Gavin Strange is a multi-disciplinary designer, illustrator and photographer with an awesome name and over 15 years experience. His renaissance career includes everything from branding to web design, animation, film, photography, product design, illustration, sculpture, and anything else that catches his fancy.
He is the senior designer at award-winning UK-based animation studio, Aardman Animations, which created Wallace and Gromit, Shaun the Sheep, Chicken Run, and many many many more. In 2001, Gavin established his funky side-project studio, JamFactory, designing everything from toys to skateboard graphics, posters to short films.
His book, Do Fly, about doing work you love, was released on May 5, 2016. Recently, he and his wife, Jane (and their beloved pet greyhound, Arnie) started Strange, a creative online shop specializing in homeware products, jewelry, stationery and other whimsical things made by them, as well as other artists and designers. From across the pond, these are his fun answers to our Dumb Questions. Read More
Becky Simpson is an Austin-based designer, illustrator, and writer, and she is blowing up right now. She just had another book, The Roommate Book, come out to rave reviews, and her design and illustrations are being sought after by many.
In 2015-2016, Mrs. Simpson was one of the first two Adobe Creative Residents. During this time she founded Chipper Things, a lifestyle product line and online store stocked full of her playful illustrations. She wrote and illustrated a book called I’d Rather Be Short when she was still at her first job. It’s 100 reasons why it’s awesome to be of small stature, and it jump started her freelance career in a big way. She has since worked with vast and varied clients such as Kianga Project, Baylor University, Spearhead Properties, GCG Marketing, and many more.
Becky is a prime example of how one can turn art and design into business. She is inspired by people, experiences and what she liked drawing as a kid. She also has a lovely smile. It was so much fun to ask her very dumb questions. Read More
Craig Frazier is a designer, an illustrator, and a storyteller. Craig Frazier is a legend. He started making his name as a graphic designer in 1978, and in 1996, he decided to shift his entire focus to illustration.
Craig is a frequent contributor to the New York Times, Time Magazine, Fortune, Forbes, The Boston Globe, Newsweek, Wall Street Journal, LA Times, and Atlantic Monthly. The man is a constant, commissioned by design firms, advertising agencies, companies and publications all over the world.
Craig has published several children’s books including the Stanley series, Trucks Roll, Hank Finds Inspiration, Lots of Dots, and Bee & Bird, as well as a 176-page monograph titled The Illustrated Voice. He has also designed several stamps for the US Postal Service, including the 2006 Love Stamp.
His work is iconic and intricate, yet playful, and it always tells a searching story of existence. The man himself is the same way. He is smart and funny and open. He remembers his 8th car! This interview was a true honor. Read More
Mackey Saturday is a prolific, enigmatic designer, and when it comes to his work, he never settles.
Mackey is a principal designer at Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv, a firm specializing in the development of trademarks, print, web and motion graphics, exhibitions and art in architecture.
Mackey now lives with his wife in Brooklyn. He is responsible for some of today’s most exciting identities, including Instagram, Oculus, and Luxe, just to name a few major players. He has spoken at AIGA events, creative conferences, as well as taught at universities and design schools all over the country.
Ever since he was a kid, drawing fish at the kitchen table, he has trained his mind and his hands to work together, honing a skill that has designed his life and work. Read More
Let’s face it, nothing beats a good cup of coffee. It’s the world’s most commonly used drug, and for good reasons. This holy bean gives us energy, focus, attention, art and possibly enlightenment. Nothing beats coffee for getting through the bologna of every day, one cup at a time. Read More
Sara Blake draws from the heart. Her inspiration starts from her eyes, then moves down her arms and goes to her hands, which she uses to illustrate and design intricate and immaculate images that seem to defy conventional thinking.
Sara Blake is a designer and illustrator with an immense amount of skill in her front pocket. A creative director by day and an illustrator by night, she runs and bikes and never stops trying. She has worked with a lot of great clients such as Nike, Ford, Hurley, IBM, Wired Magazine, VICE Media, Warner Bros Entertainment, Marvel Entertainment, Scotch & Soda, and TEDx Labs.
It took a lot of time and persistence to get her to answer our Dumb Questions, but it was well worth it because it was a fun, fantastic honor to ask an artistic visionary some seriously Dumb Questions.
Kids are naturally curious about what their parents do for a living, and when we try to explain it to them (or even some adults) our explanations generally fall into one of two categories: lengthy and overly informative or hasty and placating. You have to find the middle ground.
This is even more important when you have to explain a job that’s a bit more abstract, like artist or psychologist. You have to go big with color and candy wrappers to keep them listening. Read More
Consider the mighty hashtag. A splendid tool for grouping and monitoring specific topics via social media, it has come a long way in a relatively short amount of time.
First suggested by former Google designer, Chris Messina in 2007, who proposed that Twitter adopt the hashtag — or “pound” symbol, as it was called at the time — as a method for grouping content.
Have we truly thought about the purpose of this feature in 2016? With all the advanced tracking capabilities and tools these days, is the hashtag as important as it once was? As a company, we have personally witnessed hashtag interaction severely decline in the last few years. Read More
Jess Boonstra is a designer with an adventurous side.
She has done outstanding work for Rhinegeist Brewery, The Writer’s Market, Miami University in Ohio, and The People’s Improv Theater in New York City, just to name a fun few. She has a wild range of experience in editorial publishing, responsive web design and motion graphics. She balances big challenges with the small, down-to-the-pixel details.
Her main focus at the moment has been with a tech startup that she co-founded, called Garageio, an Internet of Things product that essentially makes your garage door smart, and integrates with other technologies like Amazon Echo.
When not working, she reads a ton of books, travels, and loves spending time outdoors. Recently, (right after this interview) she climbed Mount freaking Kilimanjaro. Read More
This day and age, typing is an undeniable core discipline, an inherent advantage. It is further heightened for developers, because good typing is critical to achieving your goal. Any programmer can tell you that one letter, one comma, one hyphen in the wrong place has cost them hours (if not days) of time fixing their code. Read More