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Meet the new committee members for the Enterprising Alumni Association

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  • Written byEleanor Harvey
  • Published date14 April 2022
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Guests at the Masters of Resilience event, organised by the Enterprising Alumni Association. | Photograph: Adam Razvi

We’re delighted to announce 2 new committee members for the Enterprising Alumni Association:

  • GabrielleShiner-Hill
  • Victoria Reis

They join the Enterprising Association as plans are taking shape for several exciting events and opportunities throughout 2022.

The Enterprising Association organises activities and events to connect you with other creative leaders who've graduated from UAL. Their programme is designed to help answer your questions and provide inspiration for each other’s creative businesses.

Gabrielle Shiner-Hill

2001 BA Textile Design, Central Saint Martins (CSM)

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Gabrielle Shiner-Hill

I started my course in 1998 and graduated in 2001, I specialised in weaving and spent 2 years of my degree working on the dobby looms at Southampton Row. It was very much learning by doing, yarn selection, dyeing, warping, weaving then finishing. At the time I honestly didn't realise how lucky I was to learn weaving from such fantastic tutors and technicians. I look back on my time at CSM as formative as getting the chance to use the textile design software Pointcarre paved the way for the next 20 years of my career.

In 2002 I moved to New York and trained fashion companies on Pointcarre. This also involved travelling all over the States helping mills convert their design and weaving process to a digital workflow. From there I went to work for suppliers focusing on design and manufacturing and I was the Design Manager at a large UK-based supplier. In 2016 I set up my consultancy, shinerhilldesign with a focus on responsible fabric sourcing for independent brands.

At the same time, I moved into teaching and was Course Leader on the BA (Hons) Fashion Buying and Brand Management Course at Ravensbourne University London, again with a focus on responsible sourcing. I led trips to Sri Lanka and Bangladesh so the students could visit textile mills and garment makers, giving them first-hand experience of the supply chain and some insight into how many people are really involved in making a garment.

In 2021 my business partner and I formed our new company Bureau 555 working across the UK and Bangladesh. We believe in digital accessibility and inclusivity throughout the supply chain. We are on a mission to empower manufacturers and factories by making 3D product creation easy. We enable manufacturers to eliminate waste by creating true-to-life digital materials for use in 3D software.

I was interested to work on the UAL Enterprising Alumni Association as I know how daunting it can be to enter the industry after graduating. Having events you can go to where you can hear how people have tried (and possibly failed) yet still succeeded is so important. Also, as I have been mentoring UAL students for the last 6 years, I know the fantastic talent pool of our alumni and I am looking forward to hearing, promoting, and being inspired by their journeys.

Victoria Reis

2018 BA Graphic Design, CSM

Photo of Victoria smiling into the camera
Victoria Reis | Photograph: Adam Rasvi

Studying at UAL was a surreal experience from the very beginning – especially coming from Venezuela! It was such a massive privilege, which I've got my parents to thank for. I started on short courses (Printing, Composition and Life Drawing), and went on to do a BA in Graphic Communication Design at CSM.

One of the things I loved the most was having the workshops and so much space to experiment and express ideas in. The talks every Tuesday, the events, I even got to attend a Ted Talk! It was always refreshing and motivating to hear directly from the experience of fellow creatives in my field.

At CSM fashion is very present and joining UAL made me realise I had no real understanding of the industry before. Being so close to the fashion students exposed me to their passion and made me appreciate the influence fashion has in the arts. I made many friends in different industries too! From product design, performance, textile, and fashion. The beauty of it was that we could all speak creatively from the heart!

One other very important part of my experience and journey at UAL was to be not only a member of the surf society but the president for a whole year. The connections I made with people that had the same two passions as me have lasted until today and we shared some really fun adventures in the UK and abroad.

After uni, I wasn't sure how to fit my multidisciplinary practice in the graphic industry. I wanted to try print, digital, branding, creative thinking... so many things. So I took some time to explore the industry. I started as a Junior Graphic Designer in the marketing department at GUS, dedicated to rebranding universities. There I worked on my first zine design, The Vibe. Then I moved to The Dubs, where I worked on my first award-winning print book release, The Little Book of Data for Aviva (which won Creativepool’s 2019 Silver and People’s Choice awards for Publishing). Then I joined EventsTag, an experiential advertising start-up. This enabled me to expand my practice to creative thinking, wayfinding, and UI/UX design; I worked as the creative lead for the Room and the Broom Animated Movie Experience at Chessington World of Adventures and the bouncy installation for Monster at Alexandra Palace.

Four years later I decided to set up my own design studio. My partner, Alex Lorimer and I, built Drool Design Studios together, where we aim to collaborate with other creatives without limiting our practice. To push ideas and go beyond the brief. We started with my freelance graphic and creative work and today we are a growing team that covers branding, web design, and marketing services!

My motivation to be a part of the alumni association comes from my personal journey as a creative. Trying to believe in myself and my work whilst battling with insecurities. I don't come from a creative family or a culture that promotes being creative. I didn't have the tools to navigate the industry after graduating, it was my friends from uni and my partner that supported each other. Knowing how that feels I want to make sure I put myself out there to help other creatives, with the experience and tools I have gained so far.  As well as just building a network of creatives that share similar concerns and challenges so that we can continue supporting each other.