CROWN PAINTS APPRENTICE DECORATOR OF THE YEAR: MEET THE NATIONAL FINALISTS
With the Crown Paints Apprentice Decorator of the Year national finals underway, we caught up with some of this year’s competitors.
Name: Zoe Evans
College and course: Level 3 Decorative Finishing at Coleg Sir Gâr
How did you get into decorating? I was very interested in being an interior designer, so I originally signed up to study Art at college. I found that the painting parts of the course where you could be more hands-on were the parts I enjoyed the most, so I decided to change colleges and move to a painting and decorating course instead. I’m enjoying it a lot more!
What’s your favourite thing about decorating? I like the detail work – in the ADY heats I enjoyed the outlining, and at work the more experienced decorators will ask me to work on feature walls as they know it’s my strong point.
What would it mean to you to win? To be honest, I haven’t even thought about that! I just want to do my best in the competition and then think about the future. My boss at Ian Williams has been very supportive so I know that representing them in this competition is a real honour.
What’s on your decorating soundtrack? I listen to loads of different things, but at the moment it’s Party Favour by Billie Eilish.
Name: Ayesha Gyimah
College and course: Level 3 Painting & Decorating at Folkestone College
How did you get into decorating? I’ve always been into art, so I think I just developed my skill set and interests from there.
What are your plans after college? I’ll keep working in the industry and hopefully start my own business.
What would it mean to win ADY? It would mean a lot to me as this is my last year, so it’s my final chance to win.
What advice would you give to apprentices and college leavers? Keep going and focus on working in specific area that you love.
What’s your favourite soundtrack to decorate to? I love music so I’m happy listening to anything! If I had to choose though I think my favourites would be R&B and hip hop.
What’s your brew of choice? Tea – always milk and two sugars.
What’s your guilty pleasure? Probably a sneaky brandy after work!
Name: Thomas Nowell
College and course: I’m in my third year of Painting & Decorating at Truro and Penwith College
What’s your favourite thing about decorating? It’s just very satisfying work – especially to finish a project and see the end result.
Why did you choose to go into decorating? I enjoyed art at school so wanted a career where I could use those skills.
What are your plans after college? I’m doing my apprenticeship with Steve Williams, so I really just want to continue to learn and build my career with everyone there.
What would it mean to win ADY? It would mean everything to win.
What do you do when you’re not decorating? I ride my scooter!
Name: Cain Craggs
College: New Durham College
How did you first get into decorating? My dad has his own decorating business and when I was younger I’d go out on jobs with him, and eventually started helping him out on weekends too. I really enjoyed the work so when I left school I signed up to an apprenticeship and started working for my dad’s company.
What’s your favourite thing about decorating? No two days are the same – sometimes you’re wallpapering, sometimes your painting, with so many colours available, and the work varies between houses and commercial buildings.
Do you use any Crown Paints products on jobs? Yes, from testing different paints and products I’ve found Fastflow to be the best so that’s the paint I usually use.
How do you think taking part in ADY will benefit you in your career? It’s another string to my bow, as it’s allowing me to experience things that most people don’t get the chance to.
What would it mean to win ADY? My dad was competing in the Apprentice Decorator of the Year final in 2003 and came fourth, so I’m hoping to beat that for bragging rights!