Hello and Welcome to the Blog Reboot

Hello to clients, colleagues, and others who are interested in what’s going to happen here, I’m very pleased to introduce this new blog, dubbed “Design@Work.” For a imagery-oriented person, writing anything longer than a catchy headline is a bit of […]

New Work: Green Teen Bus

Last year, we were thrilled to be asked by a well-known local after school teen program to “decorate” the new school bus that had just been donated to their organization. The bus carries the students to various activities, including two gardens […]

New Web Work: rbabyfoundation.org

Every now and then, a project comes along that we get really excited about. Last Spring, we suggested a website overhaul for this wonderful nonprofit, R Baby Foundation, which works to make emergency rooms better prepared for infants and children. We had been working […]

New Work: LiquidX

Our new fintech client, LiquidX, Inc., kept us very busy through December and January. Before the holidays hit, we switched to high gear in order to pull together a logo and corporate identity — delivering business cards to the client in two weeks. While this is never our […]

5 Big Brand Truths

Five things I’ve found to be (almost always) true over the years.

B2B Brands: How to Build Brand Advantage

Brand building is as important to B2B companies as it is to B2C. Here are few reasons why.

2015 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report

This useful report is chock full information! Infographic included.

5 Reasons Why Nonprofits Should Grow their Brand

A strong brand can help nonprofits achieve all their goals much more efficiently. Here’s my quick take on why nonprofit organizations should grow their brand.

“What Is Branding?” by David Brier

Couldn’t have said it better myself! Enjoy… Visit DBD International for more insights by this Fast Company blogger and brand innovator. Via Design Taxi

The Ups and Downs of Fixing a Brand

While working on an update to my portfolio and this website, I happened to go back and count how many logos I’ve designed over the years. Just to remind myself where I’ve been, I guess. (The number is somewhere around 60.) A bunch were created […]

Marsala: Pantone Color of the Year 2015!

What better way to kick off the New Year with the latest “Color of the Year” from Pantone? Each year, the color-trend company chooses one hue they believe will set the colorway for design for the years to follow. While past […]

Inspiration: 10 Great Business Card Ideas

Aren’t you so bored of your 3.5″ x 2″ 4-color business card? Well, let’s push it out of the rectangle! Print doesn’t get much attention in these days of the Interwebs and Facebooks, but there are a few places where […]

Introducing The Dog Studio

What do you do when you’re a designer and your sister is a photographer? Make cards of course! Even better…dog cards!

The Workshop Workshop: “Facilitation by Design”

This week I attended a workshop on…workshops. A part of AIGA’s Design for Good initiative, “Facilitation by Design” was led by service design superstar Renna Al-Yassini of user experience firm Adaptive Path. With loads of experience under her belt leading diverse groups to successful solutions, Renna led us through her process of how to prepare and execute a productive collaborative session…

Launching a Film for a Great Cause: The Noble Spirit

I’m going to tell you a little story that helps explain why I haven’t posted in several weeks. On a beautiful, sunny but windy day in July, I was sitting on a beach in Rowena, Oregon, with my laptop working, […]

Infographic: Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Greetings from Savannah, Georgia, on this St. Patrick’s Day! Savannah hosts a huge St. Pat’s celebration, expecting 300,000 people this year. Despite the rainy day, I can attest to the throngs of partiers in green hats! For fast facts in St. Pats, check out the “St. Patrick’s Day by the Numbers” infographic below …

Step 3: Translating Brand into Visual Identity

Here we are at the point where the rubber hits the road in the brand development process. We’ve learned all about your company and described your brand in detail. This is the arty part: creating an identity that reflects all the […]

Infographic: Apple vs. Google

A great side-by-side comparison of two technology giants by Great Business Schools. Interesting to see how they each to certain things more successfully, but both have also had their failures. Most striking is the difference in the perception of security between iOS […]

