Hothouse talk: Kath Tudball (18 years in 35mins)


Today we had a talk by Kath Tudball, a design director at the partners, who studied graphic design. She tried everything in university but began to narrow down what she liked after reading ‘A Smile in the Mind’.


She met Julia Woolams during her time at university and worked together on and off for 3 years. They collaborated as they somewhat had the same way of thinking. Once they graduated they approached companies as a pair due to the fact they didn’t know much about the industry and had worked together for so long.

In order to find the company or people to work for they looked for people who had won pencil awards among others. They linked it back to Michael Johnson (found in the book) who owned a company called Johnson Banks. They were taken on as interns and then hired together

Kath began doing posters and ‘nitty gritty’ pieces, such as a magazine, 4times a year for 6 years. Leading from the magazine she also did stamps that celebrated fashion over the decades.


She helped to design the Science Museum’s logo and branding in order to make it more unique and distinctive. When they relaunched they loved the idea so much that they went huge with the posters. They even managed to make a digital motion sequence so go on the screens around the museum. The ambition was to be able to create a font that would be recognised without the logo being seen and it definitely worked.

‘A tiny project can be quite labour intensive’, which she found out when making ‘Mister Cooper’ alcoholic ice cream. It took a lot of work to produce the logo but was worth it in the end.

When doing a cystic fibrosis logo Kath had her handwriting turned into a font (pretty awesome) due to the fact it seemed ‘gender neutral’.

Kath wanted to move onto a bigger company and learn more. Her last project at Johnson Banks was on a book called ‘branding in five and a half steps’ and she loved it, wishing to go further with branding.


Kath now works at The Partners and has been there since last February. She runs her own team and is doing a variety of projects (some she can’t tell us). At the moment one of the recent projects she’s is worked on is with a charity called Tusk that promotes and supports wildlife conservation. They had a very clever creation with the pattern, hiding the word ‘Tusk’ inside it meaning it was complex yet simple.


Her talk was really interesting and I love the type of work she does. It was really good to see and hear someone in the industry talk about one of the areas you may want to pursue.


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