Interview with Oliver Norcott, Graphic Designer

Which one of these best describes you?

Early Planning Stage




Briefly describe your business

I provide a service that delivers an array of core creative solutions with a focus on retaining consistency throughout branding, print and online material. With a vested interest in nourishing the growth of the client’s business, aiming to deliver a reliable, affordable and human-centered approach to projects comparable to an in-house design team. 

Briefly describe your education

I studied a BTEC National Diploma in Graphic design that also included an A-Level in Photography, I thoroughly enjoyed the inclusion of photography so decided to study a degree in Photographic Art and it was at this point that I began to implement my previous experience in design with the other creative skills I was developing at university, which would later prove to be crucial in starting a comprehensive creative solutions agency. I did not initially see the skills I had learnt as a potential business and after a struggle in trying to find work after graduating with a lack of experience in the field I chose to study a Master of Design course at Cardiff Metropolitan to build up a portfolio of work.


What made you decide to work for yourself?

The business unintentionally began to flourish by accepting work from external clients that was originally intended for my course and I immediately began to see the potential of producing my own design agency where I would have far more creative control and be able to take on much larger and exciting projects that would most likely go to others if I had joined an already established company.


Did you receive any kind of business support from your school, college or university ?

Yes / NO


What was this?



What was the most valuable piece of advice you were given?

I had no previous business support during my time at college and University of South Wales but found Cardiff Met very friendly and willing to offer advice during the early stages of my business. The most important advice was on how to price the services I was offering because I often undervalued the work I was doing, which made it very hard for me to spend the time I felt was needed on projects. 

What was the most difficult aspect to starting/running a business?

The finances and day-to-day running of a business were daunting at the beginning and it was stressful but finally getting to grips with my admin has made life so much easier. It has definitely allowed me to focus on the more important aspects of the businesses rather than worry about the tax, time management etc.


Do you know what a business incubator and accelerator programme is?



Have you participated in either ?



Where was this?

Cardiff Met University incubation space and Intensive business course countdown to launch.

Have you received any support from the Welsh Government?



What was this?



If you could give one piece of advice to someone starting a business, what would it be?  

121 support

affordable premises


What do you think business support in Wales is lacking?

Finance for new start ups

Role models, industry mentors


Thanks Oliver!

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