Working with Images: Hi-Res vs. Lo-Res

Lots of times, we get sent images that are too small, or “lo-res” (short for low-resolution) to use for print. Here’s a helpful guide to understand the difference between using lo-res and hi-res images. The first step to knowing the […]

New Work: Green Jay Landscaping

Green Jay Landscaping called me in need of some help refining their brand and identity design. While the company had been founded a year before, the logo their web design company had created didn’t quite hit the mark in reflecting […]

Oscars® Infographic: The Best Pictures

In celebration of the upcoming Academy Awards on Sunday night, I present to you an infographic of Best Pictures created by PR firm Beutler Ink. What an awesome example of iconography! Can you guess what movie each icon represents? …

Niice: In Search of Inspiration

The very best thing about the Internet? It’s so easy to find inspiration! When beginning a new project, I usually start clicking around to find inspiration around the ‘net. Well now it will be even easier with the launch of […]

Fun Friday: Coca-Cola’s “Social Media Guard”

Hahaha, I’m still chuckling. We’re so busted! But beyond the funny fake ad, I think this is a great piece of branding by Coke. You get the payoff at the end: “Share a real moment with Coca-Cola.” A low-budget video that goes viral. Kind of. What can you do that’s even better than this? …

Stock Photography: New “Lean In” Collection

There’s been a lot of chatter in the last week about the new Lean In stock photo collection on Getty Images. Co-curated by Getty Images and LeanIn.org (Facebook exec Sheryl Sandberg’s non-profit), the collection is meant to impart a “powerful depiction […]

Establishing Brand Authority: 5 Questions to Ask

There was a great article in Brand Strategy Insider recently that looked at how Starbucks retooled their stores several years ago when Howard Schultz took the reins of the company as it’s earnings slowed to a crawl. As a result […]

Step 2: Creating a Brand Frame

So far in our investigation into your brand, we’ve done a Deep Dive into your company — learning about your core business, mission, vision, and culture. This included our R&D process (reviewing your collateral, conducting interviews with key stakeholders, checking […]

2014: The Year Ahead

In my heart of hearts, I’m a planner. There’s nothing more thrilling than starting a new creative project — not only for the potential that it holds, but also because I get to pull out the calendar and set some […]

Happy New Year!

Simply wishing you a magical 2014 and beyond…

2013 Wrap-Up: Our Creative Year in Review

For me, 2013 was kind of a slog. But despite the challenges this year brought, we got to work on some very awesome projects. Here’s what stands out. Wwwordpress! 2013 brought responsive design and some really great WordPress themes that […]

Web Design: 5 Trends from 2013 that Won’t Go Away Any Time Soon

Just when you think you NAILED that website, another technology comes along to make it seem outdated. It reminds us that the web is fluid and changing all the time. It’s not like print, where you print it and it’s […]

Fun Friday: Totally Weird Stock Photography

I’m not being judgmental here — this is TotallyWeirdStock! If you were wondering what Twitter is good for, here’s an example: enabling interesting people to post interesting things. In this case, @StockFinds has been posting some really strange stock images. […]

Design Trends: Simplify the Logo

2012 and 2013 brought stripped down logos to the design world. You might recognize this in some of the corporate logo redesigns that have been released recently. But is this a good thing for the world of design? …

2014 Pantone Color of the Year!

“Radiant Orchid” ~ Pantone #18-3224 Why? “It’s a color that encourages us to innovate,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute which chooses the color each year. “It’s in the purple family… it’s complex, which intrigues people…” […]

New Web Work: Stylo Furniture & Design

I was very happy to be asked to revise the portfolio and e-commerce site for my talented woodworker friend Randy Hornman, of Stylo Furniture & Design, as I’ve been a longtime fan. We tried to keep the design clean and elegant — trying to reflect his high standards of craftsmanship. We don’t do too many e-commerce sites, but in this case the client kept it simple, which we like …

Happy Thanksgiving!

