Katie Lamberg Sevenseven

Written by Katie Lamberg in News

Meet the team - Rick Buckley

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After endless late nights, huge amounts of hard work and extensive planning, our founders have created a brand and digital agency that has been described as "How an agency should be". We grabbed 5 minutes with Rick to discuss his sevenseven journey and learn a little more about him.

So you're the co-owner, how long have you known your business partner Danny?

Years. We went to college together, I think it was 1994. We studied graphic design for 4 years together, from day one we were both on the same course, both hung around in the same group, so yeah years. We kept in touch with each other since then obviously, working for different agencies. Danny running an agency, whilst myself, I've worked for agencies within design teams and leading them. From years and years ago we had an idea of starting an agency with all the knowledge we have and how to do it and not to do it. So, over 20 years? Definitely over 20 years, a long time.

Have you always wanted to run your own agency?

Simple answer yes. I think a lot of people who have worked within an agency do think about running their own one day. But I've always wanted to push myself and had a drive to do more, hardwork has never phased me. I think I just wanted to take all the knowledge and insight gained over the years, and use it to create an agency. I could go into the, "Well I've seen this done wrong and they did that", but I've also seen a lot of great things and been inspired by the places and people I've worked at. I've always looked at the places I've worked at previously with a view of not just updating a creative portfolio, but learning from the people running the agencies. What I could take away from them to help when starting our own business.

So you always wanted to be a designer?

Not necessarily, I sort of fell into it really. I was in the last year of school and my careers advisor looked at my grades, and said "I can see you're doing really well in Design and Communication". The grades pushed him to suggest doing a course in graphic design, which wasn't a new thing by any stretch of the imagination, but it was an industry that was changing and at the cusp of designers working on computers. I remember starting at college and the first apple computers were out. I bought one at home with my grant which was a Performa 475, a bland beige looking thing. I always wanted to be an architect if I'm honest, but somehow found myself studying graphic design and my passion for it grew.

What’s the best bit of your job?

I like the creative process. I could talk about it for ages, but once you've got through that process, it's the results. You've worked with a client, took feedback, suggested alternative views, managed their expectations and delivered a solution to their problem that's then beneficial to their business. I think that's the bit I really like, when the client says, yep this works. I don't just mean, design me a brochure, oh the brochure looks good. It's more on the branding side because you've got something to measure it against. I just like seeing the results at the end, whether that's a smile on clients face, or feedback from clients customers. Just knowing that all the work, thinking and commitment has delivered something beneficial for the company. Whether that's at customer experience level, or the income of a business going through the roof.

So what's the secret of a good design agency?

I don't think there's one thing. In a design agency, there are so many aspects to the business, it's how you knit it all together. It's a big balancing act of the right team, right clients, the right mentality and management, and I don't just mean the management of the company, I mean project management too. I think the key to all that is the right mindset of the people in the company, and at sevenseven we definitely have that.

If someone’s wondering whether sevenseven is going to be the right agency for them, what would you say?

I'd say get in touch. We've almost been a bit of a hidden gem in the agency world for some time, which naturally evolved through word of mouth from existing clients. It's the way the agency has grown, which is all credit to the team. Yet even locally, in Manchester, Liverpool, Warrington, companies haven't probably heard of us, but when they dig a little bit deeper into what we do, who we are, the experience, and who we work with, we see the excitement. We work with quite a lot of household brands but under NDAs so our portfolio on our website doesn't really represent the breadth of work we create. Once potential new clients talk to us and realise the team we have, the way we work, the experience, they often work with us.

Which project was most satisfying for you to work on?

There's been a branding project recently that we've worked on thats been to evolve an existing brand. It's a dated brand that has existed for over 5 years and they've realised that it no longer represented where their business is and where it's heading. They've grown considerably and they want a brand to communicate their new services and ethics. So we sat down with them, got to know them, their team and have designed a really nice solution that we're excited to showcase soon.

What albums or songs are on repeat for you at the moment?

When it comes to music I'm a real mixed bag. I can't pick out one type of music I love more than another. I guess it depends on the mood I'm in. I can always go back to Doves, always loved Doves, have done for years. And as they've not released anything new in years, their new album 'The Universal Want' hasn't let me down, so I'd say that currently. But as I say, I love discovering new music all the time, house music to classical I really do listen to anything.

What's your favourite typeface?

It changes all the time along with trends. It's also dependent on use and category. So something for everyday use or something for display, headline, impact. One I've discovered recently that's really nice is Roobert from an independent type foundry called Displaay, it has some really nice details to it whilst being simplistic.

In three words, describe yourself at work

Hardworking, inquisitive, creative

In three words, describe yourself at home

Family, relax, fun

Finally, do you have a favourite phrase or saying that has inspired you?

"All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible." - T. E. Lawrence

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Meet the team - Danny Parker

Sevenseven Design And Digital Agency

Intelligent design solutions for organisations wanting to create, restore and grow their brand.

sevenseven is driven by a simple belief: that things can be done better. In a relentlessly evolving industry our team of strategic, creative and technical specialists transform both B2B and consumer brands using “intelligently creative” print and digital solutions.

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