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#MeetTheResident – Clever Ghost

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Paul Boal the Creative Director at Clever Ghost, a brand & design studio, Blick Resident of  Hill St Blick Studios.

Tell us a bit about yourself and your business Clever Ghost?

Hi, I’m Paul the Creative Director at Clever Ghost, a brand & design studio. I started Clever Ghost in October of last year as a response to freelance work growing to the point where there was no break from the day job and starting the freelance shift. This was the culmination of 10 years working in design, I worked in several design studios and in house design jobs since leaving college in 2009. I/We/Clever Ghost works with a wide range of clients including start-ups, multinationals, Ad & PR agencies, charities, individuals and companies from both public and private sectors.

 Any projects you’re currently working on?

Currently finishing the last stages of a brand identity for a hair salon up on the north coast, I’ve just overseen the photoshoot set up to create a bank of assets for their new brand. I’m also working on a brand identity for a new florist opening up in Belfast.

 What was the biggest hurdle for you starting out and how did you overcome it?

Actually stepping out, it was frightening, but once over the edge, it was grand. Best decision of my career was to take that step and to work for myself, aside from building a network of contacts, some freelance work and getting to know the market, what helped the most was a very supportive wife & family, as going out full time there have been a LOT of late nights so it helps greatly when people close to you are supportive and encourage you to keep going.

 How do you stay creative/inspired?

Simply by enjoying what I do. I enjoy reading about design, hearing about design, sketching, dreaming up ideas, fleshing out concepts and surrounding myself with all sorts of creative work in my daily life whether that be in work or in my spare time, so I find it easy to keep myself creatively inspired. How do I stay creative? By simply immersing myself in design and loving every second of it.

 Who is your creative hero?

Lance Wyman, the man behind the 1968 Mexico Olympics logo. Ever since discovering his work and learning more about him, I’m inspired by his work ethic and industrial design background, not to mention I find his work incredible. The level of detail that he worked too, and by hand, is simply awe-inspiring, we take for granted the ability to make minute changes with just a couple of clicks, these guys achieved those details too, the difference being it was by hand and often the only undo button was to simply start again.

What piece of software/ tool/ equipment would you struggle to run your business without?

The Adobe Creative Cloud suite of applications (Photoshop, InDesign & Illustrator) these programs are mission-critical in being able to produce the designs that keep the lights on so to speak. Though so long as a designer has a way of making a mark then they can create, so never too far away is a sketch pad and pen.

What’s your top tip/piece of advice for anyone wanting to start their own creative business?

Get networking! The contacts that I’ve made along the way have been pivotal in helping me get Clever Ghost off the ground, from accountants to IT support I would’ve found it an even larger mountain to climb trying to source this help once I had stepped out. In addition to creating that network of contacts that you can call upon when you need them, you will get to meet clients, your contacts will refer you on and the circle keeps on turning. So yeah, definitely get out there, get networking and get designing.

You can learn more about our Hill Street Residents https://www.blickstudios.org/hill-street-residents/