Did you know…The first Thanksgiving was a 3-day harvest feast held by the founders of Plymouth colony in 1621, attended by 53 colonists and 90 Wampanoag? They ate deer, geese swan and duck along with shellfish and lobster. And pumpkins, of course. Enjoy more fun facts in this infographic by history.com…and enjoy your Thanksgiving …

Infographic: How Not to Look Bad on a Web Cam

The way we work is changing so fast…I’ve only met about half my clients in person. On a daily basis, it’s email and phone with the occasional video chat. I love to see your pretty face, but here are some tips by Lemonly on how to look even better for the person on the other end of the line …

New Work: Alexander Project Services Rebrand + Website

When this client first contacted me for a web design project, we met up in person soon after. This was the business card he handed me. So I immediately began with my needling questions about their brand and identity. No […]

What If? Big Brands Swap Colors

The “big brands” we see every day rely heavily on color to establish their identity, but we tend to take it for granted. Have you ever thought about how much you might identify the brand with the color? Designer Paula Rúpolo via Printsome shows us these great examples of big brands swapping colors. So, how does it make you feel?

Fun Friday: Banksy in NYC

You may have heard that British street artist Banksy was “in-residency” in New York in October. In that time, he shared some really brilliant creative work across the boroughs. I love the range of his work — it’s not all […]

Infographic: 10 Tips for Better Social Media Updates

Some great ideas by Short Stack and The Social Skinny on how to maximize your likes, shares and comments …

Five Fun & Creepy Halloween Costumes

Happy Halloween! In celebration, here are five great costumes for you glean some, um, inspiration? Yep, pretty gross. Maybe for the adults only. And the doggies …

Video: Best Logos of the 20th Century

Great video by Yungsik Hong featuring some fabulous logos from the last century. Makes you wonder what the 21st century will bring …

Design Basics: Aesthetic-Usability Effect

Aesthetic designs are perceived as easier to use than less-aesthetic designs I chose this principle as the first post in this new series because it’s the basic answer to the question “Why design?” Design is much more than making something look […]

Step 1: The Branding Workshop

Recently, we looked at the 6 key elements of successful brand deployment, which gave an overview of our process for developing brands. The first two elements were “Company Definition” and “Corporate Strategy” — makes sense to start with the basics. But how do we get to know the company so well we can define it? That’s where our Branding Workshop comes in …

10 Delicious Colors to Brighten Your Tuesday

Color can be hard. It’s harder when we think about it too much (which we do, a lot). Instead of judging, how about just enjoy these 10 selections of rich and yummy color fields, courtesy of MentalFloss. Which speak to you and why?

Our Process

How we make brands and websites is not all that mysterious. Here’s a look at the thinking we put into it. To me (Melissa), following our process is critical for getting it “right.” I’ll let you in on a big […]

Infographic: The 6 Key Elements of Successful Brand Deployment

We know that a brand is much more than just a logo. There’s a lot of research and thinking that also goes into creating crisp, compelling brands. You may be creating a new brand from scratch, or refining an existing […]

Our Updated Design Portfolio

Some recent work has been added to our design portfolio, take a look here …

Help Me Reach 100 Likes!

The Facebook page is inches away from 100 likes. Help me reach my centennial! There are a few reasons why it will benefit you, and your business …

Work Detail: Jibe’s Talent Acquisition Survey

Recruiting firm Jibe asked us to create an infographic-filled booklet highlighting the findings of their new talent acquisition survey. We came away with a visually-rich overview of the talent recruitment landscape. See the full booklet PDF here »

Fun Friday: Field Guide to Procrastinators

In case you were wondering about the various species of procrastinators…Twenty Pixels draws it out for you. I’m a combination of List Maker and Sidetracker. How about you?

