Client: Blacksburg Steam Mill

Year: February 2016

A few weeks before I started working for Blacksburg Steam Mill, I was working at a local gas station that my family owns. A long time friend and co-worker quit somewhat suddenly to go work for a new business that was opening in downtown Blacksburg, and that business was of course, the Steam Mill. About two weeks go by and he give me a call and asks if I want to come in, take a look at the space, and maybe kick around some ideas for a logo with the owner. I happily obliged, and we start to work on it. Originally she wanted something that incorporated a Steam Donkey, which is a kind of archaic 19th century device that would pull lumber up a stream.

This was kind of weird to me, but obviously I wanted to please the client so I knocked out what she wanted, verbatim, and also created a more Art Deco, modern, geometric logo. I presented both of them to her at the same time, and she was much more happy with the one that completely deviated from what she had asked for. It’s always a really fun process to me when a client has an idea that might not be the most appropriate for their space and as a designer I get to noodle and play and figure out what fits really well, and it’s tremendously satisfying when that idea is the one that’s chosen.