McDonald's Signature Crafted Food Lettering

McDonald's rolled out a Royale experience for their online guest interactions: copy was pulled from consumer tweets and facebook posts to be recreated or reimagined in hand lettered builds and cheeky response gifs celebrating rave reviews of their Signature Sandwich line. The creative team wanted an everyman tone to their social replies, reaching users not as a global conglomerate but a relatable brand with their classic style. Visually I was asked to consider aesthetics from commercials and in-store signage: split screens, rich backgrounds, emoji related work, and atmospheric lighting. I chose to play with visual planes, asking the viewer to forgive top down and profile shots within the same image. Since copy was fixed, I expanded with different typographic treatments so the work felt cohesive but dynamic. 

Unlimited, the unofficial McDonald's agency, brought me on to art direct and letter ten images and gifs surrounding their new Signature Sandwiches. I freehanded everything from sauces to cheese slices, relying on my pre-approved food lettering concepts using sandwich ingredients. The work was photographed and styled by the team, retouched by myself, sent out to enthusiastic fans.

Agency // Unlimited

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Kanyegg Necklace Lettering

Nine months of sketching, drilling, glueing, and clipping brought about the Kanyegg crown jewel: a fabergé emu egg necklace. Lettering was freehanded onto the dark teal surface of the egg, then carved with a Dremel attachment to reveal two additional shell layers, light teal and white. 

While graphic and beautiful, this was a mere shell of the final concept. The desire to push forward was simplified when the white inner shell dissolved due to slight punctures. A shell of a life, as they say.

Carving required specialized drill bits, a light hand, and a watchful eye during the bleaching process. The entire process, including the hollowing of the egg, took approximately two weeks. In the above video, one can observe warm-ups on brown chicken eggs.

Encrusting the piece required research into bedazzling, jewelry making, and egg carving, all of which are rabbit holes and industries of their own. Several weeks of research went into components of jewelry, ratios for chains and bails, and problem solving to ensure the egg would freely dangle, withstanding prolonged wear. Which it did, handsomely, modeled by Tyler Phillips.

Shooting the egg in situ was yet another challenge, as photographing editorials was new territory, especially ensuring the piece was legible. Thankfully the hollowed, inner shell read as burnt orange, providing natural contrast to the teal exterior, harmonizing with the backdrop.

To see the continuing series, visit Kanyegg.com or the project page.

Salt - Food Type Inspired by Nayyirah Waheed

Nayyirah Waheed is a true poet, speaking to love's broken, confusing, and ultimately human relationships. She examines adoration of self, others, country, and skin in her latest volume, Salt, all of which profoundly resonated with me. Literal application is so rare, but what better materials than rose buds, hibiscus, and pink himalayan salt to rub into melancholy wounds?

 

Photography // The Wonder Jam 

 
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Kanyegg: Bad Yolks, G.O.O.D Egg Lettering

An ongoing food type project marrying Kanye quotes and lyrics to variations of the noble egg. Each photo is tagged with lyrics or quotes informing the image, lightly reinterpreted to make that brunch famous. Enjoy Grade A lettering and pimpin' cups at kanyegg.com.

Shoutout to Hannah Hatley, the hammiest intern, for her pursuit of boiled and dyed excellence.

Snacks & Candy Food Lettering

Sugar mama this surely is a dream for Posidrag, a monthly zine with an ever-changing prompt. "Snacks and ..." had an obvious tongue-in-cheek ending to me, so I set to work building a twizzler crop, jawbreaker gag, a special cameo by candy ass knuckles. Hard candy was never so sweet.

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John Frieda Hair Expressions Dimensional Type

John Frieda and the crew at Leapframe invited me to collaborate on a series of dynamic images to lift the brand's social accounts at the roots. Not only was direction clear yet open-ended, but the team allowed me to push their concepts, generating some gorgeous images and a slick campaign video teaser that's anything but lifeless. 

Not only was the experience smooth, but the project is one for the books. Top marks to both the agency and client for being brilliant collaborators.