5 Examples of Clean Web Design

The balancing act of saying everything you want to say while keeping your communications meaningful is ongoing for business, but in particular when it comes to web design. I always try to urge my clients to focus on the storytelling aspect, leading users through the experience of visiting their website. These five examples of simple, clean web design do a great job of just that! Enjoy …

The New First Aid Kit: Beautiful Union of Product Design and Graphic Design

It had to happen some time: the improvement of the first aid kit. Designer Kevin Harald Campean has reconceptualized an approach to the first aid kit that nails the intersection of form and function — the gold star of design. Everything is […]

Demystifying “Brand”

Some folks have told me that the term “brand” is negative and that it’s a bad idea to sell my creative service with such a label because small business and nonprofits — my two favorite clients — will be averse […]

New Web Work: lisacuemanphotography.com

It was really a joy to have the opportunity to tackle a redesign of the website for Lisa Cueman, my favorite photographer of my favorite beasts. The website was built in WordPress and features custom galleries so that she can […]

Dog Days of Summer…See you in September!

You may have noticed I haven’t written much in August. Even the best writers need a break, not to mention this amateur. So I’m declaring the remainder of August DTO: “Deserved Time Off.” The next few weeks will be spent on housekeeping, client work, and planning of some exciting new blog posts for DESIGN@WORK. I’ll be back in September with a new series on brand development, and whatever else is going on in the world of business and design …

Work Detail: Windows on Main Street 2013

Why should we be so busy in August? We smooth over the summer doldrums by helping to put on a great community art project here in Beacon, Windows on Main Street. Each summer, several dozen artists install site-specific art in […]

July Fave Find: Bicycle Style in Portland’s Pearl

July is vacation month for me, and I usually travel to Portland, Oregon for a weeklong getaway. So the following New York Times video really resonated with me. While Portland has many wonderful neighborhoods, the Pearl might be the hippest […]

Brand Extension: A Morning Dose of Grumpy Cat?

Quick on the heels of the kittens and bacon infographic post is the news that a coffee drink honoring social media star-kitty Grumpy Cat is coming soon …

Infographic: How Social Media is Changing the World

The professionals tell you to use social media in your marketing efforts, and you roll your eyes, thinking, “Yeah, I know. But I just hate Twitter!” You’re reluctant, maybe, but have you thought about exactly why it’s so important? Social media is more than just another way to reach out to your potential customer, it’s a fundamental, permanent shift in the way the world is communicating …

New Product Launch: MinderPet

After about three years of hard work developing the brand and product line, our client Minder finally launched their first product, MinderPet. MinderPet is a document sorting and storage system that enables pet owners to keep track of their vet […]

Fun Friday: Kittens & Bacon

Cats and bacon rule the Internet. That’s just how it is today. People search for “cats” on Google over 30,000,000 times per month. Funny cats storm Facebook every hour — cats tend to go viral more than any other animal. […]

Name Change Checklist

A name change is a big decision, not only because you’re changing the most essential part of your identity to the business world, but also because of everything else that must change! The process to change over to a new […]

Infographic: Advertising – Do You Buy It?

We put all this work into brand building through advertising, websites, emails, and other means. Do people believe our claims? The savvy American consumer of 2013 sees a lot of sales messages, especially now that web and digital advertising is […]

Fun Friday: 100 Years of Change Infographic

It seems June turned out to be Infographic Month. I didn’t mean for that to happen, there have been some good ones recently. What can happen in 100 years? A lot, it turns out! There are some striking comparisons in […]

Infographic: 15 Facts You Didn’t Know about Mad Men

Forget about work for a moment, let’s talk about TV. I’m a huge fan of Mad Men! How about you? Each Sunday night I get lost in the world of the despicably handsomely brilliant Don Draper, pioneer Peggy Olsen, Joan the office muse. And the furniture, clothing and art direction…delicious! I always come away inspired. If you’re a fan, you’ll love this infographic, too. Enjoy …

Website Redesign VII: Finalizing and Launching the New Site!

