The Age of Aquarius

Graphic Design

In the fall of 2010, on a tip from a friend, I wandered in to Aquarius and fell in love. My wardrobe and I have continued to improve vastly ever since.

5 years later, it’s time to celebrate another anniversary. I have tremendous admiration and respect for owner, buyer, and all around heart and soul of the store, Sara Ash Jessop. She’s done wonders for San Antonio (and for me) and continues to carefully curate one of the most beautiful spaces in South Texas.

I started as a shop girl a few weeks after the store opened. This was the first of several chances Sara has taken on me through the years. These days, it’s always an exciting creative challenge when Sara asks for my help. Typically, it’s a trunk show graphic, maybe an email, or a mailer but the annual anniversary party invitations are always special.

The art deco-inspired fifth year anniversary invitation was no different.

Aquarius is 5!

Aquarius is 5!

As the store celebrates it’s fifth birthday, I look back and I feel lucky to have been chosen to change and grow along with it – to see and learn so closely from someone who’s passion and vision became so beautifully tangible (to the benefit of many).

Cheers to Sara – to her hard work, her foresight, and her ever-impeccable sense of all things stylish.

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Thursday Night Fever

Graphic Design

It’s time again for Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum’s second annual fall fundraiser – Black Tie Disco Bingo.

Get down for a great cause on Thursday, November 19 from 7pm to Midnight

Get down for a great cause on Thursday, November 19 from 7pm to Midnight

As if you needed another excuse to dust off your bell bottoms… As if I needed another excuse to continue my obsession with vintage graphic design…

The beginnings of my most recent project (above) with Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum were nothing short of superfly. Take a peek at the Save the Date and stay tuned for images from the out-of-sight event and dyn-o-mite invitation.

 

Te Amo, Red Dot.

Graphic Design

RedDotH Fashionably late is still kind of in, right? Because I completed this project back in April of 2015 (whoops) and I’m just now sitting down to gush about it.

When my friends at Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum again called on me to help design their event collateral and identity I jumped at the chance to help honor a long-standing community influencer and local San Antonio artist, Cruz Ortiz.

If you’re not familiar with Cruz or his work, do yourself a favor and at least briefly handle that oversight. He has an immediately recognizable style packed with personality and an aesthetic that typically weaves in a seamless wink or two.

Enjoy a few pictures from the fabulous event below (and a few more here) and take a quick look at the event invitation materials I so enjoyed putting together.

Red Dot Event Pictures courtesy of the Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum Facebook page

Red Dot Event Pictures courtesy of the Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum Facebook page

A full-suite view of the invitation collateral

A full-suite view of the invitation collateral

Top: Front (R) and Back (L) panels, side by side Bottom: Interior panels (first opening of the piece)

Top: Front (R) and Back (L) panels, side by side
Bottom: Interior panels (first opening of the piece)

Adios amigos – ’til next time!

The Pros & Cons of Getting Older

Graphic Design

It’s not the years in your life, it’s the life in your years (and all that jazz).

Not too long ago, I was way too eager to add a year or two when someone said “How old are you?”. I’ve always been a little big for my britches, so I wanted some extra street cred. Unfortunately for me, I very recently realized that I’m a bit too close to hitting the age where you may in fact want to start subtracting…

While age IS just a number, it’s nice to know that while I continue to accumulate wrinkles and white hairs, I’m gaining hard-earned wisdom.

Many of these birthday-related revelations were inspired by a quick project for my favorite San Antonio boutique, Aquarius.

Visit, sign up for their email list, list your birthday (year not required), and know that when you gain that next year of wisdom, one of these bad boys will arrive in your mailbox to prove (yet again) that the best gifts might just be the ones you buy for yourself…

Taking the sting out of getting older.

Taking the sting out of getting older.

B-I-N-G-O

Graphic Design
My repurposed designs and these beautiful vintage bulbs placed in a modern installation created a larger than life event feel.

My repurposed designs and these beautiful vintage bulbs placed in a modern installation created a larger than life event feel.

Branding and identity challenges are always fun, but couple that with a clean slate, a retro game, and a vintage feel and I’m more than intrigued. When I was asked to create the event identity and collateral for Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum‘s Inaugural Black Tie Bingo fundraiser, I jumped.