#blickstudios on
Instagram post 2152379881164874480_295518986 Have you ever struggled to find clarity on your creative journey?
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Do you struggle to find the time to create space for yourself to think about what you want to create?
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If so, we've got something that might help...
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Our Time is Now 4  Week course that's just been announced will enable you to :
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•CREATE SPACE to work out what you want
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If you think this is for you, sign up today! Take that first step in to making a commitment to yourself!THE TIME IS NOW!
Instagram post 2151592073558808379_295518986 Lunch break in the Cathedral Quarter. Love working in this part of our city!
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#belfast #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #cqbelfast #northernireland #explore #discoverni #trekkingni #niexplorer #travel #architecture #graffiti #wallart #art #artist #artwork #painting #design #creative #city #nidesign #cityscape #belfastcreatives #citylife #urban #colour
Instagram post 2150351237198321252_295518986 #thetimeisnow life after university event tonight in Black Box Belfast key takeaways for creative graduates - it's not an easy journey , keep building your creative & technical skills, don't be too hard on yourself, say yes to opportunities, network & just get started
Instagram post 2150225652228757071_295518986 Cathedral Quarter holding the charm... whatever the weather!
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Instagram post 2146534546907388553_295518986 The Time is Now // Life After University
Date : 8th October
Location : The Black Box
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We are excited to introduce our final panellist @niamhxcunn  who is a Belfast based creative.
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Niamh is a Belfast-based Creative who is currently working as a Creative Producer at Mammoth Branding Agency.
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Although she studied Animation at Ulster University, she found herself drawn to working on set whether it was with Fashion or with Film/Television.  This allowed her to make connections and work with brands as a Creative Director, Stylist and Model to create content for social media platforms.
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At the moment, Niamh is searching for her next creative endeavour.
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Get your ticket at https://www.blickstudios.org/events/the-time-is-now-life-after-university/
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#belfast #belfastcreatives #blickstudios #design #paneldiscussion #storytelling #diversity #stories
Instagram post 2146522697562419124_295518986 The Time is Now // Life After University
Date : 8th October
Location : The Black Box
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We are excited to introduce our fourth panellist Alice Kearney who is a graphic designer & illustrator based in Belfast.
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"I’m Alice Kearney, a graphic designer and illustrator living in Belfast. My work is usually a good blend of both crafts. After I graduated from Graphic Design & Illustration in 2017 from Ulster University, Belfast I’ve worked full time in design studios and I also freelance on the side.
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Music is a big inspiration for me as a lot of the work I do is for the NI music scene. I work with a lot of emerging musicians and regularly brand Oh Yeah Music Centre events such as the Northern Ireland Music Prize and the Sound of Belfast festival. I wanted to take part in the discussion as graduate life can be a bit tricky and hopefully, I can help out another creative trying to navigate the world post-uni."
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Book your space today at https://www.blickstudios.org/events/the-time-is-now-life-after-university/
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#paneldiscussion #storytelling
#conversation #belfast #creativeindustries #graphicdesign #creatingaspace
Instagram post 2145969183333296990_295518986 The Time is Now // Life After University
Date : 8th October
Location : Black Box
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We are excited to introduce our third panellist Mark Fenning who is a Lens based artist and Digital Media Assistant.
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A graduate from the Ulster University, he attained a First-Class Honours degree in Fine Art (2013) and a Master with Commendation in Arts Management from Queen’s University Belfast (2017).
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His art making practice explores photographic printmaking techniques, photography, polaroid and alternative photographic processes.
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His artwork is inspired by representations of masculinity in fashion and film.
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His Masters research examined creative employment pathways and he feels this panel will be a great discussion from different perspectives of the creative industries.
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Book your space today at : https://www.blickstudios.org/events/the-time-is-now-life-after-university/
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#paneldiscussion #panel #conversation #storytelling #belfast #creativeindustries
Instagram post 2145106086544697970_295518986 Little stretch of the legs was well timed in between the showers in the Cathedral Quarter today!
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#belfast #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #cqbelfast #northernireland #ireland #explorebelfast #discoverni #trekkingni #architecture #design #creative #city #nidesign #cityscape #belfastcreatives #citylife #urban #dukeofyork
Instagram post 2141572703352869824_295518986 Where are the light nights going already?!
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#cathedralquarter #belfast #northernireland #belfastcreatives #sharedworkspace #sharedstudio #workspace #coworking #creative #creativeindustries #design #nidesign #explorebelfast
Instagram post 2141429763846488942_295518986 Join us for our first Share 6 event of 2019 – “POWER” over @belfastdesignwk on the 4th of November from 7:30 - 9PM in our Belfast Design Week Hub.
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We’ll be joined by 6 creative industry speakers who have all stepped outside of the usual patterns in their specialist areas to come up with new and exciting ventures, to think creatively or change paths entirely.
