Stuart graduated with an MA in Graphic Design from the Birmingham Institute of Art and Design, in 1999, after which he began working as a designer at the award winning independent youth culture magazine Sleazenation, based in London. During his time at Sleazenation the magazine enjoyed critical acclaim and was awarded silver for best magazine design and best front cover at the Total Publishing Awards 2000.
During this period Stuart's work was featured in international design publications, such as Plus 81 and In 2001 Stuart was appointed acting art director of the Independent on Saturday Magazine, when it was a photo-journalistic title.
Stuart then decided it was time to travel and embarked on a 4 month adventure through South America, documenting his journey along the way. On his return he was appointed Senior Designer at the internationally renowned style magazine Esquire. During this time he also co-founded The Void, an independent music magazine and art directed the launch issue of Imperfection, a newspaper magazine used to promote Fallen Vodka.
In 2004 it was time to see the rest of the world and he embarked on an 12 month adventure through Russia, Mongolia, Asia and pretty much every where else, photographing his epic trip!
Stuart is currently based in Brighton and runs his own art direction and design studio called Transmission. His company provides creative work for clients in the magazine, book publishing, fashion, music and charitable industries.
Stuart is recognised by many as one of the UK's best contemporary designers and has been featured in both Creative Review and Campaign. His poster work is featured in the forth-coming book, Made and Sold - Designers Side Projects, published by Laurence-King.
His photographic work can be seen at spikepictures.com and he is a regular exhibitor at the yearly award winning exhibition Show Below.
We asked Stuart a few questions....
BB: When did you first realise you were pretty good at this design stuff?
ST: When I got my first job at Sleazenation. It had an excellent reputation for its design, so to get a chance to work there was a real confidence boost. I was really surprised to get it.
BB: Did you enjoy studying at university?
ST: University was a great laugh and it gave me the opportunity to experiment with different methods of creating work. I really enjoyed the unlimited access to the photographic darkrooms.
BB: Is there any particular artist or designer that you admire?
ST: When I was going through university everyone was into David Carson, because his work was really playful. It always looked like he was having fun with what he was doing, but it is of its time. There are some excellent European designers currently working, such as Non-Format, Build and Hort.
BB: where do you get your inspiration?
ST: I get ideas and inspiration through making notes, sketches and looking around. I quite often store up ideas and hope the right project comes around where I can use them.
BB: Has there been a defining moment in your career?
ST: Getting the Sleazenation job was a big moment. It opened up doors that would have otherwise been shut. I still get work on the back of being employed there.
BB: If you could live and work anywhere in the world where would it be and why?
ST: Terelj, Mongolia. It is probably the most peaceful place I have ever been. Failing that somewhere with a sea view in a hot country.
BB: Are there any mediums that you would like to try out and haven't yet had the opportunity to?
ST: I would love to try working with moving images. To combine design and photography, that would be great.
BB: When was the last time you felt truly excited about a piece of artwork or design?
ST: I am really excited about my latest project, art directing the launch of Disappear Here. I have only just started but I am looking forward to developing it, as I think it will give me the chance to push myself in different visual directions.
BB: What would your best piece of advice be to a recent graduate who is about to jump into the design world?
ST: To keep contacting people and get your name out there. It took me ages to get myself into gear and I wasted a lot of time.
BB: If you had to give up Design work and could do any other job in the world what would it be?
ST: I would run a campsite in a hot country by the sea. It would have a load of old Air-stream caravans and VW campervans. My girlfriend Lynn would run the café.
BB: What is your favorite website?
ST: For a bit of blatant self-publicity it is www.thisistransmission.com but I also like looking through www.youworkforthem.com or www.concretehermit.com for things to buy.
Shop for work by Stuart at boxbird.co.uk