The Whistling Bird of St. Petersburg

Here is another sketch from creative nights I host after hours. I usually grab the closest thing to me that isn’t the requisite cup of tea or cookie and spend an hour or so on it. This is a whistle my parents brought me from their trip to Russia for my daughter, who has a burgeoning collection of musical souvenirs from their travels. The script on a circle was a good exercise in pre-planning typography.

textured and patterned bird whistle illustration

Olympia Provisions Holiday Card

I’ve recently been designing collateral and packaging for Olympia Provisions, a fine meat-centric cluster of restaurants in Portland, Oregon and purveyor of American Charcuterie. Their branding is already top notch, so when the opportunity popped up to create their holiday postcard, it was purely fun. The process on this was super succinct with just a rough sketch of the idea before approval for design & illustration. Guess you can’t fail with the formula of meat + wreath. Meaty Christmas to all!


Thanks to Hayden Walker for illustration skills that helped keep the project on time and on budget. A recent graduate, Hayden is a new to Portland and has helped the Bureau over the last few months on several projects, including the Oregon VS Oregon beer label design by decade.

Bandit Books Logo

Bandit Books is the two-pronged business of my friend Katy Meegan, focusing on bookkeeping for creative businesses as well as bookmaking and creative projects. Katy and I met at the IPRC over a decade ago as fellow letterpress teachers. We continued our friendship and shared love of books at Em Space, and for many many years Katy was half of the duo Keegan Meegan which offered letterpress and design services.

This summer Katy was taking her next professional step in combining her organizational and bookkeeping skills to help other creatives with their businesses. Over some evenings drawing together in my nook we talked about how that would look, which led to working together on her logo.

Katy knew she wanted a raccoon in her logo – it was her spirit animal and spoke to her as a symbol for not being your regular bookkeeper. Because of this, the first round of logos was very specific and concentrated on coons. Coons! Coons! Coons! I am a big fan of character studies, so I went about it trying to answer things such as: Can a raccoon reliably hold a book? If a raccoon were a typeface how would it look? How would a minimalist Scandinavian designer make a raccoon icon? Can a raccoon be as clever in a logo as in real life? The logo process shows the efforts of answering these questions.

lots of raccoon centric logo explorations for Bandit Books

After the first round, Katy was certain that the right raccoon for her was a mashup of a monoline raccoon portrait and the profile of a book, and the face of Bandit Books was born. The quality of the logo lent itself well to reproduction in letterpress, paying dues to Katy’s background in that arena, and the font was chosen so she could hand typeset other materials in the job case workhorse Futura. I’ll be posting more explorations on the brand materials soon. In the meantime, if you know a creative business looking for financial organization, you know who to call: Bandit Books.


Tofurky Holiday Headline

Here is a headline I lettered for Tofurky (through CD Gary Huck) to use in their holiday ads promoting their meat alternative products geared towards Thanksgiving, Christmas and the like. It was created in the same vein as the lettering library I created for Tofurky, but with a (relatively) more formal feel to the piece.


As a person very focused on food, and traditions, and therefore food traditions, I liked the message of this. Being a carnivore, I skate carefree through each meal eating whatever I please. Pretty much the only thing that stops me in my tracks is a stewed cabbage. For vegetarians and vegans it isn’t always as easy, especially during traditional meals centered around meat or in areas where people aren’t as aware of what being vegetarian/vegan means. So all you vegginuts, Tofurky has you covered for whatever tempeh/soy/non-meat based holiday feast you might want to gorge on. Here is the lettering incorporated into one of the ads.