At this point in the process, 80% of our work is done! We did a Web Design Workshop to determine exactly what the site needs, we organized the information architecture, and designed the page templates. It’s finally time to build the thing! …

Work Detail: MPower Oregon Website

We launched a new website over the weekend, for Portland client MPower Oregon. The site is a WordPress customization, which we’ve been doing a lot of these days. You can view the live site at www.mpoweroregon.com. The project kicked off […]

Infographic: Anatomy of a File Name

We send you a PDF for your brochure and you look at the loooong mess of letters and numbers that is the file name. Why don’t they just name it ‘Brochure.pdf’? you wonder. There is a method to our madness, I promise. Let’s break it down …

Infographic: What’s in a Meme?

You weren’t completely clear on what “meme” meant but were afraid you’d look lame if you asked anyone? Data backup service Mozy answers that question with this huge infographic. Plus! “Ingredients of a Viral Hit.” Scroll for more …

Five More Scrolly Websites

It’s called parallax scrolling, it’s (one of) the hot new things in web design. Possibly gimmicky, when used thoughtfully it can create some amazing effects, as seen below. One thing is for sure: the era of rich visuals on the web is finally here, woo-hoo! We looked at Every Last Drop a few months ago, here are some more examples. Start by scrolling! And enjoy…

Work Detail: Ecotrust’s Fresh Thinking Brochure

Sometimes I can’t believe how excited I get excited when I’m asked to design a brochure. It’s so rare these days! Most of the print we design is to be downloaded off the web and printed on an unknown laserjet printer […]

Logo Design: The Impact of Color

This fantastic infographic by British Design Experts is a great resource for understanding why we choose the colors we choose for you. It’s really not arbitrary, but an artful balance of brand execution, competitive advantage, and aesthetic appeal. All colors have positive and negative aspects, it’s how well you utilize them that makes the difference …

Fun Friday: Past vs. Present

A little fun for your Friday! Look familiar? …

A Design Reinvention of the Band-Aid

There’s always room for improvement, as evidenced by this evolution of the band-aid by Taiwanese university students. The adhesive bandage was originally designed in 1920 by a Johnson & Johnson employee for his wife who had a bad habit of cutting herself while cooking (my vice as well) …

Subliminal Visuals in Big Brand Logos

There’s a reason why corporations can spend millions developing a new logo: it takes research, thought, and design development — time, that is — to get it exactly right. There are some great logos out there, and then there are those logos that go the extra mile to include symbolism that the viewer may not even (consciously) notice! Here are six great examples of how a logo design can be pushed to subtly include additional visual information that takes it from good to brilliant …

50 Years of Color!

In celebration of the company’s 50th birthday, color sherpa PANTONE just released this awesome infographic recapping 50 years of color trends. Are we feeling nostalgic yet? I think my favorite is the psychedelic 60s. The Rainbow of Brands at the bottom is also pretty great …

#1 Shared Ad on YouTube: Dove Real Beauty Sketches

I love Dove. And that’s exactly what their marketing department wants. Even with this knowledge, I still can’t help myself. To be more specific, I love their “real beauty” campaign. You’ll remember these ladies… This is a great example of repositioning a […]

5 Great Reasons to “Like” Our Facebook Page

As I’ve said on this blog before, the Internet is here to stay, so why not connect on Facebook? Here are five fine reasons …

Iconography: Guiding a Tour through a Landmark Building

During my last real job, I got to work in this lovely building in the Pearl district of Portland Oregon in the early 2000s, when building was booming there. My employer, the conservation nonprofit Ecotrust, purchased the old warehouse and […]

Thinking About a Name Change?

The Name Change. It’s a huge decision, no doubt. Some companies put it off for years, even though they know that the name of their company is not just holding them back from achieving their big vision, but is actually […]

Maximize your Brand’s Reach on Facebook

I just found this great article on Mashable that you might enjoy: Five Tips to Maximize Your Brand’s Facebook Reach. “The bottom line is that Facebook wants people consuming content, so its algorithm rewards the brands that create the coolest content.” If you […]

Greetings from a Portlandia Stay-cation

Some of you may know that I’ve had a love affair with Portland, Oregon, for some time now. It started in the summer of 2000 when I accidentally moved there, misguided by romance and student loans. If you’ve ever been […]

Website Redesign VI: Page Template Design

In the last post in this series, I wrote about how we present three to five design directions for the client at this point in the process. The client will usually choose one design and maybe ask us for a […]

Are you Chromophobic?

