Speaking to Lindsey was a lot of fun and a natural conversation. Her down to earth and honest approach to life and design was apparent from the start. Her insight into the launch of a new brand with Troegs while still being active in her own style and brand was interesting and enjoyable. It was great to see the development of the new brand and how she helped to bring the new branding to life. She works hard and is a passionate about her work. Since we spoke she continues to be recognized for her work in print and as part of Philly Beer Week. To say it is well deserved is a huge understatement.
AJK: Welcome to another addition of the 16oz Canvas. I am really excited to have with us Lindsey Tweed out of my home town of Philadelphia joining us. Thanks so much for making the time Lindsey.
Lindsey: Yeah, absolutely. Good to be here.
AJK: Excellent, excellent. Yeah, now what part of Philadelphia are you from?
Lindsey: Well, I’m originally from Florida actually. So, I was born and raised in the South but I moved to Philly about ten-ish years ago now and I live in Northeast Philly kind of the Tacony neighborhood.
AJK: Oh great. I grew up in the Northeast, Oxford Circle is where I was early years and then my family is up on the Boulevard near to Nabisco in that area of town, Somerton.
Lindsey: Oh yeah. I know wherever that is, yeah cool.
AJK: Yeah, near the big malls yeah, so it’s always good. Yeah, yeah.
Lindsey: It’s a little further up there.
AJK: Yeah definitely. Oh yeah, like my father worked for the City of Philadelphia and like I don’t know if it’s still the case but you had to be in the city proper so we were -- I mean we’re literally less than a mile from I guess, you know, right that -- you know, where that PA Turnpike Exit is in the Neshaminy area. So, I mean it was definitely a loophole that we took advantage of.
Lindsey: I think they recently changed that and like at least cops are allowed to move out of the city now.
AJK: Yeah. I think it was kind of limiting, the crop of folks but I mean most folk, you know, my dad was a social worker and moved up so I mean he was born and raised and so was my mom. He was in Port Richmond and my mom was in my Mayfair so I think I did hear that though in the last like five or ten years they kind of -- I think it’s a mile radius now. I think it’s like a third-year, 60 mile radius or something like that but I could be wrong.
I don’t know. We’ll find out. If you’re out there, all the cops that are listening to this we definitely have a -- probably don’t have a cop niche but if you’re a Philly cop listening we’d love to hear from you. So, what brought you to Philly from -- what part of Florida are you from?
Lindsey: So, I’m from Fort Myers, it’s like a little town. Well, it’s getting bigger now, it was smaller when I grew up in the outskirts of it but it’s like Southwest Florida Gulf Coast.
So, just kind of out there in the swamp hanging out and I -- oh God, it’s a really funny story. I met my boyfriend on the internet and this was back -- oh man, this was back in like late ‘90s, early 2000s before Match or before anybody was doing anything like that and yeah, we met on the internet and he lived up this way and we were just friends for a while, we were just kind of like chatting and friends for a long time and then it kind of blossomed into something else and ten years later we’re still together so I guess it worked out.
AJK: Yeah, there you go. Yeah, it’s how I met my wife back in that period of time. It was on a -- I used to do some radio work and she happened to be in the local area and I was just kind of whoring out the show to anybody I could find to check it out and then it turned out she lived kind of like around the corner from me which was cool and so, you know, here we are married and --
Lindsey: You never know where you’re going to meet somebody.
AJK: Yeah, married with children so it’s all -- it all works out well so yeah. Yeah, we’ll queue up the song when I do the editing but yeah so that’s great yeah. How -- I mean I always find it interesting folks getting used to the weather in Philadelphia versus if you’re from Florida, was that a tough one?
Lindsey: I like the change in seasons, you know, I had never -- like I didn’t do much traveling growing up or anything like that so I didn’t see snow until I came up to Philly in the winter one time so that was the first time I had seen it and, you know, I -- it has its pros and cons you know. I’m not super into ice and everything just being dead for four or five months but yeah, it’s better than being hot all the time and just seeing the same stuff every day.
AJK: Yeah, I agree. Yeah, I think that -- I wouldn’t say winter’s my favorite but I think that when it snow -- the first couple of days of snow are my favorite and then once it’s like dirty snow and gross and a pain in the ass to drive then it’s not as fun but there’s a couple -- yeah, I would say, you know, 20 to 25% of the winter I’m enjoying it. I mean it’s always just good to stay inside and it kind of gets you to just kind of slow down a little bit and maybe get a fire going and just kind of chill.
Lindsey: Yeah, it’s just a whole different vibe.
AJK: Exactly. So, as an artist have you -- was art something you’ve always been doing, you know, your whole life? Give me a little insight into Lindsey, the artist.
Lindsey: Yeah. So, I pretty much -- I mean I grew up drawing like that was just kind of what I was always interested in and I would draw a lot of like fantasy dragons, monsters stuff like that when I was a kid and I was always into that and then as I got older I kind of realized -- actually I dabbled a little bit in web design like back in the ‘90s and that was kind of like my introduction to any kind of, you know, creating anything on the computer and then as I got older I kind of realized like oh, graphic design is a thing and this is how I could potentially be an artist to a degree, you know, and be an illustrator or whatever and then also get a decent job so it was like the perfect kind of marriage of that for me. So, I went to school for design and then I spent probably the first -- kind of cut my teeth at an alt weekly kind of like a nightlife kind of paper out in the suburbs and I worked there for about two years doing editorial design and then I ended up getting into advertising which is kind of -- which has been my day job and my career since then.
AJK: Right, yeah. If you go to your website Styrovor that’s styrovor.com, your portfolio is really interesting and I think it’s kind of -- it’s really robust and it has a lot of interesting pieces and I really enjoyed it.
Lindsey: Well, thank you, yeah. So, I worked at -- they were Neiman when I started and then they got acquired by an agency out of Boston Allen and Gerritsen but I was there for about six years and, you know, that gave me the opportunity, you know, I do graphic design but I also work on, you know, TV and photo shoots and billboards and all kinds of different stuff so it’s given me the opportunity to kind of have my -- work on a lot of different clients and do a lot of different things.
