What I learned during my internship at
Oxide (Ryan Aquilino)

“What do you mean I can do whatever I want?” was what I first thought when I learned that I was in charge of a client project. Having never done real work for real clients in the real world, it’s safe to say that I was pretty scared. But even though this was MY project to complete, it wasn’t like I was completely alone. I had the amazing Oxide design team there to help me out whenever I was unsure of what I was doing. Once I got over my initial “wow I have a lot of responsibility for an intern” jitters I learned what I feels like to be an actual, believe-it-or-not, real life designer. And it feels GOOD.

Contemporary Analysis identity

Since 2008, Contemporary Analysis has been using data science to help companies succeed. They take the data that a company has accumulated
and then — using dark magic that is incomprehensible to the majority of the population — provide their clients with highly accurate predictions as to what is likely to happen next. Because of the level of understanding we developed in their business while designing their client portal, it made sense when they
asked us to help better explain what they do through an identity refresh and
a new website.

SVG is a thing now;
you should use it.

With all this talk about resolution independence and responsive design, how many times have you built something for the internet and thought, hey, it sure  would be nice if I could have a vector graphic here instead of a series of pre-saved bulky images switching in and out some way or another?

For example: every single logo ever, social media buttons, line art of any type. If your concern is responsiveness and you’re using images, then you’re in for trouble. As we’ve seen in a previous post, just detecting a high-resolution display can be tricky, let alone all of the work up to that point getting images sized and saved for every case.

Nathan’s college leave-behind

You may have seen our Hey students! post about letting go of leave-behinds. But… as a counterpoint, I feel that I should share the leave-behind
I used while trying to secure a job after graduation.

As we discussed in our previous post, a leave-behind is typically a design school project that is made to give to someone after your interview. It is usually meant to highlight your design work — and hopefully — stick around to serve as a reminder to your potential future employer about how awesome you are.

And in that format… I completely agree that it’s better to not to have a leave-behind. If they are just a miniature version of your portfolio, and they aren’t thoughtfully considered or well constructed, then they are a waste of time.

2013 River City Rodeo poster

For several years now, we’ve been working with the Knights of Ak-Sar-Ben Foundation on design and event promotion for the annual River City Rodeo & Stock Show. (We even partnered with them on a redesign of the event logo back in 2010.) Each year, we take a step back and reevaluate and redefine the target market for the marketing. The rodeo (one of the world’s largest) has always drawn a mass migration of the rural population to the city. Since they will come regardless of promotion, a poster geared towards that group of individuals becomes irrelevant.

Redesigning election forms for
overseas citizens (FPCA and FWAB)

It seems fitting as we approach Independence Day that I share a bit about what Oxide has been up to recently in the world of election-related design. In various ways over the last couple of years, we’ve had the honor of working with the Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP, a division of the U.S. Department of Defense).

Our work has centered around an ongoing improvement of the design and usability of the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA), and the Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB). (Did I mention the DOD was involved? Steel yourself for the acronyms.) These are the two primary documents used by UOCAVA (U.S. citizens living abroad or stationed overseas in the military) to register and vote from wherever they are around the globe.

Introducing the office dogs

If you’ve ever set foot into the Oxide Office, chances are high that you’ve been greeted at the door by one (or more!) of our revolving pack of office dogs. All of us over here take turns bringing our dog into work each day (except Rainbow… who doesn’t have a dog). We even have an additional Google Calendar set up to let us know whose lucky day it is.

Because our pups play such a big part of our day around here, we thought we’d take a moment to introduce you all to them — and as an added bonus, show you a bunch of photos of them being cute around the office!

Oxide featured in LogoLounge
Master Library, Volume 2

Following up on our last post, we also recently received our copy of LogoLounge Master Library, Volume 2: 3000 Animal and Mythology Logos, which includes five logos designed by the Oxide team. While the first book focused on logos featuring crests and initials, Volume 2 features over 3,000 animal and mythology logos. The logos in the Master Library series are selected from the LogoLounge database, and do not appear in any other LogoLounge book.

Oxide featured in LogoLounge
Master Library, Volume 1

We recently received our copy of LogoLounge Master Library, Volume 1: 3000 Initial & Crest Logos, which includes two logos from the earlier days of Oxide Design Co. The first volume of the Master Library series is the beginning of a new series of books by the authors of LogoLounge, featuring the ultimate collection of logos by category. The first book focuses on logos featuring crests and initials, and features over 3,000 logos by award-winning firms from around the globe.

The entries are accepted through their website: logolounge.com.  Two Oxide logos were selected for the book. First is a logo we designed in 2004 for Generation 2 Marketing, symbolizing an electron circling a nucleus. Second is a personal logo I designed in 2006 to commemorate a weekend-long bachelor party trip to Minneapolis for Nathan P. Voss. Right down to the name (Voss + stag party = “Vösstag”), the logo was designed to be an over-the-top collection of too many things all combined together: literally and figuratively an event with too much of a good thing.

From left to right: Generation 2 Marketing, Vösstag