Conceptualized and created as a component of the Nearly Impossible conference, this meeting space and lounge area fostered fast-paced, one-on-one meetings between industry experts and conference participants. Pulling inspiration from science labs, space-age novelties, and mid-century office environments, the space is infused with thoughtful elements and details that add up to a rich brand experience—one that quickly became a favorite among attendees.
These handy guides served as takeaways for our 2014 Nearly Impossible conferences in San Francisco and New York City. The two-color, meticulously screenprinted maps utilize bright French Paper stocks and rich black + metallic inks. Each pocket-sized map includes a curated list of inspiring local shops + co-working spaces geared towards the interests of our product-making community. Maps were created for Nearly Impossible, a side project of mine, with support from Shopify.
Dreamed up over tacos with a friend + former studiomate, the Nearly Impossible conference is a multi-component event is aimed at fostering education + authentic conversations within the product-making community. After a huge response in 2013, our little pie-in-the-sky side project went bi-coastal bringing Nearly Impossible from Brooklyn to the Bay Area.
Undoubtedly, California is home to some of the most exceptional product makers in the US including our SF host, Heath Ceramics. For the West Coast one-day event, we took over the factory floor and brought together over 250 makers with speakers from leading companies such as Schoolhouse Electric Co., Google Ventures, Ban.do, and Poketo. As a nod to our host’s heritage + the movers, shakers, and makers of the California Modernism movement, we infused the look and feel with mid-century design elements—from the factory’s Stan Bitters sculptures and House Industries’ Eames type to the space-age props alongside Danish lounge furnishings. We carried this look to our Brooklyn conference where we again hosted more than 250 makers and speakers from industry leaders including Harry’s, West Elm, Kate Spade, and Rifle Paper Co. in a beautifully renovated industrial building.
Our brand collateral references another nearly impossible feat—going to the moon. We chose to work with illustrator Justin Pervorse to translate the triumph of staking a flag in the ground, representative of conquering the nearly impossible. We have chosen to weave this through in the experiential elements with a slight industrial + space slant as well. For a full look at the conference website, visit here.
To note: the name Nearly Impossible is derived from a quote by Edwin Land, “Don’t undertake a project unless it is manifestly important and nearly impossible.” This side project is truly Nearly Impossible.
Speakers included: Seth Godin [author + entrepreneur], Vanessa Holden [EVP Creative, West Elm], Jeff Raider [Co-founder, Harry’s + Warby Parker], Anna + Nathan Bond [CCO + Co-founders, Rifle Paper Co.], Kyle Andrew [SVP Brand Director, Kate Spade], Brian Faherty [Owner/Creative Director, Schoolhouse Electric], Robin Petravic [Owner/Managing Director, Heath Ceramics], Rick Klau [Product Partner, Google Ventures], Patrick Buckley [Co-founder, DODOcase], Red Gaskell [Head of Social, Everlane], and more
Brands included: Areaware, Warby Parker, Harry’s, Kate Spade, Schoolhouse Electric, BAGGU, Everlane, Ban.do, Rifle Paper Co., 20x200, Swell, POKETO, Sugar Paper, STORY, Chronicle Books, Land of Nod, Tattly, MoMA Design Store, Photojojo!, NASA, Shopify, Heath Ceramics, Tesla, and more
Sponsors included: MailChimp, Squarespace, MOO, Blue Bottle, Shopify, Amplifier, Shipwire, Jeni’s, Mama’s Sauce, Chronicle Books, DWR, Emeco, and BAGGU
Founded by two Stanford lawyers turned wedding planners, Downey Street Events is a growing, full-service wedding design studio for clients in the Bay Area and beyond. With proximity to Silicon Valley and a luxe clientele, the duo approached me about a custom wedding planning app to on-board new clients + keep couples' documents and timelines in order.
Utilizing photography from their past events + watercolor illustrations, we created a classic, seamless interface that speaks to their brand aesthetic for both client-facing and internal organization. Within the app, couples can access important spreadsheets and documents, complete vendor questionnaires, schedule meetings, and pay invoices all through a convenient dashboard. Planners are able to customize dashboards to their clients' needs and preferences as well.
Known for their architectural detailing and neoclassical style, the DC-based design + build firm Davenport & North needed a strong identity that clearly conveys the studio’s aesthetic to prospective clients. Utilizing a focused palette of slate blues and steel grays, plus a vibrant secondary palette of accent colors in both the materials, design, and photography [currently being shot / seen here with swipe reference], the identity comes to life with greater depth.
The name Davenport & North not only speaks to the NW DC address of the founders, but also the stately, classical furniture relevant to the firm’s aesthetic. Furthermore, we sought to incorporate these ideas into the design though graphic elements surfaced from old architectural manuals and type reminiscent of sixteenth and seventeenth century Roman book lettering.
Well opener + feature flowers story for the Color issue of Martha Stewart Weddings. The story focuses on using principles of the color wheel to guide wedding floral palettes. The Well opens with a color wheel of our featured flora and the story moves from a full ROYGBIV palette to a monochrome look, each incorporating one of four different styles—traditional, rustic, modern, and romantic—to speak to our readers. We chose to build on the same framing + white setup indicative of most wedding rentals, so readers could witness how the palette of florals really transforms the tone + environment. The Well opener for the iPad issue features the color wheel as a stop motion video.
From runway looks to printed paper, we collaborated with stationers to translate trends from leading fashion designers into stationery suites for five distinctive couples and their equally fitting affairs—from a plushy, classic black tie wedding to a downtown modern fête. Details were carefully tailored to speak to the different styles each with coordinating accessories and day-of ideas on each page of the story.
Holding Pattern is a personal Tumblr featuring a collection of airport imagery from above. I’ve long been fascinated by airports — there’s something about the comings + goings, the organization + operation … ultimately the systems of design at play … that’s so intriguing to me.
Whether DCA, JFK, or the little municipal airport, I’ve always lived in a direct flight pattern of an airport. Day-to-day, I glance out my window and watch planes circle about waiting to land. During layovers, I often find myself observing the activity on the runway and thinking that I’d love to see this from above. With a creative block on a project, I took to Google Mapping airports and was enamored by the beautiful satellite shots on my screen. Now, during moments of wanderlust, I find myself contemplating destinations and letting the geography, linework, and typography guide me someplace new.
So, that’s not exactly a ‘holding pattern’ you say … You’re right, but I love the idea of circling above an airport waiting to land. I feel like that mirrors my process of searching for + cropping the right shot. Plus, I love the fact that a lot of the taxiway markings and linework are patterned across an airport’s tarmac.