Meet Jackie Dryden: Tall Hair Creative's Illustrator
I met Jackie when we were eleven years old. We were on the same pop warner cheerleading team - Farmington Rockets! She went to the local Catholic grade school and I went to a public school middle school around the corner. She was my best friend on the team. Even then, we had inside jokes about our moms. Like when they freak out not knowing where their sunglasses are, but they’re on their head the whole time.
The next season, I was so sad to come back and find out that Jackie was playing volleyball instead of cheering. But as fate would have it, Jackie and I ended up going to the same high school, Mercy HS. And we’ve been best friends ever since.
Even though we haven’t lived in the same city since we were seventeen years old, we’ve remained extremely close. Thank goodness for text messaging and FaceTime. She is my closest and oldest friend. Last year, Jackie married her longtime partner, Mike, and I was lucky enough to be in their wedding. Mike is also in the arts, he’s a Creative Director (hi, Don Draper). So their wedding of course, was gorgeous - simple, classic, and elegant.
When I started Tall Hair Creative, I knew I would need Jackie on board. She is an amazing artist. She earned a BFA Illustration at The Center for Creative Studies in Detroit.
Throughout her career, she’s done a lot of great graphic design work. Right now, she works in Experiential Design, “conceptualizing and bringing to life the overall digital experience of a brand’s event.”
For Tall Hair Creative, Jackie creates original logos, icons, or anything illustration. When a client comes on board, I work directly with the client, but then collaborate with Jackie to brainstorm their illustrative needs. And then Jackie develops one of a kind, but simple designs for our clients.
She also helps me think through problems and build our own creative strategy. One of my favorite things about Jackie, is how thoughtful and intention she is. She will ask a lot of questions, and spend a lot of time processing, before jumping into any conclusion, which makes her an extremely valuable asset to our clients. Jackie is extremely helpful and I am so grateful she is on board with us.
Some of Jackie’s work. You can see more at www.jackiedrawsdetroit.com
I asked Jackie to answer some questions so that people can get to know the person behind our illustration work. Here’s what she said.
What do you do? What is your profession and why do you do it?
I’m a UI designer and an art director. I work in the experiential marketing industry making custom digital experiences that entertain and create emotional connections for the public at various events and exhibits. Touchscreen interfaces, AR and VR applications, and projection mapped experiences are a few examples of work I create. I love the reactions on people’s faces when they’re experiencing the things I’ve done! Their smiles make me smile!
What should people know about your style or approach to design?
I love designing more than almost anything! I love solving problems in a creative way for others. I enjoy the entire process from the first sketch to the final delivery. I’m very focused on creative strategy - I need to know everything about the client, their brand, their ask and why my solutions work best for them. I don’t design just for design sake. There’s reasoning for all my work and I try to always design with that in mind. Good design, not necessarily GREAT or FANTASTIC design, makes for a better world in my opinion. It’s in everything we do and see in this world: from the buttons you push on your microwave to the menus you read at restaurants.
What's your favorite part of graphic design?
There’s a formula to it all and when it’s good, it’s often unnoticeable because it’s so effortless to the user. That’s what I strive for.
What are some design projects that you are most proud of?
This year I designed and art directed multiple digital experiences for Great Park Neighborhoods in Irvine, California. It’s a master planned community of beautiful homes and amenities. They built a new neighborhood and put on a welcome center event for new residents and that’s were the experiences I designed lived. With the help of my team, we executed an AR map of the neighborhood along with various custom designed applications like touchscreen tables and social media feeds.
What do you do when you're not working?
When I’m not working, I enjoy spending time with my husband and our dog, Bear. I love hanging out with my friends and family. I love to travel and be outside and I love to draw.
What is something you're proud of doing in 2018?
This year I’m proud to have advanced to a senior level in my career!
Do you have any exciting plans for in 2019?
Next year I plan to start a family with my husband! We can’t wait to be parents and are looking forward to whatever else lies ahead.
Go follow her instagram @jackiedrawsdetroit to see her beautiful art.
PS - The dog in the photos is my dog, Daphne, not Bear. But if you’re wondering, yes they are obsessed with each other and best friends as well. They are practically the same size and same age and they play for hours. And cuddle as well.