And I’d like to take a minute (your time is appreciated), I’ll tell you how I proclaim to have started Smooth Creative…
*Hum that sweet Fresh Prince drum loop*
Smooth Creative is not a massive agency. It’s mostly just myself (Matt Easom) working from my home office and collaborating with really awesome creative industry experts when a project requires their specific skill-set in addition to my own.
There’s a solution for every budget
I’m a firm believer in there being a solution for every budget. Smooth Creative began by helping small businesses as a side project; it was a creative outlet that provided freedoms I just wasn’t getting from my day job. I couldn’t take on big projects as I only had my evenings and weekends to do the work and I only had limited time with clients, fitting consultations around lunch breaks. This meant I got really good at making client interactions mega-productive. To this day they essentially boil down to:
- What are your goals?
- What can you spend?
- Okay! Here’s how we can achieve that or get you on that path with your budget…
Simple, right? This means whatever your budget Smooth Creative can get you going in the right direction. Helping people and their businesses succeed seems to me like a pretty good way to make a living and that’s what I’m trying to do.
My background is in graphic design and front-end web development. I’ve been freelancing as a web and graphic designer since school; I worked summer placements at agencies and started picking up projects from recommendations through college and while getting my Design: Multimedia & Graphics degree.
One of my motion graphics projects got published in Computer Arts magazine for a piece on the years top design graduates and I was selected to have graphic design and typography pieces displayed at D&AD’s “New Blood” exhibition. Formal education: Nailed. Mum and Dad are very proud, job offers are coming in, things are peachy.
So fresh out of uni I take one of these jobs, “Achievement Unlocked: I’m a professional!” I’m working as graphic designer and front-end web developer, I’ve got a desk, got colleagues, got big projects, “this is exciting!” but it was not smooth sailing, far from it. I kept feeling like management wished or were expecting every project to be the same. Like, “we’ve done one, just change the logo and bang the next one out.” There was a misalignment between what was being sold, what the clients were expecting and what I was being asked to create. It just didn’t add up and I was burning myself out trying to pick up the slack and keep everyone happy. Fortunately I had Smooth Creative freelance jobs to take the edge off and keep me positive.
At this time freelance projects were almost exclusively from friends or friends that knew someone who desperately needed help, I wasn’t taking on anything else unless it looked really fun. One day, out of the blue my employer informed me that they didn’t want me freelancing any more. As dick moves go, this was a pretty big one. I offered some suggestions that would allow us to part ways amicably and complete current projects, all of which were rejected (nice!). So I resigned.
Having just bought my first house and ploughed all my savings into it, this came at about the worst possible time but there’s nothing like jumping in at the deep end to get you motivated. I start freelancing full time, “Smooth Creative Ltd.” is born and it’s time to get to work.
The bottom line
The bottom line is I want Smooth Creative to be a no bullshit company that produces great work and solutions that genuinely help other people achieve their goals. Let’s get started!