AJK: Yeah, I think -- yeah, the portfolio is really robust. It’s, you know, kind of is all over the gamut so I think that’s really interesting.
Lindsey: Yeah. That’s kind of my favorite thing about being a, you know, I’ve always defined myself as a graphic designer or an art director first then kind of an illustrator second and part of the reason is I really enjoy the opportunity to dig into any particular client and find, you know, experiment with different styles and find a solution that works for them rather than just being, you know, an illustrator you’re just kind of doing your own thing and you -- and people find you for projects that you’re a good fit for. I’ve always tried to be kind of a chameleon and work with a lot of different things.
AJK: Now was there a project kind of like early on like the first time maybe you saw your work in print or on TV that -- kind of that you remember?
Lindsey: I was the lead creative on Sunoco for most of my time at Neiman and Allen & Gerritsen and that was a big thing because I started there and that was the first client I was put on and originally I was just like working on these basically hotdog signs and Mountain Dew signs and like a big bulk of our business was like just doing the stuff that they’re -- the point of purchase stuff at their gas stations and I can’t remember -- well, I can’t remember what they -- what particular, know, type of sign it was but that was my first opportunity to really be like oh, I’m doing this stuff and then I get to go get gas and then it’s out there and I made that thing so.
Yeah, it’s fun. It’s always -- the first time seeing stuff like that out in the world is always exciting.
AJK: You know I really -- again, I say if you go to the website there’s just -- I mean the -- I like the -- I’m a big yellow mustard fan so I was a big fan -- I’m a big fan of the work, the mustard day work you did and you chose the yellow mustard which I was really happy about so I was a big fan of that.
Lindsey: It’s a classic. I mean you can’t argue with it.
AJK: Yeah. A lot of folks -- I mean now you got the dijonnaise, you got all these kind of hybrids and honey mustards and yellow mustard that’s where it’s at. I mean that’s for me. I’ll take it especially with the little pretzels I mean I’m just good to go right there.
Lindsey: Yeah. That was for -- that was for Dietz & Watson. I mean that was that’s the fun thing about doing lettering and it’s really exploded over the past couple of years. I mean when I first started doing it, you know, years and years ago and now it’s like a -- it’s whole -- it’s a whole category into itself but that was fun for Dietz and Watson it’s like, you know, you get to play with food so I really enjoyed doing that.
AJK: Right. And I think that one of the things that really sticks out with your style and, you know, if you follow along on the website if you -- and again you go to the styrovor on Instagram, you can see Lindsey’s work is her letter writing and kind of that typography and it’s really unique and I agree, you see a lot more, you know, I think that folks have come to maybe, I don’t know, appreciate more like the simpleness which is -- I don’t want to minimize it because I think it’s really -- I think this is great font and using letters to express a story I think it’s really powerful and I think it’s really kind of come a long way and that sometimes that openness of a piece doesn’t have to have a 1000 things going onto it, you know, a really strongly lettered piece can really do, you know, do a lot for the image or the branding so I think it’s, you know, I think your work really showcases that.
Lindsey: Well, thanks I appreciate that. Yeah, it’s really interesting how, you know, you -- to your point you don’t need necessarily a lot of embellishments and a lot of layers and a lot of detail all the time. It’s just you can just select -- taking the time to select the right type style can just say so much, you know, like you don’t necessarily need all of that. So, I actually do trend towards, in my personal work at least, kind of more minimalist sort of expression that way.
AJK: Yeah. Now what is the kind of -- like how’s that, how do you get that like is that -- are you using certain types of pens or markers, what is, kind of, how are you getting those?
Lindsey: So, it’s changed for me. So, I -- well, recently I got a -- I decided to take the plunge, I needed a new computer forever and the Microsoft Studio came out that like big honking thing that’s like a, you know, 28 inch or whatever tablet that you can just fold down and draw right on it and it’s like an all-in-one. So, I got one of those and I’ve been -- I just got that like two or three months ago so I’ve been kind of playing with that and getting into that whole world but prior to that I was -- and I still love to draw with, you know, whether it’s brush pens or Microns or whatever else like I usually work at my desk, drawing in like a traditional sort of way and then a lot of times I would start there, scan it in and then kind of finish it in Photoshop or Illustrator depending on what the needs were.
But I’m still kind of -- I’m still kind of adjusting. Like I don’t know, I got this thing and I’m enjoying experimenting with it but I still really, you know, you can’t replicate that feeling of pen on paper. It is really satisfying.
AJK: Yeah. A lot of folks -- who kind of -- it’s interesting, I find it -- because I think yeah, with technology it’s become easier but, you know, some folks have mastered it on their computer, maybe not on the paper and some -- yeah, everyone seems to have a different way to do it and I think those who are kind of more analogue folks, you know, they find the transition to be, you know, a little more difficult if, trying to do that and I don’t actually know if it’s a technology difficulty. I think it’s -- a lot of it’s mental right? I mean you’re trying to -- like it’s, I don’t know, not to speak for everybody, I think some folks feel like almost like they’re cheating. It’s like how, you know, like this is in a way, you know.
Lindsey: Yeah. I mean I definitely -- I get that from my parents a lot, my parents are like Luddites in a lot of ways in art. I don’t mean to say that that’s where you’re coming from but they -- whenever I talk to them about oh, I got this new computer and I’m doing a lot of stuff digitally then my dad’s like well, that’s kind of cheating like the computer kind of does it for you doesn’t it? Like, no dad it doesn’t do it for, you know, it’s a means to an end you know. So, on one end I get what you mean because there is -- especially with my lettering I want to be as good and precise with that as I can like straight from pen to paper I want it to look great and there is -- the reality is you can scan that in and you can fix whatever you want about it and make it look great in Photoshop no matter what that product is, you know, when it’s just pen and paper. So, I have that desire to be really good naturally through analogue means but I don’t think it’s cheating, you know, I think you get to whatever your means are. It can get to, you know, whatever that end result is, you know, however you achieve that, good for you, it looks good.
