If you don’t know James Martin, you should. Epic man. Epic skills. Epic beard.

He’s been a buddy of Kiel’s for a few years now, and we’re a big fan of the work he does in his creative studio BabyGiant Design Co, and the educational content he creates for his personal brand Made by James, too.

As a massive advocate for creative collaboration James leads by example, working regularly with other designers and illustrators on his own brand, even though he has the same skillset. As the man himself puts it, "I know what I am good at, but there is so much more to my brand than just me and a logo—I have big dreams for the future and to realise them, I need other creatives on this journey to help make them happen." What a legend. 

A few months back, James came to Kiel with a proposition. Rather than write about it, here’s essentially how the conversation went down:

Credit: Posts created by @made.by.james featuring Kiel’s illustrations


Starting with a blank canvas can be daunting for some, and exciting for others. For Kiel, it's always the later. Jumping on a call with James was the first step to get creative ideas flowing and to scoop up some catch phrases to work into the illustrations. What you see below is how things turned out:

The original sketches for Made by James IllustrationsA flash sheet of completed illustrations for Made by James

Kudos for Creative Collaboration

James is a big advocate for creative collaboration. Most of us are, but he really takes it a step further with some self-realisation. Just because we might do the same stuff as other creatives, doesn't mean we aren't allowed to work with them. Or that it's not right

If that's how you're feeling, it's time to quit subscribing to that mindset and go try some stuff with your pals! Aside from having a grand old time, collaborating with others will bring new perspectives, unexpected tangents, and an energy you might have been lacking previously. 

More about James on the Offbrand Podcast

Back in 2020, Kiel and podcast partner Dave Lydiard interviewed James to chat all things creative, business and "how good are gardens!?" James talks about running a studio, his logo design process and plans to launch a youtube channel. Check out the full episode here.