Through many logo concepts, and countless font choices what you see here is where we landed. I think the outcome was very well-suited for the event – a mixture of vintage simplicity and clean modernity. Upon arrival, I was elated to find that the artwork had been recreated large scale on the walls (and of course, obnoxiously had to pose with it later in the evening – see final image).

My logo design on the wall behind the event's stage and podium.

My logo design on the wall behind the event’s stage and podium.

The event itself was nothing short of incredible (which is both indicative of how much fun we had and how much more I should get out) with a silent auction, artists calling each round of Bingo, and delicious food by recently named Bon Appetit “Best New Restaurant” and local gem, Hot Joy. I can’t say if I will be asked to design the invitations again next year, but I can say we’ll be back with bells on for the next one!

(If you’d like to see more pictures of the event try here, here, or here)

The final event invitations and collateral.

The final event invitations and collateral.

Posing with my name on the wall.

Posing with my name on the wall.

LIONS & TIGERS & BEARS, OH MY!

Graphic Design

It’s an honor and a privilege to work doing what you love. It’s an even bigger honor and a far greater privilege to be asked to do what you love for someone very dear to you.

WizardQuoteImage

I have known Sarah and Hunter for a little over 2 years now but they have been together nearly 10. They share a rare and very special kind of love that hardly exists anymore these days. Childhood sweethearts who stood the test of time and grew into themselves both individually and together, and came out stronger and better for it. They are both passionate, determined, and the whole world is ahead of them. Knowing them makes me better too, as I imagine it does for everyone in their lives.

Their ceremony and reception were absolutely beautiful – but more importantly, everything about their wedding was perfect for the two of them, and peppered with cheeky but classic references to Sarah’s favorite, the Wizard of Oz. I enjoyed working with them on Save the Dates, Wedding Invitations, and other details (hand chalked signage, Bachelor/Bachelorette weekend t-shirts, and more) as the big day approached. There truly is no greater joy than lending your time and your talents to the people you love.

HuntarahBlogPic

To Sarah & Hunter. May life grant you all of the happinesses it has to offer. Cheers!

Loving Lichtenstein: The 2014 Blue Star Red Dot Gala

Graphic Design

LichtensteinBlogPost

 

Deciding to be an Art History minor in college was certainly a defining moment at the time. Having accidentally “snuck” into an upper-level Abstract Expressionism class through a registration glitch (with 4 other senior level Art History MAJORS), my professor casually offered up that I should also be an art history major. You know, since I was holding my own and all. Since I was already a Studio Art and Communications double major, I settled for the minor. I’ve just always been such a slacker.

The things I’ve learned and the love it sparked will always provide an unmatched hunger to learn more. Through art and it’s creators I have seen the world. I have seen warshungeropulenceempires rise and fall, and revolution ignite change. I have a deeper and more personal understanding of cultural histories through art. Bringing this often unknown perspective to the table (or bar, or casual water cooler conversation) has proven extremely interesting. From the day I first understood Guernica, to the day I brought in a postcard print of L’origin du Monde back from Paris (for my boss.. might I add..), art and it’s vibrant, all-encompassing history has enriched me in ways I will forever be better for.

Now, when the incredibly rare opportunity presents itself to couple my love for art history with my love for great graphic design, I jump (and how high?)

I’ve had the honor and the great privilege of working with San Antonio’s Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum on their Blue Star Red Dot Gala materials – an annual event and art sale. The task this year was bringing pop art into the design of the materials. When one hears the words “pop art” perhaps you immediately think “Andy Warhol”. Luckily, I heard “pop art” and got to bring in Lichtenstein. Many will recognize the style, but fewer know about the man behind the sometimes comic-esque pieces.

Roy, alongside our good friend Andy, was an American Pop artist in the 1960s who’s mediums included not only paint, but also lithography and sculpture. His work uses heavy black outlines and primary colors typical of 1950s comic books. Instead of shading, he uses lines and dots to create imagery and control the “density and tone” for printing purposes. Lichtenstein’s pieces were widely influenced by commercial advertising and “ironically incorporated into his highly sophisticated references to art history”.

Using various Lichtenstein pieces (and Lichtenstein’s cheeky way of using his art as a medium for more sophisticated art history messaging) as inspiration, I enjoyed re-imagining and illustrating some concepts for a new purpose.