When walking through North Laine the other day, we met Tom on his way back to work. We asked him whether he had a couple of minutes to chat with us and it turned out that he had quite some interesting things to tell about his life in Brighton!
Hi, Tom. Nice to meet you. Are you from Brighton? Yeah, I have been living here for seven years now.
What do you like most about the city? It’s just a fun place to be. It’s relaxed and small. You can get to places nice and quickly, there’s no big deal with transport. I am from the countryside originally, so I don’t particularly like the big city life. Brighton is a good balance in this regard and it’s by the sea which is really nice. People around here are really friendly as well.
What do you do in life? I am a graphic designer, so I work on the creative side of things. I work for an e-commerce company, doing the general day-to-day graphic design stuff.
How did you become a graphic designer? I did Fine Art originally and then I retrained and became a graphic designer. It is a nice work and it fits my creative life.
What do you mean by creative life? Well you know, you get paid for being creative all day long and then at home, I do my own artworks to keep the creative juices flowing so to say. Brighton as a city is really creative as well. There is lots of music, lots of events going on, many cinema places… It’s really nice.
Do you go out a lot then? Well, maybe not so much these days as I am getting a bit older but I did when I first came to Brighton and in a way, I still do. I have lots of friends in bands and things like that.
So, what is your favourite thing to do when you go out? I like streetparties and events like the Fringe because it’s the beginning of summer, the weather gets better and Brighton kind of comes alife. It’s the spontaneous side of the city that I really like.
And what about your own artwork you mentioned a bit earlier? What exactly do you do? At the moment, I am working on some sculptures and then I have another project I sometimes work on. I combine graphic design and print making to make maps. Most of the time, I end up getting obsessed with all the fine little details. I usually start off with the big picture and then I end up doing a tiny little incredibly detailed thing. I am never entirely happy with it but I guess it’s all just about knowing when to stop.
What are your plans for the future? Do you think you are gonna be a graphic designer forever? Yeah, I enjoy doing the graphic design. I would like to do more art stuff but it’s a bit of an up-hill struggle and you always have bills to pay. I will probably be here for quite a while. I might move to another city at some point but I like Brighton. Whenever I think that it might be about time to move on, things like the Fringe happen and the summer comes and I realise that Brighton is a really good place to live.
What other places could you imagine living in in the future? I grew up in Germany when I was a kid, so going to Berlin would be quite cool although I guess that’s what everyone is doing at the moment. I wouldn’t go to anywhere like London but the States would be nice, maybe New York or so.
Are you into travelling then? Yeah, I have been to a few places. I try to get away once a year. This year, I went to America because I’ve got family over there. That’s what I generally do, going to places where I’ve got family and friends. It’s always a good excuse to go there and it’s cheaper as well.
What was your favourite place so far? Bolivia. It’s the most beautiful place in the world. Being in the desert is just amazing and all the colours… When you do art, you just realise that nature is more creative than you could ever be.
Thank you very much for the chat, Tom. Enjoy the rest of your day.