A pair of graduates of Kirklees College’s BA (Hons) Graphic Design course are rapidly making a name for themselves by providing innovative graphic design solutions for a diverse range of local and nationally based clients. Oli Smith and Andy Finnerty graduated in 2014 from the Batley School of Art; both achieving a first class honours degree.
They decided to go into partnership, establishing their agency Aye! Creative in the shed at the bottom of the garden at Oli’s parents’ house in Linthwaite. But it wasn’t long before business grew and they moved to the Media Centre in Huddersfield.
Kirklees College helped the pair get their firm off the ground with principal Peter McCann helping them link with business start-up advisors.
And Business Enterprise Manager Lydia Butterworth, who runs the college’s Peter Jones Enterprise Academy, found them a business mentor and linked them up with the Mid-Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce.
Oli said: “The creativity, innovation and levels of support provided throughout our studies has been an inspiration and major motivating force in encouraging us to succeed.”
Andy added: “The course was second to none and has provided us with an in-depth understanding of the industry and a wide range of valuable skills.”
Tutor Ged Flynn said: “The initiative and enterprise shown by Andy and Oli is a credit to them, they have the skills and abilities combined with an innate desire to succeed and produce high quality creative work. I know that they will continue to provide a polished performance in all that they undertake. I wish them every success for what I’m sure will be a very rewarding and prosperous future.”