Rocket Steps. The art of communication.

Bee-ing Seen. Logo Illustration for the Greater Manchester Fringe

The Greater Manchester Fringe wanted a new logo for their festival and I was only too happy to oblige. The brief to create a bee illustration, the bee being a popular symbol of Manchester.  This year they wanted a female bee, and were open to new ideas.

I started by looking at the original logo as I always want to respect previous versions. I wanted to keep some brand recognition to, even though we did move radically away from what was done previously.  Thinking it though for look and feel I sketched out a lot of ideas. I didn’t want it to look like a children’s illustration – not too cute, but also not too exaggerated either, keeping to the shape of a bee as much as possible.

The mascot had to be interpretation, but not too broad. It’s representing the festival and shows that can be anything from comedy, drama or poetry.  I noticed the previous illustration had a microphone and I consciously took that out as its more a music and stand up comedy device, but not something you’d see in live theatre.

You can maybe accuse me of overthinking it –  but it’s my job to overthink it,  and make sure that the final result can be used effectively.  As for the character, she doesn’t have a name yet but I think the guys at the Manchester Fringe Festival I working on that right now.


Illustration design for the Greater Manchester Fringe

ADDITIONAL – 4/06/2018

So back in late April I was asked to draw the new bee mascot logo for the Greater Manchester Fringe. (The Bee is the symbol of Manchester) Oddly enough I’d already started drawing a bee for the fringe. Not intentionally. It started as a procrastination doodle while I was meant to be working on my show, and just took me ages and ages to finish as I wanted to represent as much as I could in it.


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Building Confidence Through Comedy with the Growth Hub

I recently took a Present Yourself! workshop with The Growth Company in Manchester, helping a group of their members build confidence through comedy.

Late last year I took part in their ‘Spark 2 Scale’ programme –  to help grow my own business, and it’s been a real boost for my networking and marketing. So it only made sense then for me to then approach them at the end  and offer the service they’d helped me develop in return.

The idea for ‘Present Yourself!’ was born out of the stand up comedy class I had been  teaching, and has slowly ‘iterated’ from there over the last 2 years. Slowly adding in ‘bits’ from other disciples such as personal development,  solo improvisation and side coaching, and clarifying what it is – and what it isn’t.  It’s great finally see growth myself, the help running the event the feedback on the day was incredibly rewarding.

Stand up comedy workshop for presenting and storytelling
Stand up comedy workshop for presenting and storytelling in business

Feedback from the event:

“I came away with more confidence, and an understanding that I can talk about topics that I’m passionate about in a way to engage the audience without losing them … probably one of the most rewarding growth hub events and totally valuable use of my time.”

“Brilliant – straight away comfortably out of my comfort zone!”

“Really enjoyable. Got a lot from it. Hope to implement in my workplace.”

“It will push tour boundaries, but well worth it.”

“Amazing use of 3 hours to develop confidence & presentation skills.”


Rocket Steps. The art of communication.

Rocket Steps Ltd - The Art of Communication

The Art of Communication

John Cooper, Comedian & Improviser. Public speaking workshops and training for UK businesses. Dealing with public speaking nerves and providing confident focus through unique and entertaining workshops