Hi! I'm Mel Cooper, a versatile and trusted graphic designer based in the south of the UK where I work from my home studio. I specialise in graphic design for print and digital and offer a diverse range of creative services.
With twenty-five years in the graphic design industry – in corporate, design agency and freelance environments – I’ve been privileged to work with a wide variety of fabulous clients across the UK and abroad. I get a real buzz from collaborating with businesses of all sizes although I have a particular soft spot for Small and Medium Size Enterprises (SMEs). Whether you’re a large organisation, just starting out, or a design agency or a charity, I would love to collaborate.
I originally founded Mellowdesign Creative in November 2004. I’ve been getting excited about ideas and all-things-creative as far back as I can recall so setting up on my own to do what I love was a natural next-step after a few years’ experience.
Steve Jobs said, “The only way to do great work is to love what you do,” and that certainly resonates for me. I have always been a creative type and find inspiration everywhere; the possibilities are endless and my passion for life reflects this. As a life-long learner and people-person, I love collaboration as a means to inspire and develop great design-thinking.
The best thing about being a graphic designer is being able to take your brief and bring it to life using my insight and creativity. My clients love the exceptional benefits I bring to their vision, whether it’s a for a simple layout or developing a new brand identity. I’m proud that the majority of my work comes via word-of-mouth and recommendation.
Recent work history
In April 2017, I was looking for a change of scenery and a fresh challenge after thirteen years of working for myself. I had the opportunity to join an award-winning, global audio-visual solutions company as their first graphic designer.
During my recent three-year employment, I worked on a wide range of projects. I created graphic user interface (GUI) designs for high-end residential and corporate projects. I also established a cohesive design culture across the company’s internal and external visual communications, actively seeking to improve creative unity & user-experience in both client-led & in-house projects. I developed the original, existing branding side of the business, producing regular pieces for all areas of the organisation, from sales to marketing and social media. I was involved in both design work and photography commissions.
"I had the absolute pleasure of working with Mel when she was graphic designer at proAV. She completely overhauled our sales collateral and created stunning graphic content for our proposals and presentations. Mel was able to react with agility to the often fast paced environment, and demands of my team and senior stakeholders. She was such a joy to have in the office, with a wonderful sense of humour and fun. I have no hesitation recommending Mel and I wish her every success for the future."
L Bonito, Bid Team Manager
In March 2020, before the Covid-19 pandemic took hold, I decided to go back to working for myself, which tied in with plans to get married and relocate to Swindon (all now postponed until later this year). I am currently based between Hampshire and Wiltshire.
What makes me tick?
For as far back as I can remember, I have always had a love of drawing and painting, culminating in a good degree in Art (painting practice) and Art History from the University of Wales, Aberystwyth. After I graduated, my first job was working in London as a secretary and then a marketing assistant. My journey into graphic design started there when my manager realised my potential to develop those skills. I haven't looked back (and we're still in touch, which is lovely)!
For fun and because I have no formal graphic design qualifications, I decided to study for an Advanced Diploma this summer. I was excited (and relieved!) to pass with Distinction! I think it's always good to underpin work-life with personal development and for me, this was a great opportunity to test my knowledge against current industry practices.
I still love painting and photography and have run courses for both, here in the UK and abroad.
I'm a typical extrovert / introvert mix! I love socialising and having a diverse range of hobbies as well as the art and photography. These include music (I sing and play flute and am in a local community choir), keeping fit (mainly walking these days although I challenged myself to do Couch to 5k last summer!) and the usual social activities! My quieter side seems to come out when I'm deep in design thinking or switching off to relax.
I'm hoping to pick up my childhood love of badminton with my husband at some point. I also love travel and exploring new places, opportunities to expand life experience and meet new people! And I LOVE gherkins, gin and cats, in no particular order!