2018-19 Appreciation and Recognition Award
Billion Steps Challenge Logo
There are a ton of little things we do that we don’t think much about, yet to someone it’s a big deal. Such was the case with the last logo challenge Walt Hines issued us in Fall of 2017. Healthy St. Lucie was looking for a logo that incorporated their graphic mark and could be refreshed yearly for their Billion Steps Challenge – part of their fitness initiatives that really got started in 2018. The design I created that was finessed by Walt was chosen, and in 2019 Healthy St. Lucie honored he and I with appreciation and recognition awards.
Want to know more about the project? Read more here.
2018 American Advertising Federation
Judge’s Choice Award and Gold ADDY Award for Shanghai Acrobats
When I first started taking Graphic Design courses at Indian River State College, I heard of and saw some students get awarded with an ADDY. It was like winning an Oscar on a small, local level in my eyes, and I have ever since wanted one. Even though I pined for one, I never took the time to learn more about them or where they came from. I kind of just wanted to be told that I was good enough and hey, here’s an award for that.
Silly, isn’t it?
Maybe I gave up on it because there was so much raw talent around me that I felt like I could never compete, so I dove further into visual arts and put less effort into being a notable graphic designer in my program. I used what I was learning in graphic design to build more interesting visual pieces, digitally, and that work began to bleed into my classwork. Color, texture, form, line, movement, and… meaning… came alive for me with the use of photographs and words. And I started thinking, maybe I can’t be the best graphic designer, but I could be unique.
We spend a lot of time developing skills, ideas, and creativity to turn around and fit ourselves into a box called conservative. Conservative is the norm, it’s the acceptable, it’s the status quo, and I dared to be less conservative, and more… me; a uniqueness that was valued by others leading to my now award winning cover for the Shanghai Acrobats not only winning a Gold ADDY, but also taking home a Judge’s Choice trophy.
Be different. Be unique. Be free. Most importantly… stop comparing your achievements to those of others. Each day, each moment is an opportunity to grow and reinvent yourself. Start right now.
2017 Digital Media Student Exhibition
1st Place Photography, 1st Place Sculpture
Hosted by Advanced Technology Department, Indian River State College, Fort Pierce, FL
I’ve been an on-again, off-again student at Indian River State College since 2005, usually focusing more on working full-time and obtaining new experiences over a degree. In the last few years, I’ve found that not having a bachelor’s degree made it easier for employers to instantly decide against giving me the opportunity to work for them. This realization motivated me to go ahead and finish my degree, so that I had one less barrier to overcome in the workplace. While the motivation was strong, I decided to enter our department’s 17th Annual Student Exhibition.
The competition is fierce. Students of all calibers enter, some with work that’s on a completely professional level, others go even beyond that, and none with work that doesn’t meet what you ought to expect from a college-level designer.
Needless to say, I was intimidated.Yet, I took home first place awards in two categories: Sculpture and Photography.
Photography: In Natural Light, featuring Noé Torres
Sculpture: Clay the Elf
Calendart Fundraiser 2016
Selected as Featured Artist, 1 of 24
Hosted by Art Mundo, Fort Pierce, FL
In 2016 Art Mundo announced that it would be holding one of it’s most popular fundraising events in November of that year, Art Mundo’s Calendart – where-in calendars are created with original works of art featured for each month in the calendar.
To be one of these artists, an original piece must be submitted and, if selected, would need to be replicated in some form or style 12 more times.
In response, I created the first piece of what would become my Hamlet Series, a series of two-part paintings that incorporated one non-objective, abstract painting on canvas topped with a painted canvas featuring the famous Hamlet soliloquy, “To be, or not to be…” written in script, and a negative cut-out of the skull and crossbones symbol I developed for another project, SkullLeader/SkullSquadron.
This piece was intended to be heavy and dark. It was developed during a dark period in my life, and it reflected my own questions of the meaning of life and the ultimatephilosophical question we must all ask ourselves, that which Shakespeare wrote so eloquently for Hamlet. Quite honestly, since my artwork tends to dwell on the darker side of the human spirit, I didn’t expect to become a featured Calendarist, but to my surprise – I was chosen as 1 of the 24 Calendartists for my piece, Nocte Animam.
Crazy Little Thing Called Love Exhibition, 2015
People’s Choice Award
Hosted by Art Mundo, Fort Pierce, FL
I began experimenting with some old ideas in 2015, incorporating new design skills with old concepts that I never fully fleshed out. I was just beginning to develop what I’d consider my personal style – an eclectic mix of symbology, phrases, and bold, vibrant colors; a sort of digital, mixed-media feel. The pieces looked fantastic on the screen, but getting them to print seemed to be a problem at the time for me.
So I experimented some more until I was able to match colors from screen to print in both hue and vibrance. Printed paper wasn’t good enough though, so I learned how to transfer the ink from the paper to a canvas – which didn’t actually work out as well as I thought it would, however – the aesthetic was interesting enough that I felt comfortable entering the piece into an exhibition, and it was, surprisingly, well received.
As a result of my efforts, I earned the People’s Choice Award for my vintage-esque piece, The Mending Heart, on stretched canvas.
Chalk Walk, 2007
1st Place Winner
Hosted by A.E. Backus Gallery, Fort Pierce, FL
I’ve always been interested in the arts, and for many years I was always a participant in any local art events that I could be.
Since 2004, I participated in Chalk Walk as a Street Painting Artist, using pastel chalks to create art on the sidewalk as patrons walked by to view the art as it was created and enjoyed an arts festival happening simultaneously.
In 2007 I was awarded first place for my entry, Stone Pride.