AJK: Yeah. I, you know, I don’t think it’s cheating because to tell folks like yourself who are at different stages, you know, and it’s like they’re not sure like how is this possible, you know, and so -- and from the feel of it sometimes not even, you know, just the fact that it’s a screen and not a paper, you know, I think is interesting for people and sometimes it’s, very almost like therapeutic, their design period, you know, on that paper and they see it and kind of, you know, how it goes. It just -- to me as somebody -- I’m fairly tech savvy so the fact that it’s possible to do it with these tools to me it’s like learning a whole nother -- I don’t think it’s cheating, I think it’s almost tougher. Like you have to not only -- now you have to figure out a way to take your art which you knew how to draw on a piece of paper or, you know, a palette or a canvas or whatever and then transfer it in and then work with -- like those programs, there’s like 80,000 different options and, you know, things you can do, filters and this and that and it’s not easy. I mean I used to be a hack at Photoshop and that would be -- that’s being complimentary and so the folks that take it in, doing what they’re doing and it still look like they drew it I mean it just -- that just kind of blows my mind in many ways. So, I think it’s -- to me it’s not -- I would say it’s harder because you get to learn a whole -- like a computer program and that’s sometimes not what folks are, you know, like they -- okay, you know.
Lindsey: No. I mean it’s definitely like any -- at the end of the day anybody can pick up a pen and start drawing. It’s a lot more difficult to open up Photoshop and start creating, you know, it’s just that you’re spoiled for choice or just, you know, it’s a whole interface, you know. So, yeah it’s just -- it’s definitely just two different school of thought and two different ways to approach it.
AJK: Yeah. It seems like you’re kind of at the -- in the middle, you’re kind of at the, you know, you’re going digital in a way but you’re, you know, just --
Lindsey: Yeah. Yeah, it’s always about hybrid but yeah, I’m kind of feeling it out now and I think I might -- my feeling now is I might kind of fall back to more starting analogue and then going digital with it than a purely digital workflow. I don’t know, we’ll see.
AJK: Yeah. It must -- I mean a little bit easy though you’re just carrying stuff around. You don’t have to bring as much stuff with you when you go -- using the digital. I’ve heard that a bunch. You don’t have to carry around, you know, ten or 15 different types of pens, you know, you can just click a button and it’s like oh, there’s the stroke, that’s that pen or like -- yeah.
Lindsey: Yeah. Yeah, I mean, you know, it’s like do you want a whole library of books or do you want a Kindle you know?
AJK: Yeah. Well, that’s a whole -- yeah, that’s a whole nother debate, you know, we have decent of library books here. My -- I bought my wife a Kindle and she takes the real book every time. She wants to use the Kindle but it doesn’t -- it’s not the same.
Lindsey: Yeah. We’re from that generation that’s stuck in between, you know, like I think there are a lot of people growing up now that are digital natives that when they get older they won’t, you know, I don’t know, maybe they won’t have the same affection for the printed page and pen on paper and a book, you know, that we do, I don’t know, it’ll be interesting to see how that turns out. Because I definitely -- I feel the tug from both directions big time.
AJK: I think it’s interesting because the good is, you know, now with, you know, distribution and publishing, you know, it becomes easier because you don’t have to actually have, you know, you don’t have to go at a publishing company to decide to run off, you know, 10,000 copies of a physical book, you know, they can -- A, they can print off a limited batch or they just go a digital route. So, it allows one to argue more to be out there but which could also be, you know, more craft to be out there but that’s a whole nother discussion but, you know, I think it’s tough.
Lindsey: Where would we be without Fifty Shades of Grey?
AJK: I agree. Well, again not to promote a podcast that has nothing to do with but there’s a great podcast called My Dad Wrote A Porno and which I just started listening to and it’s based off of the idea of this -- these English -- this English guy had found out his dad was writing erotica because he thought well, this Fifty Shades of Grey thing was pretty popular, I can do it and it’s --
Lindsey: Oh wow.
AJK: -- it’s hilarious because the guy’s father’s like in his mid-60s and it’s just -- and they’re English so like their accents always win so like they have great British accents and each episode they read a chapter of the pod -- of the book and it’s hilarious because like just an old man trying to describe, you know, some stuff it’s just definitely not -- it’s just -- yeah, it’s great.
Lindsey: I got to check that out. I hadn’t heard about that one.
AJK: Yeah. It’s -- I think there’s like almost like two -- it’s -- there’s a good amount of episodes on it so I mean I was genuinely like driving laughing and it’s good because it’s only like 20 -- like 25 to 35 minutes long and again, it’s -- the son and then his two friends, you know, a guy and a girl and so it’s -- it gives interesting perspective. It’s really funny.
Lindsey: That’s awesome.
AJK: Now on your Instagram I think that you put up a lot of these kind of smaller, you know, pieces what’s the -- is that just kind of the -- your way to, you know, kind of express kind of the narrative of, you know, what you’re thinking and what’s going on in this kind of crazy kind of world we’re living in right now, you know, I think it’s -- I think that -- yeah, I find it interesting, you know, I think we agree a lot or have the same perspective socially and so I just -- I was just kind of curios kind of how those come together?
Lindsey: A lot of times Instagram for me is just a way to be creative even if I don’t have a lot of time an a given day, you know, if I want to just sit down and just make, you know, and a lot of the stuff I post there tends to be simpler. So, it’s just I want to sit down for half an hour even if I’ve had a long day and just kind of dig around and see what I come up with and I do -- the one thing that I feel like is lacking on Instagram and I don’t know if it’s the audience or the type of people that gravitate towards being creators on that platform but I don’t see a lot of political work, you know, or anything that’s really, you know, engaged in any -- I don’t know, it’s a lot of like the mountains are calling and I must go and that kind of stuff which, you know, is cool too but I try to, you know, I’m watching the news and I try to be somewhat dialed into everything that’s going on in the world right now and I think I will and I have in the past and it tends to oscillate between my lettering and the stuff I’m creating and then I travel and I dabble in photography too so I post that kind of stuff as well. But I’d definitely like to see a little more, you know, a little more activism, a little less just partying and FOMO stuff on Instagram.
