Flipside PR: Photoshop creative

Great four page feature in photoshop creative magazine

Flipside Studio
Flipside shares some of its top advice and studio secrets.

Flipside was born out of a love for progressive imaging and a dream of working for the music industry, skate and surf brands. When creative director, Adam Wyatt, realised his creative vision, he quickly went about turning it into a reality. He packed in his ordinary 9-5 and got to work setting up the foundations for a new studio. He reveals how it all started: “I got on the phone to record labels, music festivals, surf and skate brands in the south west and Wales. I was lucky that my bare-faced cheek paid off and I was up and running, wearing my own t-shirts and looking at my portfolio in HMV. As a DJ and board sports enthusiast, Flipside seemed like a good name for a design brand specialising in these areas.” 

Working out of a small, shared studio space, of which Adam describes as “a bit like a TARDIS” (because of the events company and business leadership coaches, among others, who share the space), Flipside takes on creative challenges with the help of a flexible team and a studio that can drastically change from one day to the next. 

The diversity of Flipside’s clientele demands a level of understanding about the client and the audience before any work can commence. Adam explains, “In some cases, we may be working with marketing companies, or collaborating with another larger agency, sometimes white label. In those cases, it may just be creating the deliverables to an existing concept, so we have to quickly get up to speed with the concept and the desired aesthetic. Skype meetings, rough idea scamps and mood boards are quick ways to hit the ground running.” He adds: “We believe in total creative free-spirit and will only collaborate with the most talented creative minds who join forces with us on a project-by project basis. Every project is different, so every project deserves a bespoke team.” And Flipside has found a tried-and-tested method that makes sure each project starts off in the right direction: “Nine times out of ten we carry out a branding Q&A and/or a design audit. Starting the first interaction with a client with the right questions helps us to qualify leads and lets us, as well as the client, understand what the brief really is.” He adds: “We think ideas, preparation and research are key to any project. An initial face-to-face meeting is always a good start. Defining the project is probably the most important part, really getting under the skin and asking lots of questions. In simple terms, find out the purpose, what the product or service is, who the audience is and how to talk to them. Mood boards and identifying how other brands are operating in the market can be really helpful.” 

Photoshop’s role is evident in the work Flipside produces, and the program is seamlessly blended into many aspects of the creative process, from creating visuals and storyboards, to building assets for motion graphics and mocking up websites. Flipside’s use of Photoshop doesn’t stop there, however, with batch processing of images and cut-outs for print and digital work, to montage work and visual treatments for that bespoke finish. In this interview, you’ll find Adam’s top Photoshop tips, and the Flipside team reveals the making of the promotional material for Bath Film Festival. 

Adam reveals one of Flipside’s most memorable projects; “One project that I really loved to work on was the ten-year anniversary CD for Shut Up And Dance. Having grown up raving and Di-ing in the 90s, I was chuffed when I got a call from these guys, who are brilliant, by the way. I was thrilled.” 

Flipside’s passion and determination has been the driving force behind the studio’s success. A small team can produce great work, along with having a healthy work-life balance, as Adam explains: “We believe it’s important to love what you do, and strive to get the best result possible from any project, regardless of the budget or client. Also, a work-life balance can lead to better creative output and productivity, so getting out and enjoying other activities can spark some of your best eureka moments when you aren’t staring at a screen. And it is a good excuse for a surf with coastal-based clients during the summer months!” 

Flipside’s vision for the future is one of continual growth and prospecting into new and exciting fields of work. Adam paints us a picture: “Build a small but perfectly formed Flipside creative team and carry on producing image-led work for lifestyle brands. We love what’s happening in the food and drinks sector. Think craft beer brands, gourmet sweets and British fizz. We want to develop a portfolio of more work in this sector.” 

Adam concludes: “We have a love for the music industry, so we are looking to get a slice of the growing festival market. This offers opportunities to create exciting digital, print and motion work. The ever-increasing use of animation, moving graphics and virtual reality online is an interesting area, so developing websites with more integrated animation is definitely the way forward. We are also looking to start our own Flipside merchandise, or possibly a food or drinks brand – watch this space, exciting times!” 

A day in the life of Adam Wyatt 
Flipside’s creative director lets us in on his day 

The morning’s prep
I fire up my Mac and check my emails. An e-newsletter is needed for one of our online retailers, together with some website sliders and a banner advert. 

Down to business 
I catch up with Lauren on some new business 
opportunities and any marketing that needs producing, and our newsletter, blog post and PR. Time for coffee! 

Idea generation and visuals 
I start some ideas on new t-shirt designs. The client has sent through scamps and visual references; this could be a fun one! I start a bit of desk research into retro characters, some cool maps, and some new contemporary fonts. 

Face-to-face with the client 
Off to Bath for an initial client Li meeting with a chocolate brand who are looking for some new packaging for some small bars, a coffee and cocoa face cream. Sounds like it could be an interesting project. 

Studio update 
Back to the office and James has been busy working on a Flipside promo piece. We run through his ideas, and others we might try, looks good. I speak to our developer Nigel regarding a recent mini site for a Bath charity that we’ve been working on. 

Client analysis 
Home time yet? Nearly. A new branding job has come in for a drinks brand, and we’ve received our Q&A back. We check through the answers to focus the brief and the client’s positioning, so we can meet up and discuss the job further.