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Alex Gray

Career Path: Designer, Native Design
Location: London, UK

Since graduating in 2014, I jumped straight into a brief internship at graphic design agency - Firedog - after showcasing work with the course at D&AD New Blood. This was a graphic-led company and I then moved back home (to Lincolnshire) where I worked at The Energy Cell in Lincoln, a more marketing-led creative firm. After working there a while, I secured an internship at Frog Design, which moved me back to London in late summer, 2015. This was a huge eye-opener for me and definitely felt like the right industry that I was looking for. In summary, I'm working on future-facing design work in a human-centred manner. I then joined Fahrenheit 212, an innovation strategy business, as a designer. They are slightly earlier in the design process and essentially help clients figure out what to do next. I helped visualise a lot of the ideas and bring concepts to life. I left to join Native Design in September 2018.

What are you doing now?Alex Gray

I am (primarily) a UI Designer at Native Design, part of their Experience Design team which helps to design digital products. I will be working across Interaction Design (IxD) and User Experience (UX) disciplines as well looking to make sure that I have complete understanding of the projects at hand.

What was it about Northumbria that made you decide to study here?

Northumbria offered the best space to work, the best understanding of where digital design is and where it is heading, and the best range of design routes to learn that are genuinely applicable to the industry.

What was it like studying at Northumbria?

Great mix of projects, they really brought some amazing opportunities such as live briefs for big, existing companies. They also sat down with you to help you improve and encourage you on where to focus or what to look at. They support you and offer every avenue to help kick-start your career. You do a lot of it on your own terms and discipline, but you want to do well because the lecturers are so personable, passionate and supportive.

How connected was your course with industry?

Incredibly connected with the industry. They had people from big agencies like R/GA and Ustwo to come from London to inspire us, and even sit down with us to review portfolio work. One of the greatest things they offer is the chance to exhibit work at D&AD New Blood Awards.

What was the best thing about your course?

The range of projects you can work on to help you understand and figure out what area you want to specialise in.

How did studying at Northumbria help you achieve your career goals/ give your career an edge?

The opportunities they made possible. Working on live projects for big names and creating opportunities to connect you with big name businesses.

Which skills/knowledge did you learn on your course that you use most now throughout your career?

Probably self-discipline and organisation, you get to experiment with all stages of the design process and all of which sets a solid foundation for you.

What did you enjoy most about your time at Northumbria University?

The sense you are part of the new generation of designers is such a great feeling. Learning from peers and making whatever you want to make!

What advice would you give somebody who is considering studying at Northumbria?

They offer the best authority on design for digital products and services. If you want to make new apps, or shape the future of services, then this is the place to be.

How would you describe your time at Northumbria in three words?

 Engaging, inspiring and exciting.

For more information about me visit:

  • Twitter: @aalexygrey
  • Instagram: @aalexygray

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