A brew with Emily Sandom: queen of content creation
As Head of Artwork, Matt ensures the creative production department is running smoothly. He was one of the original so knows STM inside and out. He specialises in creative output and works across a variety of household brands such as Pets at Home and Lakeland.
What do you do day-to-day?
I’ve been working here for 13 years this month and in that time, I’ve seen the agency evolve from being a team of 7 in 1 studio to 40 plus across multiple studios! It’s the diverse range of projects and client industries that have kept me in this role for so long. Day-to-day role I run the production team, liaising with the Client Services team on projects and working on a range of jobs such as packaging, brochures, video and POS. On top of that I’ve happened to fall into the ‘IT guy’ role and now always looking at new technology to introduce and implementing software to ensure efficiency.
Name a highlight of your career so far.
I’m struggling to name one, but the one thing I’ve always enjoyed throughout my career is the positive feedback from people outside of the industry. It’s great to show people the work I do for household brands and see how impressed they are – it makes me realise I shouldn’t take my job for granted. Many people would see the simplest of tasks I do as impossible!
What’s been your favourite project to work on and why?
I like chunky projects that require a methodical approach and I ‘secretly’ get a buzz out of a tight deadline. More often than not the most rewarding projects are the ones that were the most challenging.
Where do you find creative inspiration?
Everywhere. I tend to analyse everything I see (which drives my wife mad) and learn from the good and bad. I once read a quote from Sir Henry Royce that’s stuck with me:“Strive for perfection in everything you do. Take the best that exists and make it better”. It’s taught me to always give 100% – even on the small jobs, but even my best efforts can always be improved and I should always be open to criticism.
What’s the last film you watched?
Once upon a Time in Hollywood. I’m not a massive Tarantino fan but I do appreciate the artistic style in his films.
What’s the one thing that you look forward to each day?
Dinner time. I love eating tasty food (albeit not always that healthy). If it was classed as a hobby, eating would be up there as one of my favourites.
If you could give a person starting out in the industry any advice, what would it be?
A good portfolio and personality will get you further than a top degree. Attend lots of creative events, such as Glug, or work as a freelancer to boost your appeal to employers. The creative industry in the North West is thriving, which presents many opportunities to engage with others in the creative world. When I started out, I had nowhere near the same opportunities people have today!
What do you do in your downtime?
I think everyone I know will guess the answer to this. Golf, golf and more golf!
What’s your top tip for working from home?
Make sure you have a comfortable desk setup, ideally with windows. It’s been nice resting my eyes from the screen with a view outside.
Which holiday destination do you have on your bucket list?
It has to be the Monaco Grand Prix. I’ve been a huge F1 and Ferrari fan since I was a kid and would love to see the cars weaving through the streets at high speed.
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’.