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Home » Up Close and Personal: Getting to Know Brent Almond, Design Nut LLC

Capitol Communicator has a report on a virtual dinner involoving photographer Cade Martin and Brent Almond, Design Nut LLC.

Up Close and Personal: Getting to Know Brent Almond, Design Nut LLC

by | Feb 19, 2017

Brent Almond

 

Capitol Communicator is running a series featuring in-depth profiles of communicators in the mid-Atlantic.  In this “Up Close and Personal” profile, we feature Brent Almond. Photography for Capitol Communicator’s profile series is by Cade Martin. Wardrobe styling by Pascale Lemaire for THE Artist Agency; and hair and makeup was by Patti D Nelson and Janice Kinigopoulos for THE Artist Agency.

Brent, please provide us a short bio.

I’ve been the sole proprietor of Design Nut LLC since 2002, so I pretty much do it all but the bookkeeping — I know my limitations! My work has evolved over the years, but I’ve typically been most drawn to branding and logo design. I’m always up for the challenge of marrying visuals, concept, and message. Clients seem to come most often from education, the arts, and other nonprofit organizations.

In 2010, I started DesignerDaddy.com, a blog that began as way to document my changing roles as a graphic designer and a father, and where they overlapped. It’s since become quite successful and is an increasing source of income through sponsored posts and brand partnerships, as well as freelance writing and design. But it’s also an additional creative space for me, to write about and advocate for things I find most interesting or important: design and pop culture, LGBTQ rights and fatherhood.

Are you involved in any other organizations?

I’ve become increasingly involved in the blogging community. I’m very active with the Dad 2.0 Summit — an annual conference that focuses on changing the perception of fatherhood in the media, as well as connecting dad bloggers/influencers with brands. At the next Summit, I’ll be moderating a panel on the place of LGBTQ parent bloggers in relation to branded content.

My son started first grade this year, so I’m also becoming more involved in his school’s PTA.

What are the things you are most proud of?

In July, I hiked nearly 100 miles along Hadrian’s Wall in the UK. I was with a group of 11 other fathers raising funds to start a summer camp for kids whose parents have been touched by cancer. We raised over $40k, and the camp is set to open next year in Maryland.

I’m also proud of the notes I make for my son’s lunch every day. I started sharing them on social media a couple of years ago; they were featured on Buzzfeed and went viral, and have become a great source of fun for me, my son, and his friends (who he sometimes give them to). You can find them at @Superlunchnotes on Instagram.

Who were your personal role models?

My dad is a minister and my mom is an English teacher. Their collective love of words and literature and phrasing important ideas has always been a strong influence on me, whether I was working in advertising, design, or social media and blogging. Plus, they did what they loved — work was never just a job for them, and it never has been for me.

Did they offer advice that helped you in your career?

Other than always encouraging my love of art and of words, I think “Do your homework” was probably the best, most consistent advice they gave me.

What advice do you have for others?

Do what you love, if at all possible. But it’s not always possible. My first year in DC I was working at Supon Design Group and struggling with the higher living costs, so I took a second job at Abercrombie & Fitch. At Pentagon City Mall. During the holidays. All that to say, there are going to be some stony parts and mud puddles on your path to success.

Also — and this is going to make me sound like a grumpy, old man — always start with a pencil and paper. If you can’t sketch an idea (even poorly) you’re not ready to get on the computer or tablet. Pencils have no limitations and don’t rely on plug-ins and filters. Besides, your brain supplies all the best special effects.

What advice do you have on what’s appropriate attire in business?

I work primarily from home, so appropriate attire is pretty open for interpretation. But when I venture out to meetings or conferences, I always try to be professional while still showing a bit of my own flair. I’m big on learning my audience ahead of time, so I know ahead of time how buttoned up I need to be (or not), which is especially crucial in DC.

Where do you buy most of the clothes you wear?

As a bigger guy, I have to do a little more hunting to find something that I really like. And I always keep an eye out for unique finds when I’m traveling or online. So the short answer is, a little bit from everywhere. In this photo, my shirt is from Seaplane, a company that produces only limited-run designs. The hat and the watch are from Provincetown and Rehoboth, respectively.

Is there anything else you would like us to know about you?

I’m in the process of writing and illustrating a children’s book that will feature same-sex parents in a traditionally hetero fairy tale. I’m rushing to finish it before my son stops wanting a bedtime story!

 

About the Author

Capitol Communicator

Capitol Communicator is a unique online and offline resource for Mid-Atlantic advertising, marketing, public relations, digital and media communications professionals. The e-magazine, e-newsletters and events bring together communications professionals, fostering community and providing important information; news; trends; education; and opportunities for networking, career enhancement, business exchange and showcasing great work. Stay current by subscribing to our newsletters by clicking on the subscribe link in the footer of this website and by checking in regularly with Capitol Communicator.

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