Interview with Peter Ruane
Today, we are privileged to interview Peter Ruane, father, illustrator, designer and a partner of Packreate. You can also check out his huge library of packaging mock-ups here at Packreate.
Packreate: Hi Peter! Please tell us a little bit about yourself and your work.
PR: I graduated in 1992 after studying graphic design and illustration for 4 years. I started freelancing for magazines and publishers, then moved across to working for design agencies in London, more specifically in the packaging design area. This is an exciting and continually evolving area where the market competition means design is a continual process and never static. I have been lucky enough to work with some of the best companies and designers in the business, on global brands and projects, which has been very motivating and inspiring.
What is your motivation to create packaging assets (mock-ups, 3D)
With the development of the stock image website in the mid 2000’s, and after 15 years experience working with designers on a daily basis, I could see there was a gap in the market for a stock visual site where the images were biased towards design presentation, and not lifestyle photographic imagery. If your company is pitching or presenting for a brand of product in say, a plastic sachet, or drink container, the traditional way was to get someone to draw the product and scan it in so the designers could work on top of it. I could see that there was a need for a more specialised site to provide these blank mock-up packs for this process. I launched Prestovisual in early 2010, at the time it was the first-to-market site for downloading Photoshop files with working layers so designers had the ability to edit the images to suit their designs. It was a side project to my daily work visualising for design companies, but the problem was, that to provide an ever growing library requires a lot of investment in time, and with three children and work to contend with, this meant that Prestovisual never really grew to it’s full potential. Although it has brought me work and contacts from every corner of the globe, I could see it needed updating.
And as I sit here writing this, my email ping just told me I just sold 4 wine bottle images, so I’m earning even when I’m not working, which is a great feeling!
Step forward to 2015, and I was asked to be involved in a new project where we open the market up to contributors from all over the world, a marketplace for visualisers and designers to upload their own images for sale at various price points and with varying goals in mind. So in January 2016 we launched Packreate.com, a new kind of site for designers. It can be specific to various markets and tastes, after all, I might be very familiar with orange juice packaging in Europe, but I know nothing of the same products in Asia or South America, so there’s an opportunity to fill these gaps and provide a much broader spectrum of imagery for all. It’s an exciting prospect, Packreate can provide now provide Photoshop files with smart objects, and even 3D files, and because time is of the essence, it’s cheaper sometimes to buy it, than build it! And as I sit here writing this, my email ping just told me I just sold 4 wine bottle images, so I’m earning even when I’m not working, which is a great feeling!
Outside of design, what sorts of things inspire and influence your work?
Outside work, I love to go to galleries in London with my eldest daughter, who intends to go to art college next year. I can revisit paintings and artists I first saw when I was a student with a whole new perspective. It really is amazing how one’s understanding and appreciation of things changes over time. After seeing both the Alexander McQueen and David Bowie exhibitions at the Victoria and Albert museum, I was particularly inspired, even though their work bears no relation to what I do, the execution, creativity and flair in their work was spellbinding.
I would like to think that success is never fully achieved, it is something aspirational that one chases, and continually strives for in the pursuit of perfection.
How would you define success? Do you think you’ve found it yet?
I would like to think that success is never fully achieved, it is something aspirational that one chases, and continually strives for in the pursuit of perfection. Degrees of success are obviously attained, and I would think of myself as successful in that I can provide for my family, doing a job that I enjoy.
And finally, what tips would you give to anybody who is looking to get started in selling packaging assets?
As the global market for imagery seems to be growing, and as deadlines become shorter and client’s expectations become greater I see the need for sites like Packreate becoming stronger. I would recommend anyone who is thinking of contributing assets to Packreate to think about who they are targeting, and what the client would really be looking for. Look at the shops and supermarkets and think about the objects that are there. In a crowded market, say for bread products, soft drinks, or pasta there are a myriad of shapes and structures to contend with, these are the kind of areas where there is a lot of design going on. The odd lonely packs on shelves indicate a small, specialist market, so might not be the ideal place to start. I would say, create the best image you can without using any gimmicks, keep it simple in terms of layers – so people can easily edit it, and above all, don’t copy someone else, because then you’re not being original or creative! In an ideal world, I’d give up work for 6 months and just sit there all day creating visuals of all the things I see out there, but seeing as that’s not possible, I’ll just plug away as and when I can. If we an get a wide spread of creative people to contribute, we will see Packreate grow into something special.
Do you make beautiful packaging mock-ups, 3D, fonts, or labels you’d love to sell? Come open a shop on Packreate, and let us help promote your work to millions of people.