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Wayne Hart (BA Design for Graphic Communication 2008)

Biography

I am an award-winning lettercutter and typographer working from my studio in Manchester. As one of only a handful of young carvers working in this specialist area, I am focused on maintaining this traditional craft while seeking to drive it forward with innovative ideas and modern technologies. Carving in both stone and wood, I also work with other materials such as metals, plastics and glass. My work to date has included commemorative gifts, public art projects, memorials, signage and art for exhibition.

In 2013 I won two awards from craft&design magazine Selected: the Gold Award for Specialist Media and the prestigious Craft Maker of the Year 2013.

Why did you choose to study at the University of Reading?

I chose to study at the University of Reading as a tutor from college had inspired me towards typography. The department’s reputation initially drew me in and the facilities and training were perfectly suited to my needs. When visiting for the first time I knew I had to study there.

What was the best bit about living and studying in Reading?

Reading was great in that I was able to enjoy first-class teaching and make use of the unique facilities in the department while at the same time enjoying a vibrant social life and meeting some of the best friends of my life. There is so much to enjoy, see and do.

What top tips would you give to students who are beginning their studies?

Work hard from day one. Graduation may seem far off, but it’ll be there before you know it. It’s important to study, build up a good portfolio of work and make the most of the teaching and facilities while you’re there. Enjoy the experience and remember it’s important to let your hair down from time to time.

What are you up to now? How did you get there?

Following the end of my lettercutting apprenticeship with Pip Hall (also an alumnus) in October 2012, I moved to Manchester to set up my own studio. I have worked hard, sacrificed much, sought specialist training and have been fortunate to raise in excess of £29,000 towards my continued development. I am beginning to create an international reputation having just completed a public art project in Amiens, France. I completed the memorial to C S Lewis for Westminster Abbey in 2013 and I am currently working on several high-profile commissions.

What would be your top tips for students interested in working in this sector?

Again, work hard from day one, put together a great portfolio of work and present it well. There are many designers out there and too few jobs. One needs to stand out from the crowd. Network, attend professional events and get as much work experience under your belt as you can. It will stand you in good stead upon graduating.

How has the University of Reading and the Careers Centre helped in your chosen career path?

I have remained in touch with the Department of Typography & Graphic Communication since graduating and in 2012 it was through the Department that I received one of my earliest commissions: a war memorial located at the London Road campus. Since 2011 I have been a demonstrating lettercutter on the MA Type Design course.

What are your top tips for students graduating this year? What should they be doing to secure the job they want?

Begin improving those past projects where necessary for the end of year show, otherwise it gets hectic at the end. Work hard on your dissertation from the outset to ensure well researched and written content. This is the most intense year of all, but give it all you’ve got and get that portfolio looking great. If you haven’t done so already, start networking and contacting studios for work experience.

What does the University mean to you and what is your favourite memory?

My time at University was a route to both career and personal development. Before starting my course I’d always assumed I was heading towards a career in graphic design, but it was a visiting lecturer at University who steered me into a different, more specialised direction. One that I’m utterly passionate about that allows me to incorporate craft, making, design and letterforms. On a personal level I really found and grew confidence in myself, and made some of my best friends to date. Among my favourite memories are meeting my housemates for the first time, seeing my degree result and graduating with my coursemates.

 

 

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