Over the past 5 years, DesignGel has been handed down through three generations of university students and graduates who have each contributed to how the business has developed. Today we are proud to announce the newest Directors of DesignGel, Hollie Arnett and Jared Thomson! We are here to introduce ourselves and talk a little about our plans for DesignGel, as well as chat to Denny about handing over the business to us!
Introduce yourself & Jared…
Hey! My name is Hollie, I’m a 22 year old designer and I am originally from England but now I live in Wellington, New Zealand. I am three weeks away from completing my degree in Visual Communication Design with Honours and have been designing branding, marketing material and websites for approximately seven years now. Jared is 24, from Masterton and now also lives here in Wellington. He completed his Bachelor of Design with Honours in 2015 and throughout his design career has been creating amazing editorial, branding and strategic design and collecting 2 best awards along the way.
Why did you apply for the DesignGel roles?
Jared and I both had dreams of owning and running our own design studios, so when the opportunity to do just that came around, we couldn’t pass it up! The nature of DesignGel also appealed to all of our passions: design, working with small businesses & non-for-profits, and giving back to young designers so it seemed like a perfect fit!
How did you feel when Denny & Sloane offered you & Jared the role of Co-Directors?
We were so excited and honoured to be offered the opportunity to Co-Direct and run DesignGel but also healthily nervous at the same time! As young designers it’s an incredible chance to build our own future and design our careers, and learn a lot along the way. We are so excited but we want to do a great job and do DesignGel proud, so the pressure is on! To have this responsibility is wonderful and the fact that Denny & Sloane believe in our skills enough to give us their business gives us the confidence that we can achieve some amazing things with DesignGel!
What aspect of DesignGel are you most excited about?
We are so excited about working alongside students and recent graduates on amazing projects for small businesses and non-for-profits. Being able to combine these incredible projects with the opportunity to help young designers is what we’re looking forward to the most! We’ve both been students, so we understand how difficult it can be to get your foot in the door, the value that it can provide when you do, and the joy of working on exciting live projects. We want to help these designers as much as we can, while also providing top-quality design for small businesses!
What do your’s & Jared’s personalities & skills bring to DesignGel?
Jared and I are both extremely passionate people when it comes to design. We are strong believers that small business doesn’t mean small impact, and we are determined to help these startups, non-for-profits and SMBs to achieve great things through the power of design. We both want to work with businesses that we feel passionately about and can form long-lasting relationships with. Jared is a whizz at managing the studio, liaising with our clients and co-ordinating our projects, as well as having amazing editorial, strategy and typographic skills. My expertise lie in art direction, working with our young designers and co-ordinating our digital presence, alongside my technical design skills in branding, digital design and typography.
What are your plans for the future of DesignGel?
We plan to grow DesignGel to the point where we can give as many creatives the opportunity to work with us as possible. We want to keep a hands-on role in the design of each project, maintaining our high standards and continuing to do the thing we love while also training up and empowering a new generation of designers. We can’t wait to work on more and more exciting projects in the time to come and we’re looking forward to seeing what the future will bring!
Why are you handing over DesignGel?
You can read all about that here!
What was the best thing about working for DesignGel?
I’ve loved being able to put my design ideas and knowledge into practice with great organisations over the past two years. Not only have I learnt about running an enterprise, I’ve gained a heap of confidence in my own skills and met some amazing people who have helped us along the way.
What was your favourite project that you worked on with DesignGel?
I hate to pick favourites, but I've most loved working with our not-for-profit clients who are so passionate about what they do and excited about trying something new.
What are you most excited about seeing happen with the new generation of Directors?
I'm really looking forward to seeing DesignGel grow into a position where it's able to help more young creatives, and become even more a part of the Wellington design community.
What made you choose them as the next generation of co-directors?
We chose Hollie and Jared primarily because of their enthusiasm both for design and for the young design community. They've both previously run projects that demonstrate their drive to do things their own way, and they're definitely up for a challenge.
What do you think Hollie & Jared will bring to DesignGel?
A new outlook on how DesignGel can continue to grow to encompass a new generation of designers. I'm really looking forward to seeing what comes next!
We (Jared & I) are so thankful for this opportunity and we are ready to face the new challenge head-on, so if you are after any beautiful & effective design to enhance your brand, get in touch and we can get things started!