Professional Development

Professional Development Ideas

Although my long term goal is to be a teacher I don’t plan to do this until my children are older due to how intensive a PGCE is:

This has got me considering a few options for what to do in between which will fit in with family commitments.

  • Graphic Design Work Placement to gain experience and improve my professional practice.
  • Graphic Design Jobs in particular part-time to fit around family
  • Look at Design Companies in Sheffield
  • Enter some Design Competitions to improve design skills
  • Selling on Etsy/Folksy, etc as I way to make an income
  • Explore photography due to the convergent nature of creative industries means that more and more disciplines are being combined and being able competent in several creative disciplines is becoming a necessity.
  • Networking – Updating and getting contacts on LinkedIn, Behance, etc.
  • Explore illustration as it is something I enjoy and I would like to use my illustration skills in my work, in particular to sell on Etsy
  • Looking further into Teaching and getting school experience for when I do apply for a PGCE.

Placements are an important part in gaining experience and a foot into the design world along with entering design competitions. However, I’m not 100% sure I want to work within the Graphic Design industry at this time but it is something I enjoy.

“Only a few graduates get jobs as a result of their final degree shows. Internships are a more common way of finding work and building up experience, making contacts and increasing your portfolio. The design world is small and design agencies will recommend interns who have impressed them, or contact them if there are suitable opportunities in the future.

Courses often provide the opportunity to work on projects with leading businesses and organisations. There may also be opportunities to take an optional work placement in industry or to work abroad as part of the Erasmus+ programme.

Participating in relevant competitions and exhibitions can help you to promote yourself and build up your contacts. You could also try and get some work experience, for example working for a film production company, television channel or even a magazine, or do some voluntary work on local projects.” –


On Friday Scott showed me and Sam round one of the Photography Studios. Explaining lighting, aperture, ISO and shutter speed in relation to the lighting. Not sure how much of this has stuck in but I have been playing around with my old Canon 350D, some examples here:

Beau in Bath Splash



UPDATE: I have kept practising taking a range of photos, some which have been in low light conditions – this has proved tricky and my lack of photography knowledge has let me down. With the convergent nature of the creative industries being able to broaden my skill set could help to gain employment or freelance work.

Red Firework



York Railway Museum Great Hall

Graphic Design

Morfitt – Freelance Work

My father-in-law plays in a band playing songs from the 60s, 70s, 80s such as Eagles, Beatles and Drifters songs. A logo and artwork was required for a band t-shirt. His idea was to have the “evolution of man image with one of them as polic officer holding a trunshon whilst scratching his arse.”

Image result for EVOLUTION OF MAN

He wanted the band name “Morfitt” to be “in a nice font underneath“. I went one step further and ran with the police theme for the band name. It was a quick turnaround job as he wanted it for a gig.

Initial “Nice Font” Ideas
Morfitt Logo and Evolution of Man Artwork
Morfitt Logo and Evolution of Man Artwork

I created my own version of Police emblem to form the O (emblems vary by police force).

Image result for police emblem uk

I originally went with a Serif typeface because I felt it suited their style of music – middle of the road/soft rock/folk rock/pop. However it is hard to align this with the style of artwork he wants which is anti-police/anarchy/punk.

I played around with the typeface to see how it would look with different typefaces.

Logo Work, Different Typefaces
Logo Work, Different Typefaces

Having getting feedback about the typeface from the client, I worked the 4th logo shown in the image above.

I cleaned up the badge emblem and also the evolution of man artwork.

T-Shirt Mock Up
T-Shirt Mock Up

This is has been a hard brief to work due to the juxtaposition between the imagery wanted and the band’s music style.  I don’t believe it is possible to combine the two without it either looking incoherent or without leaning further to one style than the other. The final logo is probably the nearest I could get without going too far either way but I don’t feel it reflects their music style, however, the client is happy with the design “looks cool” – Buskin Busman

The band also had differing views on how the work should look and after the design was approved the singer messaged me

“i think it (front) looks more like a protest than a band so any word or pic which rectifies that but it is ok as it is anyways…Neednt be guitar and neednt be on caveman = even a musical note or clef in a random pos would do it”

There wasn’t a back to be printed originally but he then wanted the tour dates on the back, he then messaged me again:

“Can u fit ” s y piloc ” in the police blocky logo n e where  on the back and perhaps ” and the echo anchors” bracketed small font  following the “morfitt” or wotever you think looks best”

The other band members disagreed with his ideas and it was decided to keep the front the same and the back to have the tour dates. He wanted to keep adding extra information but at the same time wanted the t-shirts printed quickly.

