Ryan Brinkerhoff has a full time job as a designer for Origo Branding Company but in his spare time he designs posters, cards and the occasional t-shirt for Bandito Design Co – a store he set up on Big Cartel with buddies from art school. He shows us where this after-hours design work happens.
Tell us about the kind of work you do. How long have you worked from home? And where is home? I graduated from the Columbus College of Art & Design in 2008 and since then I have been working full-time as a designer at Origo Branding Company. I began designing screen printed posters and cards in my free time around summer 2009 with buddies from school. We wanted to start something that really pushed ourselves to continue growing as designers/illustrators out of school, and it has really turned into a passion of mine. Home is a 1 bedroom, 450 sq ft apartment in the Victorian Village/Short North area of Columbus, Ohio which I share with my girlfriend, Katie Tyne. This part of town is very creatively supportive and a lot of fun to live in.
Describe your style and how it relates to the space you work in and also the work you produce. I enjoy creating a lot of retro-inspired work with the use of bold colors and geometric shapes. Above all, my goal is to make things that have a lot of character or tell a fun story. My home workspace is a mixture of modern and vintage decor which directly relates to the style of my work. It is very important for me to work in a fun and comfortable environment where things don’t always have to be super organized.
How do you keep your work space organized? It gets tough at times to stay organized because of the size of the workspace, but as previously mentioned, that’s ok. I think I work better with a little bit of disorder. Since I switch often from project to project, it is nice to have a few small piles of sketches/inspiration going at once.
Other aspects like the inventory of prints and the mailing supplies are organized at all times in their respective corners and shelves. NERF guns and other toys are usually close at hand because it is important to take breaks and have fun when working at home.
When you set up your home office what did you have to keep in mind? Were there any particular obstacles to overcome? The compact nature of the apartment led to the overlapping of areas. The kitchen runs into the living room which runs into the office.
These gray areas in the boundaries of my workspace really contribute to the casual stopping and starting of my work habits. Staying focused and not getting distracted is an obstacle at times, but it is one that is inevitable with working at home — especially because I don’t want to be working 100% of my day.
Is there any piece of home office furniture you covet right now? Right now, I would really like the Professor’s flat file by Poul Kjaerholm for all of the prints. The prints are currently bagged up and cataloged on a set of shelves, in an ill-fated space saving attempt. I would really like a system where the prints are out of the way with no chance of getting messed up or damaged. And of course, that flat file is so pretty.
What would you change about your work space? It would be really nice to get more natural light in my space. Most of the windows are obstructed by trees or neighboring houses. It is nice in the early afternoon, but before and after it is almost impossible to check Pantone chips or paper samples accurately.
What inspires you? Pop culture, cartoons, comic books. I was very lucky to have parents that supported my interests very early on. I love the fact that they let me watch cartoons and read comic books and play video games as a kid. I still gather a lot of inspiration from those outlets, and I think it really helps me and my ultimate goal of creating something that makes people smile.