Working a full-time corporate job in change management, #ShilloMEL graduate Daniele Regan wanted to find a way to explore her passion for synthesising complex information, through a creative outlet. Today she has over 600K followers on for her .
Read on to find out how Dani was able to juggle two careers and establish her own successful design business through studying at Shillington!
Why Shillington? What made our design course stand out from the rest?
Shillington was recognised internationally. I liked the idea of the course being very hands on and the how broad the learnings were across not only software but branding, AI, user experience etc.
You have your own business designing custom made monograms! Can you tell us a bit more about that?
Yes! I created Danibydsgn, a graphic design company. I design a specific type of minimal, fine line, monograms which customers use for very diverse broad applications, such as small business branding, prints for home decor, presents and the most common being meaningful tattoo designs!
What did you get up to between graduating Shillington and opening your own studio? Did you work in an agency, freelance etc.
I actually continued to work full-time in a corporate job applying my graphic design skills to my change management position whilst continuing to develop my skills on the side in my own time.
I then quite quickly moved into sharing my work on social media and developing my small business.
What do you love about being a designer?
I really enjoy the diversity given designing doesn’t require physical delivery or face to faces, my business operates globally so no one order is in the same and I have been able to provide my goods and services to people in countries I have even never heard of before.
My favourite element is knowing the full meaning behind a design and delivering that to the client and seeing how they bring that design to life, it is overwhelming how many photos I receive of clients getting their designs tattooed however there are also some other incredible uses – to name a few:
What did you do before Shillington? Why did you take the plunge and enrol?
I took the plunge because I had a passion for converting large text amounts or hard to understand information into simple to digest and communicate information.
This was something that I had a skill for mentally but not creatively or skillset digitally to do. Shillington definitely provided me with this!
What was your biggest challenge during the course? Why?
I did the course part time whilst working full time however actually got a new job during the middle of the course which required a lot more of my time than I assumed therefore driving a difficult time restraint however I believe, if you really are interested in graphic design you will make the time (just like anything).
Did you make any meaningful connections with teachers or fellow students during the course?
Yes of course, I think this was another thing I enjoyed about the course was the interaction with other students and how amazingly creative they were yet in different ways. I can today still remember many of the other students piece that I was truly amazed they were able to design and bring to life. It is really inspiring. As mentioned
Shillington is a face to face, attendance mandated and higher end course which means it does attract some seriously talented people that you get to surround yourself with.
What was your favourite brief on the course? Tell us your process!
At that point when I was doing my course, I was in a very different creative space, I was working in an office corporate job so therefore was really interested in information presentation of complex hard to understand information. Therefore my favourite brief was a magazine layout spread of information we were given creative license to design and map out and I really enjoyed after learning to skillset to be able to create vectors and infographics to be able to eliminate large chunks of text and map out information visually.
Where do you see yourself in 12 months time?
My goal is to drive my small business into a larger line of personalised monogrammed goods making my ’small business’ not so small and scaling it, allowing me to no longer work full time as well as running my business. I also hope to do some more freelancing of branding and identity especially given how many small commerce businesses are pushing through at the moment.
What would you say to someone who is sceptical about the Shillington course?
I think remembering your “why”… Why do you want to get into graphic design and where do you want to head with it?
If you are serious about becoming a Graphic Designer, you won’t go wrong with this course just given the sheer number of skills across different platforms you learn.
Yes it is a graphic design course however the fundamental skills you use can be applied and should be applied and mandated in so many career paths, jobs and freelance work outside of the graphic design niche.
If you could give one piece of advice to someone starting at Shillington, what would it be?
Immerse yourself and create the time you require to really embed your skill set. A lot of Pinterest and moodboards and really clarify before you start what you are looking for out of the course and what you want to specifically learn and push towards as a designer. Be strategic about where you want to take your own learning!