Where there is more than one person making the decision caused delays and wasn’t easy to do. If I was to do this again I would suggest naming one person as the main decision maker.

Morfitt Website

Another rush job has he wanted the domain name printed on the t-shirts but didn’t have a website. For the sake of speed, I went through template options with the band. A few tweaks to the template plus colour changes were made to make sure the theme worked for the band.

He also wanted the website populating with a few posts linking to videos the band had put on Youtube. Unfortunately, there wasn’t any good quality images of the band – all either low res phone images or stills from Youtube videos. I came up with the idea of adding a halftone effect to hide the poor quality and then converting to duo-tone. The duo-tone added a pop to the images that wasn’t there before. Although in an ideal world good quality images would be used – this is something I have fed back to the band.

Morfitt Website Homepage
Morfitt Blog Post Page


On reflection overall considering the time constraints I believe I did a good job of the site.

Other Freelance Work:

Placement and Portfolio Review

I spoke to Paul about my portfolio and applying for a placement. We also discussed the job market and how competitive it is, with some jobs getting over 100 applications. The requirement for flexibility with the job as in possible short notice overtime. This is a concern for me in regard to childcare issues.

I discussed my concerns that I’m not on the same level as the rest of my cohort, however, Paul has given me confidence that I have other skills which others may not and I should “sell myself” on that basis. We also discussed how some others on my course already have connections within the design world which is something I don’t have. Networking is so important in so many industries, on a positive note I already have my portfolio on Behance, Pinterest and Twitter. I also have an Instagram account, Flickr page and LinkedIn profile.

I have written out a draft email which I will email to Paul to check over.

I have looked at the Graphic Design Agencies which are on my side of Sheffield, I don’t want to go too far as I be travelling by bus but I also don’t want to be too far from my children.

So far I have come up with the following design agencies, which I will look into further:

Vivid Creative
Ink and Water
The Nu Agency
Field Design
Diva Creative
Leap Design
Volta Creative
Side by Side
Tonik Studio
DS Creative
Insta Design
Mesh Viz
Moors Creative

Junior Graphic Design Job Market Sheffield

Today (27/10/2017) I have taken a look at the job market today in regard to Graphic Design jobs.

First job that pops up is paying £19k-£21k and 2 years general Graphic Design experience is required and ideally experience with sign-making using a flatbed cutter or CNC router.

A middle weight position with a minimum of 5 years’ experience paying £20-£25k.

Another employer is wanting a 3+ years’ experience with a strong web portfolio, no salary mentioned.

Graphic Web Developer, £20k a year but must understand web development.

Graphic Design Assistant paying £18-20k, minimum 1 year of experience required.

Digital Designer/Graphic Designer position, experienced required and knowledge of web development.

My search today did not find any Junior Graphic Design positions full or part-time positions. All the positions above are full-time. What I have learnt is that there is a strong emphasis on web design and development – these two areas have converged over the years into 1 multi-disciplined job rather than two separate jobs in many cases. A Graphic Designer today is not only expected to be able to confidently use InDesign and Illustrator they are required to, at the very least, to be competent basic knowledge of web development – in some cases more than basic knowledge. Graphic Design is converging with Digital Media/Web Development and in the Digital Age this is not likely to change.

“For graphic designers, a career move into digital design makes sense. The shift to online platforms for almost all traditional media means skilled designers with an eye for the digital are in high demand”  –

“Learning to code websites will mean that you have a “future proof” skill. In terms of the foreseeable future, the internet and online marketing are not going away. The time that you invest in learning this new skill will put you in a position to produce work that is highly valued by employers and potential clients.” –

Also understanding how things work can help you create better designs, everything has it’s limit and understanding how websites work helps you not disappoint a client by promising something which can’t be delivered or is outside the client’s budget.

