my creativity align to create something cool – thats pretty magical to be a part of.
2. How did you grow your Instagram page so successfully? What’s your secret?
Well firstly I never set out to grow it which probably really helped me not fall into the “traps and hacks” that a lot of people fall into – once i decided to niche down into logo design for sure the rest flowed from there. I’m always honest about the way I think and share my ideas openly – this gives my audience and authentic look into the world of a designer thats in the trenches with them. This raw, authentic (and mostly unfiltered) approach makes me human and relatable.
3. What’s your dream? (Where do you want to see your life and the world in 10 years? Year 2031!?
I would love to grow into more of a mentor role for the young designers out there – i have plans to build some badass logo courses and to start coaching soon and thats super exciting as i love giving back and helping the young bucks and buckettes in the design world. I will always be a logo designer though and that will never leave my repertoire – i may just be a little more picky about the projects I choose.
What is your philosophy about life? Or a mantra, quote or proverb you want to share with us? EFFORT IS FREE
4. You’ve worked with so many amazing people and projects. What has been your favorite experience in your career so far?
The best experience has definitely been publishing a book on creativity and logo design… it was always a dream of mine (that i never thought would happen) but when the publishers reached out to me in early 2020 and asked me to write a book i almost popped. That would never have happened without all of my clients though (mostly great – some awful) but the individual experiences have made me the designer i am today.
5. What advice would you give to your younger self 10 years ago?
Don’t change a thing
6. What are your thoughts on social media? Hate it? Can’t live without it? Give us your best social media tip or insight!
Social media is great – it some of the people on it that are ruining it for others. My tip for people using social media to show their work and to possibly gain business would be – ” post as if there is no like button ” – that way you will always share the stuff you want to, rather than chasing likes and followers or adhering to an algorithm.
7. What is your philosophy about life? Or a mantra, quote or proverb you want to share with us?
EFFORT IS FREE
8. What’s your dream travel destination or the next place you want to visit? #TravelWithDot
I’d love to go to Japan – the skiing – the culture – the people – love everything about it
For example, at the moment I am working on branding projects for a coach/advisor for billionaires, an electronic music producer, a finance management & training company for martial artists, a tech recycling company, and an online personal trainer.
9. What’s your favorite food experience you would take me to in your city, and what would we eat? #EatWithDot
Well I live in a little village so there is nothing here – but my wife is the best and massive foodie so we would probably create something at home and use the fresh veg from our garden.
10. Who has been a mentor or someone you have looked up to for advice and inspiration? How do they help or how have they helped you?
I don’t have One Particular person in all honesty – my parents have played a massive roll in who I am and have nurtured my slightly crazy brain – I surround myself with good people – and also make time to chat to many other creatives and business owners. Having a broad knowledge from multiple areas and from multiple people has really helped me in my career. Group Think is dangerous so try to stay well clear of “click group” scenarios
11. Dragon or Unicorn? & Why?
Dragon – because I could make myself a fire if I was cold.
12. What are you working on right now, what gets you excited?
Building my logo course.
THE FAST FIVE
1. Your favorite Instagram feed right now:
2. What is the Best Life advice (or lesson learned in business) you ever received:
Surround yourself with these three people — Someone you can teach / someone on your level / someone you can learn from
3. Best website/destination you go to for inspiration:
Pinterest – was great when designing my new kitchen
4. The App you can’t live without right now?
5. Book we should all read?
Dare to lead – Brene Brown