8 Young Creatives to Watch

Every year we keep our eyes peeled for young, talented designers, illustrators and photographers. These are the next generation of our industry, and you saw them here first! Check out 16 of the top young creatives on page 87 of HOW’s January 2012 issue (download this feature now) and scroll down to see 8 more right here:

Designer: Dan Blackman
Website: http://dblackman.com
Born: 1984
Graduated: 2008 from Ringling College of Art and Design
Currently: Freelancing but willing to take on full-time again

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about design so far?
That every project you do should have some sort of process you follow from the beginning. Planning ahead helps eliminate problems later you may run into. Other than that, just keeping your head up. Everyone has projects here and there that are terrible. But biting your lip sometimes and just getting them done makes you a better person and a harder worker in the end.

What should prospective employers/clients know about you and your work?
That I’m always willing to try new things with my work and not afraid to be challenged.

Is there anything else we should know about you?
My doors are always open for new opportunities and work.

Designer: Bethany Heck
Website: http://heckhouse.com
Born: 1987
Graduated: 2010 from Auburn University
Currently: In the MFA Design program at MICA and freelancing


What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about design so far?
You’ll always have type at your disposal as a designer, so constantly work to improve your type skills.

What should prospective employers/clients know about you and your work?
I love working on projects with both web and print components, and have a healthy appreciation for historical type design and how that can mesh with new technologies.

Is there anything else we should know about you?
I love the challenge of using design to draw people into realms they wouldn’t normally travel with solid design.

Designer: Steph Davlantes
Website: www.stephdavl.com
Born: 1988
Graduated: 2010 from University of Florida
Currently: Freelancing in Austin, TX

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about design so far?
There is some immense talent out there; so much to learn! The value of a mentor is immeasurable. I have learned that. And, if you option + click the pop-up menu at the bottom of your Illustrator artwork window, you can choose to display the number of shopping days ’til Christmas.

What should prospective employers/clients know about you and your work?
I flourish when surrounded by open and creative minds. Collaborative brainstorming sessions are where I beam brightest. That may seem to contradict the practice of an independent freelancer, but luckily Austin is not nearly as short on creative, exploratory minds as it is on rain.
 
Is there anything else we should know about you?
I revel in all sorts of creating. At any given time, you are guaranteed to find me either watercoloring, inventing recipes, finding animal shapes in the clouds and trees, sewing or fabricating decoupage masterpieces.

Designer: Johnny Chang
Website: thejohnnychang.com
Born: 1988
Graduated: 2010 from Art Center College of Design
Currently: Working at 180la in Santa Monica and freelancing

Whats the most important thing you’ve learned about design so far?
I believe it’s important to cultivate a wide range of experiences, explore a multitude of cultures, and most of all listen to your intuition. People experience the world through design so, as a designer, I feel it’s up to us to help make these experiences meaningful in some way.

What should prospective employers/clients know about you and your work?
Being sincere is important to me, and I try to have that come through in what I do.  I love to take the time to really craft something, and work with my hands whenever I can. I’m always interested in the stories behind things,  and the possibility of discovering some other world.

Is there anything else we should know about you?
I  keep a sketchbook for various things I hear or think about. Maybe it will become of some use at some point. I like listening to records and jam out to some ELO and Pink Floyd every so often. I also try to keep a little collection of random ephemera going, gathering books and old pieces of design that are beautiful in their own way.

Designer: Sam Wolfe Connelly
Website: www.samwolfeconnelly.com
Born: 1988
Graduated: 2011 from the Savannah College of Art and Design
Currently: Doing freelance illustration and fine art from my apartment in New York City

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about illustration so far?
Being able to draw well technically is such a small part of using art to make a living. I think the attitude of always wanting to create is, by far, the most precious asset an artist can possess. It’s why people start drawing in the first place and should never be seen as a secondary motive.

What should prospective employers/clients know about you and your work?
I love what I do, and I love being able to work with other people who share the same tenacity for spreading beautiful images. Whether it’s fine art or illustration, I still always try and put a bit of myself into art that I work on, so that I can feel like I’m doing something more than just making a pretty picture.

Is there anything else we should know about you?
Yes, probably.

Designer: Kyle Fletcher
Websites: www.kylefletcher.com, www.dissmag.com,
www.kyleluvsew.tumblr.com, www.thematerialgroup.com,
www.dribbble.com/kyleluvsew
Born: The Year of International Youth
Graduated: University of Wisconsin-Stout BFA Major in Graphic Design and Minor in General Business
Currently: Lead Designer at The Material Group and taking on other creative commissions of personal interest

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about design so far?
Work hard and value a good concept. A pound of effort can go a mile.

What should prospective employers/clients know about you and your work?
It will be different and original. I trust research but believe in an artfully synthesized approach to design.

Is there anything else we should know about you?
Latest obsession is writing and researching. Figuring out how to articulate concepts for
work. More here: http://nonconceptual.tumblr.com

Designer: Christopher Muccioli
Website: www.christophermuccioli.com
Born: 1988
Graduated: May 2011 from the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA)
Currently:  Graphic designer at Kickstarter.com in New York City and freelancing


What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about design so far?
I think the most important thing I’ve learned is that concept is king. Covering a poor concept up with hip style generally falls flat in the end.

What should prospective employers/clients know about you and your work?
I have a fascination with the tangible object and really enjoy seeing things through from concept to production.

Is there anything else we should know about you?
Hands down, my all time dream project is to design a ride at Disney.

Designer: Dever Elizabeth Thomas
Website: www.deverelizabeth.com
Born: 1988
Graduated: May 2011 from Indiana University
Currently: working at Method NY and freelancing


What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about design so far?
Be thoughtful and work hard, for both the client and the end-user.

What should prospective employers/clients know about you and your work?
I value smart ideas and well-executed finished projects.

2 thoughts on “8 Young Creatives to Watch

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