Bonus Interview: Bernard Bannor in I am a Creative series
Bernard is a 20 year old Accounting and Finance student at the university of Leicester. Alongside his studies, he is also a freelance graphic designer as well as the Founder and Creative Director of The Connection Group.
How did you discover your interest in graphic design?
To be honest, I’ve always enjoyed art and design since I was young! I even studied Art for GCSE, however, when I started my A Levels, my creative side became dormant because of the heavy workload and a general change of priorities. But, when I started University, I had more free time on my hands, so I was able to go back to my creative roots.
I remember one day I wanted to start something with my boys, so I started creating logos and general designs for it, then, my friend saw it and encouraged me to start designing – and that’s where it all began.
What does the design process mean to you?
From my perspective, the design process is literally exporting the ideas and visions you have in your mind into something that is tangible or intangible. It is also a way of clearing your mind – almost therapeutic.
Accounting & Finance is a world away from design, why did you choose to study this course at university?
I love this question – it makes me laugh even.
I love numbers, I really enjoy working with number sets. It has been a dream of mine to work in the city in the Financial sector since I was young, I even worked in an Investment Bank during the summer holidays of year 12 and 13. So, I have been heavily involved in that industry. Deciding to study Accounting and Finance at university was a no brainer, I was always going to.
Plus, as an entrepreneur, these skills always come in very handy.
Talk to us about The Connection Group. What is it and how did you go about establishing it?
The Connection is a group (more like a family) that provide positive platforms and promote Christian values. Our two main platforms are our events and our website (theconnectionldn.co.uk). We are a group that are here to fully redefine positive culture. I established it through my own personal investments, team funding and funding via my University. Since we launched on 21st July 2016, we have been growing and improving daily – it is beautiful to see.
What has been your most memorable moment within the Connection Group?
Every event run by The Connection is always a success, by the grace of God. But, my most memorable moment was at our event held in April 2017 called ‘Feel That Vibe’. I just really enjoyed and cherished how everyone literally came out of their comfort zones to have such a good time. I love positive energy and environments because they encourage freedom and I felt that at that event.
If you had unlimited resources to build the platform, what would it look like?
Securing a building in every major city on Earth.
The reason I say this, is because I want us to create an environment that people can physically go to, whenever they want. A space that we can create content that is tailored to our community’s needs and wants. The Connection will be the main hub for positive culture and a promoter of The Gospel.
Is there any overlap between your graphic design and The Connection?
Yeah! I am always creating graphics and animations for The Connection – I believe graphic design is the most effective way to show information.
What is your opinion on the creative scene in London?
It is becoming stronger and stronger which I love – there are more opportunities.
But, it can be very cliquey and to be honest, that is not a surprise. The world can be a very greedy place. However, all I know is that for every creative there is a market and space out there for them – so keep on producing your work and ideas.
What I love with the creative industry is that you don’t even need to work for a company to make a living. You can literally just become a freelancer, the opportunities are in abundance.
How does your relationship with Jesus Christ affect the work you do?
Very heavily – I always apply Biblical principles to my work. Especially, working as if we are working for the Lord and not for man (Colossians 3:23). Everything I do is to glorify my Creator for what He has done for me.
Aside from your graphic design service and The Connection, what else are you involved in?
I am currently involved in a new church in Leicester called IMPRINT CHURCH (@IMPRINTCHRCH) – using my skills to create various graphics and animations.
I am part of a great network of founders and entrepreneurs in a group called YSYS (@ThisIsYSYS) as well!
How do you balance your studies with everything else that you do?
A mix of time-management and check lists. Sometimes things don’t go exactly to plan but I always keep this verse in my heart: Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? (Matthew 6:27).
I work hard, there is no doubt about that, but I always ensure that I have time to rest and recharge before I pursue my next task.
Finally, where would you like to see the UK creative scene in 5 years?
More supportive and taking over the world.