• Princess_pavilion
  • Skala
  • Skala_1
  • Skala_3
  • Skala_4
  • Kraftwerk
  • Ma_type
  • Faber_film
  • Faber_1
  • Faber2
  • Faber3
  • Modernist_diary
Graphic Design

Graduates 2009: Gareth Horner

Posted by Alex Bec,

Gareth has a painfully bad fear of spiders and deep water, and rates Paul Simon’s ‘Graceland’ as the number 1 album in the world. What better grounding for a graphic designer entering the industry?

Clean, crisp, sharp work from a guy who’s ultimate goal is to stand on the moon. Read on for one interview that definitely isn’t just copied and pasted for the standard responses, but delivered with an honesty that can only make Gareth an even more attractive option for future employers.

Gareth Horner’s from Milton Keynes and studied at University College Falmouth. As well as a painfully bad fear of spiders and deep water he likes talking to people he doesn’t know on the phone and trying to be as nice as he can. Typography is king in all of his design work and takes at least ten photographs everyday.

What did you want to be when you were growing up?

I think during the early years of my life I wanted to be a fireman, which was unique. Then around the age of maybe 8 or 9 I remember being sat eating breakfast and drawing the Frosties box in front of me. I was getting real detailed about it trying to get the type all right and the shading on Tony’s locks spot on. My Dad told me that I could do that sorta thing for a living, someone actually got paid to design a cereal boxes! I told my friends as school the next day that I was gonna design cereal boxes when I was older, which got me a massively lukewarm response. I later found out this ‘career’ was called Graphic Design.

In reflection, how bad was your work in the first year?

Before coming down to Falmouth I did the ND Graphic Design course at Milton Keynes College. When I finished there I definitely had a very tight style going on with far too much Helvetica plastering my work. Many of the projects we were given in the first year were real experimental and pushed you to into thinking about attacking briefs from different angles. We had to make a head out of scrap we found for instance (!?). To answer the question — yes and no. I didn’t improve in terms of technical ability but did broaden my boundaries on how I explored Graphic Design.

If you could show a piece of your folio to one person, what piece would you choose, and who would you show it to?

I couldn’t do that. Personally for me, it’d be great to have a portfolio full of shit hot work to show, but I’d much rather talk about Graphic Design as a subject than try to wow you with how well I can produce visually appealing .ai (or .fhmx) files. If someone came to me with that question with the intention of fulfilling it I’d decline. One piece of work to sum up everything you are as a human and a designer is impossible. I’ve taken this question far too seriously.

If you had your own business, who would you employ and why?

I’d like to own a shop that specialises in rulers. I love a good ruler. I’d source the best ones from around the world, wall to wall ruling. All the bags would be thin and long. Receipts printed on paper rules, £1 per centimeter. The more you spend, the longer the receipt. Employees would be chosen on their ability to measure.

If you’ve got any left, what will you spend the last of your student loan on?

On the day of our hand in my flat mate Tom and I were at home rushing getting our work ready to put up in the studio in time for the 4pm deadline. We needed a taxi to get all the work up there, so Tom runs down to the cashpoint to get money out, comes back 5 minutes later telling me he’s out of cash. So I rush down, and it’s the same deal! The worst thing is I probably spent the very last few pounds on Pro Plus, which makes me sad. I’d planned to buy myself some new socks after finishing.

Where will we find you in 12 months?

I wish I could tell you. The world’s changed so much since I started University in 2006. I always wanted to work for tDR, even if only for a few weeks. I wanted to see inside. That’s not gonna happen now. The media’s telling soon-to-be graduates that they should get outta the country and find work abroad. You’ve got big time designers telling students to leave the industry alone for a while. So many mixed messages being thrown from all angles right now. I’d like you to find me doing something I love.

Ab-300

Posted by Alex Bec

Alex is one of the directors of It’s Nice That who now oversees our sister creative agency INT Works. For several years he oversaw the Monday Morning Music Video feature until it came to an end in 2014.

Most Recent: Graphic Design View Archive

  1. 5173

    As the creative world digests last night’s big D&AD winners (those that scooped Black and White Pencils), there was a host of interesting work recognised in the 44 Yellow Pencils given out at the London awards bash. In total, the D&AD juries considered 847 projects this year and so less than one in five made the prestigious Yellow Pencil cut. Here’s our rundown of those winners that caught our eye for one reason or another – you can see the full list of winners over on the D&AD site here.

  2. The-plant-art-15-its-nice-that-list-

    Staying two seasons ahead (calendar-wise, at least) of the autumn art fair scrum, Art 15 takes place this week over in west London, heralded by some unmissably bright new branding by The Plant. The annual fair – now in its third outing – used to take place in February, and its new look aims to reflect its sunnier spot on the calendar. “As it’s spring and it’s a fairly new fair, we felt [the new identity] needed to look quite bold,” says Matt Utber, founder of The Plant, who also designed the fair’s initial identity. “We chose colours that were very bright and vibrant because of that light change – it reflects new life, flowers bursting into existence, it’s that kind of feel.”

  3. Thomaswilliams-bolo-itsnicethat-list

    Australian designer Thomas Williams’ work has appeared on the site several times over the years, in the shape of his editorial work for MADE, Nourished Journal and The Process Journal. He has recently decamped to Los Angeles and set up his own studio, Thomas Williams & Co., which comes complete with a newly updated site on which you can peruse his publication work alongside all manner of considered and communicative identity projects.

  4. Chwast_nose_08-1020x1600its-nice-that-list

    I don’t use the word “iconic” lightly, but in the case of designer Seymour Chwast, it fits. Co-founder of Push Pin studios, Seymour shaped what graphic design and being a graphic designer meant in the 20th Century, creating images that not only looked incredible, but distilled a message that could be anything from a light-hearted comment on design itself to an anti-smoking poster. His much-imitated graphic and illustration style still holds up brilliantly today, as proved by a fantastic new online resource, the Seymour Chwast archive.

