Made in Wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿
Discuss a project
April 25, 2024

Meet Holly, the newest member of our herd

Jen Burns
Jen Burns

Holly, who recently joined us as Marketing Manager, isn’t at all afraid to get stuck into a project, whether it’s planning a national campaign or knitting what she calls a ‘crazy lockdown cardigan’. 

Here, she talks about what needs changing in the creative industries, how she’s supporting the next generation of writers and her love of Bridget Jones’s Diary.

Tell us a bit about your career.

I used to teach knitting, crochet, macramé and sewing classes at Lark Design Make when I was still in uni. While I was there, I started doing their social media, website updates, newsletters and other bits and bobs. 

And I really enjoyed it. So, when I finished uni, I got onto the Cardiff Students’ Union marketing graduate scheme. I was doing a mix of everything there: social media – mainly Instagram and TikTok – and then a lot of planning campaigns, copywriting and doing photoshoots and videos as well. 

With socials, I like that you can tailor posts to an audience, and there’s a lot of freedom with what you can do. You can be a lot more creative than people realise – you can go in a lot of different directions with it, and link it to something that doesn’t even seem all that relevant.

I finished the graduate scheme on the Friday, and then I started at Blue Stag on the Monday. I wanted to come straight in. 

How are you finding it so far?

My role here is really varied, which keeps it exciting. Largely, I’m involved with a lot of project management, campaign and project planning, meeting clients, writing copy and sourcing anything from images to promotional materials. But I’ve also been doing all sorts of new things, such as hiring actors and speaking at events. 

I’m really enjoying the fact that everything I work on here feels really worthwhile – no matter how little the job – because the projects and the clients are so lovely.  

I’m grateful to have the opportunity to have these experiences. It’s a positive contribution to the community, and I feel really rewarded by working on every single campaign. 

It makes you feel like you’re getting up and going to work for a good reason, then.

Exactly. I think that’s important, isn’t it, to feel like you’re actually contributing to the world? 

Tell me about some of the projects you’ve worked on recently.

I’m working on a period campaign, trying to dispel shame and promote positivity and empowerment within young people of all genders. 

I’m also really enjoying being involved with Taith’s video production, and am excited to visit some of their grant recipients for upcoming case studies. They’re such an impactful organisation to communities across Wales.

I also recently worked on the campaign video for #NotTheOne, which just launched. I supported two young writers, recruited through our Takeaway project, who created the script for it. I helped them build their storyline, supporting their writing processes and giving them feedback. 

I also directed them to the right places, so they could gain inspiration for their script and make it more in line with what the client was expecting. 

Organising the actors for the video was a bit of a challenge, particularly because we had to do it on quite a quick timescale. 

And are you one of those people who enjoys working under that sort of pressure?

I like a bit of both, to be honest. I enjoy things going very smoothly when that’s possible. But when it’s not possible, as long as it all comes together in the end, it’s fine. I’m happy to feed off the pressure of it all. You’ve got to smile through it. If I stop smiling, it all goes wrong.

What needs changing in the creative industries?

I don’t think many people have the opportunity to go into a creative career, and I do think that’s a problem. 

It means that a lot of ideas are probably shut down before they even begin, because if you don’t have that representation in the field, then you’re not going to get the representation in the output. 

I think it’s really important for people to represent themselves, rather than their perspective being added in by someone else as an afterthought. 

I know you studied English literature. Any favourite books?

I like a lot of different kinds of genres, and I think it’s really important to read a wide variety of books so that you get those different perspectives. 

One of my favourite writers is Helen Fielding. She’s a very funny writer, and I think it’s very clever how she wrote these books, because they’re relatable for people now, not just in the 90s. 

I actually wrote my dissertation based on Bridget Jones’s Diary – how the idea of ‘chick flicks’ and ‘chick lit’ are all devaluing the female experience, and how by devaluing them, you’re devaluing women on several different levels. 

I heard you love crocheting and knitting. What kind of things do you make?

I picked up knitting in the first lockdown, but I’d been crocheting for a while before that. I’ve made blankets, vests and this [shows me a photo on her phone].

I call it ‘my crazy lockdown cardigan’ – it’s a multicoloured rainbow with massive puff bell sleeves.

I love it. Sometimes you just want to switch your brain off in the evening, and knitting’s good for that. It also stops you going on your phone, which is really good. So I’m a big advocate for knitting.

Dan Sargent

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    There’s a rustle in the Welsh woods that has been whispered about for generations. They believe it to be Blue. They say it’s not sasquatch, but Stag. All that’s been spotted is the odd antler in the overgrowth or hoofprint on the forest floor.

    We’ve taken matters into our own hands and set up a series of cameras to try and locate Seb the Stag for ourselves. Brave visitor, can you help us in our quest to unravel the mystery and marvel at the myth?

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