#MemberSpotlight on graphic designer Gemma Buss

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How did you get into the industry?

I honestly had no idea what I was going to do after university (studying a Fine Art BA), and panic email blasted pretty much every creative agency in Sussex. One agency came back to me in Brighton offering the opportunity to come in and shadow for a week.


At the end of the week the Creative Director offered me the chance to come back for an internship, so as soon as I’d put up my degree show work began my internship where upon completion then was offered the job as a Junior Designer – it all started from there! I am so grateful to Bolder Creative for my first job as it taught me so much and really catapulted my career.

Where are you based now and who do you work for?

I have recently moved back to West Sussex from London and work for Darktrace – a cyber security company.

If you weren’t in your current industry, what would you be doing?

Something psychology based. Mental health is very close to my heart and would love to help others.

Can you explain your creative process? What makes it unique?

I am a doer. Some people sketch out ideas or spend hours brainstorming, but for me I find it most useful to just start.


Pinterest and Behance are huge inspiration sources which is key to jumping into any project; then it’s two feet in and start experimenting.

How would you describe your style?

Weird and sometimes wonderful.

Which individuals do you gain inspiration from? Do you have any heroes in the industry?

Two people I worked with in my first job are hugely inspirational and feel very fortunate to have kicked off my career working alongside them - Billy @billelis and Yanis @ethikdesign; two incredible 3D artists who are making massive waves in the industry.

What tips would you give to aspiring creatives looking for work?

Keep going, keep applying, keep creating. I’m from a working-class background and grew up on a council estate, so had absolutely zero idea about any of this professional creative career stuff before and throughout uni.


My family couldn’t even understand why I wanted to go to university and get in debt (only 19 more years to go!). It is hard, and you will get rejected, but I truly believe that everything happens for a reason and the setbacks and achievements you face are all meant to be part of your journey.

What kind of tools/kit/software could you not do without?

Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign – staples. And Pinterest, my guilty scrolling pleasure. Cinema 4D  would be in there if I could afford it, so can do without for now.

What’s your secret to staying inspired and motivated?

Look beyond your industry for inspiration. Read books, magazines, watch documentaries, podcasts – anything that interests you and makes you feel good!

What’s the work achievement you’re most proud of?

Becoming atai Life Science’s first full-time graphic designer and being able to build on their brand; through this also having the opportunity to work with social media guru Steven Bartlett.


In a backwards way, also getting the opportunity to work for a large worldwide agency, it was a short gig, but it made me realise what I thought was a dream job actually wasn’t my dream job – and I’m grateful to have been through that experience.

What is the one thing that you would change about the industry?

Treat Junior creatives better. In general treat creatives better. We’re all human beings and all have something going on in each of our lives, there is unfortunately still a lack of compassion.

I’d also love more people from working-class backgrounds to feel they can join the industry too; statistically speaking there isn’t many of us, and I’d quite like to talk about our family Butlins holidays rather than not being able to take part in another conversation on ski trips.

Any websites, books or resources you would recommend?

Shoe Dog by Phil Knight – this over and over again!

Ceels Lockley’s podcast Peaceful Service Pro.



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