Tell Me About It: Artistic endeavors

First Posted: 4/30/2014

1. What is your day job?

Right now I am an illustrator/graphic designer for HP, Hewlett Packard. I am part of their enterprise services division. What that means, many people don’t know that HP builds a lot more than printers and laptops. They actually are involved in the public sector, government contracts, state and federal government, department of defense, a lot of different areas, and they build software solutions for them, so I support the salesmen. So when HP bids on a proposal, I’m in charge of all the graphics that go in that proposal. So, technically, my clients are the salesmen.

2. How did you get involved in art?

My mom tells a story that I was in the dentist’s office. I started drawing an elephant on a platform and I drew it from the ground up. I’ve been drawing since I could hold a pencil. My parents were incredibly encouraging and I want to give a shout out to Gary Wells. He was my art teacher in high school. He was the first one that told me I could do this, and I could make a living at it.

3. What type of training did you have?

I went to CCAD (Columbus College of Art and Design) for four years. I have a BFA in illustration with a writing minor. I got a generous scholarship. I loved school. You often hear that people who can’t do, teach, but at CCAD our professors were doing Time magazine covers. These guys were actually practitioners doing it. There was a lot of excitement there, a creativity collaboration. I’m very grateful for that.

4. What kinds of art do you do?

Pretty much anything. I keep the creative juices flowing. My freelance business is HubbellArts. I do everything — caricatures, fine art paintings, graphic design, murals in homes. I’m all over the map. I do logos and branding which is probably one of my favorite things to do.

5. What do your clients seem to want the most?

I think the last couple years, it’s been caricatures, a more finalized version. Like for a retirement party, they want a fun caricature. I incorporate a hybrid. I’ll add fun playful details that reflect their interests. I’m now moving into a logos and name branding.

6. What’s been one of your favorite projects?

That’s tough to say. They are fun for different reasons. The promo materials I did for Bubba Watson was a lot of fun. Really, any one that works out the way I described. When I work with a client, it’s collaborative. It’s not trudging through but joyfully going through the process. I was pleased with the Yogurt Your Way logo. They gave me creative freedom and it turned out to be a fun logo.

7. What’s the most challenging part?

When I feel like the client and I don’t understand what each is trying to accomplish. Or they want a Cadillac on an Ikea budget, trying to make that work. Not understanding each other. I try to establish an understanding out of the gate. I ask a ton of questions and that eliminates a lot of headaches.

8. How many hours do you work on this each week?

Well, my day job is obviously 40 hours a week. I work anywhere from another 20 to 40 hours, but 40 hours is rare. I do have to make family time with my girls and my wife. I’m a night owl, so it’s not uncommon for me to have my headphones on working until 2 a.m.

9. How many projects do you do in, say a month?

I have a couple contracts that I do a certain amount of work each month. Like Faith Life Church — I do books for their kids’ ministry. I usually have three to five projects going at once.

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