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.


Jen said...

That is so cool. You are so talented. My brother-in-law is just finishing up the fire academy and took his first test to be a Southern California Fire Fighter. If you or your hubby have any advice, let me know. We can't wait for him to be a fireman (especially since they are waiting to have a baby until after he gets the job). They live in Laguna Niguel (Orange County) and there are a lot of guys trying for those few spots!

Cathe Holden said...

Yes Jen! My No. 1 piece of advice is to read this:

It is written by a dear friend of mine. Jeff and I are a whole chapter "Baptized by Fire". You will LOVE this book, she is hysterical but will also have you crying. It will make the PERFECT gift for his wife. Sue tells ALL about her husband going into the fire service from her eyes. Please let me know if you get it and how you like it!

Pattie Cordova said...

They came out great! I love the novelty shirts.

Lisa R said...

I enjoyed reading your blog post. My dear hubby is a former police officer and worked closely with the Arlington County (VA) Fire Department. It takes a special breed, I think, to risk their lives day in and day out.