New Wisconsin Designs!
1. How would you describe your line of work?
I love working on branding, packaging and illustration. I work on other things too, but that seems to be my focus. I didn’t always LOVE what I did when I worked for other people. Now that I work for myself (with two partners), I’m able to have the freedom of doing what I want and I seem to reflect often on how lucky I am to be where I’m at. It’s been really busy, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
2. How long have you been designing?
14-15 years? Since sophomore year in high school before I even knew what graphic design was. I started designing covers for dvds my friends and I would edit of us skateboarding and doing dumb stuff around our hometown. I never took it seriously until I realized I needed to figure out what kind of career I wanted to go to school for. “Professionally”, I’ve been designing for about 8 years.
3. How would you describe your design style?
Style is a weird thing to talk about. It just comes naturally as you evolve as a designer over time. It’s not something easily described. But that said, I like to work differently from client to client. Some clients will require very clean-cut design and others will allow you to get a little more gritty. I like to work both ways.
4. Where do you draw your design inspiration from?
Early on, I think my sense of design and illustration was influenced heavily on skateboarding and snowboarding. Skateboards, t-shirts, ads, all of it. From there it just kind of stuck with me and evolved. I think I grab inspiration from a lot of different things and experiences around me, whether it’s going antiquing or traveling to a new place. Seeing old stuff done by hand is always something to appreciate and grab inspiration from.
5. What elements within your state do you include in your designs?
I wouldn’t say I include anything “Wisconsin” specifically in everything I design, but I do draw inspiration from a lot of things in this beautiful state. As far as the patches I designed for Classic State, we as Wisconsinites like to pride ourselves in being America’s Dairyland. We love cheese so much we call ourselves cheeseheads. I didn’t grow up on a farm or anything, but I lived around farms growing up. The dairy air is a real thing. A real pungent thing!
6. What’s your favorite thing about your state?
The weather. I love the four seasons. I lived in Florida for a few years in high school and college and I don’t do heat very well. I get very irritable, so I think having cooler weather up here suits me. I also love being so close to Lake Michigan. I lived a block from the lake up until 4th grade and it’s just always been a part of me. I could never see myself living somewhere that’s land-locked and I think a lot of people are that way here. I also love going camping or hanging out at a lake cabin here in Wisconsin. It’s kind of essential to do that at least once in the summer. It’s just part of being from Wisconsin. Plus we have more lakes than Minnesota, so we’ve got a lot of opportunities to hang out on a lake.
7. What’s your favorite restaurant and/or coffee shop within your state?
Favorite restaurant has to be Storyhill BKC in Wauwatosa. It’s right down the street from where my wife and I live and we admittedly go there more often than we probably should. They always have local beers and a menu that changes often including a ton of local ingredients.