It is what it sounds like. Chromophobia: the fear of color. While I haven’t been able to find actual testimonials on the Internet from anyone who admits to it, I know it exists. Some of my very clients have it. For most people, chromophobia is less an actual fear of colors than a fear of committing to a color decision, enhanced by uncertainty in how to utilize colors. The palette becomes a challenge and a mystery …

Spring Clean Your Communications

Happy April! The smell of fresh air, going outside without a coat, the pop of color in the yard from the daffodils and crocus. It’s the best time of year to open up the windows, air out the house, and sort the closets…why not freshen up your creative assets as well? Here are some ways to go about it …

Ten Technologies You Don’t Need to Upgrade!

Remember when we could buy things and not have to re-buy them in three years? I still have a working GE clock radio my cousin gave me in 1988. Of course, it’s been replaced on my bedside table by iPhone […]

Website Redesign V: Design Direction

By now you may have come to realize that the title “Web Designer” is a bit of a misnomer, as you can see all the work that goes into developing a site before we get to the really fun part, […]

Before & After: Logo Redesigns

We design lots of logos. Sometimes we create them from scratch for a new company or nonprofit. More often, we are asked to redesign existing logos. In some ways, this is an easier task — the logo has been put to […]

“Where is Beacon, anyway?”

Follow the Hudson River north from Manhattan, travel past the Tappan Zee Bridge in Tarrytown,  past the Bear Mountain Bridge in Garrison, even. Keep going until you hit the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge. You may think you’ve gone too far, but there […]

Infographic: Twitter Cheat Sheet

Clients keep asking what’s all the fuss about social media, and do they really have to be on Twitter? The hard truth is that having a social media presence is becoming as essential as having a website. Just because you […]

Website Redesign IV: Workshop Outputs

We’ve just finished a three-hour website redesign workshop. You worked hard to pull together your thoughts with your team so that you are clear on the direction the website needs to go from a business-building perspective. Through our research, the website redesign survey and the workshop, we’ve clarified some things we weren’t sure of. So what happens next?

Reader Poll: Tags, Anyone?

I know I can be picky. But the tag cloud in my sidebar is getting really long and I’m wondering if I should axe it. Tags presumably help a reader find the content they’re interested in by offering keywords to tag posts. Here’s what it looks like at the time of this post: Would you mind taking this quick poll to determine if it’s useful or not?

Product Naming: ‘iPhone’

Mashable recently reported on some alternate names Apple had considered for the iPhone when it was still in development, according to former head of Apple advertising Ken Segall: TriPod Mobi TelePod It’s totally strange to think of it being called […]

Live and Learn: “6 Secret (Until Now!) Laws of Business”

The business world works in mysterious ways…or does it? Columnist Jeff Haden details six laws of business you’ve never heard of, because he made them up …

Cat Font Generator!

Oh yes they did! Social media just looooves kitty cats, and luckily so do I. Voila — turn words into cats with this cat font generator from NekoFont. Fun? Definitely!! Completely useless? Probably. What will the Internet think of next? Click here to make your own catrific words …

5 Beautiful Envelope Designs

There is still inspiration to be found in the world of print packaging. Allow yourself to soak up the following wonderfully creative designs. Enjoy! …

The Importance of Design Consistency across Collateral (or Why We Are Such ‘Control Freaks’)

Phew, that’s a mouthful. Basically, we want everything to match. When you hear the disappointment in my voice when you tell me “Oh, I took care of that part of it!” it’s not because I want to spend my weekend […]

Logo Files: Which One Should I Use?

