Degree Project: Final Presentation & Final Week

This has been the only project in my career that I've cared about this deeply. I'm really happy with my final branding, pop-up shop, and website; and I think the amount of time spent on them shows. Probably the biggest factor during this project was the pop-up shop. I was enjoying the woodwork once it started showing it's shape but when it got to painting it, I had realized how much still needed to be done. Now that I'm done, I think it's a perfect communicator of what I want my brand to start feeling like. I still have a lookbook and promotional video in the works for a separate class so this project is really far from being done; not only within the remaining days of school but my entire life.


Degree Project: Week 9 & 10

Sorry for not updating, but things are going awesome. Just working.

The pop-up shop is almost done. LEDs are put in and all I need is the steel frame containing the wheels and handle. Hinges for the plexi on top are need too, but that's it.

Logo on the front is super good too.

The website is also getting done. One of the main features on the site will be the use of roll-over transparent gifs. Something I've never seen done for a clothing website, it's pretty cool.

The home page contains a news slideshow, video, my mixes from sound cloud, and a 'feed' scroll connected to my tumblr.

Using Tumblr will allow me to update my site from my laptop and phone using Tumblr. It also keeps my home page with updated constantly so there's always something new.

I also ordered my hang tags for my products so that's exciting. Alright, back to work.


Degree Project: Week 8

Progress is going good. The brand is starting to visually make sense and it's all fitting together pretty well. I still am going through the problem of not looking educated and looking all rebellious like, more texture exploration as well as different aspects of my website can help with that. 

First thing, the colors are now this. The reason for it is that it's the colors of the blood, sweat, and tears that are behind every effort of hard work. I think it's better than the previous colors simply because it has meaning, and a good one at that.

For my graphic assets, I'm using an assortment of street grit textures and some sketches to represent an educated blueprint. I would use them for my business cards and hangtags along with anywhere else I could use them, they'd be interchangeable; I just need like one more educated one.

The pop-up shop is getting more into it's shape! All that's left is spackle, sanding, paint, the laptop holder for me to DJ out of, the logo, a poster holder, LED installment, steel frame assembled, wheels bought, plexi glass cut...there's still a lot.

Making Connections

What are the connections you see between visual communication and your particular subject matter?

I don't really know how to answer this question, but I'll give it a shot. In order to reach my audience, I have to visually appeal to them, it's a pretty simple understanding that doesn't need much deep thought (at least I don't think so). I want the look and feel of my brand to fit a military-ish gritty urban guerrilla street unit that's educated, so I make references to brick walls, paint marks, graffiti, to visually represent the rebellious attitude and things like a blueprint of my logo to represent the educated feel. There's no questioning on if it's effective to utilize your audience to shape your visual brand, it's pointless not to design towards who your creating for.


Degree Project: Midterm

Where I'm at right now is designing towards both education and rebellion. It's pretty easy to design for rebellion. Bold text, gritty paint marks, the 'illegal' products. But designing for education is where it gets tough. I've done simple things like using serifs but I need to find more opportunities to make this smarter. Other than that the construction of both my website and my pop-up shop are going pretty good.


Art Nouveau

Basic Renderings for the first wall

Initial writing for History summary

With Art Nouveau came the first major stylistic movement in which mass-produced graphics, as opposed to traditional forms of printmaking, played a key role. Techniques of color printing were finally reaching fruition with lithography with the introduction of new forms such as Style Mucha which inevitably became known as Art Nouveau.

Print advertisement and posters were now commonplace in culture, the creation of these forms allowed for the promotion of events such as stage performances at theaters such as Mouvlan Rouge. These primordial prints allowed for the development and fruition of expression found in contemporary poster design. 

This event celebrates the roots of modern poster design, recognizing the artists who paved the way for promotional event pieces (or “gig” posters, if you’re so inclined) by annotating the connections they have to the work that followed them.


Reading Response: What Interviewers Wish & Interview Questions

What Interviewers Wish They Could Tell Every Job Candidate

Good read. A lot of these things are common sense but are always obvious when mentioned again and again. Being a likable people person gets the job over the person with no charisma and is already talking about why they didn't like their past job, pretty simple. I was interested in the things that get left behind though, like having a 'hook' for the employer to remember you with. "Hey that's the guy that slapped our manager!" One that's tough for me though is asking questions about the company you're applying for, that's probably because my last interviews were at Best Buy and Genghis Grill. It's always good to follow up to!

64 Interview Questions

I think the best way for me to express my understanding of this reading is for a list of things to remember / do.