  5. List-naonori_yago_laforet_itsnicethat_1

    I’m all for a bargain but when I hear about people queuing up at 4:30am for the big Next sale every year I can’t help but sigh. Surely sleeping is more preferable to numb lips chapping in the wind as you stand next to other haggard shoppers? Even bigger than Next’s sale is Japanese department store Laforet HARAJUKU’s annual “Grand Bazar,” which has taken sale shopping to a new level.

  6. Ah_ha_ciclovia_de_aveiro_it's_nice_that_list

    “Studio AH-HA started as an experiment. We never took ourselves too seriously, and we think that is why things have been working out,” say Carolina Cantante and Catarina Carreiras. For the last three years the Portuguese designers have been making lovely things out of their studio just a stone’s throw from the Lisbon City Museum and the university where they studied and met. Between them, Carolina and Catarina cut their teeth working with some of their heroes; Catarina at Fabrica with designer Sam Baron, who they still collaborate with, and Carolina at the renowned OMA led by “starchitect” Rem Koolhaas in Rotterdam.

  7. List-vasundhara-pachisia-its-nice-that

    Brookyln-born graphic designer Vasundhara Pachisia is still studying, but has managed to clock up a CV including work with MoMA Design Studio and Ralph Applebaum Associates. Not bad at all. She’s currently studying at Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan, where she’s making some great work combining vivid colour palettes with some gorgeous experimental typography. This is perfectly exemplified in the piece Until Perfect Comes , a typeface the designer says is “an ode to Victor Vasarely.” We’re sure the “grandfather of op-art” wouldn’t be disappointed.

  8. Antonio_ladrillo_lines_it's_nice_that_list

    Back with a colourful series of minimal, origami-like creations, Antonio Ladrillo’s Colors, Lines and Dots continues the same optimism and sense of play that has made the Barcelona-based illustrator is an It’s Nice That favourite. You may remember our enthusiasm for his exhibition of 40 small paintings on repurposed wood, Crash or his book Being a ghost is cool! The three new softcover books are designed with the same cuts, folds and palette but use different patterns, taking on multiple 2D and 3D combinations like folding cards. Part papercraft, part publication, like all of Antonio’s sunny portfolio, Colors, Lines and Dots is simple yet striking.

  9. Shannonlea-philliplarkin-itsnicethat-list

    In our recent interview with Spin’s Tony Brook he spoke about the shift in his design approach towards a fixation on conceptual work – “I wanted reasons, I wanted intelligent thought.” Tony of course is one of the best in the business with a great deal of experience; it’s less common to see this same concept-driven lust in young designers, particularly those still learning their craft at university.

  10. Alain-vonck_ruins_it's_nice_that_list

    Whether it’s glitchy internet art, streamlined design and art direction or bespoke typefaces, Alain Vonck has been building a strong portfolio since graduating from Paris’ ESAG Penninghen in 2012. Concentrating on visual identity as well as editorial and web design that communicates a passion for pattern, Alain confidently moves between a variety of commercial and self-directed projects. Whether a book and net archive inspired by early web designs and 90s digital culture, ilIustrations for the daily French newspaper founded by Jean-Paul Sartre and Serge July, Libération, or super minimal art direction for a digital magazine, the Parisian designer has proven his approach is both contemporary and versatile.

    The pixelated, retro-tech visual language of many of his self-initiated projects has taken cues from GIF revival and the unrefined aesthetic of the internet’s early days, carving him a niche as something of a digital archeologist. Further illustrating his creative range, one of Alain’s most recent commissions marked a departure into new stylistic territory with a bright book of over 250 block-coloured illustrations vaguely reminiscent of Matisse cut-outs for Franco-Lebanese publishing house Tamyras.

  11. Alex-horne-do-it-poster-its-nice-that-list

    As the likes of Haw-Lin and Tom Darracott have proved in recent years, club posters are no longer the all-caps, bright yellow, shouty things on lampposts they used to be. Well sometimes they are, and there’s something quite charming in that (UK GARAGE SENSATION in Surbiton, anyone?), but there’s certainly a finessed approach to many of the posters now, as Alex Horne proves. The designer, who also founded label Fine Grains Records, hails from Aberdeen but now lives in London, working with clients including The Financial Times, The Vinyl Factory and Vice. Today though we’re looking at some great music posters, namely those for AV collective Do It! and Oslo-based club night promoter The Drop, which Alex runs alongside Norwegian record label boss and musician Andre Ishak. Throughout the work there’s a leaning towards Bauhaus-esque typography and clean, graphic shapes, with crisp layouts proving once again that the marriage of graphic design and electronic music is one made in heaven. Or in this case, in Aberdeen, London and Oslo.

  12. Arthurfoliard-mood-itsnicethat-list

    Arthur Foliard has some impressive design experience on his CV – Pentagram, Landor and Moving Brands – and he’s been honoured by both ADC and the Cannes Lions. Not bad for a 25-year-old, but this London-based Frenchman has a portfolio of work that makes sense of these accolades.

  13. Mirko-borsche-itsnicethat-list-2

    Is there no end to Bureau Mirko Borsche’s brilliance? Having already produced season after season’s worth of printed collateral for long-term client the Bayerische Staatsoper, Mirko’s eponymous studio has just released its newest collection of work for the theatre. Spanning a series of events entitled Die Unmögliche Enzyklopädie, plus posters for the house orchestra Bayerisches Staatsorcheter and premiere posters too, the newest selection might even be the most diverse to date.