May 22 2013
I have some more new work to show you this morning. Well it’s kind of new, I finished this project back in March but have finally gotten around to showing you the final outcome. You can see the moodboard here.
The client, Aycee Brown, is a D.C. based fashion and beauty photographer who loves working on portraits. Check out her work, isn’t her black & white portfolio just ah-mazing?! When we started the project she wanted a logo that was clean, feminine, and high-end fashion inspired. We wanted to make sure the logo could reflect her current style and yet would allow her room to evolve as well.
And after several rounds of narrowing down and returning to some original designs, we finally landed on the logo below. It was a really fun experience and challenge working around a full name into the logo. Also she’s a really amazing client to work with (and knows her photography!)
I’m in love with the final branding elements going on here. I was also super glad to work in her favorite color into a palette that is sophisticated, chic and can last a while. I’m proud to have worked with Aycee Brown on this one.
May 21 2013
as a digital designer it’s hard not to depend on websites like designspiration, behance, and pinterest for sources of inspiration. i know i’m not the only one who often starts my day this way. but i have to admit that recently i’ve become heavily disheartened with this piece of my creative process.
it feels like these habits are slowing robbing me of any authenticity in my work. i’m not the first one to feel this sense of concern around the digital creative sphere. then last week Bri Emery wrote a short but sweet article about original ideas that caught me off guard. it was a small but important truth that i had forgotten.
it reminded me that i too, once relied on my pencil, paper, and mind more than a computer screen. i once had several of my own brainstorm exercises that helped me create original big ideas and delivered far deeper concepts than pinterest could’ve ever provoked.
so i’ve made some recent changes to my digital consumptions to hopefully control this habit and help reinvigorate real inspiration for my work. here are some steps i’ve already made and/or have committed to making in the next several weeks.
+ recently cut down my subscriptions to blogs, tumblr, and pinterest by half.
+ limit my time on these sites
+ get back to good old fashion brainstorming (with paper and pen)
what are some ways you limit your digital ‘inspiration’?
May 16 2013
I’ve got some new moodboards to share with you. I’m in that busy phase of projects where I feel like sometimes I’m running around forgetting half of everything. I wouldn’t say I’m overwhelmed, cause I’ve always been someone who works best under pressure with lots to do (what other people call overwhelmed heh). For me, it’s just that period of time that you can’t hurry along. You just have to get elbow deep in work and log the hours.
But on to the good stuff! This first moodboard is for a photography client that encapsulates the word ‘fun’. It’s really a word that gets used too often but this client means it. she was highly drawn to mid-mod retro and modern bold images with a happy and warm flare. we brought that playful mood into her site and it should be launching really soon!
The next mood board is super different from the first. This client is a popular wedding blogger who wants to bring her website to the next level. She’s hard at work on some secret tools for her brides and I can’t wait to see the response once it all launches. We decided on a feeling of sophisticated heritage. There’s a handmade feel to the moodboard that I’m super in love with.
May 8 2013
After traveling a few times up and down the globe, I’ve gotten into a packing rhythm. There are some key basics that I always pack no matter the occasion, climate, or adventure. I decided to share some of my basic items I take with me on every trip I go on. From clothing to beauty I want to share with and learn from you guys too. So let’s start with the clothing…
1. chambray or denim shirt
i know you have one of these. and if you don’t i’m not quite sure what other genius trends you’re forgoing – but this one is worth it. between it’s cotton breathability, durability and versatility it’s quite perfect. i like to wear mine over leggings on the flight, as a light jacket in the desert, or layered with some chunky sweater in the frigid cold. i love that it looks put together and yet approachable.
ok, dur. i know every girl lives in these things, but when you travel the insight here is what kind of leggings you buy. now i don’t go for the flimsy cotton woven kind, cause you’ll get holes in them, they look dirty easy, and i don’t know anyone who stays warm in the $5 kind. These babies are athletic leggings. they are thicker, sturdier, and don’t get dirty so easy. they have more spandex so you dont get that weird knee bunch after the first day of wearing them.
3. black tunic tank
ok this is probably the hardest working item in my travel arsenal sometimes i pack two or three! i literally love wearing them. i only have them in black because it’s a more sophisticated color and doesn’t show dirt as easily (seeing a theme here?). during the day, i wear them as t’s under my chambray. when the night hits, i un-scrunch the bottom and it becomes a mini dress, adding a black mini skirt underneath makes it longer but still attractive for going out.
