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Simon Pemberton heads up KvB Institute of Technology, the largest private design college in Australia

Do I see any differences in designers from Australia compared to designers from the UK...

Without having a clear sense of what is meant by ‘any ‘differences’ the answer is generally no, there are no differences. The best designers here are as talented and as original as the best in the UK. This isn’t a defensive reaction, it’s a statement of fact supported by our international successes in film making, special effects, graphics, product and furniture design, architecture...the list goes on.

However, if you investigate the question in a bit more detail, then I think some differences can be identified. Australian designers are perhaps more likely to be influenced by the light here which tends to encourage a bolder and/or brighter colour palette than you might commonly find in the UK. They may also subconsciously (and occasionally very consciously) make reference to slightly stereotypical Australian qualities such as our sense of humour, and our ‘can do’ attitude etc.

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Do I think it is easier or harder to find talented designers here...
It’s probably harder. This is due to it being a significantly smaller pond in which to fish.

Have we seen differences in the new talent coming through the doors now, compared to the students who walked in 5 years ago?
Yes there is a difference. Not in the sense that they’re any more or less talented or committed, but in the sense that their view of the world is different and their relationship with the technology with which and through which they communicate is different. Neither better nor worse, just different.

The student of today is the precursor for the 11 year old who right now, somewhere in the world, is making a video clip on a mobile phone and downloading it onto Youtube. These guys don’t think about communication in the same way we do.


Ken Lambert is a founding partner and Creative Director of Ink Project, also a Director of TV commercials

Do I see any differences in designers from Australia compared to designers from the UK...

I find this a strange question and I have always struggled with the geographic comparison. At Ink Project we value anyone from anywhere that has the core principles that we determine are the essentials for our team.

(1) Creativity

(2) an intrinsic sense of Quality



(3) Proactive attitude. Each individual has different mixes of these 3 key ingredients. What I have noticed from UK creatives are that they are already way ahead in the proactive area as they have taken the leap to get here. The UK market is much bigger , hence more competitive and they know they have to be good and deliver everytime. For that reason they embrace change and take risks, I am sometimes frustrated by local people who say they want to do good work and do nothing about it, yet they have good jobs in various studios. We have a number of creatives from the UK and I have to admit that they are amoung the best people I have ever worked with. Both professionally and creatively. Generalisations are to be avoided however if you are to look at our current team, 60% of which are made up of UK nationals. 15% are Australian born and the rest are from different parts of the globe.