“Also, quite simply, you will be a better designer if you have a basic understanding of how the development process works, why certain programming languages are used, and how they restrict or expand your ability to design your intentions. When you have a better sense of what’s technically realistic before you start designing, you’ll be less likely to waste your time and more likely to focus your energy focusing on the parts of your site that aren’t up to the whims of the developer’s implementation.” –

Being able to design and code makes you more attractive to employers and probably more likely to land you a job.

“Those developers/designers who have a good grasp of skills across both sides of the spectrum are highly sought after in the industry.” –

Although in the past I have built simple sites from scratch my current knowledge of web design/development is lacking and I do need to learn more about current standards.

I have continued to look but I haven’t come across any part-time design jobs.

“There are opportunities for part-time work, but these may be hard to find.” –

Looked at Job Sites for Creative Jobs:


Iris Associates and Jaywing

Iris Associates is now part of Jaywing. Jaywing have offices around the world and work with some big brands such as Castrol: Jaywing created a storyboard for a 15-minute film for Castrol. Later they designed and built the set too.

Filming – The 15-minute film was set in New York

Jaywing have worked with other big brands such as Doritos, Ann Summers and First Direct amongst others.

However, back when they were Iris, they produced a promotional mailer in 2003 – which I have a copy of.  They showcased work for Iceland, University of Nottingham and LearnDirect amongst brands in the promo.

Very interesting contrasting and comparing how design has moved on. However, what I find more interesting is some of this design work was done today, over 10 years later I don’t think it would look out of place. Good design is still good design even after many years, likewise bad design is still bad design years later.

Broader Creative World

This year saw ‘Millennial Pink’ as the new hot colour.

Marc Ange’s Le Refuge.
Vasonaso by Matteo Cibic
Matteo Cibic
Dezeen Pinterest roundups Pink
Nika Zupanc

Colour of the moment “millennial pink” dominates at Milan design week

However, as we move into 2018 the colour of next year is set to be Ultra Violet.

Pantone names Ultra Violet as colour of the year for 2018

In 2015 Pantone named a shade of pale pink and pale blue as the colours of 2016.  The Pink is is very reminiscent of the Millennial Pink.

Pantone reveals first two-tone colour of the year with Rose Quartz and Serenity

I have to say I prefer the Pink on the leaf canopy, over the Ultra Violet and the softer pink shown. I normally prefer bright colours over pastels.

Graffiti/Street Art

Don’t what is about Graffiti that I like, I think it’s probably the bright colours. Was out on a walk when I realised I could get onto the old Industrial site near Wooley Wood/Ecclesfield Road. Took a few photos and then I thought I would search for other graffiti in Sheffield to see if others had taken photos. Came across this blog, He has photographed many pieces of street art around Sheffield and other places too,

“This website is a personal project, a place to share the photos of Sheffield’s varied street art that I’ve taken as I’ve been walking around the city.

My aim is to put the best grafitti, wall murals and specially commissioned works that I find on the map. I’m no photographer, the majority of the pictures have been snapped on my camera phone, but I hope to inspire people to come visit and seek out Sheffield’s creative street art.


Found out via Twitter than Andy works at Evoluted – a web development agency who have been around since 2006.

I also came across this artist,, she has worked with some big brands such as the BBC, Channel 4 and Ikea. She defines herself as “Artist, Painter, Graphic Designer”

Some of her work includes Illustration too:


Ben Moon


Blackburn Open Walls Stoke

Loving the use of colours, so vibrant and fresh. It’s inspiring me to work on my illustration/artwork side more. I have always enjoyed art/crafty things including drawing and painting. My work is nowhere near as good but with practice it could be better.

Graffiti near Wooley Wood/Ecclesfield Road:

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-10

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-9

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-7

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-8

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-7

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-6

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-5

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-4

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-3

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-1

Shiregreen/Ecclesfield graffiti-2


Christmas Cards

Bit of illustration practice – hand-drawn illustrations converted to vectors then colourised using Illustrator. This has been good illustration practice for me and will be useful for my Etsy shop selling illustrated cards.