4. mid-weigh scarf
scarves are travelistas’ best kept secret. you see a girl rocking (a real / not fashion) scarf off the plane – you know she’s done this a few times. when shopping for your travel scarf, you want the perfect weight. heavy enough to be a decent blanket on the airplane, yet light enough to wear around your neck in 75 degree weather – because you will do both. its a chic accessory that ups your outfit on the third day of wearing it. i went with a teal color since i wear only black and neutrals. find a color that compliments most your clothing.
5. walking boots
essential. i can’t say it any other way. good walking shoes (that are stylish) are key. go with something neutral and that can look either casual or put together. it’s all about versatility when you’re packing that tiny suitcase. i like relatively flat black leather boots they go with everything and are easy to get on and off. if you have particularly sore feet after a day of walking check out aerosoles flats. i swear i walked probably 5 miles a day (at least) when I lived in europe – and these always made my feet feel great.
hope that helps you find some new basics for your suitcase. i plan on sharing some more travel basics soon. anything you want to know more about? feel free to drop a suggestion. or tell me what travel basic you swear by…
May 7 2013
love muffin cafe
a small local quick breakfast / lunch spot. good for grabbing a sandwich for the road or if you’re in the mood to try a southwestern breakfast burrito – a staple for those in the west. try the new mexico if you’re looking to go traditional.
nothing to write zagat about – but honest food with decent ingredients. there’s enough variety for everyone although the vegetarian pizzas were quite delish. the atmosphere is fun and comfortable. (more importantly) they also carry a wide selection of local small-brewery beer on tap.
higher end feasting with small plates centered around western fare of fish and game. with outdoor seating it would be the perfect spot for a relaxing dinner at the end of the night. good for those looking to add some variety to their culinary experience in moab.
http://www.quesadillamobilla.com | https://twitter.com/quesomobilla
the highest yelp rated ‘restaurant’ in moab happens to be a food truck. we spotted them around town at least twice a day and can’t be that hard to find. if you’re set on trying some of their famous cheesy bites follow their twitter feed for a more sure spotting. the southern belle looked particularly delicious…
after checking out every site in the city (literally) besides the off-road spots, this one had us kicking ourselves for not arriving earlier. with only 8 first-come-first-serve spots and no reservations the site fills quickly and is family friendly. with camp spots in an alcove of the canyon the sites sit right up against the tall red rock walls creating a very fantastical scene especially at night.
moab under canvas
for those looking to create a unique staying experience in moab this airbnb.com listing is for you. with glamping canvas tents setup outside the city you can stay in a real bed while enjoying being near the beautiful outdoors that moab is famous for.
if you’d rather go the hotel route, try the gonzo inn. part mid-size hotel with modern amenities and part local character it is the perfect marriage for moab. with all the usuals like full bathroom, jacuzzi tub, and kitchenettes, there’s also a pool and hot tub facing the west for some wonderful sunset moments. gonzo is right in the middle of the town which makes it easily accessible and walkable when going from dinner to drinks and back.
arches national park
the main reason people come to moab is to visit and play in arches and canyonland national parks. i visited arches, so i can only speak to this park’s special beauty and history. make sure to see landscape arch, the windows arches, delicate arch, and the double o arch if possible.
it’s best to split the landscape/delicate o hike for the early morning (better photos + hiking) and then come back the next day to finish the park and see delicate arch at sunset – oh so worth it. there’s no water or food in the park so pack supplies, and when the sun falls the desert gets cold quick – make sure to bring a sweatshirt.
poison spider bicycles
bycicles. one of the most popular reasons and activities that people flock to moab. this company specializes in bike trips and rentals. the most popular trail is slickrock and the terrain is worth seeing alone. get out for an early morning ride before it gets too crowded.
moab adventure center
this is one of the best tour / adventure companies in moab, highly rated and seen everywhere you go. you can rent jeeps, bikes, 4x4s, and rafting equipment. they also arrange a variety of group outings if you prefer. in the warmer months i’d suggest a the river rafting trip or standing paddleboard renting to add some variety to the desert activities. next time i’d love to try the 4day-3night southwest sampler.
moab city guide.
May 3 2013
Our second day in Moab was my favorite of the trip. We woke up early, after a good night’s sleep and had a big breakfast. We decided to take advantage of the 80 degrees warm weather with some off-roading over the Fins & Things Trail, which was very thrilling and enjoyable. At some points the jeep was 60 degrees vertical!