AJK: Yeah. I -- one of the other artists that we spoke to, kind of he’s more of the -- kind of the simple design and I always feel weird just saying oh, it’s a simple design because I’m not trying to say it’s simple in like making it. Like I think that by saying simple I just mean it’s not -- like we were talking about before, you know, using of the open space and, you know, the -- sometimes, you know, less is more type of a thing but his name is Tim Skirven and he does work for a brewery out of Virginia called Veil Brewing Company and so we met with him in Richmond a month or so back and him and his wife have their own kind of design company and they do some -- they do a lot more of that, you know, political stuff with their free time so I think that he’s somebody maybe I should connect you with because I think you guys would hit it off.
Lindsey: No, that’s cool. Yeah, I have to check his stuff out.
AJK: Yeah. Yeah and he started doing some tattoo work which is pretty cool too so that was interesting, yeah. Yeah, have you ever had -- I always find it interesting have you ever had any of your work tattooed on anybody? I think I’m going to change that. That might be my new question instead of the aesthetic question. I’m going go -- I think I’m going to use that one instead because a few folks have said yes and that to me was probably one of the cooler things.
Lindsey: My best guess would be I probably have only because I haven’t seen it personally but God, I can’t think, I’m trying to think have I? I don’t think so but Troëgs has such like really devoted fans particularly of like Nugget Nectar and Troegenator. It wouldn’t -- I mean those -- they love to get Troëgs tattoos so it wouldn’t surprise me at all if there’s already one out there from the rebrand.
AJK: All right. Well, if -- yeah, again if you’re out there and you’re a Troëgs super fan --
Lindsey: Send them in I want to see.
AJK: Yeah, send them in. Tag us up 16oz Canvas and we will whore the hell out of your pictures. We’ll make sure we get that up on our websites. Now I think that’s a great transition. How did you come to work with them? If I read the stories correctly when you were in your -- at the agency previously you kind of -- that it originally did some of the branding for them. You were -- were you part of that team or was that just a company and were you part of the original and now the current designs?
Lindsey: Yeah. So, basically when I originally started there it was like I said they were originally called Neiman and then they went under -- they were acquired by Allen & Gerritsen so it was -- I was there for about six years and back -- Troëgs had been a client of Neiman since back -- I’m pretty sure in the ‘90s so they’ve been a client for a long time and they had had an art director there that had done some of their original packaging. So, they’re just kind of like a long standing client and we hadn’t really -- like they would come to us for like little bits and pieces of things here and there we hadn’t really done any big projects for them in several years and one day they basically came to us and said well, we’re coming out with a new fall seasonal Hop Knife and we need packaging for it and this is the first time they had done any new packaging in a long time and I ended up on that project because I was, you know, we had a lot of really talented designers there but not any -- none of them could illustrate which, you know, it’s just two totally different skillsets.
So, I could draw and it was like all right cool, I can do this Troëgs thing so -- because it is kind of -- it’s tricky, you know, when they have this existing look and feel and they’re doing something new and you’re a new person being put on you’re not going to match what they’ve done in the past exactly. So, I kind of took inspiration from where they were and did new packaging for Hop Knife and the way it worked out was they were really happy with how that looked particularly the 24 pack, where we were limited to two colors. So, we just had like this stark charcoal and green on the cream 24 pack and they basically -- after it was released they came out -- came back and they were like we really loved how Hop Knife came out and particularly this 24 pack and we’ve been thinking about doing this rebrand for a long time and we dig this whole visual direction like could we start there and just kind of start thinking about a new logo, new packaging and everything? Which to me that’s normally a red flag to back into a project that way. It’s like let’s rebrand our whole brewery and we’re going to start with this one package that we did. But it ended up working out really well because it gave us a really good -- like that was our lighthouse. It was like okay cool, they like this and they’re still -- I’m somebody who, you know, I appreciate a good creative brief, I appreciate just a well-defined this is what we want and this is the problem that we’re trying to solve. So, you know, to me like I don’t look at that as a limitation I look at it as okay, at least we have somewhere to focus.
So, we started there and I -- the team was super lean it was basically -- I guess in the early stages we worked on, you know, tone and storytelling and that kind of thing so there’s a writer on it, I was the designer and we had a project manager and an account person and then a production artist. Like once we blew everything out, once we kind of figured out okay, here’s the logo and here’s some of these different labels the production artist would help with like executing all those different pieces whether it’s like, you know, you’re formatting it for a keg ring or for a, you know, tap handle and all that kind of stuff because it’s a bunch of different pieces, once you figure out what that first piece of key art is it has to translate into a lot of different formats but it was a super lean team.
And it was just an awesome opportunity to collaborate really closely with Chris and John who were the two brothers that started the brewery and they’re just, you know, it was one of those opportunities that, you know, for a lot of creatives I think come along very often where you’re working on something that’s really exciting and really fulfilling but you’re working with a client that also kind of gets it and lets you do your thing and, you know, isn’t a, you know, a lot of the times it’s -- I don’t want to say the clients are difficult but they can be and it ends up, you know, or like you have like a board of like five or six different people that all have to put their two cents in, this was just like a very, you know, a very holistic approach and worked out really well that we were able to collaborate together. So, I did, you know, the logo was where we started and kind of just like an overall framework for the packaging which they knew. I don’t know if you’ve -- have you seen their stuff before we rebranded?