Reindeer Christmas Card

Christmas Cards

Networking/Getting Work Out There

Siege Magazine

A new magazine is being set up and were asking for submissions. I sent an email and included examples of my work.

I received a confirmation email “Hey Ayshea, Thanks for reaching out and sending us your submission! We’ll get back to you soon with more information about the publication. Don’t forget to spread the word amongst your friends!All the best, SIEGE”

Details about Siege from their Facebook:

“Based in Manchester but representing artists from all over the world; SIEGE is a new, glaringly obvious, platform for emerging artists to showcase their work amongst a plethora of other like minded creatives.

Spanning all creative plains, SIEGE promotes unity. Anyone featured will recommend another artist whom they know. Whether it be as influence or just because they like their work.

The aim is to bring attention to the next generation of artists, designers, illustrators and photographers. To celebrate our numbers rather than deplore them. SIEGEs plan of attack intends on recruiting the masses, slowly linking a web of creatives. Ready to siege the already established, famous, and recognised creatives of today.

First compendium intended for early 2018, we are now taking submissions for fine art, design, textiles, illustration, photography and 3D. Please email any high quality jpegs to [email protected] With your own details (name, instagram, website etc.) also some information about the work you have sent in. And, most importantly, details of someone you know and recommend to be featured alongside you in the magazine.


UPDATE: Unfortunately, I did not get featured in the magazine, having seen some of their first publication it has a more art slant than design slant. Don’t think my work fits in with what they are looking for.


Dribbble is an invitation only website that you can only post your work once you have received an invitation.

“Founded in 2009, Dribbble has grown to become a top global community for designers and creative professionals and an inspiration destination for tens of millions of people. Dribbble is on a mission to build the world’s best platform for designers and creative professionals to gain inspiration, feedback, education, community, and job opportunities.

We are a bootstrapped and profitable company helping the world’s design talent share their creations and get hired. Dribbble has become a go-to resource for discovering and connecting with designers and creative talent around the globe.” –

You can still join the site without an invite, but you can’t post any of your design work. Some designers on the site offer invites if you send them your best work, so I sent emails to see if I could get an invite, on 01/01/2018 I did.


Dribbble Invite on 01/01/2018
First Dribbble Shot


I tweeted Let Toys Be Toys as their report into toy advertising was really useful for my essay, I thanked them and included the toy adverts I had designed. They re-tweeted them and several others have re-tweeted and commented. Shows the power of Social Media and getting your work out there. I’ve gained several followers because of this.

Social Media

I have kept posting my work on social media including Behance, Dribbble, LinkedIn, Twitter and Graphic Design Facebook Groups:


School’s Reading Volunteer (ESCAL)

Sheffield Council advertise for Reading and Talking Volunteers to visit schools. This would provide me with experience in a school but at the same time something I can work around having two children/studying. The role requires between 1/2 to 1 hour each week for between 6 to 10 weeks.

It is also one of the ways recommend by the Get Into Teaching Website to help gain classroom experience:

“To improve your chances of gaining school experience, you could also offer to volunteer at a school. Volunteering in general is a great opportunity to gain experience of working with children. You could also volunteer to work in a youth club or as a Scout or Guide leader – particularly during summer when schools are closed.

Many volunteering opportunities, such as after-school clubs, sports coaching or youth schemes, take place during evenings or at weekends, so you can fit volunteering around your existing commitments.”

UPDATE: I attend a training session on the 26/02/2018 and have contacted the school about arranging a suitable time to start my volunteering. I have also received my DBS check through which enables me to volunteer in schools.

“Dear all,

Thank you so much for coming along to the training session this morning!  It was lovely to meet with you all.

Please see attached a volunteer evaluation, a child feedback form and log sheet as promised.  Please also see attached electronic copies of the resources shared and additional resources which may help you in school.

Volunteer feedback – Please complete one volunteer feedback form at the end of the 10 week placement for each student you support.  This will ensure that we have accurate data with regards to progress of students and impact of volunteer support across the city.