Production // Colleen Donohoue

Video & Direction // Brandon Faris

Photography // Jeremy Kramer

Art Direction // Kyle Ebersole

Assistance // Hannah Hatley


Half Baked Lettering

An assortment of homemade letters steeped in butter and baked with love. Some are more bitter than others.

 
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Sticky Trap: Food Type collab with Nick Fancher

The correlation between candy and fashion was not initially obvious beyond the choking hazard, however, candy's saccharine mockery of adult vices (smoking, hard drugs, and expensive jewelry being easy examples) intrigued me. These vices can stem from childhood habits, and the tension felt reminiscent of bittersweet adolescence. Trap fashion inhabits this ambiguous space, therefore I focused my research and devised a series of type related pieces. 

I brought fashion photographer Nick Fancher the concept and split art direction, lettering construction, and retouching duties while he photographed, produced, and color processed files. I prototyped twisted, coated wires reading "Queen"; each was submerged into a hyper-saturated syrup for four hours. The pieces hung dry and the best one was chained by yours truly. Twenty candy necklaces were broken apart and placed into a $, then restrung vertically using the original elastic string, fishing line, and wire for weight bearing support. To counter such a large Kayne-esque piece, I made candy-ass knuckles out of taffy baked onto modeling clay. Smartee rings were ground to match the model's finger size. To subsidize these looks, I created gum ball hoops, a marshmallow rope charm bracelet of printed and traditional gum balls, and a bib necklace of lollipops and fondant.

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To break into the fashion world, I needed a fashion-able copilot. Enter Columbus based photographer Nick Fancher. Nick carves light the way some discard a candy wrapper: instinctively, deftly. Like mine, his work is scrappy and resourcefully produced, which made him the perfect partner. He not only shot but produced the set, bringing the best people to the table. The final set is mouthwatering but powerful, pure hard candy.

Photography & Production // Nick Fancher

Styling // Whitney Moore

Hair & Makeup // Leigh Ann Ehmann

Modeling // Isabella Silveirra

 

Analog Killer Style Lettering

Analog Watch Co's approach to timepieces, their natural materials and attention to fine detail, won me over in 2015 when I purchased my first watch. The hexagonal white face I kickstarted from their solid marble line also charmed Stanley, an albino corn snake belonging to a friend. 

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The snake reminded me of arm candy, appearing comfortable as an accessory to my watch in a timeless but edgy way. High contrast serif and brush script treatment are consistent fashion brands staples and benefitted from the reflection and crinkle of the foil. Unforeseen consequence of live creatures: shiny, reflective letterforms made him curious and skittish, therefore harder to manage. 

 

I shot Stanley over the course of a couple days in several positions, coiling around the face, while simultaneously modeling and foiling any escape attempts. Aluminum lettering was suspended to create depth and contrast while mimicking the leather texture. Leather was a natural backdrop, providing contrast and fortifying the luxurious, raw material emphasis of the brand. The cool factor appears effortless, perhaps a bit dangerous.

Special thanks to the following for their expertise and assistance in this killer project.

Type Consultation // Kyle Read

Post Production Assistance // Cory Boyle

Assistant Snake Wrangler // Nick Arner

Snake Provision // Melissa Hagmaier


Washington Post Food Type

Joseph Alessio, fine animator of lettering gifs, wanted to collaborate on a food type cover for the Washington Post, and I was happy to oblige. Together we made a beautiful mess of lunch room fodder to highlight competition, preference, and political struggle surrounding edibles. 

Direction // Chris Rukan



Baby It's Cold Outside Paper Type

Denise of D&A Paper Co contacted me to create a small social ad and shop banner for the winter season. The catch? Incorporate wiggly, nine month old Amelia, the A of D&A, into the shot. We bundled her tightly, encouraging viewers to stay inside where the chocolate is hot and the only flakes are paper. 


Target Spring Type

Embarking on a journey of free smells with my third campaign for Target, this time in the spirit of summer eats. The first, an ode to spicy smells permeating the Memorial Day barbeques, the second, a cry to sweet, crumbly brunch. 

The cake was baked over the course of nine hours and assembled from four different coffee cakes portions into a fancy script worthy of breakfast glory.

