Philip is a self-taught designer through countless hours of practise, hard work & a passion for design.
The Logo Creative – Hi Philip I love your work and thanks for taking part in the interview.
Philip Martland – Thanks I’m more than happy to take part in this! It looks very interesting!
The Logo Creative – What was the turning point in your life when you decided to become a designer and how did you proceed?
Philip Martland – I began designing when I was 16, I just kind of fell into it and it was purely for a hobby. I did it like that for 4 years. I was so fascinated by it. I just wanted to learn more of these cool effects, then did it professionally for 6 years, from freelance to agencies. I then took a hiatus from design completely, didn’t open an adobe application for just over 3 years due to my personal life and feeling like I wanted to try some new career avenues, I returned to design around January 2020, with a new perspective, goals and thanks to some persuasion from a designer friend.
The Logo Creative – What does your day consist of?
Philip Martland – An average day for me starts with a coffee and catching up on notifications. I usually hit the gym first thing after that or early afternoon, I usually work long days, anything from 0700 – 2100, 12-14 hour days sometimes so the gym for me is a nice stress reliever.
The Logo Creative – Are you a morning person or night owl and is there a reason why?
Philip Martland – So from my teens up until about 27, I was always a night owl. I used to always sleep through my alarms in the morning, however for the past 4-5 years I like to wake up between 5/7am, I’ve noticed I get a lot more done in the mornings than the afternoons, my creativity is at its peak in the mornings also, whether that’s thanks to coffee I don’t know haha.
The Logo Creative – What was the first logo you ever designed?
Philip Martland – I actually cant remember! When I first began design, I was purely using photoshop, I didn’t make my first logo until about 5-6 years into that when I got a hold of illustrator, I’m pretty sure it was for a friend of mine gaming/youtube channel, and it was an awful logo haha.
The Logo Creative – What is your favourite logo you have designed?
Philip Martland – I have one absolute favorite logo I’ve designed, but the client has asked me to keep it under wraps until the business is ready to launch. I did it about 4 months ago and I like it more and more every time I look at it.
There is one or 2 that stand out to me that provided me with a challenge that I felt extremely happy with myself for managing to overcome.
The main one being my ‘Zeus Apparel’ logo, this was an inspired logo but some of the letters I tried in so many different ways and just couldn’t get it to look right, but when I finished it was very happy with the outcome.
The Logo Creative – What’s the best logo you’ve designed that clients DIDN’T go for?
Philip Martland – My ‘Inksane’ logo was a rejection unfortunately, I touch wood because I’ve been pretty lucky when it comes to rejections and not had that many at all, but this one I was sure was the perfect one, even though I wasn’t given much of a brief, I felt like I did a really good job on it however they didn’t seem impressed at all haha.
The Logo Creative – What is your favourite logos of all time?
Philip Martland – I have a lot of inspiration from mainstream logos, such as the NY Yankee logo, YSL/Coco Chanel, they’re some of my favorite monogram styles, Eminem’s logo is a personal favourite with all the letters connecting (His latest one),
The Logo Creative – Can you describe or give us an overview of your logo design process?
Philip Martland – Sure! I have a few examples on my Instagram profile, but once the client talks and I have a brief and all information I need to get started, I usually start off with pencil & paper but that’s recently moved to ipad & apple pencil, ill give myself 20-30 minutes to sketch as many rough ideas as I can, remove the ones that I don’t like, leave ones with potential, then do it again, ill usually narrow it down to around 3 concepts, then ill do a more In detail sketch, with annotations as to what I should change, improve, or options for when
I put it into illustrator to get vectored, I’ll usually put together a small presentation, so the top 3 concepts, grids if necessary, as well as mock ups if possible to give them an idea of the logo in the real world, once the client has approved one of the concepts, we move onto revisions if any are applicable until the logo is finished.
The Logo Creative – What brands do you most admire and how do they influence your creative thinking?
Philip Martland – This is a good question! First one is Apple, I love how clean all their design is, the old advertisements for iPods were really creative! There’s really no brands that jump to mind, I get my creative thinking from everything, movies, games, or something as simple as a walk in the park!
The Logo Creative – What do you consider your most successful design project, and why?
Philip Martland – Hmm, to be honest any client that is happy with my work is a success to me, it doesn’t matter if one logo I design is seen by millions compared to another I designed that’s seen by hundreds, as long as my jobs done and the client is happy then I consider it a success.
The Logo Creative – How long does it take to complete the average logo design project from start to finish?
