Usually around the new year, I’d post a cute little grid image celebrating my Top 9 posts on social media from the previous year but this year I wanted to do something a little more thoughtful – and to be fair, I don’t even know that I’ve posted 9 times this past year because Mama’s been busy 😅. Nonetheless, I wanted to take a moment to celebrate my top 5 favorite projects of 2023. I picked these projects for a multitude of reasons. For some, I learned a lot and pushed myself to do something new while others were all around dream collaboration from dream clients. All in all, they each deserve to be highlighted and celebrated.
#5 Gauge Bosan – Comic Book Illustrations
Gauge Bosan by John Cooley 2023
Gauge Bosan marks the very first time that I’ve ever illustrated a comic book and what a blast I had doing so. My journey with this comic began in 2015 when I was tasked by creator John Cooley to create the original cover which can be seen, featured on the back of issue one. Fast forward to 2023 when I got the call to do the illustrations I was super excited and raring to go. It’s always important to me to work on projects that tell authentic stories from diverse perspectives and Gauge Bosan exemplifies that. It tells the story of a super intelligent black female lead who can easily be named the smartest hero ever to exist and I am here for it! Follow Patera Ann Jackson as she navigates real life with the addition to exciting new abilities. Be sure to grab your copy of Gauge Bosan from Fan Boy Entertainment.
I would love to do more comics in the future. This project in particular, taught me a lot about time management and it boosted my productivity. I was drawing faster than I’ve ever drawn before to help Fan Boy Ent. meet their printing deadline. Being the first I’ve done, it definitely gave me a good insight into the actual time needed to produce and fully illustrate a comic which will definitely come in handy in projects to come. It was a good baseline experience that will certainly impact the way in which I schedule similar projects in the future. Shoutout to John Cooley and Fan Boy Entertainment for allowing me to illustrate my first comic with them.
Portrait of Ms. Rose, 2023
Although my business is has largely focused on commercial projects in recent years, portraiture will always hold a special place in my heart. There’s something very beautiful and intimate about capturing a person’s likeness through art and though I don’t do much of it these days, I was deeply honored to have had the opportunity to do this one.
I was entrusted to capture the likeness of the beautiful Ms. Rose who made her transition earlier in 2023. I was commissioned to create this portrait for her daughter Leah and it turned out to be such a beautiful image. We framed the image in gold which I think adds to the elegance of this portrait.
#3 Alpha Sync Academy Brand Design
Secondary Logo Design for Alpha Sync Academy
If there was ever a project where everything was just…seamless and perfect, this one would be it. The founders of Alpha Sync Academy entrusted me to not only create their logo design, but their brand guidelines as well and it was by far, the smoothest collaboration on this list. I made a video a few weeks ago about hiring a graphic designer and illustrator which was largely inspired by my more challenging projects/client interactions this year but Alpha Sync Academy made up for those challenges in a major way.
Alpha Sync Academy is a learning platform aimed at teaching the nuances of stock trading. One of the things I loved about their mission, was the focus on discipline and synchronicities. Their mission statement was very inspiring to me and it was definitely reflected in my work experience with them. Needless to say, they were a dream to work with. To learn more about Alpha Sync Academy, be sure to check out their website below.
#2 From Memphis With Love – Food Truck Logo Design
Primary Logo Design - From Memphis With Love Wings & Things
Over the years, I’ve created logos-a-plenty but From Memphis With Love was the first time I’d done a logo for a food truck and it’s hands down the most excited I’ve ever been to see the final product in full use. This project was sooooo much fun. When commissioning me for logos and/or branding, I usually offer packages which include a set amount of design options to choose from. Well, I must have been in my design bag for this project because Jermaine at From Memphis WIth Love purchased rights to all three design options two of which can be seen on his truck. My favorite of the three is a design inspired by the neon signs on Beale Street. It definitely fits the brand and overall feel of Memphis.
If you’re ever in Los Angeles, CA and want to get a taste of authentic Memphis wings AND have a chance to see my design work up close in person, be sure to stop by From Memphis With Love parked at 215 W 14th St, Los Angeles, CA 90015
#1 Divine Feminine Essence – Book Cover Design
Book Cover Design for Divine Feminine Essence
My No. 1 pick of 2023 goes to the book cover design for Divine Feminine Essence by Jarrell Hamilton. This project was the most aligned to my greater ambitions and it felt so….right. Generally speaking, I get a lot of projects that require me to focus on either illustration or graphic design but rarely both outside of creating logos. So any time I can combine both illustration and graphic design is a win.
Jarrell gave me the opportunity to do both and to do both on a subject that speaks near and dear to my heart. It turned out to be a beautiful cover. Even though I’ve designed book covers before, this project helped me realize how much more of these I’d like to do. It’s without a doubt, my favorite project of the year. Be sure to grab a copy of Jarrell’s book on Amazon.
Moving into 2024 I’m manifesting doing more branding projects (not just logos but the whole brand identity) and more publishing projects – whether that’s book covers, interior illustrations and design or the whole shebang: Cover, layouts and illustrations. And we can’t forget, the Cosmic Gateways Tarot! It’s going to be a fun year and I’m super excited to have you all along the journey.
✨Wishing you each a happy, creative and prosperous New Year. Let’s goooooooo! ✨