Karla Pámanes


I am Karla Pámanes and I am an award-winning designer and branding expert based out of San Antonio, Texas. I have designed for brands like BRIT + CO, Discovery, HGTV, Food Network, Facebook (now Meta) and more.

The best part of my job is meeting people who have big ideas that they feel passionately about. I love that I get to use my skills as a designer to help them translate those ideas into a dynamic brand that inspires people to take action. The brand identity design I do for my clients gives them premium positioning in a global marketplace that’s becoming more and more crowded by the day. My process focuses on capturing the distinctive personality of the brands I work with so they can make waves in their industry. After all, the world doesn’t need more boring design!

When I’m not working on brand identities for my clients, I am working with aspiring designers as a mentor. I created a signature design course to share the knowledge I’ve collected from my 15+ years of experience in the corporate, agency, and freelance world. I talk to people all the time who are drawn to the design world but aren’t sure whether they’re ready to pursue it. These conversations inspired me to dedicate more of my time and energy to design mentorship!


Looking forward to 2023, are you optimistic about the role and impact of Graphic Design and Visual Communication in Business? Culture? Causes? Have the events and disruptions of the past few years changed the role or trajectory of Graphic Design?

I feel very optimistic about the impact of graphic design on business and culture. These days, we can access an overwhelming number of options online in just seconds. Because of this, we can be more discerning in choosing things that look good and align with our values. On top of that, we tend to curate our lives for social media, and this impacts our buying decisions, too. How something looks has become a significant factor when people are choosing whether or not to make a purchase, and I think this trend will continue to grow year after year.

Most influential graphic designer(s) or art directors(s) of the past 60 years?

Of today? Paula Scher, Louise Fili, Milton Glaser, and Saul Bass represent the pinnacle of design in my opinion. Some current designers I’m also inspired by are Jessica Hische, Lauren Hom, Tad Carpenter, Jessica Walsh, Zipen Zhu, and Timothy Goodman.

Most influential graphic design firm(s), ad agency(s), or inhouse department(s) of the past 60 years? Of today?

Pentagram, Landor, and Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv all instantly come to mind. Some of the more up-andcoming agencies I’ve been following are Young Jerks, &Walsh, The Heads of State, and Lab Partners.

Favorite or most influential logo or branding project of the past 60 years?

I’m a huge fan of the logo design from Chermayeff & Geismar & Haviv, but especially the simpler ones, like the logos they did for National Geographic and Women’s World Banking.

Favorite or most influential design project or campaign in any medium for the past 60 years?

The packaging at Trader Joe’s. Their design style always gets me; both the design elements and the copy. I end up buying so many things based solely on the packaging! I’m also obsessed with everything that comes from Target’s in-house design team.