A FATHER-OF-TWO who designs graphics for Disney theme parks and re-modelled the iconic Premier League golden lion is to expand his Frodsham business.
When Glen Southern left his 20-year career in retail management to follow his dream job as a illustrator and designer, his friends thought he was mad.
But now the father-of-two travels all around the world designing graphics for Disney, Sky Sports, Adidas, Nike and B&Q after launching his own 3D modelling and graphic design company.
The company, named SouthernGFX, has become one of the leading modelling and design companies in the UK, and just three years after it was launched, the business based at Frodsham Business Centre is preparing to expand and hire more staff.
The 45-year-old, who travels all over the world, working on films in Lithuania and designing digital artwork for Disney theme park rides in Florida, said: “My retail career gave me stability but not the creative outlet I needed.
“I was still taking on freelance jobs in my spare time illustrating for magazines and games companies, initially as more of a hobby but as my experience and design skills grew this work became more lucrative and I knew this is where my real passion was.”
Despite the difficult economic climate, Glen, who was born in Northwich and now lives in Norton, decided to leave his career in retail and set up his own company in 2010.
“Some people thought I was mad starting out in the middle of a recession but I felt the time was right and I already had clients lined up so I went for it,” he said.
“I’ve been really lucky to work with some fantastic agencies and clients but the project I’m most proud of in recent years was getting to model the iconic golden lion for Sky Sports’ Premier League football coverage.”
The success of the business in the first three years enabled Glen to expand it into a new premises at Frodsham Business Centre, which is also home to more than 20 other businesses employing more than 100 people.
“Frodsham Business Centre has been extremely accommodating as we had some very specific needs such as a full blackout studio with particular neutral grey walls and carpet.
“They sorted it all for us within two weeks and I can’t praise them enough for all their help and support since we arrived,” said Glen.