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Spotlight Series: Cat Noonan

Q&A With Cat Noonan

15 Oct 2020

In-House Designer: Cat Noonan

Tell us a bit about yourself….

Hey I’m Cat! My official title is CEO of Humour at Moonpig, and by ‘official title’ I mean ‘thing I keep saying even though my manager has told me to stop’. I’m responsible for many of our finest humour cards, and even more of our terrible ones. My top qualification is being Irish, so I talk too much and too fast for anyone else to be able to get the joke in before me.

How did you get into the creative/greeting card industry?

I really wanted to have a steady and practical career path, so as soon as I finished school I went and did a degree in Illustration. Ever since, I’ve been telling people I don’t know how to design, but they keep paying me for it so it seems rude to stop.

What have been your biggest challenges within the industry?

My weird habit of spelling Mum ‘Mom’. Not helpful when you’re hand lettering all of your Mother’s Day cards and have to repeatedly redraw them… And before anyone asks, no it’s not an Irish thing, and my Mom/Mum blames my Dad. Who’s also Irish. Look it just makes no sense, don’t try to understand it.

What has been the proudest moment of your career?

I think probably when Marvel asked if they could use my drawings of Spider-Man for their own products. Sadly they also told me I couldn’t make any jokes about his butt, so it was a truly bittersweet moment

At what point in your life did you realise illustration was the path for you?

When I was about 16, we had a school project to write a book. Being an overly confident and poorly organised teenager (nothing has changed), I thought I’d create a novel. Naturally I did no actual writing and in my last minute panic, I created a picture book called “The Boy Who Fell In Love Most Tragically”. Those 3 days spent stress-drawing an emotionally unaware toddler really decided the rest of my life. I’m sure there’s a life lesson in there somewhere.

Do you have anyone or anything in mind when you're designing your cards?

My manager and how behind the deadline I am

What is the best card you’ve ever been given?

The sample proofs of my own cards. That or the ones that have money in them

Which is your favourite card you ever designed and why?

My answer to this changes on a daily basis... But probably my Top Two are two Valentine’s cards that never got past the approval stage (for exactly reasons you’d think). While I can’t show you them I’ll just say one involved a pun about the KFC Double Down burger, while the other was a beautiful rhyme about an Action Man being 6 inches of solid plastic. Sadly true art is never appreciated in its time.

Who or what is your biggest inspiration?

I need a better answer for this, but honestly just making people laugh. Or making myself laugh. I have to credit my siblings (and my brother in particular) for telling me if my jokes make sense or else just straight up writing jokes for me. I give them full credit for my success. That means I don’t have to give them any money, right?

What do you love most about your job/brand?

I get given actual money to draw dumb jokes. What’s not to love?

How did you land your job at Moonpig as a card designer?

Through a fortunate series of events. They saw my work at a degree show, and were understandably overwhelmed by my hilarity so I got invited to do a week’s placement. I got asked back for a longer placement and frankly I think they just forgot to kick me out…

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Cat Noonan

Card Designer