I’m currently collaborating with Rachel over at Hounds in the Kitchen. We’re creating her soon-to-be-amazing logo and for payment? Local goodness for the next five months.
– Need a placeholder while you’re building a website? I found this via SwissMiss.
– This art direction for Art Review caught my eye.
– Did you see this dumpster pool?! Amazing!
– I love this. Beautiful thinking.
Awhile ago, the talented Ashley of Ashley Nacke Photography came to me for new branding and a fresh blog for her thriving business. The branding is completed so check back soon for the newly designed blog!
I usually pump out links to share on Mondays but I’ve been behind in almost everything lately. My room is covered in dirty (and clean) clothes, I’m battling a head cold and I’m juggling three jobs! Anyways, if you’re bored at work or waiting for the weekend to roll around…enjoy these links!
– Who wouldn’t want the sand beneath their feet all day at work?
– Throwing a cocktail party? Impress your guests with these invitations.
– One of my all time favorite YouTube videos. It makes me want to have a daughter.
– I wouldn’t be cool enough to live here.
– Downloaded this mix over at Pitch Design Union! Love it.
– I love their use of the chalkboard wall. So clean and visually appealing.
– Buying a return address stamp here soon!
Everyone is a graphic designer these days and sometimes our culture forgets that it takes a lot of work. Not every designer just live traces everything and slaps on some generic font. I’ve started and completed so many projects this past year and the process is difficult. I thought I’d share a few of my “draft” vs “final” snapshots so that you can see the process. Enjoy!
^ This project is a current one. It’s always interesting to see where a project goes when the designer and the client have two completely different visions. I actually really like both versions.
^ This project has been completed and it took me awhile, as the designer, to understand what the client was looking for. Sometimes communicating through email isn’t good enough and because of this project, we began using Skype to talk voice-to-voice.
^ This wedding invitation set has not even been revealed on my website, blog, or Facebook page yet! I’m excited to show you all the entire set because it’s one of my favorites. The couple really knew what they wanted but even the most detail oriented people have so many options to choose from.
Hopefully I’ll be able to share things like this more often. No Monday Link Love today. I posted a lot links via Twitter last week. Check them out here along with some of my other favorite tweets by others.
I’m not a banker but I have to say…I was overly excited when I logged into my online Huntington account and saw their new site design (pictured above)! As a designer, it wasn’t fun signing into their old site everyday. I thought I would include a screenshot of what their site USED to look like (pictured below) just so you can see the difference. Exciting, right? Just agree with me.
I had a wonderful time with family and friends this weekend at our friends’ wedding. Below are a handful of links to start off your work week!
– I’m planning on making this for dinner soon.
– Love this design. Peace Corps at 50 identity.
– These wedding invites are great. I’ve drawn an illustration the bride and groom before and it’s nerve racking!
I thought I’d post some recent work that is nearing the final stage. I post a lot of rough drafts and comps on my Facebook page but sometimes forget to post it here. I try to keep a balance between my blog and my Facebook page. I like to post similar content in case I have a different audience but also keep it different for variety.
Above: Graduation announcement.
Above: Church Youth Group Branding
Below: Web Design site for a freelance web developer
Below: Better Networks logo and business cards
I don’t have anything related to April Fool’s Day but I do have some stellar designs that I’d love to share. I hope you all get pranked at least once today!
Wedding Invitation sneak peak by Bird and Banner.
Original Beans packaging found here.
It’s the second week of my MEET series. I hope that this can continue on for as long as possible. I have artists lined up until the beginning of summer so check back every Tuesday to meet someone new. This week I’m featuring designer Joshua Cook. He is twenty-three year old graphic designer in Indianapolis, Indiana where he works full-time at Miles Design.
Q1. At what point in your life did you know you’d be an Designer? To be exact, it was November of 2004. I was a senior in high school and was completely unsure of the answer to “what does God want me to choose as a profession?” I think for most Christian kids this question can be one of the most stressful and potentially unnecessary to dwell on. I was struggling between going to school for Music Ministry or Visual Design. Growing up in church I was always distracted by the horrible images in PowerPoint and interior decorating in the sanctuary. It wasn’t until I toured Anderson University and saw current student’s studios that I saw relevant ministry through art+design. I was reminded that God isn’t limited by what profession I choose. Strategic and well-crafted design is so important for the church — for example, during the Renaissance period — and I consider it a necessary communication tool today.
Q2. What do you enjoy doing when you’re not designing? You would most likely find me drinking coffee or tea with my wife while watching Dexter. That show is freakishly–spectacular.
Q3. Who has been the most encouraging person in your life? It’s impossible to name just one. I would say my family. That includes my wife, my parents and siblings, my in-laws, and grandparents. They’ve each been the most encouraging person at one point in my life and with their collective encouragement I feel like I can accomplish anything I want.
Q4. What inspires you? Design blogs such as BrandNew, Swiss-Miss, design observer, design-sponge, beast pieces, and also home improvement blogs such as hooked on houses and younghouselove. I also enjoy some of the articles posted on Wired and Fast Company.
Q5. What medium still intimidates you? Coding HTML (especially for e-mail marketing).
