Why a Designer and a Lawyer are a match made in heaven!

Author Sarah Follent

I wholeheartedly believe that the collaboration (and relationship) of Designers and Lawyers is on the rise and here is why!

Other than the obvious benefits of bringing colour and life into the mostly black, white and grey legal industry, there is so much value in finding your designer counterpart. Whether it be co-creating simple and consumable legal documents for those who find themselves seeking legal services or bringing colour to your personal brand, a designer can help set you apart.

You might be wondering “what would a designer know about legal stuff? Surely there are much more interesting jobs a designer could be working on…” 

Let me take you on a trip down memory lane.

Simply put, I am Sarah, fun, vibrant and colourful. I have an effervescent love of life, colour and energy which is reflected in all I do. I am a designer, baker and co-creator. I completed a Bachelor in Design (Interior) in 2013, in over 5 years experience in many design roles (and all-sorts), I have developed a multi- faceted and distinctive understanding of design across the board. I enjoy the interlacing that design and life experiences bring and how these bring opportunities of evolving design to a beautiful expression. And now for the fun part…. 

I met the trailblazing lawyer Clarissa Rayward in 2012 through my friend and at the time “housemate” Freya Gardon. Clarissa was on the hunt for new staff for her cafe Ma Belle Amie in Albion, Brisbane. I remember getting the heads up from Freya for my interview with Clarissa “she is like no-other lawyer, wear something colourful and just be you.” At that time little did I know what a fruitful constellation this meeting would be! Naturally I got the job and worked in the cafe for 3 years whilst finishing my studies. I eventually left work at the cafe to explore a role in Interior Design however I was never far. Fast forward a year and I was back with Clarissa, Ollie and London. (There is much more of a story here but I won’t waffle on anymore.)  

And so, today you will find me designing and co-creating alongside my friend (and boss) Clarissa Rayward on all things Happy Lawyer Happy Life, The Happy Family Lawyer, Brisbane Family Law Centre & our soon to launch project Amicably. Clarissa has graciously allowed and supported me to develop a specialised expertise in (and fondness for) brand development, identity, strategy and digital design execution.

So back to the chase. Here are my 3 key reasons why a designer and a lawyer are a match made in heaven and why I think you should go out and explore this relationship too.

1. Co-creating simple and consumable legal documents

First and foremost, designers allow the work of a lawyer to evolve into attractive consumable legal or non-legal documents and outcomes. How people consume and find service based industries is forever changing. Therefore it is essential that your legal firm evolves too! The way you curate and convey your work and business messaging must at the end of the day resonate with those “humans” who will ultimately need and use your services. A designer is able to help create alluring visual solutions, map out, cut out and co-create with you the “actual” words, documents and messaging your firm may need to stay ahead of the game in “law land!” 

Inject joy where-ever you can. It truly has a ripple effect!

2. Shifting focus to creating and not the result

Easier said than done, I know! However, designers will guide you in introducing concepts like play into a design task and force you to take things outside “the box!” Something I always come back to is when I am inspired by something or get an idea from something I’ve seen I like to spend another 30 hours on it. Giving something space to evolve is the beauty in any design process or creation. 

3. Guide and support your brand's "tone of voice"- aka the language and words you want to use to convey your message

Lawyer talk is hard to wrap your head around when you are removed from “Law Land.” It has taken me 4 years, much eaves dropping and approx. 6  of Clarissa’s Collaborative Practice Training Workshops to understand what and why anyone would need a consent order or some such. So having someone in your firm and on your team that needs things explained like a million times is useful to see what language can and cannot stay. Non-lawyers, like myself need simple, honest and straight to the point dialogue. No amount of Acts, heavy binned papers or legal terms will help me or your clients understand the law. So give it a whirl!

Working and supporting the wonderful lawyers running firms, in house lawyers, corporate counsel, senior associates, and even Barristers in “The Club” –  such as the likes of Megan Sweetlove (I just had to drop that name in there just for the pure fact that there is a Family Lawyer with the name “Sweetlove”, it’s just amazing!) has allowed me to see (and understand) the great potential the collaboration of a lawyer and a designer can bring to the legal services industry. Back track 5 years ago my Interior Designer self would have never dreamed of being a designer co-creating alongside a trailblazing lawyer like Clarissa but here I am today and it is a dream come true. I even get to practise my Interior Design skills at time thanks to the creative, colourful, craziness that is Clarissa Rayward and her many projects! 

So in a wrap… Inject joy into the profession with colour, words, changing the way we are with one another and welcome the idea of collaborating with a designer today!

This is a image of Sarah Follent

Sarah Follent

Design & Creative Director | Co-Creator | Baker | Blogger | Event Co-ordinator 

Hello! I am Sarah a fun, vibrant and colourful woman. I have an effervescent love of life, colour and energy which is reflected in all I do. I am a designer, baker and co-creator. 

It is actually really hard for me to put into words what I do each day (many will agree) but I will give it a crack.

I currently work in a number of different capacities, relying on my skills in creativity and innovation as well as my experience in coordination and business to be as versatile and adaptable as possible.

Most days you will find me designing and co-creating alongside my friend (and boss) Clarissa Rayward on all things Happy Lawyer Happy LifeThe Happy Family LawyerBrisbane Family Law Centre & our soon to launch project Amicably. On other occasions you will find me caring and playing with my little soul sisters London and Daisy, baking loving, healthy, yummy and vibrant food at Baked Livingness or organising and coordinating events at Happiness Hub

Let’s be friends! I would love to connect with you on Linkedin and Instagram!

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