When we finish designing a brand identity, we always send the client a big ol’ zipped file of the final logo in a variety of file formats; EPS, PSD, JPG, TIF, and PNG. Do you ever wonder why we send […]

An Awesome Scroll-Through Website

Ooops, I think I just fell in love…with a website! I mentioned just last week in 5 Trends for Web Design in 2013 that continuous scroll was hot hot hot. Well this site takes it to a new level. Take […]

CMYK vs. RGB: What’s the Difference?

While we are working on your digital images, there are two basic color spaces, also known as modes, that we encounter: RGB and CMYK. They’re not as complicated as you think! For now, let’s focus on the specific use of […]

5 Trends for Web Design in 2013

Wondering where website design is going? You’ve probably been aware of spacious web pages and big, delicious imagery. Here’s the skinny, according to WDL …

Fun Friday: Creative 404 Error Pages

Eventually it happens to everyone surfing the Internet: You hit a hyperlink and it takes you to a scary page with a “404 – Page not found” error on it. You panic for a minute, right? Then either you go […]

Website Redesign III: The Workshop

You’ve done some hard thinking about your biz and handed in your homework. So what’s the next step in the website redesign process? The Workshop! Doesn’t sound like fun? Yes, you will have to corral your internal team into participating. And you will need to pipe up and share your ideas and opinions, which are always welcome. We’ll work hard, collaborating as a group. But all this work will be well worth it when you begin to brag about your awesome, relevant, perfect new website. Here’s how it works…

Laser-cutting Offers Beautiful Precision

Turn 2D into 3D with laser cutting. Laser cutting is a v-cool way to create depth in metal, plastic, wood…pretty much anything. The precision is unbeatable, and the detail can be minute. It can go very small, as on this business card. Or something much larger, like this sculpture. Looking for an innovative approach to your wedding invitation? Check this awesomeness out …

Amazing Snow Sculptures!

The thermometer read 5 when I rolled out of bed this morning in Beacon….dang that’s cold! I understand some folks kinda like the wintry weather. Check out these five awesome snow sculptures inspired by, well, snow! …

Infographic: How to Design a Logo

“When you want a new logo is when your current trademark is too complex, no longer relevant to your brand, or you want to unite various sub-brands. A new mark should be an uncomplicated form that can work anywhere, from […]

Website Redesign II: Where to Begin

Ah, January. A fresh start, yet so chilly and grey. What’s the best use of these dark days of winter? How about…redesign your website! I get many requests for web redesign at the beginning of the year, so I’m devoting […]

McDonald’s Sundial Billboard

McDonalds? I haven’t been a customer in years. Sworn off McDs and such competitors ever since I read Fast Food Nation, watched Food, Inc., and stopped eating anything with legs. Despite my personal feelings toward the leading fast food chain, I […]

The Importance of Using Professional Photography

Photography and imagery: put them in the budget! Photography should always be included as part of your marketing budget. Many of my clients complain of having to paying for photography, and usually ignore the possibility of doing a photo shoot altogether. Photography is an essential component of your brand building. Don’t be afraid to spend some extra dollars on imagery that makes your enterprise sing…

Website Redesign I: Is It Time?

You feel a little anxious that you haven’t been paying enough attention to your website. Maybe you don’t want to look at it ’cause it’s looking outdated. And you can’t easily update it with new content. Or you badly want to add more functionality. Most importantly, it’s not driving: business, media coverage, or donations. This is a problem. Your website is the home base of your online presence, and should be the core of your marketing strategy…

Fab Friday: logodesignlove.com

During down time, I do love getting lost in a “design inspiration” search on the web. The source of my biggest appreciation of the Internet is the access to visual content. One can click and wander for hours, a visual […]

Infographic: The State of Small Business in 2013

The outlook of small business is “cautiously optimistic” according to recent survey by AWebber Communications. While we know firsthand growth feels sluggish and spending is tight, social media offers an inexpensive (FREE!) way to expand marketing outreach for small business and nonprofits. It takes time to cultivate your social media network, yes, but it’s increasingly becoming an integral piece of the marketing puzzle. The Direct Marketing Association also reports that every $1 spent on email marketing yield $40 in revenue …

2012 Recap: Top 5 Nonprofit Videos on YouTube

Mashable published Google’s list of the most-watched videos posted by nonprofits on YouTube last year. Content so good it goes viral is a cheap/quick way for a nonprofit to fan its flames. What will your story be?

