Black Bee Creative

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You are passionate about what you do and you want everything to be top notch, but you're not sure you're making the right marketing decisions. You are a positive soul, but you're stuck on how to tell people what you're all about. You'd like help putting some polish on things and making them shine! If only you were telling your story just right. If only you had the marketing thing sorted. Wouldn't that be great?


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We could be a great team if... You would like an image you can be proud of, that truly reflects who you are ... You want more nice people to know about you and what you do ... You would love to create marketing campaigns that talk to your clients in an honest and pressure-free way.

A little bit about me... I am Steph Cronin, founder of Black Bee Creative. I started my company because I love design, creativity and communication and I want to use my skills to help good people do good things.

Black Bee Creative can provide you with... Graphic design, marketing campaigns and strategy, illustration, a little copy editing and lots of creative enthusiasm!

I have a special place in my heart for clients who... Are doing what they are passionate about for a living ... Want to make the world a better place ... Put their small change in the charity box.

Take a look around my services, explore what I've done for other lovely people in my portfolio, and drop me a line.


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Primary School Enterprise Challenge – product design

Posted on Jul 3 by

Being a judge at the Primary School Enterprise Challenge last December was such a brilliant experience that when I was asked to return it was an immediate ‘Yes’ from me! The guys at Primary School Enterprise go into schools and work with the children on real-life business challenges. According to PSE this helps the children to “develop the enterprise and employability skills of all the young learners who take part, including sharing ideas, aiming high, listening carefully, leadership, creativity, problem-solving and presentation.” The challenge is open to primary school children in years 3, 4, 5 and 6 all across Yorkshire, so there is a real variety of ages and abilities. I arrived at Tankersley Manor on the morning of 18 June 2018, met my fellow judges over a cup of tea and we were briefed about the days proceedings. Meanwhile downstairs children from all over Yorkshire were congregating ready to present their pitches. The children had been tasked with designing and marketing a music frame product which children like themselves could make music with in the playground, and could be...


A five year milestone for Black Bee Creative graphic design

Posted on May 24 by

On this day in 2013 I registered Black Bee Creative as a limited company and providing graphic design and illustration services for lovely businesses and organisations. The start of my business journey began a while before this, and my professional career in graphic design started nearly 20 years ago, but today marks the day that it all got real for me all on my own. Considering that more than half of new businesses in the UK don’t survive beyond five years, I’m pretty blooming pleased with myself for making it this far. Over  the five years I have worked with so many wonderful clients, in a vast array of sectors including manufacturing, coaching, healthcare and artisan crafts to name a few. I’m very pleased to say that many of them have gone on to become returning clients and friends. It’s onwards and upwards for the next five years. Wish me...


A design challenge for Tour de Yorkshire

Posted on May 6 by

This was the experience of a lifetime! Barnsley Council commissioned local charity Creative Recovery to produce a spectacular work of art to celebrate the town especially for the Tour de Yorkshire bike race which was starting its second leg in Barnsley town centre on 4th May 2018. The canvas was to be the top levels of Barnsley Market’s multi-storey car park which fills 2,773 square metres! The idea was that as the TV helicopters flew over the town filming the race they would see our message to the world – “Barnsley is here! We have a rich history and are moving forward to a bright future!”. I often design marketing communications for Creative Recovery so when founders Helen and Hayley told me about their plans my mind started whirring and I knew I had to get involved. Artists Helen and Phil worked together with the ‘Recovery Through Art’ group (Creative Recovery’s core visual arts project) to come up with concepts. We really liked the style of old war propaganda posters, with their graphic shapes and block colours, so took...


A beginners guide to getting your documents professionally printed

Posted on Feb 5 by

 Have you ever created a document that you’d like to get professionally printed, but not known how to go about it?  Maybe you’ve always printed your company newsletter on your desktop printer but love the idea of having it printed on thicker paper stock and coated with a touchy-feely velvet lamination to grab your customers attention? Here is my quick run-down on printing basics to help you on your way. (I’m keeping this list short and sweet because there are so many print options out there. If you want spot varnishes, fancy folds or die-cuts, you’re best off employing a professional graphic designer.)   Document creation Firstly, it’s worth noting that not all software is set up for professional printing. Microsoft Word, Publisher or PowerPoint documents may print out ok on your desktop printer, but they’re not really compatible for commercial printing. Files created with Adobe products such as InDesign, Illustrator or Photoshop are preferable.   Bleed This is not nearly as scary as it sounds! If your artwork includes a block of colour, photo or whatever that you...


LTL Enterprise Primary School Challenge awards

Posted on Dec 13 by

  It was a real honour to be one of the judges at the LTL Enterprise Challenge finals day at Tankersley Manor in Barnsley, South Yorkshire on Monday. Around 2,000 children from years 4, 5 and 6 across Barnsley Primary schools were involved in the challenge and 20 schools took part on the finals day. The scheme is run by the amazing team at Louder Than Life Enterprise and the contest was hosted by Ashleigh Porter-Exley, who won the BBC’s Young Apprentice in 2012, and is passionate about young people. This event is a seriously big deal! Each school was asked to produce designs for a product so that children can play music together outside. They had to come up with a name, look at their perfect customer, budgets, financial forecasts etc, just as if it was a real business. The judging groups were in 3 separate rooms, and throughout the morning the teams of school children came in to deliver their presentations to us. Every group had a different take on it, which was really interesting to see. Some...


Top ten tips to make a difference – World Kindness Day 2017

Posted on Nov 13 by

    I wrote a list “Ten ways to make a difference without really trying” a couple of years ago, which I feel compelled to share with you again especially for World Kindness Day 2017. I’m pleased to say that almost everything I wrote back then still stands, the only change being that Diabetes UK no longer collect plastic bottle tops, so I’ve updated that point. “As one person I cannot change the world, but I can change the world of one person.” Paul Shane Spear I used to believe that one person couldn’t change anything and that to make a difference I’d need to join an army of like-minded people to transform the negatives of the world in to positives. That was until the kindness of others changed things for me. I was feeling a bit lost and overwhelmed by life. Lots of stuff had landed on my plate and I found that my plate simply wasn’t big enough to carry it all. But after having a little help, being offered a friendly ear, a cup of tea...