Graduated – 1985
Peter Richardson is currently a joint creative director at The Chase, one of the most awarded design consultants in the U.K. Peter took his first job in London at a small agency based in Kensington which specialised in premium packaging. It was a great schooling in craft and design giving him a good grounding in the respect for typography. After five years there Peter ‘came back north’ to a young and ambitious agency in Manchester, The Chase, where he still works and runs a small team of designers.
Peter Windett and Associates 1985 – 1989
The Chase 1989 – Present
Honors and Awards
2011 D&AD Silver (Writing for design) Posters
2011 Cannes Silver Typography
2011 Cannes Bronze Posters
2008 Fresh Creative Awards The Big F overall Winner
2008 Fresh Creative Awards Design for Print Gold
2008 Fresh Creative Awards Self Promotion Gold
2006 D&AD Graphic Design
2006 New York Festival World Gold Medal
2003 DBA Effectiveness Award Corporate Identity
2003 Design Week Annual Reports
2002 Cream Winner Annual Reports
2002 Roses Awards Winner Corporate Identity
2002 Consort Royal Awards Bronze Annual Reports
2002 Marketing Magazine Winner Corporate Identity
2000 D&AD Corporate Identity
1999 National Graphics Awards Annual Reports
1998/99 Donside National Graphics Awards Annual Reports
1995 National Graphics Awards Direct Mail
1995 Donside National Graphics Awards Bronze Direct Mail
1985 D&AD Student Award Highly Commended
The Disciples of Design Q&A
How and where did you secure your first job?
My very first job was collecting money for the paper round at the end of the week for the local newsagents. I got paid £4.25 per round. I then worked in my friends vacuum repair shop in Birkenhead. What I can’t do with a Hoover Junior. My first real job, of course was mentioned above, Peter Windett and Associates. On reflection it may have been an odd decision taking this position having gone through 4 years at Preston, being taught how important ideas are, then taking a job that was really about designing premium packaging. The point was Peter Windett was our external assessor at the time and offered me a job straight away. I felt privileged and flattered to be offered anything. Working on brands like Crabtree and Evelyn, Glenmorangie and Hediard in Paris was enormously educational. Getting into the London ‘scene’ was also very important at that time.
Do you think being a Preston student has benefited you in any way?
I hadn’t planned on going to Preston. It was luck or fate depending on your view. I’m afraid I spent most of my days at art college looking lost and confused. I just didn’t get things I just went along with them. When I reached the end of a two year foundation course I was asked which college I was going to apply to. Mmmmm? I thought. Graduates these days seem so clued up and clear on their objectives, I just seemed to go with the flow. I applied to Norwich School of Art because I was going there on holiday. See what I mean. I failed to get in. I was then asked what my second choice was. Mmmmm? I thought again. I looked over at the list of colleges and saw Preston. Preston I said. Off I went. It was one the best decisions I’ve ever made. It’s a cliche but I wouldn’t be where I am today without going there – sat on my backside in front of the telly to be exact.
How has the industry changed over the years in your experience?
From a purely commercial point of view it seems to have become tougher. Clients are more knowledgeable about the processes involved in design and desire clear commercial results, nothing wrong with that but when I started in the 80’s it felt like designers commanded a lot of respect and even became household names. I think clients were a little more in awe of our industry and it was a great time. Of course the other great change is the digital revolution. I remember when a hard drive meant holidaying in Cornwall.
Were do you get your ideas from? Do you prefer collaboration or thinking alone?
This is going to sound arrogant. Not meant to. When ‘Lovejoy’ was asked how he made so much money so quickly from his knowledge of antiques, he said, I’ve just made £20,000 in 2 minutes, but it took 30 years to get there. It’s the same with me. After 26 years of thinking of ideas it does come naturally, I should hope so. The ideas come from the brief, simple. I enjoy working with other good thinkers but equally happy thinking on my own.
What would you have done differently at University knowing what you know now?
If I’d have studied marketing, business studies, economics, social history, commercial law, psychiatry and computer studies then I think I may have been a better designer.
What’s the best thing about your job?
The best thing about the job is having the ability to change and improve any business.
What would you say has been the key to your success so far?
Sounds obvious but it’s hard work, treating every job with same level of attention and always trying for the best solution possible.
What is the most unusual thing you have done in your career?
Going 36 hours without sleep to finish a print job for a corporate launch party then going to the party.
What do you look for in graduates and their portfolios?
Creativity, Commitment and Character.
Any advice for students entering the industry?
Consider all positions offered, don’t be too proud or set your sights too high, any job is better than none. Experience is key. Have the best portfolio possible, full of ideas and immaculatly crafted. Get as much experience as possible including placements. Never give up. Be yourself.
Calendar - The Chase
'1000 Words' Mailer - Paul Thompson Photography