AJK: Yeah. I was -- yeah because I’m like I said from the Philly area originally so I would come home -- because their distribution hadn’t really broken out into New England yet and so when I would come home I would -- I’d really, you know, I’d tried to get myself, you know, a couple of six packs of Nugget Nectar and then, you know, we’d always have Mad Elf around Christmas time so, yeah it was definitely -- I wasn’t even aware of the rebranding and so that was interesting when I went to the store and when they kind of -- I think almost correlated when they came up this way and more accessibility. It was kind of like -- it seemed like maybe that it was timed that way I’m not sure but I just was like okay, this is their new branding and there’re all these new markets so that was really interesting to me.
Lindsey: Yeah. So, they originally had the -- I would say the overall conceptual basis for their packaging and for their brand didn’t really change that much like, you know, they had -- they always had like these really fun expressive unique illustrations for each of their different beers, they wanted them to have their own personality and their own sort of like mascot or character associated with that. So, you know, the first step was we did the logo and then we kind of figured out like what’s the wire frame of what this packaging looks like knowing that they’re going to want this piece of key art for each beer and it’s going to need to feel consistent, it’s going to need to feel self-contained across the whole portfolio.
So we figured out what that framework looked like, you know, the shape of the bottle label and how it would -- how the key art would fit within it and the shape of the six pack and how the dart would fit within it and once that was signed off on it was like okay, now we start updating each of these labels and in some of the cases like a Troegenator or a Nugget Nectar where they had a lot of equity in that brand and they’re like really beloved labels and mean a lot to the -- to their fans. It was we need to keep this the same conceptually we just want to update the look and feel of it and then for other ones, you know, it was you can kind of with HopBack and Perpetual, like a couple of different labels they were like well, you know, you can kind of -- you can go take what we have and reimagine it or you can kind of do whatever you want. So, we would start with a couple of different concepts and sketch for them and then go from there but it was definitely a good collaborative process between us and the brewery.
AJK: Yeah. I think they’re all great. I mean I think it’s like you said I think it’s really clean to your point of the -- kind of the Troegenator and the Nugget Nectar, you know, I think that it still -- it pulls in from that, you know, previous image but it makes it its, you know, own so, you know, it still kind of gives a little homage to the originals and I think it’s, you know, it makes perfect sense that those were the kind of foundational ones so that you didn’t want to just kind of scrap it, you know, holding of the nectar, you know, it doesn’t have as much of that like revolution as the previous one, you know, with the Hawaiian but yeah, I think -- and I really like them and so I think they really compliment -- I mean it’s obvious when you look at your portfolio and you look at these that, you know, you played a key part in that with the lettering and just kind of the layout of things and that that sketch kind of, you know, feel to them.
Lindsey: Well, thanks. Yeah, so I’m really happy with how everything turned out and it ended up, you know, I worked on that at the agency for a while and then we did most of the -- I’m trying to remember how many we did before, probably about ten labels and -- eight or ten labels and then I actually started a different job and it was kind of -- and it was like before we were really done with Troëgs but I thankfully had the agency’s blessing because it was really something, you know, a lot of times when you work at an agency and you’re in a creative department a lot of different hands touch a project and a lot of different people are involved in it, even just a lot of different designers but in this case it was one of those things where it was like oh, this was really, you know, it was my baby and I worked really closely, you know, developing the whole thing and kind of had their blessing to just take Troëgs on as a freelance client, you know, after I left. So, I’ve done six or seven labels for them just on a freelance basis and we still have more coming up so it’s been a really good relationship for me.
AJK: Yeah. I was worried when you’re -- because when I was -- in my head I’m like doing the time frame and I’m like okay, she was at that agency and I was hoping that it wasn’t a situation where like you had this, you know, vision and, you know, artistic kind of almost like style sheet for it and then it was like okay, well Lindsey’s gone and then it kind of like, you know, hacked up your work. So, I was getting to that, I was afraid to ask but I’m glad and I was hoping you’re still a part of it. You know what I mean? Like I was like oh oh, like I hope it wasn’t like --
Lindsey: Yeah, absolutely. I mean a lot of -- I really appreciate how chilled they were about it because a lot of agencies wouldn’t have been.
AJK: Yeah. When you said agency and then even just kind of like acquiring and become -- I’m like that’s a lot of red tape. I’m like oh man this question might be some tears, you know, like oh no, Lindsey’s understudy. Now you go to the theatre and it’s like oh no, now this is going to be played by, you know, somebody else it’s like oh. Great, now what’s the process, you know, how do you work with the brothers, you know, do they -- I mean they have their Scratch series which I think is really interesting and -- but when a new beer is coming out like how much time are you given, do you have a schedule, you know, what’s that like working with them?
Lindsey: It’s usually about -- it’s usually -- we’re typically working on stuff like six or seven months ahead of the release because that’s like -- we have -- it sounds like a lot of time but a big part of that is just the production time that they need and then it’s also getting stuff approved by the TTB like you have to submit, you know, any alcohol label, you have to submit for approval and that can take -- they always say it’s like oh, it could be two weeks, it could be three months so you have to build in this massive chunk of time. They usually get back to them pretty quickly but, you know, you never really know. So, yeah it’s usually I start working on something about six or seven months out before it hits the shelves like Crimson Pistil is the most recent one they’re summer seasonal that’s coming out now and I was working on that in September, October of last year.
AJK: Well, cool. What secret new beers are coming out from Troëgs that we can drop? I mean now this will probably -- won’t air for six to eight weeks so you’re not really going to blow any spots so what have you got for us?
Lindsey: In the next six -- I don’t think I can spill anything now but I mean -- I got to keep a zip on it.
AJK: All right, all right. I have to try, I have to try. Yeah.
Lindsey: I respect that.
AJK: Yeah. It’s like, you know, a couple of times of like, you know, yeah.
Lindsey: They do. The way that they -- you can keep an eye out though on -- I think it’s like my beer buzz is a blog that they go into the TTB post publicly like as soon as you submit something maybe it’s once it’s approved, I’m not sure but either way once it’s in the TTB system you can go in there and just find new beers that are coming out before the brewery really publicizes them. So, a lot of times they’ll be like oh Troëgs has Crimson Pistil because they submitted a label for it, you know, in December or whatever so you do get -- you can get a sneak peak at stuff that way.
