I was lucky to dance in a real theater as kid and did so in the Orpheum Theater for over 10 years. Sadly, Katrina floodwaters inundated the structure, and it sat vacant and neglected for nearly as many years thereafter. When I heard Trumpet had been chosen to work on the branding for the Orpheum's reopening, I immediately emailed my creative director with the simple statement of my personal history with the theater and my willingness to do whatever it took to help it return to its glory.
I was honored to create a lovingly-crafted ad campaign and website that flourished even in the tightest of deadlines. The campaign and website showcase the extraordinary restoration of a building that would take anyone's breath away and neither shies away from the Orpheum's history, but rather announces its resurgence and its repositioning as the "It Spot" in New Orleans. The ultimate satisfaction came in the creation of a large format print piece describing the surprise-find of the terra cotta, which now hangs in the lobby where the timeless stonework was discovered.
The Orpheum Theater will have a long history ahead of it, and I am proud to have given back to the theater that gave me so much joy as a child.
Design principles shouldn't be stuck in their medium, and Swerve's tradeshow booth design is a great demonstration of that. Swerve came to us with the challenge of having the options of a 20x10 and a 10x10 tradeshow booth space design that was not only on-point brandwise, but cost effective.
I applied responsive design principles and a "mobile-first" (or in this case, 10x10-first) approach to work out a floor place and a must-have list of items for the space. Then, I expanded the design to the 20x10 space to maximize their tradeshow investment.
The background consists of two separate panels that can be easily used within the smaller space. A modular floor plan also took into consideration Swerve's brand appeal as approachable: a charging station and cafe-style seating for patrons to sit and enjoy Swerved treats while chatting with the amazing Swerve team. And of course, every item was a chance to reiterate the fun, bright brand identity Swerve embodies.
The Louisiana State Museum is a system of 9 individual museums that range from historical and cultural curations to honoring local sports stars. Each museum is unique, but sadly, many people, even the locals, are unaware of the smaller museums.
Tasked with tying the wide range of topics into a cohesive design, I focused on a clean user-experience that conveyed modernity, was not afraid of being cutting edge, but did not ignore the historical roots.
The resulting design not only helped increase museum attendance overall, it also increased awareness of the museums--donations have increased as well. It currently holds one of the lowest bounce rates in Trumpet's history and won a Silver Addy.
Most people overlook the fact that glasses are just as important a fashion statement as shoes or jewelry--they're a quintessential design example with their melding form and function. We focus on our shoes, our jewelry, coats, scarves, etcetera, and yet we ignore the glasses that sit front and center to the world. This campaign challenged viewers to change that thinking.
The campaign took actual frames carried by St. Charles Vision and visually posited them as the necessary accessories they should be. Whether you need frames to match your wardrobe (work or weekend), your situation (desk or dinner), or just enjoying the time off (Month of Saturdays), the campaign echoed the sentiment that glasses are the ultimate fashion accessory.
St. Charles Vision is as beautifully crafted a brand as the high-fashion frames they sell. What sets them apart from the majority is their attention to detail, which is what the Optrics program best embodies. Created to educate incoming opticians on best practices, the Optrics program details what shape frames would best suit their clients based on facial features—face shape, nose, brow, etc.
It would’ve been easy to create a trifold brochure and call it a day; however, that would not have communicated the importance or class of the program. Because the information felt very much like a brand style-guide, I researched great guides and used those thoughts in the design. The opticians needed to use these, not throw them away because they felt cheap and unimportant. The final format was a result of physical mockups based on swatch booklets for ease of use and out-of-the-everyday appeal.
Design and strategy cannot solve everything, but it can certainly help in the long road of progress. NOPD had a serious recruitment problem; their system was old-school to say the least. So how do you encourage people who want to be police officers to join?
For starters, make it more convenient. Also, never lose focus on your audience. Police don’t like bureaucracy (does anyone?), so I wanted to make sure the site was easy to use, and frankly, demonstrated some amazing action-inspired design. The result was a Gold Addy-award winning website and over-achieving application numbers thanks to the ease-of-process.
The site's ease of use increased recruitment exponentially and won a Gold Addy.
I’m a firm believer that small businesses benefit most from brand talks, and Kickstand is a great example of why it should’ve been done sooner. The simple-chic cafe did not have a sign nor logo that represented it properly. Though the name was a client-mandatory keeper (the cafe rented bikes as well as serving food & coffee), I used it to the logo’s benefit in subtle touches with the K's kickstand-like extender and the bike cruiser wheel-inspired framing.
The menu design is also minimal, though not unapproachable, and the printed format was easily folded into a to-go size to encourage customers to call-in orders for pickup while eliminating the need for 2 different menus. Though a more expansive brand consultation may have rendered a different solution, the logo and menu are perfect solutions for what the cafe’s needs were.
Great design isn’t limited to one medium, so it’s always a pleasure to work with clients that are as passionate about great work as I am. Torre Design is a 30+ year architecture firm that was in need of a website reboot. Their work was simply too beautiful to not draw inspiration from, and I felt they deserved a site that presented the breadth of their skills to the fullest.
Fully-responsive and including a custom gallery piece that was worth every penny, the site still excites me when I visit it. Taking what could’ve been another cut-and-dry, white, squarespace-ish design and telling it to eff of in favor of risky visual appeal was worth every sleepless night. I’m proud they now have a website that’s as epic as their work, and it has a Silver Addy to prove it.
I like my design how I like my career—equal parts strategic choices mixed with happy accidents.
I first fell in love with design when I bought an HTML book at ten years old. The fact that I could one day make money doing something so amazing pushed me through high school and into college with the satisfaction that I would pursue a career in website design and development.
Yep, I was one of those weird people that knew what they wanted to do before high school even started. I also find inspiration in sunsets on the beach, dancing for 20+ years (primarily ballet), Porsche automobiles and Jameson, neat.
Beyond development though, I've branched out into a multitude of mediums—print, broadcast, interactive, concepting—anything and everything I can get my hands on.
Both design and development are about problem solving—so what's your problem? Logo got you down? Need a website? Hell, need some overall strategic brand direction? All three and more? Design doesn't belong to just big companies or big budgets; let's solve some problems together.