Child feedback – The coordinator will know the UPN Number for the students you are supporting.  These are to be completed on the last session with the student.

Log sheet – This is a useful document to help record activites of a session, and any ideas for next sessions.

When you have completed the evaluation, please forward back to myself either through the post or via e-mail – thank you!  However, please note – there is no need to send back any log sheets used within or after sessions.

If you require any clarificaton with regards to these support documents, please do not hesitate to contact me.

If you have been allocated to a school, I will contact you upon receipt of your DBS (CRB) disclosure.  If you have not yet been allocated to a school in Sheffield, please see a list of school post codes requiring volunteers:

S35 0DD
S6 4RH
S2 3DJ
S2 2GQ
S36 1EJ
S11 8ZG
S12 2EJ
S10 5DP
S14 1LW
S9 1LU
S8 8JS
S35 8QB
S8 9EH
S17 3QP
S7 2DY

Thanks so much again for your generous offer of support!  Again, it was lovely to meet with you all.  We hope you are looking forward to starting your volunteering!!

With best wishes,

Faye Jeffrey
ESCAL Volunteering”

Professional Skills Test

“You have to pass the professional skills tests in numeracy and literacy before you begin your teacher training. Almost 90% passed both skills tests in 2015/16 – the key to successfully passing is plenty of preparation and practice.” –

Although I have a GCSE grade C in Math and English, Math and English is not my strong point. Part of the Professional Skills Test is spelling – which is something I have always struggled with.

I took one of the practice Literacy test  on 27/11/2017, and got 70%.

I can’t find an official answer but the pass mark according to this thread on The Student Room website is 63% for the skills test.

Sheffield Hallam PGCE

2017 Requirements for a Primary PGCE

“Typically you need

• GCSE grade C in English and mathematics and science, or equivalent*. You must already hold the GCSE requirements before applying for the course.

• a 2.1 degree or above, or a 2.2 degree plus evidence of wider experience in a UK school or foundation setting

• it is desirable that you have at least 15 days recent foundation stage or primary UK school teaching experience with five of these days as continuous teaching (gained in the two years before your application)

You must also

• successfully complete QTS skills tests in numeracy and literacy as designated by the National College for Teaching and Leadership.

• complete a declaration of criminal convictions and health check forms.”

I already hold a C in Maths and English and 2 B’s in Science. As you need to have at least 15 days experience within 2 years of applying for a PGCE I have not applied for teaching experience yet.

There are bursaries available depending on the subject you wish to teach and the level of your degree.

Although there is shortage of teachers this is mainly at Secondary level. Bearing in mind that Primary teaching is more competitive and with me having a non-traditional degree (not Maths, English, one of the Sciences) I am concerned that I might be less employable as a teacher due to me having studied Graphic Design. I could consider teaching at secondary level and studying a SKE course to teach Design and Technology.

“The schools or universities you apply to may ask you to take an SKE course if they feel you have the right qualities to become a teacher, but need to acquire more subject knowledge first. If that’s the case, they’ll offer you a conditional place upon doing an SKE course.

This could be for several reasons, including:

I came across this idea after researching other people with Graphic Design degrees becoming D & T teachers.

“I know both people who have studies Graphic Design at uni and have done a PGCE in Art and others who have do it in D&T.” –

Entry requirements for a PGCE Secondary in Design and Technology.

“2017 entry requirements

All applicants need GCSE mathematics and English language at grade C or above or equivalent*. We will consider applicants who are in the process of obtaining the relevant GCSEs.

You must also

• hold an honours degree (normally 2.2 or above) or equivalent which includes substantial elements of design and technology study from a relevant material area for example product design or fashion and textiles
• complete a declaration of criminal convictions and health check forms
• successfully complete QTS skills tests in numeracy and literacy as designated by the National College for Teaching and Leadership

You are encouraged to gain experience of schools through direct observation of teaching and learning and/or by working with young people in design and technology-related or other educational activities.” –

However, I do feel more drawn to teaching Primary but it is something to consider as an option especially as I’m more likely to gain employment with a PGCE in D & T as there is a shortage of teachers for this subject.