AJK: Yeah. That is what -- I’ve tried to peak around that just for posting like because the good thing is they -- you can even see the image most of the time and it’s really nicely -- it’s really crisp and it’s really nice but that website is really hard to use. I mean it’s -- I think it’s by design. It’s like this -- because yeah, yeah I mean I’ve gotten a little better with it but even though I know what I’m trying to find is hard like it’s just -- yeah, it’s I mean they’re not updating their technology, they’re not trying to make this great UI searchable database so -- but it’s yeah.
Lindsey: That’s any government website, yeah.
AJK: Right, exactly --
Lindsey: It’s just rough.
AJK: Yeah, because sometimes they’ll do the same thing and it worked one day and the next day it doesn’t and I’m like oh, I should like do like a video record of how I found -- because I’ve found stuff and it’d be like I don’t -- I didn’t save it and I go back and I’m like how the hell did I find that? I don’t know, I don’t know. Now with your background I mean the, you know, doing labels or cans is that decided ahead of time too what it’s going to be, it would be a bomber, you know, how does that go?
Lindsey: No. Yeah, they always know, you know, what -- how they’re going to package it, you know, when we kick the project off. But typically just about everything they do is just traditional, you know, six packs and cans for most things and then they have a -- like LaGrave and Jovial were in the, you know, the corking cage bottles but again they always know that before I start working on it so -- but it doesn’t have too much of an effect on, you know, the way we -- because either way it’s, you know, it’s a very similar shaped label and the way the key art is developed it’s meant to be used in a bunch of different formats so it’s always really flexible that way.
AJK: Okay. Now the new series kind of the Splinter series that seems to have more of just like a text based kind of typography style to it. Is that part of the style sheet that you guys have designed?
Lindsey: So, they have, I don’t want to say, I think her name is Rachel, I want to say her name is Rachel Mills but they have an in-house -- her first name is definitely Rachel, I think her last name is Mills, in-house designer at Troëgs that is also a really talented young designer. So, she does all their Splinter series so that’s actually the one thing that I don’t -- I don’t work on that stuff. So, she did like the -- they had like Freaky Peach, like a sour peach that just came out that I love that they did like an iridescent, like a foil on that and she does all the Splinter series stuff so they did like a barrel aged Troegenator and they do like just kind of, you know, whenever they release that stuff she gets to work on those so. And she also does the -- like I developed the original design for like the Scratch beer label but she does all those like number 252 or whatever all those little lettering treatments that they do for each of their Scratch beer, she does all that stuff and a lot of their social media graphics, all those kind of things Rachel all works on.
AJK: Yeah. Whatever they’re like yeah, even just is -- all their stuff is really clean, you know, their website and just looking at it and every, you know, even the art of Troëgs that whole -- ever year they have that contest right and I think that’s really interesting kind of how they really support art and I think it’s really -- like I said I just like things that are really clean and, you know, the images they have on their site of the website. I haven’t been to Hershey in a long time but I definitely -- it’s one of the reasons I want to get back there.
Lindsey: Did you go there after the new breweries built --
Lindsey: -- or just before?
AJK: No. I haven’t been there so it’s kind of just, you know, yeah, I actually haven’t been there.
Lindsey: It’s an amazing space and it -- I have a lot of respect for Jen Adams is the marketing manager and I work with her, anytime we’re working on any labels and stuff but she has just been killing it, you know, like I just think Troëgs, it’s really exciting to see how, you know -- a lot of times you work with a client, you know, whatever you do for them whether it’s a logo or website or whatever you kind of hand it off at the end and it’s just like okay, cool like run with it and, you know, cross your fingers and a lot of times it ends up getting kind of butchered and not, you know, live up to your expectations for it. But Troëgs just does an amazing job with all that, you know, I love all the -- they do like a lot of stop motion animation stuff on social that I just think is super cool and Art of Troëgs contest is really great too, you know, the work that comes out of that I’m always impressed by and they have a -- in the new brewery they have a dedicated art gallery for that. So, you go down to the one end of it and you can go out and see, you know, whatever. I think they do -- like some of the stuff’s permanent and some of the stuff rotates out, you know, each year but a gallery of all the stuff that people have created and it’s all, you know, really awesome work.
AJK: Yeah, I love that because I was just -- even the fact that I thought it was really great there’s, you know, if you go to the website troëgs.com there’s, you know, the story of how you did the rebranding and there’s pictures of you with the brothers I just thought that was, I don’t know, I just thought it was -- it wasn’t necessary but I thought it would just kind of paint an overall picture of this rebranding and kind of what you see from them and then I think it’s just really -- it’s a little extra something that isn’t necessary right, it doesn’t, you know, they’re a brewery but, you know, to have those -- make those design choices and have that be part of it I thought that was really interesting. I mean that was one of the ways I was able to find you so I do appreciate that, you know, I was trying to do my research and then --
Lindsey: Oh yeah. I never asked you how you -- how we did end up getting in touch so you just saw me right on the website?
AJK: Yeah. I think I was, you know, I keep a file of different, you know, art that I really like and I, you know, it’s a Google Drive, you know, Excel file and I have, you know, brewery and location and so I try to figure it out sometimes. I’d have to check I might have messaged them on Facebook that’s been a really great way. I think that breweries have been super supportive of that, you know, they’re really excited, you know, when I tell them what I’m trying to do and a lot of the times it had kind of -- do a deep dive and try to figure it out. I’ve noticed more that with label work when people are posting it on social is, you know, some of the breweries will tag, you know, who the artist is that made that and so that makes my life a lot easier.
Lindsey: I think it all depends on the personality as a brewery, you know, some, you know, if they’re more corporate maybe they don’t want to, you know, show the man behind the curtain as much as just, you know, here it is but I think it works really well for Troëgs and it resonates with their whole ethos and their whole brand that’s just, you know, it’s creativity and it’s art and it’s that passion for creating things by hand that whether it’s brewing a beer or making a label that’s kind of at the heart of everything they do. So, I think that that -- showing those behind the scenes -- showing that behind the scene stuff really resonates with a lot of their fans.
