Creative alumna’s ventures in illustration, writing and creating content

A purple background with pink circles on with an image of Sam Warburton on a yellow background in the middle of the canvas.

Sam Warburton has explored many creative roles over the years and has always searched for opportunities to expand in her creative career.

Sam graduated from Loughborough with a degree in Publishing and English in 2015. After graduating the alumna continued to pursue a creative career with a graduate editorial internship at Oxford University Press before moving into a range of marketing roles. She currently works as a Design & Content Creator at Ad Esse Consulting. In addition to working at Ad Esse Consulting, Sam is a freelance Sketch Note Artist. 

We asked Sam about the thought process that has seen her career develop since graduating. She said:  

“My squiggly career has taken me through various creative roles over the years. I’ve always been open to trying new opportunities and continuously reflect on what I want from my creative career. I now have an employer who values my creativity, and a freelance creative business that I’ve built from scratch.” 

The alumna is a self-taught illustrator, and she first explored the field as an outlet for her own professional development. Sketch notes are a form of one-page image illustrations often intended to summarise longer forms of content using images and words.  

She started capitalising on her sketch work by first sharing her work on LinkedIn and Instagram where Sam found a commercial demand for her services. Her work was discovered by her first client, an Events Manager, on Instagram who wanted to commission her sketch notes. She continued pursuing her sketch note work and worked on a Growth Hub talk with the founder of Reebok, Joe Foster. The success of the collaboration allowed Sam to sketch note professionally at the National Sales Conference in 2022. The alumna’s illustration portfolio has flourished, and she has produced sketch notes for various outlets including books, podcasts, research, webinars, and events.  

An illustration of Sam Warburtons work with images and text.

Sam spoke about her growth in her sketch note work. She shared:  

I’ve gone from zero clients to a portfolio of supportive clients who have embraced sketch notes for communicating their books, services, ideas and more. One of my ‘pinch me’ moments was sketch noting in partnership with The London Book Fair 2023.” 

The alumna would like to share her experiences with others looking to build a career in the creative industries. 

Sam explained: 

“I have a creative career that I love, and I hope to inspire and help other creatives who are graduating or just starting out in their career.” 

You can check out Sam’s website online and her weekly newsletterThe Creative Tea Break