A red ribbon for South Africa
The brief for the 2016 International AIDS Conference logo had a few constraints: it must include the full event details, incorporate the red ribbon, and reflect the host country.
The arts have always been a powerful response to the HIV/AIDS crisis, so I immediately began researching the arts and crafts popular in Durban. As soon as I saw the beautiful geometric patterns in Zulu basket weaving, I knew what the logo would be. Read more about the tradition and symbolism of these baskets on the AIDS 2016 blog.
Traveling to Durban for the conference was the experience of a lifetime. Seeing this logo on banners around the city, on stage curtains behind the likes of Charlize Theron and Nelson Mandela's grandchildren, and on bootleg t-shirts in local market stalls is the greatest honor design has afforded me yet.
The biggest compliment on the work came from a South African conference delegate who told me, "I assumed the work was done by a South African, it reflects the country so well."
Homos make homies at the LGBTQ+ gym
The Queer Gym is the first LGBTQ+ gym in the nation. It also happens to be where I get my fitness on. As a member who happened to be a designer, I knew the gym's old branding wasn't reflecting the awesome people, spirit, and programming it offers.
The logo is warming up for a larger rebrand, including web redesign, that will debut in 2018.
A tattoo artist whose work goes deeper than skin
Micah Riot is a queer tattoo artist who describes her work as "a little woo," but is also a strong voice against cultural appropriation in tattooing.
She needed logos for two projects that reflected her spritiual approach to her work without relying on misappropriated symbols.
Out were runic fonts and geometric tribal patterns. Instead, we created two sigils that are modern and just the right amount of witchy.
Design without the 'I': a weekend designing for good
Desgn.It is an annual project of Elefint Designs that pairs volunteer designers with mission-oriented organizations for a weekend of designing for good.
The logo for the 2015 event in Tahoe showcases the killer cabin the event takes place in and the good vibes that abound over the weekend.
They'll leave the light on for you
The Gaslamp is a charming Victorian bed & breakfast in Provincetown, Massachusetts. The name and logo reference the gas-powered street light that used to light the way up to the inn and which has since been restored.
The illustration stitches together several authentic etchings of these original street lights into a seal that's translated beautifully to signage, swag, and marketing.
The queer community is living history
The Queer Oral History Project aimed to film and collect the stories of LGBTQ+ people of all ages and life experiences.
The branding for the project positioned history as a dialogue and preserving it as an activist act.
Using the visual language of queer protest, the brand was energetic, positive, and fearless. I also helped the project founders craft their messaging, creating the tagline "The queer community is living history" and writing much of the copy on the site.
While the project is sadly now history itself, it's worth preserving.