I am a multimedia creative with over two decades of experience in Logo design, Graphic design, Branding, Website Design & Development, online marketing, Illustration, Music and Photography

Logo design

I have helped start-ups, new ventures and established local businesses develop a unique visual identity that has defined and promoted their marketing materials and services. When applied consistently, a crisp, original, professional logo design can raise the presence and profile of a business beyond the average. The logos below are just some of those that I have designed for my clients.

Branding

When "new media" was a buzz word and businesses first started getting online, I wanted to know how logo and website design fitted into the bigger picture. In order to learn more I gleaned as much experience as I could working with brand specialists at design agencies. I have since worked as Creative Director for an array of diverse start-ups and SMEs, guiding them through an effective and consistent branding process. As a result I have designed logos, stationery, leaflets, print adverts, fleet livery, interactive presentations, online video guides, websites and ecommerce stores. The following is just a sample of my work.

Website design and development

I designed my first website when getting online required listening to the raucous screech of a 33K modem dialling up. I had found my ikigai. I gave up a well paid job in IT to join a design agency where the only role available was a "Web Monkey" (that's not a joke, it was my job title). Since then I have freelanced at leading digital design agencies in London and Edinburgh, founded and run my own dotcom, and now manage my own web design and marketing business. I have worked in every sector and supported a vast array of businesses: passionate startups,  outfitters with a Royal Warrant to the Queen, overseas businesses, community councils, historic local estates, multinational B2B ventures, and many more. 

COMPLEMENTARY services

Not as pretty to look at as pictures, but only words can explain things sometimes:

When I began optimising websites, search engines such as Lycos, HotBot, Excite, Alta Vista and AOL Search were no more than poorly ordered lists; then came Google, keywords, Panda, Penguin and all that followed.

As I’ve always promoted my own businesses and services I ensured that a comprehensive and up-to-date understanding of the myriad complexities of online marketing was at the core of my digital skill set – it doesn’t matter how great a site looks, it’s pointless if no-one can find it.

I now have over two decades of experience on the subject, and regularly work with businesses to help them improve their online marketing strategies. I could write a meticulously detailed, jargon filled and mind-numbingly tedious book on the subject, but I’ll leave it there.

First and foremost I am a creative; that should be clear from the plethora of designs, illustrations, concepts, musical creations and photographs showcased throughout this portfolio site (more below).

I do however firmly believe that designers can’t create an effective website if they don’t know how to build, test and fix it themselves. I have a thorough knowledge of HTML and CSS and build and style responsive websites from scratch, taking them from concept design to the optimised and comprehensively tested finished article.

I have also worked alongside and supported technical architects on .NET and PHP projects, and I have extensive experience designing, developing, optimising and maintaining content managed WordPress websites and complex interactive WooCommerce stores. 

In the past, more times than I care to remember, I switched from one hosting company to another. I was simply never happy with the service and support provided.

I now have my own server and host and support all my client’s websites and technical needs – it’s the only way to ensure the highest level of performance and reliability.

Powered by industry leading cPanel™ control panel, CloudLinux & LiteSpeed, I provide tailored hosting solutions and technical support for online brochures, content managed WordPress sites and secure resource hungry WooCommerce stores.

As I design, develop, test, optimise, host, support and promote websites myself, it means that my clients only ever need one point of contact.

Illustration

I had a truly inept art teacher at school; he didn't teach me a thing, not even the curriculum. On the up side I was free to use the "art computers" whenever I wanted to.

I taught myself to illustrate and animate on Deluxe Paint 4 on a 1MB Amiga. It was illustration pixel by pixel, but a process that later helped me master Macromedia Flash, Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.

Mr Men illustrated for my son's room
Mr Men illustrated for my son's room
Winnie the Pooh illustrated for my son's room
Pooh and friends (plus Bender) illustrated for my son's room

Artworking

Artworking, or 'Photoshopping', is a skill that is often required during creative projects. Typical processes include tidying and touching up images, removing items from a photo, or creating a completely new scene. I wanted an impressive opening backdrop for this site, so I created one myself using my own photos and a few illustrated stars. Click on a photo below to enlarge it.

