10 Questions with... Glenn Watkiss

At Graymatter Limited we know the people make or break a company and two of the things we are proud of are the talent of our staff and their great personalities!

Over the next few weeks, we will be introducing you to some of the people who drive Graymatter Limited and they will be sharing their thoughts on the Marketing industry today.

So this week we'd like to introduce you to Glenn Watkiss, our Conceptual Designer!

1. What was the first job you had?

Working as a finished artist/artworker in an advertising agency in the West Midlands in 1984.

Back in the day, a finished artist took ideas and concepts from the Art Directors and produced the final, print-ready artwork for press ads and brochures. It was a lot more hands-on than today as there were no computers back then. I always wanted to do the Art Directors’ job, so I trained hard and within a few months I was the one coming up with the ideas for others to execute! It was one of the best places I ever worked – lots of fun, camaraderie.

2. If you weren’t working in this industry what would you be doing instead?

Something to do with music, either playing bass in a band, building guitars or working in a guitar shop.

3. What gets you out of bed in the morning?

Our two cats.

4. What are you most proud of?

I’m from a working-class background and I’ve managed to sustain a career in the very middle-class environment of art and design.

5. What has been your biggest career regret?

Probably not being that good at selling myself. Hence I was a rubbish freelancer.

[Tweet "@GraymatterLtd: My biggest career regret is probably not being that good at selling myself."]

6. If you had to give one piece of advice to someone who has just started out in the industry, what would it be?

I was told this years ago by a boss of mine - “Don’t get precious”. It works for me.

[Tweet "@GraymatterLtd: I was told years ago by a boss of mine “Don’t get precious”. It works for me."]

7. What do you think is the biggest challenge facing Marketers today?

The ever-changing marketing landscape and not being very well trained for dealing with it.

[Tweet "@GraymatterLtd: The ever-changing marketing landscape is the biggest challenge for Marketers today."]

8. What recent work has struck a chord with you this year and why?

I quite like the Co-op’s new/old branding by ‘North’ and the ‘Take a look at me now’ albums by Phil Collins (can’t stand his music though). They featured re-issues of old albums, but instead of presenting the original album covers with Phil Collins as he was 20/30 odd years ago, they showed him in the present day but in the same style and pose.

I also like Richard Dawkins’ Penguin novels that have a different cover for each copy of his books (there were tens of thousands of them). They used a generative art algorithm programme and modern print-on-demand techniques so that each one was unique.

9. Tell us one thing someone would NOT be able to find out about you from looking at your Social Media profiles.

If you look at my facebook account, probably 80% of the images are of me with a pint in my hand. But I don’t actually like the taste of beer that much… honest.

10. If you were stranded on a desert island and could only take any three people with you, who would they be?

I’d take Herb Lubalin (Brilliant 60’s Graphic Designer who changed the face of design and typography), Bill Bernbach (Brilliant 60’s Creative Director who changed the face of advertising and VW) and Alan Moore (Brilliant, but mad, author/spiritualist from Northampton, who changed the face of comics).

Glenn Watkiss | Conceptual Designer