Pretty Pretty Awkward, Pretty Pretty Can
Milkshake and craft beer. That’s right, milkshake and a tasty I.P.A beer. BrewLink Brewery are not scared to try new things and inventing beer oddities is kind of their thing. So when they asked me to design their latest can I was happy to oblige. This beer goes by the name ‘Pretty, Pretty Awkward, Milkshake Indian Pale Ale’ which is exactly what it sounds like. The beer contains hints of peach and mango as well as a sniff of vanilla and fructose which gives it a unique taste.
For the can I wanted to go cheeky and playful. I also wanted to play off the Milkshake vibe of the 50’s. I took inspiration from the ‘Let’s all go to the lobby’ campaign of movie concession stands and twisted it up. The milkshake is running away with the peach while the chubby mango gleefully follows. It was a funny image in my head and it translated pretty well onto the packaging. To date this is probably my favorite can for the brewery. Judging by the early success of the beer it looks like the fans are loving it too. Job done.View Full Post
Art Cases now available from a new partner!
I recently joined forces with the phone case manufacturer Artscase to make more of my designs available. They have a large selection of my art available in all phone case sizes. As with all of my recommended vendors I asked for samples before featuring them on my site and social channels. They sent me a package containing the three cases shown here in the photo.
All three cases are very well printed with vibrant colors and smooth application. The colors also match the artwork very closely, which in my experience is the main issue when printing cases. The thing I like most about their cases is how thin and snug fitting they are. Although thin they are also very tough. I twisted one pretty hard and it bounced right back into shape. Many other phone cases I have owned or seen tend to snap under such poor handling. Bravo Artscases. If you are in the market for a new case for your phone or devise you should check them out.View Full Post
10 years on, Chillzone becomes HyperFreeze
10 years ago Cumberland Farms commissioned me to develop 12 character designs to represent their iced beverage line ‘Chillzone’. The characters I developed went on to be a roaring success with many spin off products. Icecream, candy, soda drink line, hats, t-shirts, toys, keychains, tattoos and even 6 foot costumes were developed from my designs. The characters had also blossomed into 15 as new flavors were added. In 2017 it was time to rebrand, refresh and rethink the characters. I was honored to get the chance to rework my original designs.
10 years is a long time, in that time my illustration skills have improved and my style has altered slightly. Looking back at the characters I could see how they had dated and were definitely ready for a rework. 15 characters were reduced to 12. Each reworked to give it more character and energy. After months of work and a handful of revisions the characters where approved and ready. Recently the designs were unveiled in stores and are set for many more adventures. For me this is what good client relationships are all about. The Cumberland Farms came back to me after 10 years and trusted me with their brand once more. That means a lot and reaffirms my belief that being a good artist is only part of the job, you have to be good to your clients too.View Full Post
For 61 days during March & April I set a personal goal : To create one vector character each day that reflects my mood or something that impacted me that day. These are the 61 characters that shaped this piece because sometimes creating one small thing is easier than a large thing.
Character design is my joy. This was an exercise in finding some joy with no barriers or client pressure, just because. Why 61? Why not? I love some and hate others and that’s perfect. Just like the days it took to create. Some good, some bad and some indifferent. Now I just have to work out wtf to do with them all.
Two cans, different but related.
Cosmic Jacuzzi I.P.A is next in line to get my illustration treatment. I’ve been working with BrewLink Brewing since their inception and this marks the fifth can I have designed for them. This one has psychedelic roots mixed with a big cheeky octopus. He is basically shooting through the cosmos on a cloud of doodles. A brighter color palette and hand drawn text made this one a fun departure from my normal work. If you are into beer you should definitely check out BrewLink’s brews.
Based on the success of Cosmic Jacuzzi at the BrewLink Tap Room they asked me to design their Limited Edition version of Cosmic Jacuzzi that features pineapple! For this design we switched the octopus for a very sure of himself pineapple character. The cans are related but not the same, making this a true limited edition brew. Even the doodles got switched up to match the flavor better.View Full Post
Reaching a benchmark.
I started my T-shirt design career in 2008 when I stumbled upon Threadless, an online design contest that printed crowd sourced designs. I’d spent a lot of time designing for print/other mediums but t-shirts where completely new to me. I created designs that I wanted to wear and submitted them to the site. My first submission got picked, printed and delivered to me. I was hooked on the T-shirt as a design canvas.
From there I entered many similar platforms online and my work got selected regularly. Before long I had a small fan following and people where starting to notice my work. I’d developed a T-shirt design style and mastered the art of marketing my art. At this point I started getting requests from brands for designs for their apparel lines. I did many, including the music scene. After a few twists and turns I ended up working as the Art Director at Design By Humans. A similar model to Threadless at the time. There I learned the art of screen printing and how to push the boundaries of the medium. This made me a better designer. I could advise clients on how to print their product to make them more successful. I could consider the process when I designed. After being promoted to Creative Director I got exposed to apparel licensing and worked with brands to curate art.
After designing hundreds of tees I got more opportunities to work with clients like Disney, Star Wars, Modcloth and Billabong. I realized the power of the T-shirt. The medium that is seen by hundreds and loved by thousands had got me quite the client list. It’s a medium that never goes away. I recently designed my 500th tee, a design for a MMA fighter. As I finished it and sent it off for approval I realized the benchmark I had reached. In eight years I have designed 500 T-shirts. That’s a lot of people wearing my art and that makes me happy.View Full Post