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Scott Latimer

Scott Latimer
Course studied:
Product Design
Year of graduation:

Grand designs

Scott Latimer grew up in Hampshire but chose to stay in Staffordshire after graduating from his Product Design degree course in 1993.

Having built up experience in various roles in different industries, in August 2015 the father-of-two launched his own business, Productionhouse Studio, which supplies outsourced art-working and studio services, primarily working with the financial services industry.

“I didn’t have a big plan after university,” says the 44-year-old. “I just didn’t want to move back home to live with my parents. I did lots of little jobs like cleaning and working in bars, and then I moved into licensing and cheffing before becoming a financial administrator at Mecca Bingo in Hanley.

“I bumped into a friend from university who recommended going into freelancing, so I went for it as a self-taught graphic designer. I always knew I would do something creative, I just didn’t know what the route would be.”

After being self-employed for several years he joined a multi-channel marketing business as a ‘hands-on’ studio manager, working with clients such as the Co-operative Group and Police Mutual.

A unique business

Seven years later he decided to set up Productionhouse Studio, which is based in Stoke-on-Trent.

“We take the creative vision from an agency and turn it into collateral,” he says. “We sit in the middle of the agency and production company, and I don’t think there are any other separate art-working studios in the country. We will need to educate people as this is a different way of doing things, but our costs can be up to 50 per cent cheaper than an agency.

“I’m building a management team and I have a strong freelancing team who work remotely. I’ve got an office in Longton but I’d like to build a more permanent studio. I want to stay in Stoke-on-Trent and hope eventually to have another studio just outside London.

“I don’t want to focus on following other agencies into the big cities. I want to be able to employ people from more areas of economic development. If you have the aptitude for this industry and are hard-working, that’s what I’m looking for as an employer.”

Giving back to the University

Scott, who chose Staffordshire “because it had one of the best product design courses in the country”, is currently working with the University to help prepare students for the world of work.

“It’s always been in the back of my mind to give something back to Staffordshire University but I haven’t been in a position to do so before now,” he says. “I had a lot of fun times there with plenty of camaraderie and friendship.

“I’m doing a session at the next careers festival called “Graphic design: are you print-savvy?” as I’ve been on both sides of the job, managing and learning the craft, and have a full spectrum of knowledge.

“I want to help students go out into the world of work equipped with some knowledge about print. I’d like to help people think about print and offer insight. It kind of nourishes my soul a bit.”