Journey to Spark: Olly Sussams

Journey to Spark: Olly Sussams

Journey to Spark: Olly Sussams

Tell us a bit about who you are and what you do at Spark?

Yes, yes, my name is Olly, and I joined Spark in January as Design Director. I manage the design team, helping lead the art direction, keeping people smiling and inspired, and jumping in to use the tools when needed. There is little routine in my day-to-day. One moment, I’ll be working on internal marketing and proposals; the next, I’ll be sketching out a ton of symbols with the team – this is what keeps me on my toes. I am a very energetic person. I believe we were put here to move, and I approach my work with this mindset. You’ve got to keep moving forward. Today is yesterday, and tomorrow is already here.

Tell us a bit about your journey before Spark

I’ve always worked in the creative industry. I am a practical person and never gelled in an academic environment (I’m not the best at remembering facts).

My mum worked in the textile industry, and the dining table regularly had mood boards and piles of samples on it—there wasn’t much space to eat. She inspired my sister to get into textiles and ultimately dragged me down the creative route too. It’s a wild space to work in; every other industry wants a piece of you.

I’ve worked both client and agency side, as well as running my own business for five years. This ultimately led me to Creative Spark, where I wanted to work back in a team and create bigger and better work.

What has been your career highlight to date?

While working at We Launch, I had the opportunity to create the identity for the Jamaican Bobsleigh Team… yep, can you believe that? Mic drop.

I was a junior designer at the time, and the creative director gave us plenty of time to play, sketch, and design tons of options.

The whole project kind of felt like a dream, especially when we discovered that the team didn’t actually have a sled and had to borrow one at the Winter Games.

The branding was used on the official Puma kits, which received plenty of press coverage due to the team’s legacy. I do love a bit of sports branding.

What’s the best thing about working in the agency/creative industry space?

Every project is different. We have the opportunity to work with new people, new goals, and a completely new output at the end. We’re constantly making things, which leaves a trail that you can look back on as a professional diary. It’s fast-paced and constantly shifting, meaning you need to keep your eyes peeled to see how brands and organisations are behaving.

Tell us an unpopular opinion:

Pickle Juice is tasty.

Do you have a fun fact about yourself?

I once walked a catwalk in heels in front of a live audience.