Another option I have looked at is supply teaching as this can provide more flexibility and a possible way into teaching if I can’t find a permanent position.

“While most teachers can only plan their holiday at set times to fit in with the school year, supply teachers are free from such constraints.  So you can benefit from off peak travel prices and avoid crowded destinations. But that’s not the only type of flexibility that supply work offers. “I have days off for personal reasons when I want them like my fiance’s birthday, to get carpet fitted, and for long weekends away,” says Saucisson, supply teacher, and TES forum user. “If already know what I’m doing for the day, I arrive at school between 8.00am and 8.30am and leave at 3.30pm I enjoy time off in September when there isn’t a big demand for supply teachers.”  –

Being a supply teaching could give me more time with my children, which is something I am worried about missing out on if I become a teacher.

“Becoming a supply teacher gives you the chance to experience different classrooms, decide your own work schedule, and avoid hours of after school planning…” –

Role and Responsibilities of a Teacher

There is a lot more to being a teacher than just teaching including:

“…organising the classroom and learning resources and creating displays to encourage a positive learning environment…planning, preparing and presenting lessons that cater for the needs of the whole ability range within the class…maintaining discipline…organising and taking part in school events, outings and activities which may take place at weekends or in the evening…meeting with other professionals such as education welfare officers and educational psychologists, if required.” –

This can mean long working hours which could prove difficult with children unless I take a part-time or supply teacher role.

“Most teachers work long hours during term time, usually over 50 hours a week. They are in school before the school day starts and stay after the pupils have gone home. Marking and preparation are usually done at home.

Teachers have up to 13 weeks’ holiday per year, but most do work on marking, planning, preparation and any classroom organisation during this time. Parents’ evenings, school concerts, clubs, after-school activities and preparation for school inspections all take up extra hours.

Part-time and temporary work is available. Career breaks are possible, after which, support and refresher courses are available.” –


I tried working up some ideas for the Antalis Brief (D & AD) but I’m struggling to get a fully formed concept.

“The Challenge Create a physical experience for Conqueror that explores and celebrates the possibilities of paper as a physical, tactile, and creative material for design. Create the unexpected and the imaginative, the inspiring and the innovative – but create it using paper, in a way that brings the medium back to the forefront of creative minds.

It needs to be something that creatives can experience first hand, that inspires them to use paper, whilst challenging their understanding of its possibilities. “



I’ve had a few ideas but nothing I can envision as a fully formed idea. So I moved into a YCN brief,, and I’m hoping that might prove more fruitful.

The Grown Up Chocolate Company – YCN Brief

I was thinking along the lines of coming up with a Phrase to represent the new ranges, see quote below, of “dairy free”,”nut free” and “vegan”.

I like the idea of the slogan to represent each and then work on a visual/typography to match that. So far I have two slogans “nut to be”, “no moo for you” and not sure on the third for vegan. Struggling with that a bit, not sure if I can get a workable idea.

The Creative Challenge

We want you to design a tempting new identity for our new range. Please note, the range is currently in development, so we do not have recipes or variations finalised, but we’re keen to prepare the business for its launch next year.
As well as coming up with a name for the range, we want to see how your new identity will be executed as:

Packaging — create artwork that shows how the new identity will look on our packs (see the Project Pack for cutter guides)

A landing page for the new ‘free from’ range on our online store

Key visuals — these are icons for the range that appear on pack, in print and online. Each emphasises a different message about the product (see Project Pack for current examples). For the ‘free from’ range, we need three key visuals which communicate that the products are ‘dairy free’, ‘nut free’ and ‘vegan’.

As the recipes for these bars have not yet been finalised, we do not expect a fully formed idea, rather an example of how you would incorporate your name and identity for the range onto these different touchpoints. If you’d prefer, feel free to make up bars (EG. Naughty But Nice Nutty Nougat) for this challenge!”