Philip Martland – On average, it varies a lot but I try to get a logo done in a day, sometimes it can take up to a week depending on the actual process and whether I’m working to a time scale. I want every logo I design to be better than the last and a lot of potential clients are going to see these logos so I like to give them as much thought as possible and not rush them. (unless requested by the client)
The Logo Creative – What are your recommended design books to read?
Philip Martland – Personal favourite is ‘Designing Brand Identity’ by Alina Wheeler which is available on Amazon UK and US. I also enjoyed ‘How to be a graphic designer without losing your soul’ Also available on Amazon UK and US – other than those I actually haven’t read that many.
The Logo Creative – Which software do you use frequently and is there any you would recommend to designers?
Philip Martland – Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop & Procreate. Photoshop is my all time favorite app, I’ve probably used that app more than I’ve had roast dinners and know it like the back of my hand. Illustrator is an incredible app for illustration and logo design. Photoshop is great as you can do literally anything else that you can imagine! Procreate is a new app to me.
I recently bought the iPad Pro and Pencil and I find it so useful in my day to day, from notes, sketches, and now just yesterday Adobe illustrator! So I can literally sketch and then vectorise a logo all on my iPad whilst on the go!
The Logo Creative – What is your favourite style of logo design? And why?
Philip Martland – Hmmm, I can’t pick, I honestly have a huge love for them all, from vintage to modern, minimal, lettermark, the lot! If it’s a good logo, it’s a good logo regardless of the style.
The Logo Creative – What is your daily inspiration when you design?
Philip Martland – Daily casual inspiration I would say pinterest, behance, Instagram. I browse them daily.
The Logo Creative – When you’re not designing do you have a favorite free time activity you like to do?
Philip Martland – Definitely the gym, but if not then gaming, watching a movie, I don’t really game or watch movies that often so it’s always a nice way to relax.
The Logo Creative – What was the biggest challenge you ever faced on a project?
Philip Martland – I’d have to refer this one to my previous answer of the Zeus Logo.
The Logo Creative – In your opinion what’s the best and worst part of your job as a designer?
Philip Martland – The best I would say is the job itself, I feel like it’s not even a job, I get paid to do something I enjoy daily. The worst is probably people expecting you to work for free/exposure, as if they’re doing you a favour by letting you design for them haha.
The Logo Creative – Who is the most inspiring person to you and why?
Philip Martland – So many to mention! My dad firstly, hardest worker I know! Speaking of which, Dwayne The Rock Johnson has been a massive inspiration of mine ever since I was young.
The Logo Creative – Who is your favourite graphic designer and why?
Philip Martland – I’m a huge fan of James Martin & Sagi Haviv’s work. But I couldn’t pick just one, I tried to look at everybody’s work, picture in my head how they created it and came up with that idea, and implement that into my own thing.
The Logo Creative – What’s your favourite design quote or quote in general, and do you have a mantra or saying you live by?
Philip Martland – “Just show up” This is something I tell myself daily, whether it’s to go to the gym when I have no motivation to get out of bed, or to go out for the day, or to sit on my computer designing all day, just show up and do it, its never as bad as you think it will be.
As well as “Always be the hardest worker in the room” & “Done is better than perfect”.
The Logo Creative – In less than 10 words what is graphic design?
Philip Martland – A limitless expression of the mind.
The Logo Creative – What steps did you take to start your graphic design business? Did you have to make any sacrifices on your journey?
Philip Martland – First I had to put in a lot of thought and make sure this is what I see myself doing in 10 years, the answer is definitely yes! I sacrifice everyday, being a graphic designer unless you’re working in a populated office environment can be very isolating, it was one of the reasons I took a 3 year hiatus. Unless you can balance your work/life ratio, I’ve sacrificed spending time with family and friends, work elsewhere, money, effort and time.
The Logo Creative – Do you have any regrets? Is there anything you would have changed early on in your career?
Philip Martland – I try not to regret anything I do, we do the things we want, we all have choices so live by the ones you make.
The Logo Creative – If you could go back in time, what would you tell your younger self?
Philip Martland – Don’t give up and stay focussed!
The Logo Creative – What’s the most important piece of advice you have received as a designer that’s helped you?
Philip Martland – Things don’t just get given to you, you have to work and earn them.
The Logo Creative – What would be your advice for new Logo and Graphic Designers?
Philip Martland – Figure out your own style and perfect it. It’s that what will get you noticed, without that you’ll fade into the sea of designers who’s work all look the same.
Im 100% self taught, way back before youtube tutorials even existed, I was never given a hand on how to design, if I can do it, then you, today with all the resources available are definitely capable, just trial and error, and a sh*t load of practise!
Also published on Medium.