- Sell what the buyer is buying
- Ask what the priorities are
- Ask who the top employees are and what they do to become the top
- Being a good time-manager
- Sense of humor
- Hide a strength within your weaknesses
- Never regret anything
- Will they really be worried if I'm overqualified?
- If so it's really easy to convince them that that's a good thing, because it is.
- If they ask where you'll be in 5 years, just tell them at a higher rank at the same job. Boo yah.
- If there's any describing of the perfect job or company just describe the one you're applying for.
- Never be negative
- "I would do anything for this company"

I'll have to go through each question and make sure I have a correct answer, thanks for the read!


Degree Project: Week 5

Well now my website and pop-up shop were my focus this week and I got a lot done with them,

The pop-up shop is now in it's 4th and final iteration. It's a lot smaller but still has plenty of space to work with. And additional poster holder has been added along with a 3D logo for the front.

Side Elevation (Frame) Back

Plan (Face) Top

Side Elevation (Face) Back

Side Elevation (Face) Front

The website is making it's way too. I'm using a horizontal scroll and a lot of .gifs to make it different from what I've seen. My plan for each product is to have them displayed with transparency and when you roll over them, the animate. This means that instead shooting photos for this I actually will be shooting video and pulling stills from it. A little over the edge on process but it will give it a one of a kind online experience.

I'm also using animated toolbars because it's awesome.

Current emoticon: ✈️


Degree Project: Week 4

Things are going well. I'm just working along and discovering Ribz' visual identity. My colors are navy, military green, and maroon, representing some of our militant units as well as the blood sweat and tears that goes into hard work.

Here's the work I started doing on some hangtags, using an urban grit paint smear to set it off. I think I'm going to be creating multiple marks to represent more street textures as well as ones to make it feel 'educated'. I'm also gonna be changing up some typefaces to get that feel I'm missing.

I'm also getting together my blueprints for my pop-up shop. Which could actually start taking shape this week! It's going to hold my amp so I can DJ out of it and the top will have an ice cream style display case.

Back (frame / face)

Top (frame / face)

Current emoticon: 🔦

Find & Share: 2/23

Here's five cool sites I'd like to base my site on!

Cav Empt

Duane Dalton

Vincent Schwenk

Thomas Pregiato

Times Elliot


Reading Response + Other Stuff

Non-Akward Conversations

Those are a couple of good tips, it feels like I'm trying to get chicks' numbers rather than some dude's business card though. But I do agree, being more talk-y gets a better response with a large amount of people. Sometimes it's really all you need to make a huge move towards landing an awesome job or business partner. Asking people what their connection is will surely get some kind of ice-breaker going. One that always works for me is finding someone to make fun of the same things with, that's a good connection too.

Contact List

Le Creative Sweatshop - Design Firm

Black Market USA - TX Based Streetwear Store

Rob Walsh - Garment Manufacturing and Sourcing

Brendan O'Shaughnessy - Graphic Designer

Dustin Maberry - Graphic Designer



Degree Project: Week 3

Got my plan all laid out, now it's just time to act on it. There's not much really else to say or do besides just acting on this. My first steps will be the essential branding of Ribz (color, typeface, etc.) and lead to secondary branding (hang tags, labels, etc.). Once I'm done with that I'll focus on the new website, the lookbook, and the mobile pop-up shop. All stuff I'm really excited for. Now it's just time to get to work.

Current emoticon: 🔧


Reading Response: The Brand Called You & My Portfolio Sucks

The Brand Called You
"Don't sell the steak, sell the sizzle." Not a good line for an article trying to motivate me to be different.

I don't get this article. All this is about is how great it would be to be a well known brand, something everyone knows. Well known brands understand the concept of being a well known brand because they are a well known brand, stuff like this. Networking works! Improve my value and character to myself! Persuade interviewers that I'm perfect for them! A little degrading for me. I'm sorry, but I really don't need this kind of motivation, especially this desperately. I just want my work and work ethic to speak for myself and what I do in the professional world. I want to portray an image that I feel comfortable with and that I think looks awesome, not something I'm not.

My Last Portfolio Sucked
A couple of good pointers, much that were obvious. No music...really? One that I'm glad I got insight on was the thumbnails. Me being the way I am, I would've probably had my projects zoomed in on each thumbnail, says here you shouldn't. Noted. Have good navigation, have a good contact page, will do. Thanks article!


Degree Project: Week 2

After defining my audience and my overall message, I was able to put together a mission statement:

"Most people take orders from at least one person in life. Some take many orders from many people. Ribz stands for the ones who rebel against orders to seize what they know they can accomplish, what generates their desire. Rebellion isn't something handled without a plan or reason; doing so gets you nowhere. Arm yourself with structure and knowledge, and streamlined orders crumble in the face of something true to the individual: An Educated Rebellion."