We then spent the rest of the day exploring Arches National Park. It’s mostly a driving park that creates a loop throughout all the major view points and arches. The short (but sandy) hike to Landscape Arch is worth it, the arch is impressively huge – spanning over the length of a football field.
We made the final 3 mile hike to Delicate Arch right before sunset and watched as the stone lit up into a lovely orange-red shade. The hike back during the sunset was worth it all. Without it’s usual harsh glare the valley revealed beautiful shades of gold, dark rust, lavender, sage and moss.
We ended our evening in the same manor as the last, and the next day was spent walking around town perusing trinkets and local artwork. We stopped in locally-owned Zax for our last beer and some satisfying slices before hitting the road back to Denver.
Rus and I both talk about ‘when’ we go back, not ‘if’… It’s just that kind of place.
May 2 2013
I’m a big fan of National Parks. I even have a National Park Passport I got when I was little. It’s full of stamps from all kinds of places – from Yosemite to the Black Hills, South Dakota, I’ve collected quite a few.
So going to Moab, Utah was definetly on my top priority list when it came to the National Park sector. So my boy and I packed up the Jeep and spent three wonderfully relaxing and quiet days together.
Unfortunately, most of our first day was spent looking for a camping spot! There’s only one reservable area in Arches National Park and the campsite usually books 4-6 months out. The rest of the selection is first come first serve, and if you’re not there at 6am it’s really tough finding a spot outside the city limits of Moab.
We ended up in a small woodsy area that was kind of too populated for me. But next time we’re planning on camping near an off-roading trail since it’s usually more secluded. A hotel or AirB&B would also be a better if you’re not much for camping anyways… there’s also options like safari or tipi camping!
After finally setting up our humble campsite, we spent the rest of the afternoon in town picking up necessities and exploring an easy off-roading trail. We decided on Onion Creek Fischer Towers Trail for its numerous water crossings and easy riding. It was particularly relaxing and most stock trucks or SUVs could handle it.
We ended the evening in our traditional manor, with a campfire and s’mores. I got to try my first ‘mountain pie’ which is a deliciously grilled pizza/sandwich thing made in one of these contraptions.
April 29 2013
I hope you were following me on instagram this weekend, cause I couldn’t help myself from posting tons of gorgeous views of the scenery out in Moab, Utah. Including these two shots.
One was just outside the north of Moab right after a sunrise. The other deep in Arches National Park near Delicate Arch at sunset. The vast amount of colors in the desert are highly underrated. I’ll have more later this week and will fill you in on all the details from the trip.
April 24 2013
Its no surprise that I’ve been a little MIA from the blog. Between all the client work and concepting the new design of Observant Nomad (eee!) – my brain is floating in design land these days.
So here’s some more of what’s been occupying my attention – new client work all the way in Doha, Qatar. Meet Karen, who runs the cutest fashion and lifestyle blog, Clumsy Chic.
Come to think, I never showed the moodboard for Clumsy Chic – so here it is!
Karen came to me for a complete rebranding including a new blog design. Combining the sophisticated nature of her ‘Chic’ brand along with the cute and quirky ‘Clumsy’ was all about keeping the design clean, geometrically modern and still unexpectedly feminine and fun.
After the rebrand was complete we moved onto the blog design. The design was cued from more than just our brand standards, we also considered the type of content she had on the blog.
Being a fashion blogger, Karen has plenty of beautiful and colorful photography to showcase, so I created a space that allowed her to show off her outfits and photos in a large format.
Take a look at the new Clumsy Chic.
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April 23 2013
I know I haven’t put up a mixtape in a while, but today with the snow still falling out my window I needed a little melancholy music escape. Something that allowed me to imagine myself curled up in a wool blanket, cupping hot tea in hand and staring out the frosty window.
Frigid Sirens is a more vocal focused mixtape with bluesgrass and songwriter tracks. If anything you should listen to that Adam Barnes track. Kills me everytime.
Listen on Spotify
1. Six Weeks – Of Monsters and Men
2. Round and Round – Imagine Dragons
3. Dead Sea – The Lumineers
4. Go – The Civil Wars
5. Lovers’ Eyes – Mumford & Sons
6. The Warpath – Connor Youngblood
7. Rivers and Roads – The Head and The Heart
9. Come Undone – Adam Barnes
10. Perfectly Aligned – Milo Greene