Tackling mental health problems in graphic design, with Graham Jones

We kick off season five of The Creative Boom Podcast with a topic that is, thankfully, getting louder in the creative industries. And that's mental health. We've invited Manchester-based graphic designer Graham Jones as our first guest to guide us through.

Now, if you're one of those creatives who doesn't do any marketing or seek fame in this industry, then Graham's approach will appeal. He's stayed deliberately quiet, not seeking out interviews or press coverage. Instead, he's been focusing on navigating his way through a successful career spanning over two decades. And he's had the publicity without even trying, as his work speaks for itself. He's been published in dozens of respected books by Victionary and Counter-Print and celebrated in magazines such as Computer Arts and Grafik.

Graham runs the independent design studio Loose Collective and is a part-time senior lecturer at the Manchester School of Art. If there's one thing he's especially famous for in the North West, it's for being one of the nicest people in the industry. Graham knows everyone and is well-loved. He's a positive force for good in the design community and someone who, we discover, has fought many battles to overcome his own mental struggles.

In this episode, we chat about the obsession with fame and fortune in the design industry, why it's bad for mental health and why being famous shouldn't be the goal. Graham also gives us a reality check about the field overall – it's not glamorous, for the most part. It can be hard work, a real slog. You have to love the profession to do it.

We also discuss overcoming imposter syndrome and the little mind tricks we can play to be happier creatives. And Graham gives us lots more reassuring advice to navigate what can sometimes feel like a demanding career.

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