In the spotlight: Ruby Ross, Junior Designer

In our latest Q&A, we chat with Ruby Ross, a junior designer in our London studio, about her design journey, inspirations, and memorable projects at Luminous.

Who are you, and what’s your story?

I’ve had a persistent passion for visual art and design since I was a little girl. It’s been what has inspired and inspirited me for as long as I can remember. Often when I design I don’t notice the time passing; I’ll glance up at the clock and hours have gone past without me noticing.

In this way, design is a kind of meditation for me. Growing up with dyslexia was always a challenge but it encouraged me to develop other ways of understanding and communicating. I think this has been a blessing in disguise and it’s led me to become the designer I am today.

I like to parallel design directly with how humans communicate verbally. Only a small percentage of verbal communication is the words themselves; the remainder is how they are expressed - with what body language and emotion. I like to think of graphic design as the body language and emotion of a piece of work. It comes down to human connection and understanding.

I think this is why design is so important to me.I came across a quote recently that reads “Art asks questions and design holds the solutions.” I think this encapsulates the essence of why I find it so fascinating.

What attracted you to Luminous?

Luminous seemed particularly vibrant to me. Both the work I saw and the people I met on my initial interview seemed bright, passionate and exciting. It’s hard to put my finger on exactly what that vibrancy was, but in some ways that’s what made Luminous so intriguing. "The whole is greater than the sum of its parts" – that’s exactly how Luminous felt to me!

What was your favourite project to work on?

This is a hard question to answer! There have been many. Creating the Butterfly Bison for JCT has been a favourite. This was an amazing project and a great challenge (the best kind of job!). The project was to create a three-dimensional bison made from thousands of tiny butterflies. This was part of an eclectic collection of butterfly animals for the JCT brand. The Bison project really ignited my problem-solving flame!

What is a project you have worked on recently that you are proud of?

Another favourite project has been the design for a brand refresh and suite of reports for student accommodation brand UPP. As a relatively fresh graduate myself, it was relatable and a great conceptual challenge as UPP is a leading student brand that also needs to appeal to cooperate investors. The outcome of this project is one I am definitely proud of.

In three words, what is it like working at Luminous?

Stimulating, synergetic, creative, warm. (I’m sorry I had to do four!)

When do you feel most creative?

I have noticed I usually feel most creative in two types of environments, both producing different styles of work. The first is in quiet calm spaces, where I have time and space to myself. Being in quietness inspires me and in these situations I often find myself doing self-led or personal projects. The other is when I’m given a brief; this is more of a fast-paced, exciting feeling of creative momentum. The energy in those initial stages of finding the solution and creative direction of a project – that’s when I feel most creative.

What campaign/work has inspired you recently?

The ‘Marmite - Love It or Hate It’ campaign. It’s an especially simple but clever idea that comments on what the public think about the Marmite brand in a very witty way. The campaign plays on self-awareness and is humorous, bold and eye-catching. It hones in on that quintessential, British, self-deprecating humour, making the brand likeable even to those who don’t like the product. I often feel inspired by this kind of clever, minimalist campaign as it reinforces just how much you can do with such a minimal visual if the thinking is there.

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