13 Predictions for Small Business in 2013

These are not my predictions — I’m the MFA, not the MBA — I just made it look pretty. This was blogged by Barry Moltz on AmEx’s OPENForum. His success rate for 2012 was 80%, so keep it in perspective …

Happy New Year!

Wishing everyone a joyous and prosperous 2013, from the design team at Melissa Tatge Creative!

Redesigning Your Logo: Will 2013 Be the Year?

When is it time to redesign your logo? It’s easy to become attached to it over the years, but there are a few circumstances when it’s worth taking a closer look. Check out three great logo redesigns from 2012…

Why Are My Domain Name Registration and Web Hosting Billed Separately?

This week, online grocer FreshDirect got so busy with the holidays, they forgot to renew their domain name. Their web site reverted to Network Solutions’ generic placeholder landing page. Oops! Don’t make this mistake: be sure to renew your domain name […]

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays from Melissa Tatge Creative!
Wishing you the very best holiday season, and a fantastic New Year.
Click for an animated greeting…

When It Comes to Holiday eCards, KISS!

Tip for the season: when creating a holiday ecard to blast out to your mailing list, keep it simple! Your customers are also getting blasted from retailers, other vendors, and year-end fundraising campaigns. See an example here…

The ‘Do You Need a Designer?’ Flowchart

Hamburg designer Sabine Ahrens created this awesome flow chart for her clients, I’m happy to share it with you. It’s cheeky, in a funny-because-it’s-true kinda way…

The Ultimate Social Media Cheat Sheet

We want to make you look good, not just on the home turf of your website, but also every time you reach out to your audience through social media. We put in a lot of thought as to how your […]

2012 Recap: Social Media & Nonprofit Giving

2012 was the best year yet for nonprofits to raise money through social media. Evolving with the social media trend, individual giving through this avenue has steadily increased over recent years — the average donation increased from $38 in 2010 […]

Visual History of Apple Products

This may be overly-indulgent, but this colorful timeline combines two of my favorite things: the Apple brand and great infographics. Pop Chart Lab has created this awesome infographical history of Apple’s product development. If you’ve also used Apple products in […]

Branding and the Small Business

We’ve been hearing a lot about small business this campaign season, and that we might need a leg up through tax breaks and other incentives. That’d be nice! Politics aside, a cost-effective way for SMBs to give themselves a boost […]

Happy Hannukkah!

“Here Comes Hannukkah”! The classic Adam Sandler version from the ’90s, for your listening pleasure.

Pantone Announces 2013 Color of the Year!

Oh, this is one of the most exciting days of the year! Of all the colors in the spectrum, Pantone has chosen Emerald 17-5641 as its 2013 Color of the Year. “Lively. Radiant. Lush… A color of elegance and beauty […]

Why blah-blah-Blog?

Blogging, hmph. Hasn’t the Facebook/Tumblr/Twitter revolution demolished this long-winded format already? You’d think! But 2012 was the biggest year for blogging to date — 42,000,000 blogs are out there. They have evolved beyond the musings and rants of individual opinionators to provide a specific delivery stream for businesses to tap their markets and keep in touch with their customers. This trend should capture your attention…

Hello and Welcome!

Hello to clients, colleagues, and others who are interested in what’s going to happen here, I’m very pleased to introduce this new blog, dubbed “Design@Work.” For a imagery-oriented person, writing anything longer than a catchy headline is a bit of […]