Chad Thompson

ptw16-chad-thompson

ART DIRECTOR EMC, SAN DIEGO CA

Chad Thompson is an Art Director for tech giant EMC and leads a team of designers that help shape the digital face of the EMC brand. He focuses on projects that elevate brand engagement on mobile platforms and events, innovation and community initiatives, and sales enablement (tools and experience). Drawn to commercial art at an early age, Chad was making logos in art class instead of still life, and perpetually painting surfboards and murals for local shapers and businesses. The intersection of art and commerce led to a BFA in graphic design from Flagler College. Soon after, he cut his teeth on the East Coast in a small design studio with local and national clients before swapping coasts and sharpening his craft with small businesses and global brands in southern California. Grateful that passion met profession, he works to cultivate both while building “white space” into life. Surfing, traveling and beach days with his family keep perspectives in check while drawing, painting, and photography feed the creative drive.

WHERE OR HOW DO YOU FIND INSPIRATION FOR YOUR DESIGN WORK?
The way a fine artist reinterprets their subject in surprising ways gets me fired up and eager to find new ways to communicate an idea visually. Also, nature and its own forms of artistry.

HOW DOES WHERE YOU WERE BORN, GREW UP OR LIVE NOW AFFECT YOUR DESIGN SENSIBILITY OR STYLE?
I grew up on the water and live near it now, fishing, shrimping, surfing and exploring first the Atlantic in Jacksonville Beach FL and now the Pacific off Encinitas CA. Being immersed in nature and not just observing it has a profound effect, feeding style, driving creativity, and amplifying life.

FAVORITE COLOR?
Midnight blue, a dark, dark blue with a trace green

FAVORITE TYPEFACE?
Fatslab & Futura

FAVORITE TV SHOW?
Rake (the Australian version), Planet Earth, and Top Gear (the British version)

FAVORITE BOOKS?
Re-work, Barbarian Days, Ben Franklin’s autobiography

FAVORITE MOVIES?
Kill Bill, Moonrise Kingdom

FAVORITE MUSICIANS OR BANDS?
The Vaccines, Chuck Berry, Spoon, The Clash, Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass

FAVORITE SOCIAL MEDIA?
Face-to-face high fives

FAVORITE FINE ARTISTS?
Digging Phil Noto, Spencer Reynolds, Pat Perry

GREATEST STRENGTH/WEAKNESS AS A DESIGNER?
Saying no/ Saying yes

TALENT YOU WISHED YOU POSSESSED?
Sustainable insomnia

ADVICE TO A YOUNG DESIGNER JUST STARTING OUT?
Put down the pixels and pick up the pencil. Don’t let what’s hot now influence you. Understand it, file it away, look beyond. Take a business class.

IF NOT A DESIGNER, WHAT WOULD YOU BE?
Probably a commercial fisherman with an art and design compulsion.

A MANTRA OR SAYING YOU LIVE BY?
Perfect is the enemy of good

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