Sunday, September 20, 2009

For The Love of Red Trucks

There’s something about an old red truck. Charm, strength, friendliness, character, history, and hardworking. For me, the love of the red truck came one day in the early 90s when I was in perusing a boutique fabric store in Tahoe, California. This particular store had antiques peppered throughout as displays and a few for sale. The one that caught my eye, and is embedded forever in my mind, was a 1940s, red pressed-steel toy stake-bed truck that held a crawling ivy plant displayed above the bolts of fabric. At that very moment, it became my obsession to find a truck just like that that I could afford. I scoured ebay and antique fairs and eventually found my share of like trucks, some I kept, some I sold during my days as an antique dealer. Eventually, I became obsessed with actually owning one.

When I decided to narrow my graphic design projects to logo design, I figured what better icon for my own logo than the truck I love. I chose to model my truck as an early 50s generic style, no specific model. Since then, I have found that many other businesses chose a red truck as their identity. You know what they say about great minds. A few actually own an old red truck and a have their own story to tell.(1) Red Truck Wines (2) Red Truck Entertainment (3) Red Truck Beer (4) Red Truck Renovations (5) Red Truck Publishing (6) Step-Side Shorty Band (7) Red Truck Fly Fishing

Last week I was asked to design a new logo for a family rose nursery in Fillmore, California in need of a new look. They were planning to place the new logo on their father’s recently restored 1960 Ford F350 stake-bed truck.I suggested using the truck in their logo, as clearly, I think red trucks rock. They agreed and here are their new logotypes.

Please visit Otto & Son’s website HERE.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Blog Headers & Banners

I enjoy designing banners/headers for blogs. When else can you see your work in use any time you want? Here are a few recent ones, including my own recently updated Click on each to go to their blogs, (Gizzy’s blog is still work in progress.)

LogoLounge Master Library Series II

More of my work has been selected for inclusion in a new LogoLounge project, "Animals and Mythology", the second book in the new Master Library series. I’m looking forward to the release of this series!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bar Rosso Restaurant and Vinoteca Logo

I recently designed a new logo for the new Bar Rosso Restaurant & Vinoteca located in downtown Aventura, Florida.

If you’re in the area, you must check it out! Click HERE to go to their website for more information.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A Family Logo

I was recently asked to create a logo for a family, a crest of sorts, utilizing the common theme that runs through their lives: Frogs. This is the final design and here is the story on their blog, The Princess and The Frog.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

LogoLounge Master Library Series

I’m excited to announce that 3 of my logo designs have been chosen for publication in the first book of the new LogoLounge Master Library series, the inaugural book, Initials & Crests. The logos include: Holden’s Physical Therapy of Sonoma, (my brother-in-law!), Axiom Videography, serving Northern California, and an oldie but goodie, Early California Days, a logo for a St. Francis Elementary School, Sonoma, CA.

I have had one logo published in LogoLounge 4, (my truck logo) and another is in the upcoming LogoLounge 5, (Azz & Bzz) soon to be released.

More info from LogoLounge:

What is the Master Library series?

Like our existing (and continuing) LogoLounge book series, the new Master Library books will bring you plenty of exemplary logo design work from creatives around the world.

Unlike our original series, though, each book in the Master Library series will focus on a very specific logo design category, to wit:

• Initials & Crests
• Typography
• People
• Animals, Birds and Mythology
• Shapes and Symbols
• Nature and Food
• Arts and Culture (including transportation, sports and architecture)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Wash Day: Photoshop Filters

I’ve been looking for a good reason to buy this fun package of Photoshop image filter effects appropriately named Permanent Press, by Mr. Retro. {LINK} I have a fun vintage-style project in the works and figured it was due time I had some fun of my own in Photoshop. I’m much more Illustrator savvy, but it is easy enough to create an image in Illustrator and simply copy it over onto a Photoshop page as a smart object.

The filters allow you to give your artwork cool effects, from comic book and halftone to letterpress and concert poster and many, many more. Each effect can then be tweeked in dozens of ways. This filter was $99 in download format.

Below is my logo in it’s original state first then as altered with a few of the fun filters all created within a matter of one or two minutes each. And if you think these are cool, wait until you see what it does with photos! Check out the site link above for some great examples.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Photographer Profile: Nina Zhito

Over the years of being married to a fireman, I’ve had the great opportunity to know the woman who sees a different side of my husband than I do. His on-duty side, which she often captures in her amazing photographs.

Nina Zhito, a North Bay press, portrait and event photographer has captured some of Marin and Sonoma counties’ most amazing moments.

This black and white shot of Captain Rick King of the Petaluma Fire Department, taken during a feed mill silo fire, is one of my favorites. My other favorites are over on my JSIM blog.

Nina is represented by Zuma Press, a well-known international agency for photojournalism.

She also offers stock photos, specializing in first responders, lifestyle, and animal images.

These are just a few of her incredible photographs. Nina has covered so many tragic incidents as they occur, but she has also been there to capture more than her share of local service members’ processions and funerals. She would be quick to note that these are hard and stressful days.

To check out more of Nina Zhito’s photography- CLICK HERE.

I’d like to note that the last photograph is of the infamous Kentucky Street Fire in Petaluma. My husband was an off-duty Captain this day and eventually ended up working on that roof during the fire. I witnessed the entire thing from the second story window of a bank next door. It has all been documented in “The Fireman’s Wife”, a Memoir by Susan Farren, who’s husband was seriously injured when hit by a high-powered stream of water from a laddertruck while cutting a vent hole in the roof in the foreground. GREAT shot, Nina!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Working With Fire Departments

You may or may not know that I am married to a fireman. Which, as a graphic designer, puts me into a natural position of designing for the fire department. 2007 was the Petaluma Fire Department’s 150th anniversary. I was asked to design a new patch for the uniforms, with the same design to be used for fire apparatus decals, flags, badges, t-shirts and more.

This same year the department held a firefighters ball. It was a wonderful affair and I was also proud to have designed the poster and program cover.

Word of mouth has led to other fire department projects such as the Healdsburg Fire Department’s new patch as they also celebrate 150 years of service. Healdsburg is about 45 minutes from here. I was very happy with how it translated from artwork to embroidery.

Naturally, firefighters have a wacky sense of humor. Here’s a t-shirt design I did a the request of a friend who is with the Sonoma Fire Dept. Apparently, station 2 is pretty laid back! These shirts are not the actual duty shirts, just novelty shirts sold for fundraising.

Most recently I did a re-design for Cloverdale, CA Fire Department. The illustration of the fireman carrying a child to safety is a historical image of the department and they wanted it to be carried over into the new design with a cleaner style than the previous patch.

The new patch, shown here worn by Firefighter/Engineer Anthony Michalek, shows the simplified illustration I created to translate well to embroidery.

One thing I’ll say for sure, I have never had a bad experience working with any fire department, they are the best clients you could ask for.