Illustrated props

During design projects there is often a need for a graphic, a realistic effect, or real life item to complete a concept. I illustrated everything on here using Flash or Photoshop; Post-it Notes, Polaroid photos, torn note paper, pin board pins, the gift card, Christmas baubles and an old portable TV. 

Gift card illustrated for a client © NICHOLSON CREATIVE
A TV illustrated for a portfolio site © NICHOLSON CREATIVE
Animated Christmas card with snow falling inside the baubles © NICHOLSON CREATIVE

Buttons & Icons

Websites and interactive projects require buttons, icons and navigational aids. These can be purchased from stock websites, but i create them myself if I can't find the right style. These are some of the buttons and icons I have illustrated for various projects.

Animated portfolios

As a digital creative I've had to come up with some distinctive and eye-catching portfolios to promote my work. I illustrated and animated each of the following websites in the once great software that was Flash (and despite Prince Vultan's insistence, Flash is now very much dead).

Space themed portfolio © NICHOLSON CREATIVE

Space | 1999 - Out of darkness a spaceship powered up, activated sensors, lowered shields and revealed that it was in earth orbit. It allowed the user to listen to my music in a rather novel setting (whisper mode, sensors and charts were all interactive).

Nature themed portfolio © NICHOLSON CREATIVE

Nature | 2002 - Appearing out of mist, plants, trees, mountains, animated leaves, grass, insects and birds faded into view. Complete with natural sound effects and a calming sound track, the site presented my photo portfolio.

Metal themed portfolio © NICHOLSON CREATIVE

Metal | 2005 - I animated this portfolio so a myriad of metal components unfolded and built themselves into the screen, navigational menu and sound system. Users could browse designs, photos and listen to music. Pressing "Reboot" made the entire screen explode into shards before it rebuilt itself afresh.

Water themed portfolio © NICHOLSON CREATIVE

Water | 2008 - My last animated portfolio formed from bubbles underwater, with icons bobbing in the sunlit underwater current. Bubbles were released when the cursor rested on an icon, and lettering popped into nothingness when the cursor was removed. designs, photos, illustrations and music could be enjoyed.

Notebook

I illustrated this book in flash for an earlier animated portfolio. It now shows sketches from school (and bender).

Sketches from school (and Bender) © NICHOLSON CREATIVE
Sketches from school (and Bender) © NICHOLSON CREATIVE

Music composition and production

With the help of my Dad I first wrote music in Basic on a 32k BBC when I was nine... there was a lot of beeping. I switched to sequencing on an a Amiga when I was 15 - that had 1MB of memory. I got into DJing (old school vinyl) at university before significantly upgrading my music hardware and software. I've since written, produced and published seven multi-genre albums released using the artist name Scambler.

Music licensing

My music has been licensed by film studios, TV stations, advertisers and software developers around the world. License rates start from £99 and a rate can be found on my music website at ScamblerMusic.com. To arrange a license please feel free to get in touch.

SANTANDER "Żyjesz jak chcesz" TV Advert
Track used: Who am I?
Polish TV

So you think you can dance
Track used: Lighting fires
Fox | USA

Red Bull Cliff Diving
Track used: Release me
Dave | Europe

Campbell’s Nourish Advert
Track used: On Black Meldon
CBC | Canada

Mars Ultimate Challenge
Track used: Child
Nova | USA

Photography

I started taking photos on a second hand Canon SLR back in school. Working with an old camera, then transitioning through a range of digital cameras as technology evolved, and finally working with professional stock photographs as a website designer helped me develop an eye for capturing an image. Light, colour, contrast, texture and landscapes are preferred topics. View more photos on my photography website.

Altered reality

I like to elevate my photographs and create surreal eye-catching views. Only a little Photoshop editing was undertaken to create the following reality-distorting and otherworldly scenes. Where possible I only combine photographs taken in close geographic proximity for a more consistent look.

Pixel sorting

Pixel sorting, or glitch art, is an effect applied to photographs by way of scripts, algorithms or a series of Photoshop effects. The following are examples of photos from my portfolio that I have enhanced by way of a range of different pixel sorting processes. I started pixel sorting existing photographs that I had taken, but now take photos specifically to apply the effect too.

CONTACT | PRIVACY
© NICHOLSON CREATIVE | ALL RIGHTS RESERVED