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Meet George Ripton, Shillington Graduate and Kre-eyt Founder

It’s no secret that Shillington graduates are a hard working bunch. They’ve made their way through the design trenches of our full-time or part-time course and came out the other side to kick butt in the design world. In past interviews we’ve spoken to graduates who’ve set up their own companies or even labels either as side hustles or entrepreneurial efforts. So when Shillington London graduate George Ripton contacted us about his new creative enterprise we couldn’t wait to find out more!

Kre-eyt is an online store selling prints created by some of the worlds most exciting kre-ey-tivs, ranging from illustrators and designers through to tattoo artists from all over the globe. Read on to discover more about George’s journey as a Shillumni, the steps he took to launch Kre-eyt, and what to look out for next!

In terms of your relationship with Shillington, you studied on the full-time course in London, graduating over 3 years ago. What have you been up to since and do you think your time at Shillington prepared you for the design industry?

Since leaving Shillington I’ve been fortunate enough to have worked for three awesome yet varied companies. I spent my first few years employed as a digital designer for cash-back site Quidco, I was lucky enough to pick up a wealth of experience, launching new sites throughout Europe, working alongside a broad team including developers and copywriters whilst also spearheading some of the brands largest campaigns such as Christmas, Black Friday and the launch of the new mobile app and homepage.

I moved on from here to work for the renown advertising agency leap, for the second role running I was heavily involved in the companies rebrand, but was also fortunate enough to work on some awesome and varied projects for clients such as the NBA, Audi, Visa, Rolls Royce and JP Morgan to name just a few. I was then offered the role of senior designer at global media agency DCT8. We currently specialise within the automotive industry and have key clients such as McLaren and Genesis cars whilst working alongside the BBC and Top Gear on multiple campaigns.

I feel Shillington prepared me perfectly for my career thus far as a designer, I honestly cannot recommend the course enough for anybody looking to follow the same career path.

Not only is the whole experience fun and full of awesome people, but you gain so much knowledge from such a short space of time. The skills, techniques and contacts you leave with are invaluable and geared perfectly to the design world of today, I was able to start in my first role within a month of graduating.

Kre-eyt is an exciting new creative platform, founded by yourself and featuring a lot of talented Shillumni. Can you tell us a bit more about it?

Absolutely, kre-eyt was formed to celebrate and promote the sometimes unheralded, yet super talented creatives spread across the globe. Our aim was not just to identify these individuals but to give them a platform to showcase their work. Each person will create a one off piece that will be sold on our online store, we have linked up with one of the UK’s leading fine art printers who already exhibit work in galleries and museums around the world, they will take care of all our printing and production.

We wanted to form a real creative and culturally diverse hub of talent, building a brand full of ideas, personality and ambition.

I’ve been fortunate enough to meet so many hugely talented individuals in my career to date, yet sometimes I feel the platform isn’t always available for them to showcase their creativity, which was my main driving goal when setting up kre-eyt. As you mentioned we have a large number of talented Shillumi already onboard, this just goes to show the high level of designers/illustrators that Shillington constantly creates, all of these have gone on to forge their own career path and create their own unique style.

How did you go about collecting creative members for kre-eyt, did the Shillumni network facilitate this at all?

I spent large amounts of time short-listing individuals that I believed would be perfect for this venture, before contacting them and sharing our vision. This approach has culminated in a real mixture of styles from a whole host of different skill-sets, from both hand and vector illustrators, 3d artists and designers through to tattoo artists. Each bringing their own unique vision and background, with nationalities ranging from South America across the globe to Asia.

As mentioned before I had a number of contacts through my time at Shillington but also used resources such as the Shillington Design Blog for identifying other Shillumni from different year groups.

Aside from this I would identify talent through sites such as Itsnicethat and instagram along with campaigns such as 36 days of type. Great thought was put into who I wanted to approach, keeping the collective varied and unique.

What drove you to start something like Kre-eyt and can you share any future plans of its growth with us?

As I mentioned previously it was to really allow a platform for the large number of hugely talented creatives to showcase their work and to gain exposure. Whilst initially being set up as a site selling prints from all of our creatives, the team at kre-eyt have some big and bold ideas moving forward, with plans for further manoeuvres in the creative world, with partnerships being looked at with like-minded brands, along with plans to put on events and exhibitions in the future forming just a part of the vision for what is just the beginning of our exciting journey.

How can people get involved, are you looking for new applicants and if so how can they impress you?

We are constantly on the lookout for new applicants to add to our creative pool of talent and would be delighted to hear from potential contributors, this can be done via our email or through any of our social media sites which can all be found on our website.

One of the brand components of Kre-eyt is to ‘give super talented creatives a platform to showcase their work’ how do you intend to do this, will it mostly be through digital efforts or are there plans for any exhibitions or events?

Initially this will be done through our site, each artists prints will firstly be featured and sold on our site, with a bio on each artist including links to their own sites and social links. We will also be featuring each artist heavily through our social media channels and have recently been running our meet the team campaign through these platforms. But like you mentioned we have our sights set far greater than this and will be looking to put on a series of events and exhibitions throughout 2019. We are also in some advanced talks with likeminded brands with some really exciting linkups on the horizon in the worlds of music and fashion.

Phase one of Kre-eyt’s launch plan is to sell merchandise from its creatives by way of an online store—when can we expect to see this live?

Our site officially launched earlier this month on, Sunday 2nd September, feel free to head on over and check out some of the great pieces up for grabs already.

Kre-eyt has a global contingent with members spanning from South America to Asia, do you think having global representation is important in design?

Absolutely, one thing that instantly surprised me on my course at Shillington was the sheer variety of nationalities and cultures. In the world of design and art, as with any other, this has so many positive impacts and really allows a mixture of styles, themes and cultures.

Like you mentioned I’ve aimed to continue this philosophy into the kre-eyt project, with around twenty nations already represented, aside from these impacts it also gives the brand a much more far reaching appeal and we have already picked up followers and admirers from all over the globe. nationalities represented, aside from these impacts it also gives the brand a much more far reaching appeal and we have already picked up followers and admirers from all over the globe.

We love to see our graduates develop their own side hustles, would you advise fellow Shillumni to start up an entrepreneurial effort and if so, any tips?

Absolutely, I started by just setting myself my own briefs, I always tried to pick up on current affairs, whether that be through sports or politics and try to create something appealing and engaging from those subjects, something that people could relate to and would provide a smile or a laugh on their daily commute. Now with kre-eyt I’ve taken this side hustle one step further by forging more of a brand.

I feel you can only benefit from this whatever end of the scale you arrive at, it’s all about learning new techniques, trying out new methods and meeting new people which are all hugely important and beneficial throughout your career.

Huge thanks to George and his team at Kre-eyt! Be sure to check the website and follow them on Instagram

Would you like to study design like George and his collaborating Shillumni? Study design 3 months full-time or 9 months part-time at Shillington in New York, London, Manchester, Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane –>

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