I have been working professionally in the adult industry for around 15 years now. I studied visual communication at the London College of Printing (whos notable students include Ralph Steadman and Neville Brody amongst many others).
With no immediate plans after finishing College I was looking at a copy of UK Penthouse one day and saw a feature on English porn actress Sarah Young, in the article several of her movie box covers were shown along with the address of her company in Langenhagen, near Hanover in Germany.
I decided to write to them and was quite surprised when I got a call from Hans Moser inviting me over to Ibiza where the company was 50% based.
I guess Moser saw some potential because after a week there on trial he offered me a full time job.
I learned a great deal from Moser and he had some amazing hardware at that time – a full editing suite and top of the line Macs (Quadra 950′s – don’t laugh) in an air conditioned office on top of a mountain in the middle of nowhere. While working for SYC I produced many box covers, catalogues, flyers and various other types of material.
Hans is actually quite a legend in the adult industry, he was the founder and driving force behind Germany’s VTO (Video Teresa Orlowski) brand, which was massive in the 80s.
Teresa Orlowski was Mosers wife and the company was much the same as Sarah Young Communications but on a much larger scale.
Orlowski and Moser had split several years earlier on bad terms and the company was in a slow decline. After seven or eight months in Ibiza I needed a change and after listening to all Hans’ tales of VTO I managed to contact them (Also based in Hanover). I met Teresa and found her quite charming along with her partner at that time Gerd Rombke.
I didn’t stay at VTO long, I was living in the building – which was a massive production studio and set of offices. They would fly performers in from all over Europe who would stay there for up to a week, so I was living with them for a while. Kinda like Big Brother with new people every few days – an odd experience. I learned a lot about video production there and did some camera work on a few videos (nothing I would admit to though). I went back to SYC for a while after leaving there.
My next major contract was with Private, then based in Stockholm. After mailing a Resume to them, I got a call from Berth Milton Jr a few weeks later and an invite to Sweden. I met Milton and we discussed/criticised his magazines and movies for quite a while. He came across as a genuinely enthusiastic person and was proud of his products. We discussed how they could be improved amongst other things.
I let that meeting with a verbal agreement for a permanent contract.
I joined Private at a time when the company was uprooting and planning a major move to Barcelona in Spain. I spent a freezing cold six months there and Berth Milton Jr decided that I should be Artistic director for the whole company but internal politics prevented this and eventually it was agreed that I should take over one magazine and control it as a totally separate entity.
I took over Pirate magazine and with Carte Blanche given to me, I made it a point of making Pirate as different as possible to the other three magazines. Read a case study here.
I was at Private quite a few years involved with Magazine and video production. I also acted as production and budget manager on several projects. This culminated with Pirate taking the Best Magazine award at the Berlin Venus festival (the only time Private has won an award for a magazine). Tanya Hyde who was a director I brough in went on to win an AVN award for Xtreme Desires (Hydes first ever movie).
I went back to Stockholm, Sweden after finishing with Private to work for Lau Larsson at Tremag. Tremag produce the very well known
magazines Aktuelle Rapport and Cats. I designed their first website and was given the job of modernising their magazines with new layouts, templates and logos. I found Lau to be a very creative thinker and was a really great guy to work with. I produced magazine layouts, national newspaper adverts, movie boxes and catalogues at Tremag, as well as web work. At this point in time I started working with photography more seriously.
After a while at Tremag I took time out to get married and went back to work for Hans Moser. He had since split with Sarah Young, remarried and had moved from Ibiza to Mallorca to Denia on mainland Spain. My wife and I stayed in Spain for a while before we split and I returned to the UK.
I decided to stay in the UK and freelance for a while and web work was becoming an increasing part of my work. I produced a lot of freelance work during this time for a wide variety of customers and this is where my main work lies today along with photographic and video content which has been published in well known magazines and websites.
Most recently I was contracted out as Art director and Production manager to Daring! A company formed by Scala and Beate Uhse and ex Private employees. There is a managerial case study here.
My main goal has always been high quality. I believe the world has enough low quality, cheap design and content and that people do actually appreciate a higher standard.