The 'Educated Rebellion' is my chance to represent something I'm very passionate about. I made sure not to just be another brand that represents rebellion by adding the education aspect. In my years at school and business, I've learned that education is the strongest base for any action.

I was also able to contact 3 different artists / designers who have started their own career in the creative field.

Phil Shafer graduated from the Printmaking department at KCAI. Shafer’s success in selling T-shirts and buttons for other people led him to a venture creating and selling his own designs. His clothing line, Sikenomics, established in 2006, is now sold in some stores and online. Shafer draws inspiration from his childhood growing up in Brooklyn, hip-hop culture and his fine arts college years, for his approach to art making. Phil Shafer is now the creative director for the brand Madness and continues to be commissioned for inner city murals. What he kept referring to was how a good work ethic like being on time, always being available, and communicating with your client, really makes the difference in the business world. He also stated that there was nothing that hasn't been done, and that what makes the difference is how you present your work. Staying true to your own voice and heart was a big tip from Shafer as well. Last he said how important it was for him to keep good connections with your local community and your peers incase of any outside help you may need, some of these connections may even lead to bigger job opportunities.

The other two people are local KC artist Scribe, and Kenny Kim, the founder of lifestyle brand God & Famous. I'll get back to them when I get their answers from my interview.

Right now I'm taking my new audience and message and seeing what I can do with branding. Hopefully it can start shaping itself to a more complete brand since I now have something to design towards.

Current emoticon: 💾

Commemorating Google: Development

We wanted to commemorate a modern advancement that changed how we search and view the world. We thought the idea of designing a monument for Google will inspire others to find possibilities and feel determined to be informed. The whole idea of Google should be honored. We want to have the monument near Stanford, CA, since it was started by two students there. Google "organizes the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful." It is a gateway to information, it is about searching the world, and it opens up possibilities. 

Standford, CA

possible arch ideas:
representing knowledge in the center of the monument/infinity staircase:
having the monument possibly light up when users work together: 


After critique, we learned we should focus on making the monument represent the idea of "universally accessible" more and have it connect with other parts of the monument. Google connects people to the world, and we should focus on having the monument come together at one point. More ideas include having the archways come together at a point. Also all of the sections have a button the user can step on, and their arch lights up then when stepped on. If all are stepped on, then the center lights up.  

More Sketches:

Currently color and arch-less

Our final idea is to then have four different colored archway sections unevenly spaced out. They all connect to an abstract tree structure in the center representing knowledge. Sections of the tree will release water when users step on the button under an archway. 


Degree Project: Week 1.5

My first step towards developing Ribz is to define what it is I'm really standing for. Research right now for me consists of looking at other brands, finding what their message is, and summing up who their audience is.

My Message

A lot of these brands were chosen simply for my interest in their products along with being companies that I think are handling their audience very well. Most of the audience's found are the same. Skaters, creative minded, and musicians are always a big one, phenomenons that've grown in a urban community tend to influence every street brand out there. Companies like Levi's, Carhartt, and HUF focus on the respected craftsmanship of their product in whatever subculture their audience is in. While some companies like Been Trill, Dickies, and Crooks & Castles are representing a very specific audience. What I've wanted to represent with my company is an educated rebellion that comes within an individuals personal life. I've found that OBEY, 10 Deep, and Rebel 8 all are in the same realm of what I'm trying to express. They're mostly related to rebelling against the mans order and doing whatever the hell you want. What I'm trying to make different about mine is the emphasis on education. It doesn't have to be about getting a degree, but instead basing your rebellion on an educated decision, not just for the hell of it. My prime example throughout this project is rapper / producer Tyler the Creator. Tyler turned down college and anything else in the way of what he imagined he'd be doing for his future career. Rebellion can be a good feeling, but I believe what's better is doing what you want because you know it's going to work and you have a plan.

My Audience

My audience consist of skaters, graffiti writers, fans of alternative rap, fashion heads, people who go to house shows, active workers, musicians, artists, creative minded, hustlers, rebels, dream pursuers, and people who aren't phased by the word illegal. They're what I'm into and what have inspired the lifestyle that I'm trying to project.

I've also gathered some articles on success with the brands Rebel 8 and Diamond Supply as well as some inspiring text by Tyler the Creator.

Rebel 8:

Diamond Supply:

Tyler the Creator:

Current emoticon: 💯