I was one of the first students in the UK to graduate with a degree combining Product Design with Marketing. Each project required research into current buying trends and to identify and target a suitably large segment of the market.
Whilst a good mix, to sell creative ideas, I needed sales experience. So, I served 8 years in one of the toughest sales environments: recruitment. Ready to become a designer, I set up a graphics division, with the aim of placing myself... It just eroded my confidence, seeing how many great designers were looking for work!
Aged 30, I'd had enough. Then I met an ex-farmer from Zimbabwe. He loved the UK! He'd just done an IT course where they also place students in their first I.T. job. He was now a database programmer. I applied for his course. 8 weeks later and £4k lighter I got 92%. I didn't get a placement. I wondered what I'd done...
Then the course organiser rang,
"Want to go on our new 4 week web course ?"
"How about if it's free? " I looked around the shared flat I'd had to move in to...
Whilst other students paid full price, no-one else had any design knowledge! I guess they were panicking, that no-one would hire students, who produced fugly websites.
It was 2000. The weekend of the dot com boom. We learnt 5 new web languages, sometimes at the same time as the lecturer. I loved it. Especially the usability aspect. It came across in my first interview. They hired me.
I stayed for 3 years, creating websites and writing mailshots, in return for selling their software. Then IT went into recession and I was made redundant.
At this time, someone who used to work for me, from the Graphics recruitment division, got me my first graphic design contract. Originally for 2 weeks, I managed to extend it to 9 months. More graphics work followed, but I was missing web design.
I figured I'd build a web design business, in my spare time. So, in 2006 I started doing shift work. Unfortunately, Internet Explorer 6 was the only web browser. It had so many bugs to fix, sites couldn't be built quickly enough for the price people were prepared to pay.
With nothing to lose, in 2008 I sold my soul and went on a short course to learn a drag and drop code generator(Dreamweaver). I hated it and told the lecturer. He showed me a book he was reading on the new version of CSS.
CSS2 separated content from formatting, making it easier to update websites. I was hooked. I bought ambrosedesigns.co.uk and began building websites for people on an ad-hoc basis.
On 24th September 2010, I launched Ambrose Designs, full-time. Then the learning really began.
I worked with Richard on a large and complex web design project - his input was invaluable and I learnt a lot from the collaboration. If you are looking for someone who absolutely understands web design and user-experience and who cares passionately about his work then you need to speak to Richard.
I have found Richard to be an excellent group leader at Waltham Abbey and he definitely went the extra mile in giving me advice for my 4sight which really helped focus my message and make it relevant to the audience.
I have collaborated with Richard on a number of web-design projects and can thoroughly recommend his skills in coding and responsive design and his pro-active attitude. He keeps up to date with trends and advances in technology and is always able to give useful advice.