A brew (or 10) with Cat Ditchburn: an avid strategist and prosecco lover
Get to know two of the Creative Team’s latest joiners; Tuna, Creative Designer, specialising in motion design, 3D animation and UI design; Jordan, Mid-weight Creative, with skills in concept creation, branding and typography design. From useful tips for budding creatives to the best Manchester spots to visit, learn more about the them as they open up about their experience at Shoot the Moon so far… (perhaps best done with a brew!)
How long have you been a creative at Shoot the Moon now?
Tuna: “It’s been four months since I’ve started working at Shoot the Moon as a creative designer. I’m mostly responsible from videos and animations, so if you see something that jiggles but shouldn’t, it’s my bad.”
Jordan: “I’ve been at STM for 3 months now and have been working closely with Oli on creative. I’ve always loved branding work and I’ve been lucky to be involved in some great projects so far.”
How did you get to where you are today?
Tuna: “I’m an architecture graduate, which let me have a really comprehensive education. While I was studying and working, I was also freelancing for different graphic design work, animations and video edits. Even though I enjoyed being an architect, as time passed, I’ve noticed that it wasn’t something I wanted to do passionately. So, I pivoted my efforts into freelancing on visual design field more and more until I woke up one day, and I wasn’t an architect anymore.
Jordan: “I have a lot to thank my nan for in terms of my love for the arts and anything creative. She’s the card making, oil painting, cake baking type of nan and she taught me so much growing up. That love just grew as I did!”
What advice would you give to someone starting out in the industry?
Tuna: “Keep doing things that you find really cool, because it will keep you passionate. Personal projects have always had a special place in my heart. It might seem like a drag, especially while you have a full-time job and have limited time to work on your personal project, but I learned lots while working on them and it kept me motivated throughout the ups and downs in my professional life.”
Jordan: “Put yourself out there. I think taking action is so important, especially when starting out in the industry. Knock on doors with a portfolio, turn up to an event and strike up a conversation with that designer or director you want to meet. It’s really scary, but people do recognise that bit of gumption and who knows where it could lead.”
What trend do you hope makes a comeback?
Tuna: “Capes, hands down! I mean, CAPES, guys, how did we miss this chance as humanity moved on? I’m not only talking about superhero capes; think about, cloak, robes, halfsies… Take a minute and imagine how cool it would be to walk on the street like Snape strolling around Hogwarts! Still, I am really optimistic about it though, I believe we will see a fashion show with capes anytime from now, mark my words.”
Jordan: “I definitely know some trends I hope NEVER make a comeback. There’s a picture of me at my mums rocking that Gareth Gates hairstyle from the early 00’s. Come to think of it, was that ever a trend?”
What’s the secret to running a successful project from start to finish?
Tuna: “I think it depends on scale and scope of the project but being open to new ideas definitely makes the process easier. In my early days as a designer, I was so stubborn with my initial concepts, and it only brought me down. As I develop my skills, I’ve been much better with incorporating new ideas, giving myself some critical feedback and trying to remain open-minded about the result. But it is also a balancing act, knowing when to stop juggling with new ideas is important too.”
Jordan: “I think collaborating and chatting through ideas is super important to the outcome of a project. The best ideas always seem to come from the little conversations throughout.”
Favourite thing about working at STM?
Tuna: “I’ve been working here for only four months now, but I’ve seen nothing less than constant support, and an amazing team to work with and have loads of fun. I had chance to build exciting stuff with them, and whenever I felt stuck or felt underwhelmed, someone came to my help like Gandalf coming from east on the first light of the fifth day -but much faster.”
Jordan: “Strength in depth. It’s just great being surrounded by so many talented people with different specialisms. There’s a lot to learn from everyone here and being part of the team is ace.”
Where do you love to visit?
Tuna: “Growing in an eastern Mediterranean town, swimming was a second nature for me, and any beach within a mile was nice enough. While I would recommend the town named Kaș, in Antalya, Turkey, you can’t go wrong with any other southern city in Turkey with its nice beaches, amazing weather and delicious food. Ohh, I miss summer already.”
Jordan: “I think everyone should experience a winter holiday at least once. Skiing is my number 1 escape, and Zermatt in Switzerland is the most breath-taking place I’ve ever been. Me and my fiancé have always joked about climbing the Matterhorn together, who knows, watch this space I guess!”
Who is your favourite artist?
Tuna: “Beeple. For people who don’t know, he is a motion designer working on 3D field and producing an artwork everyday, while sharing all the files for free to the community. I’ve learned a lot just by looking through his files. With the NFT wave soaring, he is now much more popular with his current work. I feel like he is the perfect embodiment of determination, dedication with his constant stream of work everyday for years. The man’s a living legend!”
Jordan: “There’s an illustrator called Malika Favre who’s work I really admire. Her use of negative space and colour is seriously cool.”
What is your favourite Manchester hotspot?
Tuna: “Since I am very new to the city, everywhere I’ve been, seemed like an architectural wonder, result of great craftsmanship. I can’t really think of a specific place but I am really in love with the way the new and old blends in together. And I still feel like I have a lot to see here!”
Jordan: “There’s a real buzz around Ancoats at the moment and it still feels like a new part of town to explore. A couple of pints of honeycomb lager at Seven Brothers followed by Sugo ticks the boxes.”
What’s left on your bucket list?
Tuna: “I have yet lots of places to see on my list, but the most exciting one for me would be probably Japan. I’ve been a fan of the culture for long time and been dreaming about seeing its crowded downtowns and vast countryside. I love how people in different parts of the world approach the same issues and come out with complete different solutions, Japan feels like a great example of that.”
Jordan: “I was over in Vancouver a few years ago and spent some time in Whistler, a ski resort which is widely considered to be the best in the world…problem is, I was there in summer! I’ve always wanted to go back during the ski season. A trip through the Rockies is high up on the list.”
Best advice you’ve ever received?
Tuna: “We always label our layers!”, that’s some golden words by Ben Marriot, since this one is definitely underestimated. You tend to skip naming and organising your work, telling yourself it needs to be just a quick change and find yourself in a mess, so fast, with 153 unnamed layers, no colours, no tags, no folders and crying in the corner trying to figure out your life.”
Jordan: “Take the leap! Comfort zones are too easy to get stuck into within work life. Time really does fly and you could find yourself looking back and wondering ‘what if’. I found myself in this situation before joining STM and I look back now and I’m so glad I went for it and moved on to a new challenge.”
If you’d like to work with us, get in touch!
When you visit us in Manchester
We have free parking available on site (M4 6AX) but, spaces are limited. Day parking is also available on Goulden Street just round the corner.
When you visit us in Leeds
If you’re visiting us in Leeds we’re based at Mabgate Mills (LS9 7DZ) and there are plenty of parking options nearby.
Day parking is available nearby with free on street parking available for 4 hours on Cherry Row and reasonably priced parking on Macaulay Street and Mabgate via an app called ‘Park Mobile’.