Samara Bryan

BA(Hons) Illustration 1998 - 2001

From the age of about ten I wanted to be a graphic designer. My uncle ran a very successful company in this field, which has inspired me and my career path greatly. It was only when doing my Foundation course at Portsmouth University that I realised that it was drawing and specifically Illustration that I loved most.

University College Falmouth appealed to me for many reasons. I knew it had a great reputation for the arts and its beautiful location seemed ideal. I grew up in the Isle of Wight and was dreading the prospect of heading off to a large city on my own. Falmouth seemed like the perfect place as it provided an alternative to a large city.

My Falmouth experience was not only shaped by the course but also by the people I met, the location, the encouragement, and the vibrant social scene. A vital lesson that I learnt at my time at University College Falmouth was the idea of ‘professionalism'. I learnt that no matter what happens, work must be in on time and must be produced to the highest standard. That way, clients will return time and time again.

After graduating from University College Falmouth, I set up as a freelance Illustrator. Within a year's time, after travelling with my husband, I came back armed with sketchbooks full of drawings. I was so inspired with ideas that my husband Chris and I set up a website and took part in an exhibition in London. From that moment on my illustration career has grown from strength to strength. Shortly after the exhibition, I accepted an offer of representation from a well known Illustration agency. Since then, I have established a good, strong working relationship with my agent and many of my clients. I left University College Falmouth feeling inspired and motivated. Chris and I couldn't wait to get out into the world and embark on our illustration careers.

I am also a part of a collective called GUMBO, which was set up two years ago with a number of my colleagues and associates. The idea was to form a group so that we could pool our collective talents and exhibit our work to a wide audience. This has been a successful venture with many of the ‘Gumbo's' receiving offers of work via their involvement with the group.

The Illustration BA(Hons) course taught me a tremendous amount about illustrative practice and I feel that I would not be where I am today if it wasn't for Falmouth.