Q6. What has been you favorite piece of someone else’s art up until this point in your life? Conceptually I’d say Frank Lloyd Wright. His understanding of cohesion (note: in design, not marriage) is spot on and I referenced him quite a bit in my senior work at AU. The way he was able to harmonize his architecture with nature is inspiring to me. I try to incorporate his thinking in how I approach brand work. Design requires Gestalt and without considering all the parts to the whole, it’s just visual noise. Another aspect to Wright I appreciate is how he convinced his clients to hire him — his sales pitches were incredible. He was able to convince clients that it was more important to invest in artists than in doctors because without creativity everything would essential flat-line. The man was a genius.
Q7. Do you think you have a specific style? What is that style and do you see yourself evolving out of that anytime soon? I wouldn’t call it a style because I focus on designing visuals that are successful solutions to a specific problem. I think a sticking to one style can make you easy to recognize but not necessarily the best problem solver. Most of the clients I work with are in professional services looking for high-end, premium design solutions. It’s crucial that the solution we arrive at addresses the problem, the market and evokes emotion.
Meet Byron A. Gronseth, a twenty-eight year old designer located in Seattle Washington.
Q1. At what point in your life did you know you would be an artist? I have two stories that I feel best describe my creative origins. I’ve been drawing and playing with colors since I was a child, but when I was in third grade, my parents got a call from my teacher because I was reprimanded in art class. We were supposed to draw trees with colored pencils and everyone else in the class had painted bright colored summer and autumn trees. I decided to draw a tree in winter, and it was sad, blue in color and had no leaves, only gnarled branches and exposed roots. Apparently this was against the rules, and my dad had to argue with my teacher at length over the meaning of art, perspective and expression.
My first experience with digital design was when my mom took me to work with her at a government computer technology office. She let me play on her computer while she had meetings, and I opened up Microsoft Paint for the first time. It was a thrilling experience being able to color and draw on a computer screen instead of paper.
Q2. Who has been the most encouraging person in your life? While my parents have always supported my creative endeavors (which I’m wholeheartedly appreciative and eternally grateful) I have to say my best friend Andrew has been the most encouraging when I needed it the most. We have both been in very long-standing creative ruts at different times in our lives, and without prompting, we have kicked each others’ asses into gear at the time we really needed it most. We critique each other openly and honestly and always seek and value each others’ opinion first. We have different styles and different strengths, but generally share the same outlook on quality and have equal passion in the creative world. I don’t hesitate to say this is one of the strongest reasons why we are best friends.
Q3. What inspires you? I have always been inspired by literary and story-telling or any medium that conveys strong visuals while exploring and engaging the depths of our imagination. I grew up with a strong interest in Greek and Egyptian mythology and under the care of adults who would read the Hobbit and Grimm’s Fairy Tales to me when I was very little. I would watch movies like the Dark Crystal and Legend, the Neverending Story (also one of my favorite books, especially since the main character becomes part of the story – the movie hardly does the book justice), all of which have dark and strongly visual themes. While I still enjoy those films, I have since moved on to even more visually arresting films with strong story-telling themes like The Fall, The Fountain, and Mirrormask. Books such as American Gods and the Sandman series of graphic novels (by author Neil Gaiman) also inspire me by tapping into both darkly visual themes as well as classic mythology. In addition to story-telling, I have an obsession for exploring the mental and physical battles between good and evil.
Q4. What medium still intimidates you? To this day, I still get nervous around color, especially in permanence (paint , marker, etc). My comfort zone is B/W and traditional sketch & ink drawing, so anytime I involve color I get nervous. Strangely, this is also evident in my clothing and style sensibilities, my closet is full of black, gray and white.
Q5. What artistic trend do you dislike? While there has been a prolific return in illustration in most visual media (especially in the pop surrealist scene), I am seriously hating on the 80’s/90’s erratic bright colored, abstract polygonal throwback style that has popped up in the last couple years, embraced and ubiquitously served up by hipster giants American Apparel and Urban Outfitters. I don’t mean the genuine NYC “funky fresh” street style from the early nineties that artists like MIA have brought back in interesting ways, I’m speaking specifically to this awkward and painfully disjointed collection of poor design choices that lacks any sort of unified visual presence in the urban hipster community. Someone please over-write this nonsense with something of value…
Q6. What has been you favorite piece of someone else’s art up until this point in your life? This is a very difficult question, but I will try and be precise. I really have 2 favorite artists of whose artwork and visual style I consistently admire: Edward Gorey the illustrator and Dave McKean the photocollage artist.
Q7. Do you think you have a specific style? What is that style and do you see yourself evolving out of that anytime soon? In my graphic design, most often I enjoy photo collage overlays and manipulation, as well as a strong typographic presence. this describes my personal preference, but of course that visual aesthetic does not mesh well with all businesses or projects. For special cases, my “back-pocket” style is a clean, minimalist approach that still employs strong type design, but often entails stark backgrounds and overall has a much cleaner look and feel. I feel this diversity is both extremely useful as a backup and helps balance my skillset as a designer, until I get to that point in my career where I get to pick the projects I want to work on. but then, don’t we all want to be there?
Byron is currently working full-time as an in-house designer at an internationally recognized security conference organization called Black Hat. In his free time, he has a number of local and regional freelance clients that he works with to build and shape brands & identities, logos, collateral materials, special one-off projects, small websites, basic web production and more. If you’re interested in his work or would like to contact him, visit his site www.byrongronseth.com.