The cloud of BBQ smells was mixed by hand and applied to the ribs, which smoked for four hours, creating the perfect studio atmosphere for creating the perfect midsummer scent.

To view more of my partnerships with Target, visit my Pinterest Holiday and Food for Thought I & II campaigns.

Pattern Play Collab

I'm always looking for amazing collaborative opportunities, and none seemed so natural as working with Alea Toussaint, a pattern designer from Minneapolis. Her materials, sense of artistry and resourcefulness distinguish her from other pattern makers, as evidenced in the first of several pieces together. 

One of the greatest challenges has been bridging the physical gap between Ohio and Minnesota. Finding matching materials, editing digitally and merging two processes has been a worthy challenge but striking in the results.

Silver and Gold was produced with tiny Christmas bulbs and tinsel, hoping to evoke the festive class of midcentury. 
Unwrap Joy was created with freeform ribbon, juniper and various greenery, traditional with a twist and roll.
Warm & Cozy was produced from loosely piled cocoa and hot chocolate towering over fluffy marshmallows on butcher paper. 

Follow along with us on this continuing series and visit Alea's Instagram and mine for sumptuous imagery.


Thanksgiving Corn Type

Inspired by David Pearson's gorgeous cover for Emerson's Nature, I delicately wrapped and curled the fronds of maize to create festive Thanksgiving food lettering with ornate French cap flair. The sumptuous cap letters were photographed and printed as a special thank you gift for cherished friends and clients.


Cadillac Mag's Planting Kindness 

Cadillac's publication for the well-driven was looking for a lush, garden inspired headline to compliment an article on Jason Mraz's manifesto. I chose a lettering treatment befitting of the groovy singer and philanthropist, creating two versions: one tropical and lush, the other mossy and creeping. Each was shot in natural light, then compiled into a making-of cover for the app.  

For the first, I created oversized lettering on a grid of foam bricks, then literally planted hundreds of shrubs, succulents, and IKEA plants into warm earth.

The second image opted for a lower, more uniform look by cutting rough shapes from sheet lichen, then affixing live moss. The 42" wide image continued to spread happily after three days, destroying legibility.

Art Direction // Cassidy Zobl

Prop Styling & Assistance // Erin Robey

Special Thanks // The Wonder Jam


Stop Motion Sugar Skull

Inspired by the Mexican celebration of boys and ghouls past, I fashioned baking sugars and flowers into a sugar skull for Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. Beyond creating a beautiful still, I chose to animate the sugar by hand to resurrect my destructed lettering and bring the final image to life.


Bath & Body Works Dimensional Type

When B&BW called looking for in-store signage, I was excited to bring the local retailer to life for the Thanksgiving season. After a few rounds of revision and testing, we determined a cornucopic effect of fruits, flowers, gourds, and spices would best convey the bounty of family dinner.

The first image was built in a tighter color palette inspired by the warmth of fall, the second with an ombré effect, shifting from crisp greens to rich purples. After two building two versions, the first was chosen to grace B&BW's social media channels. 

Photography // Sang An

Photographic Direction // Ken Baldwin

Design Direction // Frank Noca

Styling & Sourcing // Lisa Lee

Styling & Assistance // Erin Robey

Production // Kathy Eng


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Mean Trills

Small batch coffees and Mean Girls are the undisputed underpinnings of the design community. Inspired by Tina Fey's high school cult classic, illustrator Shauna Lynn and myself wrangled beziers to highlight the Fey's most quotable lines. We encouraged original interpretations and received gems from fellow Plastics like Mike Greenwell, Lauren Hom, and more. Watch as we try to make fetch happen at MeanTrills.com.


Just Wink! for American Greetings

After clashing pens in Ink Wars, fellow art warrior Chris Ryniak invited me to create a line for the cheeky Just Wink! brand at American Greetings. I dropped serious coin for large scale granny purses, studded leather for three days, whipped wasabi swears, and threw a birthday party for one in pursuit of fresh to death lettering. 

Direction (various projects) // Mark Harvey & Chris Ryniak, Gwen Bucknell, & Tom Page


"Love You More than..." Valentines

As a kid, I loved making Valentines and dropping them in my classmates' handmade holiday boxes with a piece of candy. This year I realized Instagram had adopted a direct message box requiring a private image to start a discussion which reminded me of this nostalgic practice.