AJK: Yeah. And I think that people are dedicated and I think that, you know, like you’re saying beers, you know, beer’s handcrafted and so I think that if they’re going to make a conscious decision to have somebody create something from hand and, you know, even the style that -- of your art work is, you know, shows more of a hand, you know, hand drawn, you know, style to it I think there’s an overall theme to it and so I think it’s really just -- I thought it was really complimentary and I thought that was, you know, it was classy too I think just to kind of give you some props on the website, you know, it’s kind of nice for your portfolio, you know, you have -- you said a lot of times you pass something off from a client and you hope it comes back out, you know, or what they do with it and they might chop it up or put it in a really weird layout that you don’t really like, you know, and so I think -- yeah, I think it’s -- I think in that regard it’s, you know, it’s a really cool one so, you know, so, you know, props to those guys and the crew over there. Yeah, I was really happy --
AJK: -- I was really happy to see that and yeah, and what I’ve been finding myself doing now that I know the different artists of the beers, you know, social media is great for people hey, look at my picture of my beer. So, I’ve found myself, you know, I’ll take a couple, you know, maybe a half hour or, you know, here and there and just search for a certain brewery or a certain beer and then I’ll just tag the people’s photos. Like hey, this artwork was by so and so and so that’s been kind of a fun little side project to do.
AJK: Yeah, so I think it’s cool. So, working with all this beer are you -- do you enjoy craft beer, do you have a favorite?
Lindsey: This may sound crazy but I’m not a big beer drinker.
AJK: It doesn’t sound crazy.
Lindsey: So, I -- well, by -- I like like a good -- I actually really love Mad Elf and I like -- I’m just not a big like, you know, just sitting out on the porch drinking a bunch of Miller Lights kind of beer, you know, or any --
AJK: Oh good, because --
Lindsey: -- kind of like craft beer, like any kind of just like a sustainable beer I guess I’m not super into but I -- but yeah, like Mad Elf is great. Oh, I like like a sour beer which is just like a totally -- it’s totally different than any -- that’s probably why I like them they just don’t taste like a typical beer to me so I actually -- I really want to try the -- they have that sour peaches they just came out with but I’ve got to get up to the brewery and try it but, you know, like a Gose or a Lambic is kind of like if I’m going to get a beer that’s what I’ll go for.
AJK: Okay, okay. So, yeah that does makes sense. I mean I think that’s the best part of where the kind of current beer situation is. I think that I never -- like if you told me, you know, there’s these things called sour beers I like -- I was like when I first heard of it, it was like -- I was like that doesn’t sound like -- it doesn’t sound really good to me. I think you try these different ones and it’s okay, it’s this fruit or that fruit or this is how it’s made and I’m pretty novice on the sour aspect of things. I mean I’m not sure what I like or I don’t like. I mean I’ll try them but I don’t know I can’t be like oh, I like that, I don’t know why I like it yet but I keep trying them. Yeah, that Freaky Peach one I definitely -- I would love -- definitely like to try that one when I saw that one on their Instagram the other day. But yeah, I think it’s -- that’s the best part there’s always new styles and even the Gose which I was like oh, like sea salt and this, that and the other it’s like, you know West Brook out of -- South Carolina makes a really, really good one and they’ve even made like a Key Lime Pie one again, it sounds awful but it was great.
Lindsey: Oh man.
Lindsey: Yeah, sometimes you hear about a flavor and it’s kind of like oh, I mean I’ll try it but it can surprise you, you know, you just have to be open to it.
AJK: Yeah. I think it’s amazing how they’re able to get some, you know, just get some of the flavors to actually be what they are and then you see how they did it and it’s not like there’s another weird beer. I think it’s a peanut butter and jelly one and that just sounds like how do you even do that and it does -- I mean to your point it’s like I’ll try that once. Like I’m not getting myself, you know, I’m not sitting down having a six pack of peanut butter and jelly sandwich but you try -- I think part of you just tries it out because I can and it’s like it’s a thing and so it’s like that’s interesting to me but …
Lindsey: I mean I had a peanut butter and jelly burger recently that was great so you never know.
AJK: Right, yeah. Like even that with food it’s like what are you doing with that and it’s like oh yeah, like even when people were saying like, which is not as adventurous, but like putting like the fried egg on like a burger that -- I was like oh, what does it mean? That’s not really -- that’s breakfast, you know but --
Lindsey: I’ll put a fried egg on anything. I think they --
AJK: Yeah, I’m down with that. No, yeah.
Lindsey: -- jazz up just about any kind of food.
AJK: If I see that option I’m like I’m in, sign me up, yeah.
Lindsey: A dollar for an egg. Put it on top, yeah.
AJK: Yeah. I’m the key to that like oh yeah, I’ll just have all those extra options so give me -- that’s a $30 dollar burger I’m like let’s do it up, let’s go. Well, I think that’s really, you know, I think -- yeah, I think that’s cool. I mean yeah, so Freaky Peach is that only -- brewery only? That’s a bummer.
Lindsey: Yeah. All those Splinter series stuff you have to actually go out to the brewery to get it as far as I know so. But I mean, you know, it’s only about two hours away so it’s not too bad and then they got the -- they got the theme park right there. I mean you could definitely make a day of it.
AJK: Nice. Yeah, have a couple of drinks and then go over to the --
Lindsey: Go on a roller coaster. Yeah.
AJK: Yeah, go see the Chocolate River and, you know, do it up. I haven’t been to Hershey in a long time. Well, the first time I went was when I saw a Phish for the first time at the Hershey stadium in ‘96 but yeah.
Lindsey: Oh, that’s great.
AJK: Yeah, it was good. I snuck out and went to that. It was good. Sorry Mom.
Lindsey: Yeah. I’ve never even been to the theme park. I’ve been out to the brewery and I’ve just kind of like looked longingly over at it but, you know, I have to check it out one of these days.
