Design Director

In a nutshell…

Job ads are pretty crap aren’t they? They never tell you what’s really on offer. But here at big fish we like to swim against the tide, so with this one we thought we’d tell it how it is and see what we get back.

What are we after?

We’re looking for seriously talented design directors who can take a brief and nail it first time. Someone who creates challenging, unconventional design work that defies trends and wows clients and fellow designers alike. The design directors at big fish need to be methodical thinkers as well as creatively broad-minded designers, so you’ll be someone who can identify the problem quickly and solve it with simple, effective and commercially sensitive solutions. You’ll spend most of your time putting pen to paper and getting stuck into design, as well as pushing the less experienced members of the team to be more and more creative on a daily basis.

How do you know you’re the right person?

Are you someone who consumes life at 10,000 miles per hour? Do you love language, art, music, illustration, photography, books, old record collections, dusty libraries, stuffed animals, beer bottle tops, airline safety cards, Tim Walker, eating things you’ve never tried before, that little old shop in East Anglia that only sells chess sets made from recycled Coke cans, blogs about brands with names that pun, yarn bombing, paper cuts of Che Guevara, living art drawn only in moss on old church walls and those photos that make real life look like tiny train sets. Is that too much to ask? If not, read on! Do you believe that everything in life, without exception, should be beautiful and considered?

Yes? Great! You’re halfway to a new career at big fish. Now for the sensible bit.

You’ll be responsible for creating your own design work, taking control of the most complex and strategic problems that we work on. You’ll be expected to cut through tangled briefs and understand the creative problem at their core, knowing exactly what makes work effective (or otherwise), and taking the lead with other designers. You’ll need to be able to rationalise and explain design work clearly and impressively, both internally and for our clients, in a way that helps people see your vision and that helps sell in your potential solution.

What about the work you’ll be doing?

Using a big layout pad, over-sized post-it notes and a lot of Sharpie pens you’ll be scribbling ideas and brainstorming lots with our writers and planners. You’ll be researching online and offline in the high street. You’ll be shooting stuff in our photo studio, building models out of paper, card and glue, painting, drawing, filming, recording and generally enjoying the life of a designer who has everything they could ever want to help them create amazing work. In addition to this, you’ll be mentoring the less experienced members of the team. You’ll be working closely, face-to-face with the clients and selling your ideas.

You’ll also need to be super Mac literate and treat your laptop and software as it if was an extension of your body. We like to combine the old and the new and keep our work lively, fast and fresh.

As well as creating your own work you’ll also help with other projects in the studio, helping to clear a path to potential solutions for other designers. Although this isn’t a management role per se, you’ll also help evaluate designers in their appraisals and reviews, giving advice on how they can improve and progress in their careers. You’ll also serve as a creative standard-bearer, flying the flag for the quality of Big Fish’s overall output and ensuring that the work we produce is as beautiful as it should be.

Honestly? We have no idea who we’re looking for really. We just want to meet incredible talent and find our kindred spirit to help us do great work.

What are our deal breakers?

First and foremost, we’re after someone who isn’t afraid of being selective and turning long-winded briefs into succinct and perfectly formed ideas. You’ll also need a minimum of 7 years’ experience, and if you don’t know your way around Illustrator and Photoshop, you’ll’ be in trouble…

We’d love you to…

  • • inspire and lead a small team
  • • work closely with our clients
  • • be able to draw and communicate ideas quickly
  • • turn the complex into the simple
  • • be an exceptional typographer
  • • obsess over colour
  • • live and breathe all things design
  • • know your way around a Mac, Illustrator and Photoshop
  • • know your print and love books, magazines and blogs
  • • be well-read and highly knowledgeable on matters of design and marketing
  • • live within a sensible distance of our studio (because we think long commutes are a waste of time)

How much?

We like paying people, honestly we do, so you tell us what you cost and we’ll see if our pockets are deep enough.

So, there we have it, the world’s greatest job for a design-obsessed, graphic designer/art director-type person who loves nothing more than burying themselves in solving problems and turning the mundane into deliciously delightful things that are fit for a king who likes delightful things, so why not click here and change your life?

Interested? Click here to apply >