I set to work on the theme"Love You More Than..." and sent over 250 private message Valentines with personal notes to the recipients. I pulled every pun, sparing no dad joke. This was about more than love.

The pizza image was carved blindly without stencil, using 4 mediums, eventually executing the final on a extra large, 16" diameter pie.

The bacon image was assembled from 1.5 pounds of thick sliced, cooked bacon on a 36" surface.

Each image was sent quietly to the intended reciepients, then published publicly on Instagram Valentine's Day as a bite sized slice of heaven.


Columbus Monthly Floral Type

In full bloom for Columbus Monthly, I dug deeply into the Dispatch basement studio for this editorial cover celebrating the best of city greenery and eateries. We covered the floor in vermiculite dotted soil and various buds, petals, and flowers from zinnias, impatiens, and forget-me-nots. The masthead was replicated with green bean seeds, used for their bright whiteness and visibility.

CM compiled a lovely "making of" video documenting the sprouting and demolition of the July cover.

Art Direction // Carrie Sosnowksi

Photography // Will Shilling

Editing // Kristen Schmidt


Pop of Color Dimensional Type

I got carried away with this beautiful balloon ombré. Puffy pillows of air billow into a perfect pop of color, accented with elegant streamers. 

Balloons were fashioned into overlapping and scalloped sans serifs, streamers twisted into energetic and graceful script, a party in a box.

I'm not generally a stop motion kinda girl, but my Instagram hashtag, #WendesdayWipe, required a burst of dramatic proportions. As I cleared this project with a bang, I threw out my shoulder shooting inflation frames in the name of art. 


Bagelli Italian Food Type

Toronto's D'Italiano decided to bring Italian indulgence to breakfast with their new line of Bagelli bagels and asked me to enliven their concept. Together with The Hive and Ryan Szulc, we brought warm, Mediterranean sensibilities to heavily stacked bruschetta and elegant caramel. The concept arranged the hero of each bagel's flavor into an Italian greeting, punctuated by the bagel "O".

I endeavored to utilize legible letterforms that hearkened to decorative ornamental caps and scripts found on authentic signage and labels, the challenge being the integration of the bagel into each without feeling forced or misplaced. The finals moved further away from this concept, but these in process shots are no less stunning. Say Ciao to boring breakfast.

Art Direction // James McGuire & Anna Cumyn

Photography // Ryan Szulc

Food Styling // Carol Dudar


Half Baked Lettering

Occasionally I get a pie in the sky idea and have to broadcast it to the world through delicious, half baked wonders. I use a standard recipe for my crusts, cutting blindly to flattened dough to create smooth, dimensional forms. 

Both pies were assembled from a tweaked pie crust recipe, chilled throughout the process to keep the letterforms both flaky and solid. Humble Pie was lightly inspired by Christine Kawasaki-Chan's Easy As, though we use 100% original content. For Pi Day (March 14th), I decided to up the ante, layering pastry to make a meta pie: three layers, one dough, four hours.

Hand Model / Joseph Alessio

Taste Tester / Claire Coullon


Purina Purpose Litter Lettering

The internet loves cats, but not their poop, unsurprisingly. Purpose, a sassy new brand for hip cat ladies, asked me to create a series of environment based images to whisk women to dreamier places while scooping away their... problems.

We cat scratched our way to secret gardens, mountain escapes, and coastal groves in one of my strangest social media undertakings yet with local agency, Resource Ammirati. 


Inch x Inch Food Type

Bob and Drew's joint venture Inch x Inch pins affordable style to generous support by way of their monthly button club. Each membership donates cash to failing and underfunded art programs while funding a pack of wearable art from amazing artists. I was fortunate to contribute to two packs, one for Creative South, the other, a solo pack in celebration of 90s phraseology.


Target Holiday Pins

Target dreamt up a flurry of festive posts for their social media sites and asked me to contribute to half of them. Together we concocted a winter wonderland of marshmallows, confetti, frosting, and snow to build printable art for Pinterest. 

