Back in 2015, before I had even told my wife I was planning to start Gather, I had commissioned Anthony Oram to craft our visual identity. He probably didn't realise at the time! I only knew Ant from Instagram, where we had some mutual friends, but I was convinced that he was the person to trust with how folk perceived us. There must have been the magic in the misty mornings with Lukka the pointer that he captures so perfectly.
Delving a bit deeper I learnt he’d created identities for the likes of Glastonbury Festival and the Bicycle Academy and designed for Howies, Beerbods, Do Book Company... Basically a roll call of every brand I’ve enjoyed and appreciated. The logo he created for us was spot on. It’s one of the few actual strengths I built the brand on, at the time when Gather was just a few crazy ideas in my head.
Since then Ant has done us the honour of becoming a Gather Ambassador. Who better to represent what we are all about? Ant is a doer behind several outdoor brands and businesses, who loves nothing more than time spent outdoors. He’s exactly the sort of creative adventurer we are here for: folk who pine to be outside whilst sat hunched over laptops and deadlines.
Enough waffle, lets hear from the man himself...
Why is there such a strong outdoor element in your work?
I just love being outside. From a young age we spent a lot of time outside, whether it be, walking, canoeing riding or running. I really cant stand being cooped up all day. Being on a plane or confined space fills me with dread. I need to be able to breath fresh air.
My adult life has been a slow journey towards the wilderness. I moved to London after Uni and am working my way to smaller and smaller places. The end goal being a Snowdonian cabin.
Tell us about your style and technique.
I wouldn’t say I have a style. People may say otherwise, but I try and approach each project with an open mind and deliver what is best for the client or context, not just what I like doing. You cant have one solution, it just wouldn’t work.
I also think it would get a bit boring just doing the same thing all day every day. So I like a mix of medias from vintage letterset to paint brush to computer, they all have their place. It always starts with a sketch though, thats the best way to get the thoughts out and into a notebook.
Tell us a story from your best adventure ever
Not sure what the best was. Travelling around Iceland with my partner Sue was pretty ace. But one that always comes to mind was when I was about 14 and doing the Ten Tors Hiking Race across Dartmoor. We got chosen to help make a new safety video and spent a day flying around Dartmoor in and army helicopter filming clips for it. That was fun.
Who do you enjoy being outside with most?
My partner Sue and the dog, or by myself getting some headspace.
Do you find the outdoors helps with the creative process?
Definitely, especially when running. With cycling I have to stay focussed so not to crash, but running is great for getting the brain going with some loud music. The reality of life is that I spend far too much time sat in front of a computer. Time outside is when my mind thinks best, and I get some clarity and inspiration. I email myself a lot when out walking.
Without giving anything away, can you give us a hint about thoughts for your
Adventurous Ink contribution?
It probably involves a reworking of the Gather logo I produced when the brand launched.
We cant wait to see what he comes up with!
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