California Voter Information Guides

At Oxide, we use the term “election design” to describe design that solves issues across the full range of the voting experience. It’s not just ballot design; it’s things like wayfinding and informational signage at polling places, data visualization of election results, and user interfaces for election officials’ administrative software.



What’s a “sport”?

If you’ve been around the Oxide office lately, you’d have heard us bantering back and forth over the difference between a competitive activity and a “sport”. For myself, I think there’s an interesting series of questions there as well as a pretty funny discussion.

  • What is the traditional definition of “sport”?
  • What, according to popular culture, is considered a sport today?
  • Which definition takes precedence (popular opinion vs. traditional)?

It’s my hope that through this brief blog post, I’ll at least challenge your perspective.



One Omaha identity

Earlier this year we had the opportunity to work with the newly formed organization One Omaha to develop their identity.

One Omaha is a non-profit, citizen-driven initiative created to provide support for Omaha’s neighborhoods. Formed after the closing of the Neighborhood Center’s Omaha office in 2013, One Omaha (the Office of Neighborhood Engagement) will take over as the main resource for neighborhood development and advocacy in Omaha. Their mission is to facilitate the development of Omaha neighborhoods through advocacy, development, and education for neighborhood alliances
and associations.

Currently Omaha’s neighborhood associations are somewhat disconnected and operate as individual groups. There is an imbalance in resources and support throughout the city. One of the goals of this organization is to help to rectify that imbalance by engaging neighborhood residents and acting as the main advocate for neighborhood alliances in Omaha. The ultimate goal of One Omaha is to make Omaha better and stronger by building and supporting these communities.

We worked with the volunteer task force (made up of neighborhood alliance members from across the city) to develop an identity they could call their own. They talked to us about many aspects of their organization but these ideas of community and connecting people kept coming back to the surface.

We came up with a few options we felt were all getting at these core ideas.
The chosen direction is both a literal interpretation of a neighborhood (a map showing neighborhood streets) and a more abstract idea of a community
(the bringing together of different pieces to form something new, in this
case an “O”).

To learn more about One Omaha, contact them at info@oneomaha.org.
Get out and join your local neighborhood association and help support
your neighborhood!



Sheana, Mr. Muggle,
and the Magic Book

I’ve loved writing for a very long time. Imagine my delight when, while exploring the box of keepsakes that my mom saved for me, I discovered a hardbound book I wrote in fifth grade.



New Oxide hand-painted signage

Well, it’s not that new, but if you haven’t visited Oxide’s north entrance since last year, we’d like to share our new hand-painted signage!

With our neighborhood — the Blackstone District — on the rise, it felt like time to spruce up our building. We knew we wanted to do something that would stand out and look appropriate to the building’s age. We considered repurposing a vintage neon sign like we did on the front of our building, but after looking around for a few months, we realized that old signs are either destroyed and scrapped or cost a small fortune. We decided that a hand-painted sign was the perfect solution — when the neighborhood was first established in the early 20th century, hand-lettered murals and signage were universal to the area.

We let our OCD run free, did a bunch of measuring, and designed a layout that worked well with the available space. However, finding someone that was willing to actually get up on a ladder and paint it was more difficult than you’d imagine. After asking around for some time, we finally found Sharon Davis of Arbor Street Studios. In the months since then, they have become the go-to sign painters in Omaha. And as many businesses in our neighborhood look to cultivate the character of yesteryear, hand-painted signs in general have become the de facto choice.



Oxide featured in LogoLounge
Master Library, Volume 4

I’m pleased to announce that eight logos designed by the Oxide team have been selected for inclusion in LogoLounge Master Library, Volume 4: 3000 Type and Calligraphy Logos. Each volume in the Master Library series focuses on a different specific category — Volume 4 features over 3,000 typographic and word-based logos. The logos in the series are selected from the LogoLounge database, and do not appear in any other LogoLounge book. The entries are accepted on an ongoing basis through their website: logolounge.com, which also serves as an exhaustive resource of logos being created by design firms across the globe.



Mula Mexican Kitchen website

Over the past year and a half, Oxide has had the honor working with Michael Sanchez on his latest restaurant, Mula Mexican Kitchen & Tequileria. Located on the corner of 40th and Farnam, this establishment has become one of the must-see destinations in Omaha. This modern take on Mexican food has something for everyone with specialty margaritas & tequila cocktails to high-end dinner and lunch menu items.

Throughout our working relationship with Mula, we’ve been privileged with branding the restaurant, lending a hand in everything from the logo to interior design. We recently completed the latest project of the campaign: a new website.



Skål! Scandinavian Spirits Identity

The Museum of Danish America, located in Elk Horn, Iowa, has been open since 1994 as a national center for the Danish-American community. Its mission is “to celebrate Danish roots and American dreams”.

Oxide has had the privilege of working with the Museum of Danish America on various projects in the past. Recently, they asked us to develop the look and identity for their upcoming exhibition on the history and culture of beer and aquavit in Scandinavia, called “Skål! Scandinavian Spirits”.

The exhibition highlights the drinking traditions of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. It follows those traditions to Scandinavian-American communities answering questions like “What is aquavit, anyway?” and “How do you ‘skål’ correctly?” We love broadening our knowledge base on anything and everything, and, needless to say, we learned quite bit about Scandinavia researching this project.



Commercial Flooring Systems

We recently had the pleasure of working with Commercial Flooring Systems to develop a new identity and logo, business papers, and a website. We love broadening our list of industries that we’ve gotten to learn about, and flooring was a welcome addition.



Design Student Interview

Last year, I was contacted by Ashley McFeely, an instructor at the University of Nebraska at Omaha‘s Graphic Design program. Ashley was looking for professional designers who could commit to mentoring her Graphic Design 3 students throughout the upcoming semester. During the initial class meeting, students came up with various concepts for their single semester-long project. They then broke into small groups based on the ideas that interested them the most. They were given the week to build presentations and pitch their ideas to the mentors. I was really impressed with the excitement students Evan Ludes and Natali Bianco had for their concept. After a discussion with my fellow mentors, I requested that I work with them.

I really enjoyed the mentoring throughout the semester and wanted to share one of my student’s thoughts on the experience. Evan was graciously willing to answer a few questions I had for him about his group’s project.