Hussain is one of our creative gurus here at Denvir, working in the creative design team as a junior designer and one of our go-to guys for everything from brand identity and website designs to social and video to collateral for experiential events. We’ve been speaking to Hussain to delve into what life is like on a daily basis in the Denvir studio, while also getting an insight into what goes on inside that creative mind:
Describe a typical day in the Denvir office?
Typical day – okay, so I would rock up to the office after tuning into some podcasts on my way to work. First things first, I make myself a cup of coffee and then get on to Pinterest to get my creative juices flowing. I would then speak to the account handlers and find out what’s what, then we’d get on to tackling the day’s tasks.
The design and account teams normally go through the day’s creative brief together to work through a few initial ideas and concepts, whether that’s the development of a new logo or the development of a new social campaign – it’s great to start by throwing some ideas about. I then get fired in to the thick of it, and develop a few routes for the task needed, whether it’s designs, videos or anything else within the creative mix – that’s when the magic happens!
Is this approach one that you stick too?
This is not just a Friday this is everyday – keepin’ it 100 since 89. But yes, we do find that the collaborative brainstorming starting point is a good way to get things going. We then have periodic catch-ups throughout the day, working closely with the whole team to make sure things stay on track and the best final outcome is achieved for our clients.
What is the biggest challenge that creative designers face?
The biggest challenge, I think to be honest, is that the industry is constantly evolving. I need to stay on top of the game in terms of what design trends are out there and what software is available to use. This spans from digital and design to other things like motion graphics and print based design trends.
So far, what has been your favourite project to date?
The one that stands out is Highland Spring’s campaign ‘Anywhere for Tennis’. It was a nationwide experiential campaign that was a huge success. I mean, we just made it work and it went viral – our creative team were on point. In other words, we killed it.
Why did you choose a career in marketing?
I didn’t really choose a career in marketing… it chose me! In all seriousness, it did actually choose me. I feel like I have always been a creative person from a very young age, and the marketing industry is, for me, the best place to be to let that creativity be known. In our particular agency environment, there is great scope to work on new things on a daily basis which I think is brilliant.
How did you know that ‘marketing chose you’?
I used to dress up – creative from a young age!
In that case, I’m expecting some ‘creative’ Music/TV preferences. Tell us about your ‘tune’ ATM?
The tune ATM? Great question, and I really mean that. It has to be Drake ft. Wizz kid – Come closer.
And your favourite TV series?
My recent TV series has the potential to ruin my ‘reputation’ but it’s my guilty pleasure… Love Island! It’s too addictive.
I never saw that coming, is there an alternative to save your ‘rep’?
The alternative? Yes. That has to be the very topical Game of Thrones.
Okay, great… moving on, tell us about your studies?
I went to Telford college in Edinburgh, where I studied creative media, which focussed on the behind the scenes of films and production, but that didn’t appeal to me as much. I much preferred graphic design, in terms of commercial, poster, adverts and branding – once I had done my first project I was sold.
What were you like in high school?
In high school, okay I was a bit of a bad boy. Maybe that’s where the creativity came from, right?! Always pushing the boundaries. But, obviously, that has all changed! I still like to have fun but I would say I have found peace within myself… (laughs)
What would you be doing if you weren’t at your current job?
If I wasn’t a creative designer I would be a pilot, no doubt about it – I didn’t have the brain power to cut it as a pilot. However, I am always going places so technically I am still a pilot.
Okay so, hypothetically speaking…
If I gave you £100,000 to start a business what would you do?
£100,000? This is an easy question for me. I love nuts, snacking is my thing!
Yeah so basically, it’s a nut company called The Nut Factory where we actually roast different kinds of nuts and we kind of season and flavour them. It would be like ‘Graze’ but better. From an aesthetic point of view, the branding would obviously have to be something special too!
I get a suspicion you might have given this some thought before?
Yes, absolutely, I’m going into business with some nuts…
So, if you were on a desert island and you could only bring 3 things, would you take some nuts to snack on?
Well yes and no. Firstly, I would probably take playing cards. I like playing cards so if you bump into Bob or whatever, I would be like do you want a game of cards – as I’m guessing there is no electricity? Secondly, I would take a pen and paper so I could get all my crazy thoughts noted down. Lastly, I would to take a Victoria’s Secret model, then maybe some nuts if I had room in my case!
Okay Hussain, to finish here are some quick fire ‘Qs’…
At which store would you like to max-out your credit card?
Max out a credit card? That has to be, Versace. I just love the ethos behind the brand which shouts, funky patterns and gold which also says, I am a prince. Versace, Versace, Versace.
You’ve inherited a time machine. What point in time do you travel to first?
The swinging 60s!
And why is that?
It’s the start of soul! So, I feel like I belong there. Imagine being able relive the incredible music, people, and culture. People had a different way of thinking back then.
Finally, if you could have a superpower, what would it be?
Superpower would have to be being able to fly.
Ah really? Not invisibility?
That isn’t an option as I need to be seen everywhere I go. I just want to fly as I won’t have to pay for a holiday again.
Hussain, thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to answer our Q’s.