AJK: Yeah. It was a school trip. Yeah, yeah. It was fun. I mean there’s huge people dressed up instead of like characters it’s like chocolate items so it’s kind of weird you know. And if you travel the world like people aren’t always raving about like oh, like, you know, I’ve been to Europe and like the chocolate’s amazing and no one’s like oh, how about that great American Hershey milk chocolate, you know, it’s like, you know, that kind of things.
Lindsey: Yeah. It’s not exactly a world renowned brand.
AJK: But like -- but yeah, in Belgium do they have, you know, a six foot tall, you know, chocolate bar walking around? No, they don’t have that so.
Lindsey: Yeah, exactly. Yeah, yeah it’s like is it -- are people coming for the marketing or for the chocolate?
AJK: Yeah. The Hershey kiss like that was like I got ridiculed for that like -- and I was like I didn’t even make it like just because I’m, you know, so when you go over there you represent all of America apparently. So, hopefully given things how they are now, hopefully they’re be forgiving because he’s not all of our president but anyway this is not a political podcast but we will interject our two cents every once in a while.
Lindsey: It’s going to happen.
AJK: Yeah, exactly. Now your creative process I always -- this is -- I think this is the ying to the aesthetics’ yang so there’s a better one that I ask everybody. At least I think it is. What type of, you know, you’re -- when you’re creating is there a type of music or there’s kind of a vibe that you’ve got going in your studio, are you into music are you quiet, what have you got going on?
Lindsey: I’ve actually come to realize recently that I create a lot better in silence which is a bummer to me because I like listening to music but I found that my productivity has gone up and I get -- and I’m more focused if it’s just quiet, if I can just find a quiet place which can be tough sometimes, you know. There’s a lot --
AJK: I think the fact that you can do that, I think that should be a whole other series finding a quiet place, yeah.
Lindsey: Yeah. So, if I do throw something on, you know, it’ll be, you know, something ambient or a classical soundtrack or something like that. It doesn’t have -- I think the vocals for me are what becomes the most distracting if I’m trying to focus on something.
AJK: Yeah, I agree. A lot of it -- yeah, a lot of it varies. Some folks, like it’s been interesting, some folks are really into like metal and they like just rock out to metal and then other folks have more like a, you know, electronic or something with no words they can just kind of, you know, get into it but I always just find it kind of interesting. So, all right is there anything -- I want to thank you for making the time, is there anything kind of currently you’re working on or are you working on some of those secret labels that you’re not going to share with us? Anything you’re currently working on?
Lindsey: I don’t have a -- I have something for Troëgs coming out pretty soon. I haven’t started working on it yet but there’s going to be something for them and then the main other thing I’m working on right now is kind of something close to my heart that I work on for the Tacony Community Development Corporation that’s right here in Northeast Philly, they have grants from, you know, the Knight Foundation and they work on kind of revitalizing the neighborhood.
So, they’ve done a lot of like, you know, they’re doing landscape improvements and store fronts and just redesigning a lot of stuff and I do like a lot of their -- like little brochures and their annual reports and that kind of thing. So, I’m working on some stuff for them and it’s a nice like working for the community kind of project that I really enjoy.
AJK: Yeah. And if I’m not mistaken, if you go on Lindsey’s Instagram -- There’s a nice piece up there right from when -- I think it was their fifth anniversary right?
Lindsey: Yeah. Yeah, that was -- so they’ve been working on stuff around here for five years now and it was like an overview. We did a big spread on the inquirer here in Philly to kind of highlight all the different stuff that they’ve achieved over the past five years so that was fun and that was something new for them just from that style. Like I hadn’t done a big like illustrated piece for them before and then that was a good opportunity to do that, you know, you can always kind of break out of the brand guidelines a little bit for an ad campaign so it was fun to do that for them.
AJK: Yeah. I’m looking at it now and I’m thinking there’s launch the Hoagie Trail and I’m thinking like I need to get on that Hoagie Trail, I like a good Hoagie so.
Lindsey: Oh, there’s some killer -- people underestimate, there are some killer food in Northeast Philly you just have to look a little harder for it.
AJK: Yeah. I’ve recently saw a couple. I don’t know if it was -- it was one of the larger publications but one of like a world renown artist went and it was like all these kind of unexpected, you know, because they’re such a good like cultural diversity which is one of the things I love just about Philadelphia in general it’s, you know, I think that kind of it shows how things can be, you know, the coexistence of, you know, but everyone still keeps their uniqueness and it was just really impressive to kind of, you know, I’ve been in Connecticut almost 20 years now but I mean you ask me I always say I’m from Philadelphia, you know, and so it’s always kind of -- I always pull for Philly so I was psyched that you’re from Philly and the fact that you’re in the Northeast is even kind of a, you know, a double thumbs up. I know you’re from Florida originally but, you know, eventually you’ll give in and say you’re from Philadelphia.
Lindsey: I feel like I say that already. It’s funny, I grew up, you know, growing up in Florida and I moved out as an adult and I don’t know it just never -- Philly definitely feels like home to me. It’s just weird, you know, you come to a place and it’s like this just fits my whole vibe, you know, it just -- I say I’m from Philly, you know, it’s not -- I don’t have that like hometown where I was born kind of prize put forward in a way a lot of people probably would.
AJK: Right, right, yeah. Yeah, don’t mess with the Gulf man. Well, again Lindsey I thank you so much for making the time. It was really interesting. I really enjoyed, you know, your work. I think that with your style I think a mural should be next on the future projects. I think your work would --
Lindsey: A mural?
AJK: -- yeah. It will look great.
Lindsey: Yeah. Yeah, there’s been a couple of things that just haven’t come to fruition yet but a couple of different opportunities that maybe -- to do something like that and I’m -- I would love to do a mural so yeah, that’s funny that you say that but thanks for having me. It was a great talk
AJK: All right, well you have a great day and I’ll talk to you soon. Thanks Lindsey.
Lindsey: All right you too.