All month I’ve been shining a light on men who are living creatively fulfilled lives, in the hope that during the lifetime of Holly & Co, we might be able to start a conversation to allow more men to follow their passions.
I am so happy to end the month with the amazing Ash of The Brilliant Sign Co – whose work adorns the facade of the Work/Shop – he is as fascinating as he is talented. Thank you for sharing your words with us Ash.
I’ve always liked old things, interesting things, even from a young age – but I had a burning desire to go into the Armed Forces. After leaving the forces, I had a decision in front of me, to either go into law (I had a law degree and a place at Bar school) or to go into sign writing.
I have a creative background, my Great Grandad was a tattooist and sign writer in Slough and I think the tales from my Nan, Mum and Uncles crystallised in me. It wasn’t an easy decision at the age of 25 but with a head full of dreams, of constant ideas I decided to go into sign writing. I was so inspired by some of my friends, Guy Furner and Joe Berens who had taken up old crafts in the face of a world obsessed by technology and the rejection of hand skills.
I love everything about my craft, for me its as much about the process as it is the end product. Everyday I am inspired to make by things I see, old photos, pieces of typography, vintage labels or architecture all are grist too my mill. Working for yourself creatively has it’s ups and downs, particularly in the early days and when tight deadlines and long hours are involved but the mantra I tell myself, even when it gets a little dark, is to “keep on keeping on”, the satisfaction of seeing a beautiful hand crafted sign sitting in the streetscape, twinkling like jewellery, is always worth it.