Each piece was constructed at least twice the ratio of my usual canvas size, the largest spanning over eight feet in height to accommodate a fixed perspective (We Should Sleigh Ride Everywhere).

Visit Target's blog, A Bullseye View, for a lovely write-up on the collaboration, as well as other images from the series.

Creative Direction // John Baugh

Art Direction // Kyle Gustafson & Sandi Grigoryan

Photography // Chris Sheehan

Copywriting // Kiera Jacobson

Production // Shelter Studio

Prop Styling // Herb Schnabel & Jennifer Bailey


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Burst into Bloom Flower Type

Inspired by the onset of Earth Day and seasonal flowering trees in my neighborhood, I decided to put petal to page for spring lettering to lift the rainy day grays. Full blossoms, petals, and buds were applied to create a high contrast script, suggesting we all burst into bloom- 'tis the season!


Real Thread Shirt Type

Real Thread is the undisputed champion of soft, smartly designed tees, so when asked to work together on a gig, I jumped at the opportunity. We opted to use the existing concrete at the Orlando headquarters and brought 25 tee shirts of varying sizes together in a twisty, draping jumble. We covered 8 feet of floor, making quick work of these pieces over the course of an afternoon.

Over the weekend, I gave a workshop on dimensional type as part of this project, garnering just under 100 participants. Together we twisted, fashioned, and licked our way through various items on #createwow via Instagram.

To learn more about workshop opportunities, visit my blog post on food type beginnings or Podcasts & Lectures.

Photography // Patrick Chin


Aria Dimensional Type Campaign

San Fran's Eleven approached me about a social media campaign for Aria, a colossal hotel and monument to New Las Vegas entertaining. Together Henry Hargreaves and I highlighted amenities of the City Center giant under the banner This is How We Vegas. My interpretation noted their luxurious 300 count sheets, fresh seafood flown in from Japan, and storehouses of planted rather than plucked vegetation. 

The pieces were made to fit in a 1:1, 16:9, and 9:16 ratios for Instagram, video, and print materials around the campus.

For three days, I set 120 succulents into clusters, hand picked and placed $400 worth of seafood, and folded 30 yards of fabric into type befitting Vegas sensibilities. Over the top and fabulous.


Producer // Lindsay Fa

Art Director // Sara Worthington

Copywriter // Aryan Aminzadeh

Director // Brandon Bloch

Gaffer & Camera Assistant // Zach Jopling

Production Designer // Courtney Dawley

Editor // J.P. Damboragian


FOUR Spice Road Food Type

FOUR, a high class culinary magazine based in London and Dubai, asked for a beautiful title script to highlight an article on sourcing exotic seasonings across the famous Spice Route. The beautiful ombré trail led into a gorgeous shot of the Sahara with a similarly warm color palette, striking beyond words.

Photography // Erin Robey


SAA Live Your Dream Campaign

SAA determined to encourage prospective students to marry their love of art to their interest in tech by commissioning a poster titled Live Your Dream, the first installment in a year long campaign. After proposing several ideas, we settled on a folded paper concept and a backup in paint pigments. The first was cut and folded to perfection, then sent to schools around the state. The second was assembled with vibrant paint pigments and sent with stickers and letters of acceptance. 

Art Direction // Matthew Flick

Photography // John Rossi

Videography // Boomcrate Studios


TAZO Chai Lettering

Tazo's new chai blends necessitated a pair delicate but playful hands for their beautiful web commercial. Tony Smith and I combined forces to make and move sweet and spicy lettering through the magic of stop animation. Over the course of three days, cocoa, cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns, and caramel found themselves pressed and pushed into letterforms, a dynamic balance of flavors and teamwork. 

Direction // Anthony Farquar-Smith

Executive Production // Bill Hughes

Line Production // Allan Wachs

Videography // Shawn Sewter

Production Management // Andrea Torres

Art Production // David Kobzantsev

Art Direction // Jessica Hickman

Copywriting // Lydia VanHoven

Propping // Drew Kennedy

Food Styling // Judy Peck-Prindle


The Guardian Do Something Food Type

London's theGuardian approached me about creating a cover to their Saturday lifestyle insert, Do Something, a segment on improving one's non-digital self. The issue focused on local food fare, which required baking Welsh Cakes, a traditional crowd pleaser, and additionally inspired the type's flour, currant, and butter treatment. The concept was to encourage Londonites to adventurously eat, hence become 'Hungry for Adventure'.

