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Design | Team

Leading Ladies

As a young female designer working in a world which can often feel male dominated, I regularly recognise the importance of finding inspiration from female heroes in the industry who fuel my passion for all things design. Be it on Instagram, Pinterest or Awwwards, I implore all young female designers to share your passion, be inspired and support your fellow comrades. This being said, it’s not just the ladies who benefit from a bit of fellow womanly wisdom, which is why I’d like to share my top 3 female designers with you all. Some you may have heard of, some you may not, but all of them are achieving incredible things in their field which will hopefully provide a bit of inspiration!


1. Margaret Calvert

Margaret Calvert is a British typographer and graphic designer, most famous for her work with Jock Kinneir in designing the road signs used throughout the UK. Before this huge undertaking, signs in the UK were commissioned by the local authorities, meaning different fonts and sizes were used across the country, making for difficult reading and a slightly haphazard appearance. Utilising simple pictograms and a brand new font designed for maximum legibility, Calvert overhauled the entire system, standardising signs across the country. This is a fantastic showcase of design for function; simple, straightforward design that touches the lives of everyone in the country, even if they don’t realise it. Here at ICE, our work with UI feels similar to this (though, admittedly, on a slightly smaller scale!). Even though designing user interfaces often requires a simple design, the context is hugely important and users always have to be at the forefront of your mind to ensure a successful uptake, such as with our work on the Amey Waste Recovery Park.


2. Annie Atkins

Annie Atkins is an Irish designer specialising in graphics for filmmaking. Her most notable work includes The Grand Budapest Hotel, Isle of Dogs, Vikings and The Tudors; my favourite of which has to be Isle of Dogs, not only for Atkin’s work on the project but also just because I’m a huge dog person! Atkins’ work encompasses a whole range of different tasks, but her main focus is creating any graphic pieces outlined by a period film script. This includes creating items such as stamps and banknotes, shop front signs and fake passports, handwritten letters and ancient scrolls, the list goes on! Despite the fact that these pieces may only be on screen for a fraction of a second, their look and feel helps to create a world for viewers to be brought into, and their attention to detail and historical accuracy is second to none.

At ICE, we have to employ the same attention to detail when designing for our customers, particularly when working on projects such as Venta which include lots of print and packaging. Once something is printed, it’s set in stone, so we take extra precautions to ensure our print work is perfect first time, every time, just like Atkins.


3. Paula Scher

Paula Scher is an American graphic designer most well known for her branding of The Public Theatre in New York in 1994, amongst many other landmark projects since she began her design career in 1972.

Scher’s work has had a huge influence on the graphic design of today. This incredibly successful designer somehow always seems to be one step ahead of the latest trends. You’re sure to have come into contact with some of her work, either directly designed by Scher herself or influenced by her somewhere along the line. Achieving the title of the first female principal at Pentagram in the 1990s, the world’s largest independent design consultancy, Scher also dabbles in painting and has worked as a design educator in prestigious universities such as Yale and Tyler School of Art. In the ICE studio, we love branding as much as Scher does. One of our favourite brand creations in recent times is MusicPlanet Live; a project which allowed us to flex our creative muscles and work on something entirely new from the ground up, helping to craft not just a brand but a surrounding ethos to boot.


For me, these inspirational designers influence everything I do; from working on a stylish new website (Walnut Unlimited being ICE’s most recent triumph!) or illustrating video game characters in my free time. Their work, skills and techniques motivate me to create pieces which stem from passion and the desire to be the best I can be.


Daily inspirations like these, coupled with working alongside the fantastic team we have here at ICE ensures that our work is always fresh, and of the highest quality. Inspiration really does fuel creativity, and we’re always excited for our next project, whatever it may be.

For me, these inspirational designers influence everything I do
By Bethany Larcombe
Posted: 13th August 2018
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