Me in a nutshell
I live and breathe all things art, colour and texture and it’s always been that way. Growing up, I was one of the lucky ones who knew exactly what they wanted to do from a really young age. This allowed me to develop expertise in both the print and digital realms of design from early on.
My design career began in the world of print: with a five-year apprenticeship in the prepress department of a print factory. Print will always have a place in my heart. It taught me all about quality control, made me a stickler for small details, and showed me how to communicate effectively with clients. To this day, nothing makes me happier than running my hands over fresh print samples: the look, the feel, even the smell.
While I completed my apprenticeship, I studied web design and development, while gaining a diploma in graphic design. This helped me expand my nerdy obsessions to new heights (I am one of those weirdos who actually likes technical troubleshooting!)
For four years, I worked in a dynamic, fast-paced creative agency, where I took responsibility for client briefs, from concept through to production, refreshing brands and creating responsive websites that made clients really happy. During this time, I built up a strong freelance business and four years ago, I decided to take the plunge into working for myself full time. The years have flown by and I’ve never looked back.
I’ve often been referred to as a design unicorn because I specialise in both design and code, a rare skill combination that uses both the creative and logical sides of the brain. But despite my mythical unicorn status, underneath it all, I’m really just a coffee-sculling, underwater-diving yogi-dog-mum with a soft spot for the colour pink.
My network of trusty collaborators
I work with a team of awesome locally-based creatives who I trust to call on when any brief sits outside of my skill zones. Together, we’re a dynamic force be reckoned with:
Kira Friedman a Sydney-based writer and marketing specialist, with a knack for telling stories. She turns complex ideas into simple content that people genuinely enjoy reading, giving life to brands and bringing out their unique personalities. Over seven years as a writer, Kira has crafted copy across a broad range of industries – and she likes it that way. Writing across different sectors, especially niche ones, has blessed her with unique insight into a range of interesting topics. It also makes for riveting dinner table conversation. She holds a degree in Communications, Marketing and English from Sydney University and you can find her work in a range of literary publications, websites, blogs, and SEO-friendly marketing collateral.
Server Guru & Coding Wizard
Farhan Saeed is a Sydney-based web developer with seven years’ experience working with web frameworks. He has a broad range of expertise spanning across WordPress, AWS, Magento and Shopify. Farhan’s broad experience in design and web development agencies has enabled him to work on projects of all different sizes. He loves his job because the rapid rate of technological advancement keeps him on his toes. There’s always a new skill or framework to master down the road, many of which haven’t even been invented yet. Farhan holds a Masters of Information Technology from UTS. Away from the keyboard, he takes any opportunity he can to spend time outdoors, whether that’s riding his motorbike, scuba diving or playing cricket in the par
Rhiannon Carnohan is a self-professed SEO nerd and passionate small business supporter. In her seven years as an SEO specialist, she’s worked with a number of big-name brands in both Australia and the UK, helping them create and implement strategies to get to page one of Google. In recent years, she’s turned her focus to serving small businesses, helping them supercharge their online visibility through the power of SEO. After spending some time overseas, Rhiannon has returned to her hometown of Sydney and now enjoys the quintessential Aussie beach lifestyle, and has even taken up surfing for the first time!
Amber from VAAM Virtual Assistance is my go-to for all things admin. A whizz at social media scheduling, website maintenance, proofreading and website handover documents, Amber is a VA and mum who absolutely loves working in the small businesses space. Passionate about all things organisation, nothing makes her happier than ticking off those niggly tasks from her to-do list. When she’s not making my life easier with her fantastic admin skills, Amber can be found collecting indoor plants and spending time with her family outside in nature. VAMM bam, go Amb!
Toby’s canine biology renders him physically unable to code, write, type or even talk to clients. And being just over two years old, he doesn’t have the several years of experience most entry-level jobs require these days. He gets away with it all though… I mean look at those eyes and that waggly tail. He keeps me sane, takes me for walks and is an all round very good boy.
It also can’t be forgotten that Toby was the proud winner of the Cutest Puppy Comp at the 2019 Sutherland Dog Markets. Thanks to myself nobody will every forget this and his PINK sash will be with us forever.
What’s important to me
Keeping things local
As someone who’s worked in this industry for twelve years, I know how cutthroat it can be for Australian creatives forced to compete with low-cost offshore labour. I’m also a firm believer that nobody understands Australia like Australians do. I believe design needs to be locally-sourced in order to be relevant to its audience, which is difficult to achieve when you partner with an overseas provider who doesn’t understand our market. For these reasons, I only ever contract work locally.
Getting to know you
I get to know my clients, not only their brands. When you work with me, I communicate with you the way you’d like to be communicated with, whether that’s face to face, on the phone, Zoom, or via your grandfather’s fax machine. That’s because I am someone who values your time, resources and unique way of doing things. I enjoy working with organisations across multiple industries. It keeps my mind fresh and ensures I continue to hone my design skills for new creative challenges, every single day.
Being a decent human
Having the freedom to be ethical, transparent and responsible in everything I do is one of the reasons I started my own business. Sustainability is something I’m immensely passionate about. Outside of work, I’m the kind of person who carries around a keep cup just in case the urge for coffee strikes. I even have a phone case made of recycled bottle caps. At work, I’m a massive advocate for using recycled print or FSC-certified materials and will always encourage my clients to do the same. While my workflow is almost entirely paperless, in the rare case that I print something, it will be on recycled paper, from a printer with re-engineered INKvestment tanks that give me up 3000 pages per cartridge of ink. Much of this isn’t only environmentally friendly – it’s also cost effective.