Art Direction // Chris Clarke

Photography & Videography // The Wonder Jam


World Cup Dimensional Type

I've been playing soccer since the tender age of six, and in recent years have only dreamed of doing official work for the World Cup, the pinnacle of global sportsmanship.

Nike's now twelve year old World Cup slogan, Joga Bonito, a slightly altered expression from soccer god Pele that means both "Play Beautifully" and "The Beautiful Game", inspired me to do just that.

To commemorate Brazil's Cup hosting, I chose yellow shoes and green paper and over the course of three days twirled two very long shoelaces into letters and trills. The laces were bought on spools, and due to their tight weave were perfectly malleable yet firm. I added lace covers in post, otherwise the piece retained most of its original charm and magic.


Seattle Times Food Type

In honor of Opening Day, The Seattle Times invited me to celebrate the Mariners and their fresh start to the 2016 MLB season. I build and photographed their cover at my local team field (shoutout to the Columbus Clippers for accommodating such an odd request) for context, choosing an anamorphic lettering treatment in peanuts and cracker jacks. Two variations of the cover went to the Times, one vertical and one horizontal orientation. In the end, the tighter, horizontal crop of the peanut and cracker jack pennant was the grand slam.

Art Direction // Frank Mira

Design // Richard Boudet


Spaghetti Food Type

Spaghet about it- this is the most elegant application of pasta I've made all year. Utilizing fettuccine, I fashioned a copperplate script by using the heat and starch of al dente noodles to create thick and thin line variations on my kitchen counter. A batch of angel hair was used for ornamentation, also while piping hot to make advantageous use of the starch. 

The process took three days, as the spaghetti would begin drying out immediately, leaving a pasta disasta in its wake. I documented its deconstruction to crunchy mess over a period of two hours, compacted into a gif. Some of the preliminary attempts can be found on Instagram, but the delicious final script twirled to perfection on the sauce colored surface in honor of my Italian heritage- spaghet-it?


SXSW + FYI Food Type Installation

On behalf of FYI network for SXSW Interactive, CIVIC dreamed of revamping a ballroom in Austin's historic Driskill Hotel into a sophisticated foodie oasis and desired a focal installation for the space. Together we conceived a food lettering mural to display free nourishment for visitors that would inspire tasteful guest interaction. 

I was originally approached about tabletop installation; in surveying the room's limited size, I suggested an ambitious food type mural, the first of its kind, to grace the space. We tackled Feed Your Imagination, one of the network's indulgent taglines, to encourage viewer interaction from both near and far. The mural needed to appear impressive yet reasonably sized to be assembled in nine hours and replenished several times throughout each day. Further, several ingredients would be rotated every few hours to avoid spoilage while others would last the duration of the exhibit. Chosen items were encouraged to reflect local Austin flavors and mirror featured rotating fare. 

Armed with this arsenal of challenges, I set to planning via Illustrator.


Nashville event builders, MadeFirst, not only constructed the wall according to my plans but completed the seemingly impossible task of building and installing the entire room with masterful skill and little sleep in less than 24 hours. Together we tweaked a few shelves and pegs to reflect variances in the size of ingredients. 

To accurately represent my vision to the builders, I drew on several interior design courses from college to create scale elevations for the 8x15' wall space. This included a rudimentary chip hopper, doughnut poles, and angled display shelf for cupcakes. The eleven characters in Imagination constricted the width of the letterforms and dictated the need for a sans serif treatment; I calculated a height of 48" was necessary to provide the right scale of grandeur while allowing for the ambitious construction time of nine hours. I assumed sweets would be the most popular items and created several stations (either letters or shelving systems) to avoid traffic jams or lines. 

A small yet emphatic Feed Your served as a ribbony crossbar for both the AG, which was laser etched by MadeFirst via my vector lettering to created a woodburn effect. The lettering was 12" and wedged between snug pegs for easy deconstruction.

