Spotlight focuses on Creative Commission members with stories to tell. Next up, we hear from designer Cam Heyes - a trusted go-to creator of visual content for some of the biggest artists in the world. Over to you, Cam...
My name is Cam Heyes and I’m a multi-disciplined designer specialising solely in visual content for the music industry. I started StudioX three years ago out of a lifelong interest in music, marketing and design. It has gone from strength to strength ever since.
Career beginnings weren’t plain sailing for me at all, some would describe me as an underdog - and I’m happy with that.
When I left school I really struggled to get into graphic design professionally. I didn’t achieve the grades needed for the graphic design A Levels so, instead, was enrolled on a lower-ranked mediocre art course whilst I re-took certain subjects. I didn’t hate it but I didn’t enjoy it either - life drawings and the history of fine art just wasn’t for me.
After a long dull year of college, I finally got the grades for the course and was hit with another blow that the course was full. I had to look for another college but by that time I was 19 and just wanted to work and earn money.
In 2013, after a few years of job-hopping and freelancing, I landed my first in-house design job working in marketing for a family-run card craft business. I was over the moon. All those nights learning the software and keeping up with trends had paid off. My car was falling to bits, money was tight but I was happy nonetheless.
It was at this firm I first experimented with motion graphics, adding basic lower thirds to card-making tutorials and moving a logo from side to side - it was very minimal animation but back then, I felt like Dreamworks Pictures! I learned a hell of a lot about marketing and design from my colleagues during the three years with the company.
I set myself a personal goal that one day I would work in music marketing. That being said, I had a lot to learn about the music industry and how it operates. Before I felt confident enough to do that, I needed design agency experience and after several unsuccessful interviews and I gave up trying - you can’t pay people to see the potential that I frustratingly knew I had.
'Fast forward five years, I can say with so much pride that I’m now a trusted go-to creator of visual content for some of the biggest artists in the world'
I spent the next two years relentlessly perfecting my graft and reaching out to other music creatives, labels, management and even artists directly to try and win them over, in hindsight - I was a bit of pest. I wonder how many blocked lists I’m on? Hmmm. One artist I reached out to finally said “yes, send your details over to my manager” and that was the start of a solid working relationship with them which ultimately opened the door to bags of industry experience.
Fast forward five years, I can say with so much pride that I’m now a trusted go-to creator of visual content for some of the biggest artists in the world. I work with for labels and management companies daily including Universal Music Group’s UK and US division, Ministry of Sound, Capitol Records UK, Sony Music, Tap Music, Eleven Management, Virgin Music UK - just to name a few.