Jeff Strahl

JEFF-STRAHL

CREATIVE DIRECTOR, CACTUS, DENVER CO

Jeff is a Creative Director, storyteller, facilitator and friend at Cactus. With over 20 years of experience that includes Natural Product CPG, Conscious Living, Travel and Tourism, and Health and Wellness, he combines traditional advertising and design practices with emerging digital technologies to find the common ground where brands and their audiences can come together. And through the use of humor, emotion, style and reason, he creates meaningful bonds so friendships can form. It’s better to make friends than customers, and Jeff is in the business of making friends. Among others, Jeff has made friends for WhiteWave Foods, Smartypants Vitamins, Gaia, Bhakti Chai, Jackson Hole and the Colorado Tourism Office. He has been fortunate to have received recognition from numerous publications and awards programs. Jeff is also an accomplished photographer, whose work has been featured in PDN, Graphis, many galleries and in his book Little House on the Lake.

WHERE WERE YOU BORN AND WHERE DO YOU LIVE NOW?
Born in Madison WI and live in Denver CO

DID YOU GO TO DESIGN SCHOOL?
I have a BBA from UW-Madison, where I tried to create my own Advertising and Design program. They wouldn’t let me. So I finished as quickly as I could, and then headed west to the Colorado Institute of Art to finish my portfolio work

LEFTY OR RIGHTY?
Right on

MORNING PERSON OR NIGHT OWL?
Night Owl

FICTIONAL OR HISTORICAL CHARACTER YOU IDENTIFY WITH?
Joe Strummer

ARE YOU MUSICAL AND/OR DO YOU PLAY AN INSTRUMENT?
Music is one of my favorite things in the world, unfortunately not a musician

FAVORITE BOOK?
Walden: Life in the Woods by Thoreau. But also love Cosmic Trigger by Robert Anton Wilson

FAVORITE MOVIE?
Animal House

FAVORITE TV BINGE WATCH?
M•A•S•H

FAVORITE SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORM?
Instagram

FAVORITE FINE ARTIST?
Ravi Zupa

FAVORITE CHARITY?
Save the Giants Great Dane Rescue and Tibet House US

FAVORITE FREE TIME ACTIVITY?
Spending time with my family and climbing trees

COLLECT ANYTHING?
Art and memories

COLOR USED MOST OFTEN IN YOUR DESIGN?
Orange, as an accent

TYPEFACE USED MOST OFTEN IN YOUR DESIGN?
Avenir is the go to

DOES PRINT HAVE A ROLE IN YOUR DESIGNS?
Magazine, Newspaper, New Business Proposals, Packaging

DESIGN MENTOR/INSPIRATION/HERO?
Norm Shearer, my team at Cactus, and Frank Lloyd Wright.

GREATEST STRENGTH/WEAKNESS AS A DESIGNER?
Strength is my passion. Weakness is my passion

ADVICE TO A YOUNG DESIGNER JUST STARTING OUT?
It’s a team effort. Surround yourself with the smartest people you can find, talk a lot, collaborate, make each other laugh, work hard, and share credit and gratitude when you succeed. I guarantee you didn’t do it alone.

IF YOU WERE NOT A DESIGNER, WHAT WOULD YOU BE?
Nature Therapist, Arborist, Clinical Herbalist or Acupuncturist

A MANTRA OR SAYING YOU LIVE BY?
You can choose to be right, or you can choose to be happy. Or practice what you preach and live what you teach.

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