We decided to plant fresh herbs in the wall to represent the featured tacos, quesos, and bloody marys. Hand cut and mounted floral foam was screwed to the wall, then planted individual bunches of herbs in plastic water picks to avoid mass wilting. The herbs would be sprayed regularly and wrapped nightly with plastic; individual bunches could be replaced or rehydrated when necessary. 

Pegs were measured against Voo-Doo Donuts, a recent addition to 6th Street, to determine their .34" width, allowing each pastry to slide onto the pegs by the hole or nestle between them like makeshift shelves and slots. The doughnuts were stacked carefully to retain their visual appeal while generously filling in the letterform. Doughnut holes supplemented any gaps or small spaces within the A's.

Video via Austin 360.

CIVIC requested a smaller bar sign for subtle station identification that tied in various greenery used in mixology. Floral foam was hand cut and screwed into a pre-painted board to ground mint, lavender, basil, celery, jalapeños, tomatillos, and artichokes into the slab, san serif logo. The greens were attached with water picks and concealed bamboo skewers. 

Besides serving as a focal point, the food type wall was used as a backdrop for FYI's food and travel series, Food Porn. Visitors indulged in various salsas, doughnuts, cornbreads, and cupcakes during filming while judges chose an outstanding restauranteur's cheesy winner for the Quesoff. The space was engaging and consistent in design, allowing guests to mingle, recline, or indulge.

Many, many thanks to the entire crew and the various hands that hammered nails, prepped items, steadied crowds and fought for these bold ideas. SXSW Interactive was enhanced by their dedicated efforts.

Event Management & Design // Ellen Basile, Rachel Pumeroy, Sarah Emery

Coordination // Annie Vaughan

Photography // Daniel Cavazos, Robin Marchant, myself

Construction // MadeFirst

Interiors //  David L. Arsenault

Prep, Transportation, & Build Assistance // Joseph Alessio

Special Thanks // Erik Attkisson, Whole Foods, Delish, Salt & Pine

Valentine's Food Type

Valentine's Day is the perfect occasion to surprise and astonish internet friends with cute little cards sent via private message. In the tradition of the last few years, I concocted peanut butter, leek, and apple wishes to melt the hardest of hearts. 

  • The peanut butter was applied in layers to build up to a decadent swirl reminiscent of childhood sandwiches and shot on a dark oak to mimic chocolate.
  • Leeks were torn and folded to capture the essence of brushstrokes when applying ink. The color shone vibrantly with a gentle application of oil.
  • Apples were carefully sliced to still resemble the fruit but maintain thick, playful strokes. These were also animated in a gif, the perfect accompaniment to a crisp bill of type.

Condé Nast Food Type

Editorial giant Condé Nast contacted me to produce a series of educational food type imagery for the ethical foodie. All five images utilized ingredients describing the processes behind each term. I created and photographed three stagnant images and one stop motion video for publication in both Bon Appétit and SELF.

Most notably, I was asked to design lettering for a steak brand, which would in turn sear a sirloin. Thankfully BrandNew in Santa Barbara was equally thrilled to assist and sent over a gorgeous stainless steel brand to spec in a mere three days. To better meat this project, visit Condé Nast Brand for the process.

Creative Direction // Alejandro Santandrea

Design // Luisa Fuentes

Production Direction // Sasha Smyslova

Production // Jessy Price

Brand Manufacturer // BrandNew


 

 

Condé Nast Heritage Brand

Rarely does the iron literally strike while hot in my line of work, so when Condé Nast imagined a branded steak, I couldn't refuse. They envisioned a rustic sirloin, seared with Heritage to cap their Foodie Glossary digital campaign. 

I worked with BrandNew, a custom iron caster in Santa Barbara, to design a 4" kitchen grade, stainless steel brand. The turnaround from concept to table was four days, but the process was incredibly smooth and the results were incredible. 

Condé Nast required a slightly masculine, Midwestern agricultural vibe to sell the headline. Crafting a usable brand required low contrast, chunky forms, ideally connected forms. After a couple sketches and countless tweaks, I produced the above and physically held the iron in an impressive three day build and delivery. Designing to such a small scale is rare, but BrandNew blew all expectations away. The craftsmanship was meticulous, precise to my vector file and came with easy-to-follow instructions.