Dark Chocolate Salted Caramelised Almonds, , hi-res
Dairy Free
The All Dark Vegan Chocolate Hamper Collection, , hi-res
Vegan Hamper
Vegan, Nut Free

Superb Salted Caramel Truffles

Chocolate Selection Tray

Chocolate Caramel Pumpkin Preorder


I’ve opened an Etsy shop. It took a bit of time just to get 10 items up for sale. I could do with working on the banner and logo for the shop, it was done quickly as to get the shop up and running before Valentine’s day. From what I have read online I will need to drive traffic via Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, etc in order to create sales. However, I’m not sure I have the time to commit to this level of promotion until after I have finished my degree.

Shop Front
Product Page
Product Page

I’m part of a group of Facebook called Crafty Business Sheffield, here are what some of the members have said about selling on Etsy:

I use Etsy and I like it. There’s a really good Etsy sellers community in Sheffield who have started doing Etsy Made Local fairs and such, which have been really popular. You do have to do a lot of social media marketing to get sales, and that takes a long time to build up, but it’s the same with any platform you use. I’m thinking of trying Folksy this year, too.”

“I have an etsy shop and went a few months before I sold anything. You do have to market it yourself but I’m also getting traffic through etsy search results and I’ve started having more online sales since doing fares and making people know about me that way. There is lots you can do to optimise your etsy and google search results, there’s lots of advice out there and help in the etsy guidebook on their website.”

“It depends what you are selling. Set up is free and listings are inexpensive, but very few make much money on there. Where Etsy failed for me is in the promotion. You sped so much time promoting it is ridiculous.”

This comment was posted in January;

Not too bad to set up, but you need to drive traffic to your shop. As yet I haven’t sold anything been on since October. Still trying.”

The group has been really useful for networking and receiving advice. It’s been a good way to connect with other businesses/local crafters.

UPDATE: Even though I did not promote my Etsy page I still sold several valentine’s day cards.  I now feel working for myself selling online is the best route until the kids are older at which point I will do a PGCE (assuming I get a 2.1 from this degree).

Ethical Considerations

“Design is a discipline of action. You are responsible for what you put into the world. It has your name on it. And while it is certainly impossible to predict how any of your work may be used, it shouldn’t be a surprise when work that is meant to hurt someone fulfills its mission. We cannot be surprised when a gun we designed kills someone. We cannot be surprised when a database we designed to catalog immigrants gets those immigrants deported. When we knowingly produce work that is intended to harm, we are abdicating our responsibility. When we ignorantly produce work that harms others because we didn’t consider the full ramifications of that work, we are doubly guilty.” –

Refusing to design something because you don’t agree with what a client is trying to do is an admirable quality but if you are working for an agency you risk losing your job. But would I want to work for a company that is happy to promote something I find morally reprehensible. On the other hand, I have two children and a mortgage would I risk losing my job for that, then again if I did the work I don’t think I could look my children in the eye.

“You are part of a professional community and the way you do your job and handle yourself professionally affects everyone in that community. Just as a rising tide affects all boats, taking a shit in the pool affects all swimmers. If you are dishonest with a client or employer, the designer behind you will pay the price. If you work for free, the designer behind you will be expected to do the same. If you do not hold your ground on doing bad work, the designer behind you will have to work twice as hard to make up for it.” –

In the age of Fiverr it is easy to understand how some clients undervalue design work. In the past I have done work for free for family and friends just because it was a chance to do something I enjoyed opposed to answering calls in a call centre. It never occurred to me that I was part of the problem with people expecting work for free.

However, in order to get a foot in many Creative jobs you are expected to do unpaid work experience. There has been media attention shone on extended unpaid internships recently (those that last more than a few weeks long).

“However, there’s a culture in the creative industries that allows unpaid work to go on far too long and take over responsibilities that should be reserved for paid staff.” –

Are the creative industries at fault here creating the image that design/artistic work is worthless by not paying interns yet then complaining when the same young designers do work for free directly for a client? You can’t say design work is worth nothing when a graduate does it on a work placement but it is worth something if a graduate was doing it as a paid junior.

Also, the culture of long internships has the biggest impact on those from poorer families because they can’t afford to support their adult child whilst they work for free. Especially if they are working in London. This also affects me as I can’t afford to pay for childcare whilst working for free.