BA (Hons) Graphic Design alumnus, Andrew Jackson, talks to us about his design studio, Rotate.

“It’s quite funky here. There’s a good mix of creative companies, tech start ups, designers, architects, typical East London.  We’ve been here for five months. When we got it, it was a just shell, so we had to put up shelves design the work and lounge areas. It’s small but the illusion of space is kept by the full length widows and sliding doors at each end.

Adam Robbins (also BA (Hons) Graphic Design) and I worked at several agencies for a few years and then Adam’s boss left and started up this company. Adam started a year ago, then I joined about 6 months ago as director and designer. I worked with them when I was working at Ragged Edge on a few projects and, when I wanted to move on, this seemed like the best move.

After graduating I actually went to Winchester, home of King Arthur’s Round Table, but not really the home of contemporary design.  We had a guest lecturer Martin Coyne and he had his own practice Bond & Coyne. He met me when I was a student and he liked my work.  When I was still studying he asked me to do a placement, which turned into an internship, which turned into a job after university. I worked there for about two years and then the company moved on to London so I moved with them.  It worked out quite nicely.

After that I went to Ragged Edge where I was before this.  I met lots of nice people on the way and I’m hoping to use these contacts in this new venture.

When it comes to running my own company,  Jim does a lot of the business side because this is his second company, which is quite lucky for me and Adam.  It makes it much easier for us to crack on with the day to day work.

We are a digital focused design agency, so most of our work is online based or apps, but also we do some work which branches off from this like branding or print. We work with start-up and existing brands to maybe bring some new energy. Recently we got a new job. They wanted us to audit a website from a big fashion house Loewe based in Spain, but with stores all over the world.  They wanted us to look at a specific part of the website and we pitched against international designers. It’s grown from there into a much bigger project. We have various sized clients, not just all in London.

Within reason we can do what we want.  We are our own bosses so as long as the work gets done it doesn’t matter when it happens. We’re free to have our own take on projects as well, as long as the client is happy. We are all mates and have a laugh, we’re all doers.  In agencies there is usually a client manager, but we deal with every aspect from initial contact to delivery, so that is a pro and a con.”

What is your One Piece of Advice?

“Get yourself out there, be outgoing to put your work out there, contact as many people as possible, because you never know what will come out of it.  You never know where jobs will come from and just work hard.”