Two steaks and a blow torch run later, the sirloins were tested and retested by applying consistent heat until red, then pressed for a minute. Pro tip: remove any batteries from smoke detectors or head outside to sear.

The brand transfer was remarkably accurate, though I hadn't accounted for the uneven surface area of the sirloin. With some darkening in post, the searing epiphany comes to life, at least it's still mooing.

Special Thanks // Erik Attkisson

Brand construction // BrandNew

Visit the Condé Nast campaign to view other delicious imagery.


The Middle Food Type

It just takes some time to handcraft a food typography sandwich, but like any good homage, it'll be all right. I made this hefty, meaty mess to celebrate speaking at Made in the Middle's inaugural conference in Kansas City, Missouri.

 

I sliced and diced spam, then fried and assembled the meat lettering vertically on a bed of kale. Like any Royale, it comes with cheese. Thank you to Twitter and various internet friends for the blind suggestion of mustard.


AAF Cincinnati Addy's Food Type

Landor felt the 2014 Cincinnati Addy Awards needed a touch of craftsmanship and contacted me to develop handmade type out of malt, barley, and hops. After a full day in Moerlein Taproom,  two beautiful posters, movies, and fast motion clips for the award announcements emerged. The end result is loving rustic, elegant yet edgy.

Creative Director // Dale Doyle

Design Director // Grant Collinsworth

Video & Photographers // Eric Hintz and Chris Vogel


A Close Shave Dimensional Type

Time for a shave. A gentlemanly exploration of elegant type, three days and five cans of shaving cream later. Each stroke embraces the imperfection and sporadic nature of the medium. 

Props were kindly provided by Old Familiar Barbershop.


Target Food For Thought Pt. 1

Target devised a tasty "Food for Thought" social media campaign to herald the opening of their Canadian stores. To satisfy both Franco and Anglophone residents, phrases were devised bilingually in a myriad of food groups. The advertised Archer Farms product was subtly pictured in the top corner of each piece.

The campaign required eleven food lettering images, all of which were built and filmed over the course of three and a half days, as well as a process video and interview. Ambitious but delicious for a first ever client gig.

Visit Part 2 for more imagery, also final videos for the full interview.

 

Art Director // Allan Peters

Copywriter // Sage Rider

French Copywriter // Charlotte Decelles

Videographer // TC Worley


Target Food For Thought Pt. 2

Target devised a tasty "Food for Thought" social media campaign to herald the opening of their Canadian stores. To satisfy both Franco and Anglophone residents, phrases were devised bilingually in a myriad of food groups. The advertised Archer Farms product was subtly pictured in the top corner of each piece.

The campaign required eleven food lettering images, all of which were built and filmed over the course of three and a half days, as well as a process video and interview. Ambitious but delicious for a first ever client gig.

Visit Part 1 for more imagery, also final videos for the full interview.

Art Director // Allan Peters

Copywriter // Sage Rider

French Copywriter // Charlotte Decelles

Videographer // TC Worley


Fazoli's Food Type Commercial

 

My inner sixteen year old couldn't say no when Fazoli's asked for help with their stop motion food type commercial. For two days I animated cheesy blends, produce, and herbs for the fast food Italian chain, even played breadstick girl for a hot second between takes. SpaceJunk production team and I agreed we wanted complex lead in's and out's for various motion sequences. This resulted in too many jokes about cutting the cheese, but drastic motions required drastic measures.

 

 

Animation was built by hand with use of a monitor, keyed in from a blue background onto a wooden surface, which gave greater freedom for smoother transitions between animation sets. This was a new way of working for me, one which sped up the process considerably. No need to wax technical over such a cheesy line.

 

 

Along the way, we encountered some focal issues that halted the first morning of production. Thankfully, the team and I took to snapchat to boost morale and diffuse nerves between resets, the best of which is worth sharing below.

 

Creative Direction // Stephen Childress

Agency // SBC Advertising

Production // SpaceJunk Media