Sean Thomas and Shaun Bowen...
26 SEP 2017

Published by Samantha Jamieson


Sean Thomas and Shaun Bowen...

Last week we hosted our first ‘Interview with the Creative Directors’ event (still trying to think of a better name – suggestions welcome). First up were Sean Thomas, Creative Director at JKR and Shaun Bowen, Joint Founder and Creative Partner at B&B Studio.

The guys took us through their career to date and we had a more in depth look at three of their projects which included Sean’s earlier work on Budweiser to that brilliant Dominoes box and Shaun’s earlier work on Absolut and more recently creating the award-winning BEAR brand.

Here’s what we learned:

Sean Thomas

  • Go with your gut. If you’re feeling like something isn’t quite right or you aren’t 100% on something – then you’re probably right. Go with it.
  • Brands - and all of us - have less time to grab people's attention than ever before. You have to make it count.
  • Don't buy bullshit. When you’re interviewing don’t be dazzled by a £5k pay rise and the promise of glory. Try to be a bit more discerning about where you decide to work as not all that glitters is gold.
  • You’ve got more chance of getting to where you want to be if you aim your portfolio at what you want to do. So if you want to design websites show websites - not banner ads.

"If you want to design websites show websites, not banner adverts."

Shaun Bowen

  • Not all agencies are the same – you might need to move around to find your groove, but there’s always something to be learned along the way.
  • Ideas are king. Both Shaun and Sean are all about the big idea, everything starts from here.

"Show sketchbooks, I want to see how your mind works."

  • Interviews are about personality as much as they are about the projects. Both Sean T and Shaun B said that when they are interviewing, they look for someone they’ll be able to work with well. While the portfolio might be AMAZING, it doesn’t always mean you’ll get the job – the right personality fit is paramount.
  • Sketchbooks are disappearing. Shaun pointed out that he rarely sees portfolios that have initial sketches in them anymore. ‘I want to see how your mind works’ he said, and including your sketches is a great way of showing your thought process. (take note if you ever get an interview at B&B studio…)

If you’re interested in coming to any of our events, follow us on social or sign up for our newsletter so you don’t miss out!

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