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The theme for this year for @belfastdesignwk is ‘POWER’ and the word has its intricacies have so much sway on our personal and professional lives. Power can be seen as positive or negative.
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Power can be a constant struggle or it can be delicately shared. Power can be a responsibility that some of us wish we had, or a stronghold we wish others didn’t. Its dynamic is an integral part of the design industry today, and it is why we’re excited to be exploring this theme for Belfast Design Week 2019.
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Our speakers are:
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Lucinda Graham / @lucindaggg_
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Rachel O’Grady /
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Liam O’Neill / @liamonetwo
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Hannah Sharp / @hannahlizsharp
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Melanie Wiggins / @melwiggins
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Jamie Baird / @jamiebeardillustration
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#events #belfastdesignweek #power #creative #empowerment #belfast
Instagram post 2139993802080228401_295518986 Busy day of meetings and errands in the Cathedral Quarter so far. Love this part of our city... even on the greyest of days!
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#walktowork #belfast #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #CQBelfast #northernireland #explorebelfast #explore #discoverni #trekkingni #niexplorer #travel #graffiti #wallart #art #artist #artwork #painting #design #creative #city #nidesign #cityscape #belfastcreatives #citylife #urban #photography
Instagram post 2139968897393559087_295518986 @womenfolk.co & Blick Shared Studios & @creatingaspace have teamed up to create a unique interactive event with a panel of female design entrepreneurs based in Belfast talking about their experiences as a female entrepreneur , the journey in the design industry and how they have crafted their business up until this point. The panel will be taking place on the 5th November during @belfastdesignwk
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The phrase ‘The Time is Now’ came from noticing a change within Belfast within the creative scene. We love that there is a rush of women in design that are inspired to pursue their creative dreams. .
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There will be a panel of four female designers from different design disciplines and backgrounds discussing their perspective of achieving success within the design industries. We will be asking the panellists to share their story of how they built their businesses and what the realities they have faced in the midst of creating an entrepreneurial lifestyle.
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Book your space at Blickstudios.org
Instagram post 2139201445055334038_295518986 We are delighted once again to be involved with @belfastdesignwk now in its 5th year. Belfast Design Week is a collaborative festival, last year there were more than 100 individuals, small businesses and organisations involved in over 60 events throughout the week. The festival is a great celebration of Belfast as a creative city. There is currently an open call for people/businesses to get involved with this year's festival, if you have an idea for an event, are interested in volunteering or submitting an article you can get all the info here http://belfastdesignweek.com/
Instagram post 2136307233603442912_295518986 What a morning! ☀️ A little detour was called for on the way to our Cathedral Quarter studios
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#walktowork #belfast #lovebelfast #cathedralquarter #CQBelfast #ireland #northernireland #explore #travel #graffiti #wallart #art #artist #artwork #painting #design #creative #city #nidesign #cityscape #belfastcreatives #citylife #urban #autumn
Instagram post 2135677884973868880_295518986 Lovely peaceful Wednesday here in our Hill Street studio
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#cathedralquarter #belfast #northernireland #belfastcreatives #sharedworkspace #sharedstudio #workspace #coworking #creative #creativeindustries #design #nidesign #explorebelfast
Instagram post 2134439374883376928_295518986 -- NEW FREE WORKSHOP-- Pitching with @timtendo. Learn how to communicate your business idea and get people excited about your creative business. Wednesday 23rd October 6.30pm - 8.00pm. Limited places
https://www.blickstudios.org/events/blick-academy-pitching-workshop/
Instagram post 2131336993530373739_295518986 Definitely a day for staying put in the studio!
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#cathedralquarter #belfast #northernireland #belfastcreatives #sharedworkspace #sharedstudio #workspace #coworking #creative #creativeindustries #design #designer #art #artwork #artist #wallart #nidesign #explorebelfast
Instagram post 2130566333094774766_295518986 We recently caught up with Ronan Lunney interviewing him on his time in Blick after being here 5 years!
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He speaks about what he has learnt in business, how the Blick space has been beneficial for his business and top tips for people just starting out! To read the full article visit https://www.blickstudios.org/blog-posts/ronan-lunney-farewell-blog/
-We are also excited that he is facilitating a 4 Week Squarespace course starting tonight! He will be covering the foundation of what you need to create a website on Squarespace! To book your space today, visit https://getinvited.to/blick-shared-studios/blick-academy-squarespace-course/
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.#coworking #workspace #creative #belfast #deskspace #sharedworkspace #creativeindustries #creativeentrepreneur #startup #creativespace
#blickstudios
Instagram post 2130496273772954643_295518986 When you can create in a beautiful environment, inspiration hits and everything clicks.
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Our Malone Road studios always shines light, even on those hard full days.
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Always find your light! Today is one of those beautiful days!
Instagram post 2129828232236000981_295518986 Lovely day for meetings in the Cathedral Quarter
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#art #design #belfast #belfastcity #instabelfast #lovebelfast #northernireland #ireland #discoverni #explorebelfast #visitbelfast #belfastart #city #cathedralquarter #insta_ni_ #architecture #CQBelfast #themac