Beacon AW19: Meet Josh Costar

To celebrate the launch of the AW19 Barbour Beacon Campaign, we sat down with Josh Costar, to discover more about him and his passion for graphic design.

Beacon AW19: Meet Josh Costar


To celebrate the launch of the AW19 Barbour Beacon Campaign, we sat down with Josh Costar, to discover more about him and his passion for graphic design.

What does being a DIY kid mean to you?

For me it means not getting a hand out from anyone, it’s about going off your own accord and making something of yourself with the cards you’ve been dealt and with the tools that are accessible to you. Also it’s about gathering your own network, like your friends or people you have met along the way from different places/practises to make work or create something together. That way you can achieve the best results but most importantly you’ve got to do it for yourself too.

Josh Costar


What does it mean to be a young person in today's climate?

We live in such a fast-paced society, it can feel like we’re going non stop and people forget to take a step back, pause, reflect and view things or where you are ‘going’ from a different perspective or pace. Sometimes It can be hard and things can take time to develop but you’ll get there in the end if you persevere.

I do think it is about who you know and we’ve got to stick together, be your own network and create your own network. If someone you know is a photographer, a designer or an art director, bring them all together to create something if you have ideas you want to realise. It goes back to doing something yourself and bringing those right people together to achieve something which you couldn’t have done on your own.

Why do you think it is important to shine a light on young people?

Young people have the best ideas! You go to graduation shows and you know they are just full and springing with ideas. I look back at it and I’m what, only 25 now and go back to a graduation show and it’s amazing. Sometimes I can get so inspired even more so from a grad show than an art gallery full of esteemed makers because these kids are coming out fresh and bringing new ideas into the creative industry. There are ideas you’ve never even thought about addressing really relevant topics, the current political climate or progressive social and cultural topics.

Personally I’ve felt the support of family and friends, but I feel there still is a lot left to learn from society as a whole to support young people in the creative industry.

Josh Costar


Why do you think so many young people have side hustles now?

We are in a world which is quite harsh, especially living In London you’ve got to earn so much to fulfil your rent and some people often don’t enjoy their full-time job. You might need that little side hustle just to get you by in life, whether that's fulfilling your creative passion or earning a bit of extra money to get on top of your rent. If it’s solely an outlet for your creative passion, it is really important to make time for that especially as we live such busy lives.

Josh Costar

Josh Costar 


How did you get your start in design and know it was what you wanted to do?

I think the first time I knew what graphic design was, was on Myspace. You could create your own profile, edit the HTML, make yourself a personalised ‘skin’ and that became your own online identity, early before Facebook or other social media sites. This was a visual identity you created for yourself.

At the time I was really into music and you could play songs on your personal profile, this lead to designing layout skins for different rock bands with really cool graphics. This went on to them wanting me to design t-shirts, which is such a quick way of expressing your idea. Even just giving these to my mum or anyone in the playground and seeing my ideas so quickly realised on a t-shirt was such an amazing thing for me, it was such a passion of mine. 

How did you get introduced into graphic design?

I can remember getting a disk of Photoshop from someone in year 8 and it was like, " Woah you can learn to change a background in an image? You can take a picture of a person make them look like they’re flying and go through a filter to make them look like a cartoon?" That is when I started to learn what graphic design was, it’s visual language, it’s decorating something, it’s informing something, it’s manipulating imagery to a certain extent.

What do you love about design and creating art?

I think design and art are always going streamline, it’s collaborating with each other constantly - it’s a conversation and I think art informs design. One of the things I really love about design is it gives me a sense of order as I have a very chaotic mind and design is very order based, methodical and I really love that part about it. You can collaborate that with creativity or passion and graphic design perfectly marries my passion and order for things. Wether it be through music or cultural studies or anything really design it’s like an expression of a tool, it’s like an artists brush, it’s everything.

Discover more about the DIY Gen here, and shop the AW19 Barbour Beacon collection.


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