Yellowbird Hot Dip

Yellowbird Hot Dip

In the summer of 2020, Yellowbird Foods made its dip debut at Whole Foods Market nationwide. Made with 100% organic ingredients, Hot Dip’s visual identity took a lot of cues from the Yellowbird’s Whole30-approved organic sauce line that launched early 2019. With illustrations of fresh garden veggies and vibrant colors that pop right off the shelf, Hot Dip is the perfect addition to the nest.

To learn more about the process of this project, you can access my blog entry here: Branding a Product Line  

My team focused heavily on the journey our condiments take: from the pepper farm, to our kitchen in beautiful San Marcos, straight to your Friday night feast. Hot Dip’s illustrative direction is primarily inspired by floral prints found on oilcloth. We champion anything that encourages us to play with our food — no matter how messy we get.

Our illustrations are brought to life by a key component of our brand identity: color. Much like our other sauces, color acts to differentiate different flavors of dip. Hot Dip utilizes a mostly-monochromatic, surrealist approach to color. The ingredient illustrations harmonize with the background’s overarching color; however, the radiant leaves interrupt the monotonous monochrome with sparks of unexpected contrasting hues inspired by Sandy Skoglund’s A Breeze at Work (1987). This adds a visual interest that would be lacking otherwise.

We complimented our lush illustrations and unexpected color palette typographically with heavier letter forms as a reference to the thick, rich consistency of the dip.

Compositionally, we were driven by the cyclical form of our dip container and used it as a method of story-telling. The lid has a border of fiery ingredients arranged in a circle to reflect on our commitment to holistic and clean nutrition. The Bird peaks out from his garden of fiery produce to challenge our Flock to think beyond the chip. Hot Dip is a journey. Once you buy it, you embark on an experience that’s hotter than a pedicab seat on a summer day. When you open your first tub of Hot Dip, the inside lid surprises you with a literal wave of flavor. It encourages you to dip, dunk, and drench any food to make it infinitely yummier. Make sure to put down an oilcloth — things are going to get messy.

Want to know more about this project?
For additional animations, web content, and more insight detailing my design thinking, visit my blog post, “Branding a Product Line.”

Anniversary Series

Happy Anniversary Series

The Happy Anniversary Series is a collection of looping animations designed for a private client. The initial scope of work was to create a looping GIF celebrating work anniversaries for each month the company’s employees were assigned to work from home during the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the course of nine months, our team developed 24 concepts and 10 final looping animations spanning March through December of 2021.

Each month, I made it a point to learn a new skill in Adobe After Effects. My favorite part of the final reel is seeing how far the production quality has come from its humble beginnings in March.

There were a few items we had to keep in mind starting out. The client’s brand standards dictated the shape of the cake and the colors we were allowed to use in the illustrations. Fortunately, their color palette was expansive and their design direction was minimal for the series. However, it was incredibly important to the client that each month portrayed the seasons as accurately as humanly possible. In the initial stages, we spent days researching seasonal fruits, vegetables, and flora in the Farmer’s Almonach until we had a total of 24 concept sketches to pitch. Each concept featured a real cake made from fruits and vegetables that were in season for their corresponding month. The background also featured flora in bloom at that specific point in the year. Once we had our concepts fully fleshed out, the client narrowed the scope until each month had a single course of action.

This series was particularly special to me because it helped me steadily grow as a motion graphics designer. Each month, I made it a point to learn a new skill in Adobe After Effects. From learning a basic rain effect in April to manipulating different warp and light settings to create a dramatic heatwave in June, I was able to expand my toolkit along the way. My favorite part of the final reel is seeing how far the production quality has come from its humble beginnings in March.

Design Something With…

Design Something With…



Design Something With… is an introductory graphic design reference book for high school students in career and charter schools. It’s divided into three smaller books tackling subjects like Design Basics, Typography and The Grid, and Production because books are heavy and you should be allowed to pick and choose what you want to carry. Each book is given a designated primary color and fit in a box set rendered after a Pantone color chip. The type system uses Helvetica for most primary headings and embraces Baskerville for all body copy. 

Design Something With... Design Basics

Design Something With… is a candid take on introductory level graphic design information. It uses sidebars, added opinions, and advice throughout to give perspective on what separates academic information from that of the real world. Inspired loosely on the revival of Memphis design in today’s modern aesthetic, it’s a bright, interactive vehicle meant to engage and entertain the audience.

Design Basics: Table of Contents

“Each book utilizes production techniques like fold-outs, pouches, accordion pull-outs, and smaller books to give a visual and tactile learning experience.”

Design Basics: Elements of Design
Design Basics: Adding scale to the Elements of Design

Type & The Grid


The second book in the set is called Type & The Grid. It gives the reader perspective on type through a hierarchy of learning. First, it explains the elegance and anatomy of the letter. Then, it moves into full words and how typefaces and kerning make an impact on their appearance. From words, we move into lines and paragraphs – discussing leading, raging, and eventually moving into type on a grid. Because type and the grid are technically separate topics, they’re given different colors to represent their sections. They are so closely related, however, it was appropriate to put them in the same book.

Design Something With... Type & The Grid
Type & The Grid: Type Anatomy spread
Type & The Grid: Explaining the difference between a font and a typeface. Showing examples of type classifications with accordion fold.
Type & The Grid: Listing the most common typefaces and providing their perfect match under every flap.

“I used visual cues [like highlighting the rag] so the reader leaves with lasting impressions that build stronger design practices.”

Type & The Grid: Paragraph rag


The third book in the set focuses on Production. It covers resolution, color in print and web, binding and production techniques, client relationships, budgeting, and tips for excellent craft. Though the book has a heavy focus on print design, it instills vital knowledge on the reader about producing a well-manicured comprehensive design for a client. With the design industry heavily embracing technology, I find design students struggle with their craft. Design Something With… Production provides tips and tricks to combat this issue.

Design Something With... Production
Production: Spread on CMYK color printing
Production: Spread on popular book binding techniques

“Illustrations simplify complicated production techniques and provide comic relief to combat the dry nature most textbooks have.”

Each of the books ends with a ‘Words of Wisdom’ section. Here, professionals in the industry share their real-world responses to questions students are afraid to ask in the classroom. Questions like, “What typeface are you sick of?” and “Should a design student know art history?” are answered here.

Want to know more about this project?
For extra spreads and more insight detailing my process and design thinking, visit my blog post, “Writing & Designing a Book.”

Tactix Tenant Brokers

Tactix Tenant Brokers

Tactix is a real estate brokerage firm that advocates exclusively for the interests of tenants. During my time at Michael Graves Architecture & Design, Tactix approached us to design a chess piece icon, a brochure, and a poster design. We extended the project further to include an animation, as well.

The chess piece icon we designed for Tactix is based on the Knight. This further solidifies the idea that they fight to defend the rights of those in need. The icon’s design was inspired by the rigid structures found in Cubism and was further transformed into a clean vector graphic with an accompanying tagline.

We were so fortunate to work with Tactix because they encouraged creative solutions. It was liberating to have the freedom to try new production methods. 

When we approached the visuals for the poster and brochure, we felt it was best to proceed with a modern and masculine aesthetic. We used illustrated vector graphics because they have a crisp, clean appearance. To avoid looking sterile, we also included a light screen-printed texture that adds a humanistic feeling to the designs. Tactix Tenant Brokers help families in the tri-state area, so it’s important that we illustrate their sense of justice in delivering fair housing for all.