Martine Warburton runs Puree Design – a micro design agency in Brighton. Puree recently rebranded D4D and designed the new website. She art directs a small team of designers working on projects from rebranding and web design to infographics for a diverse range of clients.
1. How did you become a designer?
I’ve wanted to be a designer since I was about 14, I studied Art and Graphics at GCSE and then A-level, and followed it up with a Design Studies degree at Goldsmiths. My course involved a whole year of industry placements and I made the most of it working with four different design agencies from giants like Fitch to tiny boutique agencies. Our degree show at the OXO tower in London was a massive springboard for me and I landed a few interviews, I began freelancing straight out of uni and gradually grew this into Puree Design (www.pureedesign.com) where myself and small team of designers work direct for our own clients.
2. What has been the most interesting project you’ve worked on and why?
There have been so many it is hard to choose. Aside from designing the D4D brand and website, we recently worked on a brand refresh and brand development for Sussex Wildlife Trust, developing a new illustration style and graphic style. It’s a great cause and a lovely team and we were able to push the brand towards something much more modern and engaging. We’ve also created two infographics for the IOC (International Olympic Committee). I loved the challenge of selecting the right stats and presenting them in an engaging and understandable way, and it’s about as big as brands get so it was a massive honour to work on the project.
3. What would be your dream project?
I generally love working on projects where the client has an open mind and trusts our creative judgement. Anything that involves illustration or branding also holds a special place in my heart.
4. What are you reading right now?
“Designing Brand Identity: An Essential Guide for the Whole Branding Team”
It’s a really thorough look into branding and branding process.
5. What do you love doing when you are not working?
I’m an outdoorsy sort of person so I spend a lot of time mountain biking, kayaking, snowboarding and walking, I also like to paint (watercolour mostly) when I have spare time, which isn’t often enough! My husband and I are doing up our house room by room so we spend a lot of time on Pinterest gathering ideas and most weekends making them happen. One highlight has been a penny floor in our bathroom which I laid by hand over 3 weekends – it cost £160 in 1 pence pieces.
6. What’s your favourite London hidden gem?
That it is so close to Brighton! It’s such a unique city with loads going on, it’s sandwiched between the South downs and the sea, plus there are so many fab little independent cafes, and cool antique / retro shops and a thriving creative scene.
7. What’s the one piece of advice you would give to someone starting out their career in design?
It’s a highly competitive industry, you need to be confident in your own work and I find the best way to do that is to have a reason behind every decision. If you can back up every design decision with well researched evidence or reasoning then you have a much better chance of getting your way when it comes to convincing your clients. Also try to look beyond your own niche for inspiration, some of the best ideas come from cross pollinating ideas and styles from many different corners of design or culture in general.