FRANK FORD  /  creative director + artist  / worldclass pedigree earned by working for the masters.


view my portfolio need a mentor? details are at the bottom of this page
you'll get quality attention + development until completion of a droolworthy (major market) portfolio is produced and business accumen is obtained. apply now so you can lead later / mentorships are open to anyone +everyone on planet earth thanks to skype. the 1 pre–requisite: desire

old news: mistaken identity / leggo my logo
i am the designer of the first ff squared, yen yang box logo. with well documented proof. although designed in 1984 as a sophmore at lsu. it remains one of my favorite signatures. yes, i'm aware of ffontshop, i was one of their first usa customers. i'm somewhat flattered. they rotated my pre-historic logo, they market products i love, so it's cool (and it's ancient history) but people are always asking about it. funny how a logo i made in 1984 with a radiograph pen + ruler defies trend as it remains in use (and mis-abuse) to this day.


my advertising + brand work for clients:

être–verb: be. to be. let it be. (now it's a pretty cool brand name.) the É is an accent circumflex



r</a>dical concept: no computer. just my hands, a camera with film!, paint, research of the french language aka:

t h e  h u m a n  t o u c h.  


that's what's for sale here: innovative ideas + execution, with client roi always top of mind
and ya gotta be fresh to do it + ya gotta prove it.

i still think young. but now with wisdom.



p r o o f :

cue ≥  the pudding




l e t  t h e  f i l m  r o l l   >


design work for ferrari

advertising workferrari: the clothing, the accessories, the madness.


advertising projects for ferrari / collateral + outdoor
our brand strategy meetings + their outcomes.tagline for this round: "the clothing. the accessories. the madness"
outdoor + clothing taglines: too dangerous, too macho, too italian, too intense  


view my portfolio 55 more portfolio samples + bio



above: "loving the alien" branded this earthly mountain bike. funny how a little dingbat can really save your ass sometimes.

febru</a>ry post #2


brand identity / saab + gary fisher co–brand / thrilling work with non-billable late night hours

wrong text replace replace replace are now available direct / i'm adding useage samples daily.7of the 20–something fonts i created for commercial sale / connect with me at below are samples of each that t i've used on client projects.these are now for sale direct, no middlemen. fyi: these are display fonts (meaning they are intended to be used youuuuuuge! if you're googling my fonts, you've found them. previously marketed by thirstype, t26 + prototype.i took them off the market five years ago. making 50% for wrist-cracking work while the foundries made 50% while sleeping. ugh. no .

still make custom corporate and identity fonts.many of them are at my online portfolio was my most popular typeface. a big family of 7 styles. 2 of the styles were in wide use in television, film and graphic design. technoire is deemed by typographical gearheads as the most influential font of the1990's (topping 4 emigre fonts) a career–thrilla! pricing? dirt cheap. free to students and faculty.also free if used on a high exposure project crediting me as typographer.i'm not sure what to charge. email me, we'll work it out for peanuts i'm sure. my custom typefacces available with retaiiner, but it'll runya. it's an incredible amount of work.


the 7: technoire | ghetto prince | stroke | zydeco | paradise | loving the alien < free sample


view my portfolio connect with me at sport brand love / some of my best work is with sport brands.maybe its because they let me loose with my esoteric sensibilities of color, scale and type. more samples later. reebok, nike +more. i think i may post on my interview with nike just for it's humour






this site is being developed


febru</a>ry post #1

b®andnew client work in progress / FIT / name, logo and tagline concept +execution on a teenie-tiny budget

fit is a custom alterations company that serves high-end department stores. this may be the greatest optic challenge of my career. i always thought houndstooth was symetrical. not! every other row and column is a different size! dizzying but satisying. my next step is to weave the letters fit in and out of the pattern. if you look closely you can see how i have mistaken my grid. should have a final logo by mid-march. the yellow is for demo purposes only. i think i'm going with a chinese red for the logotype. i tried treating each square like a unit and color individually—doesn't work! bummer. that was my plan from the start. also trying to handletter an italic script to weave in and out of the negatives spaces. i may lose my eyesight soon:-)







custom typography serves as the logo and all internal communication with a set of 12 styles.


above: widely used image design for avid ad campaigns and collateral.


magazine ad announcing new software product. synthetic rubber glued into spine. not a tip in.

ebru</a>ry post #2


one of many campaign taglines: "tools for storytellers"

logo, copy, collateral, print + digital advertising and a custum font family of 12 for avid technology, inc.
very gratifying work. most longterm projects are.with a load of advertising, collateral and 12 custom typefaces, tagline definition, supporting statements, copywriting, graphic design, image design = many a snowy new england night! some commercial art is not temporary. atleast thats what i shoot for.


view my portfolio more samples / in online portfolio





mirage furniture / complete branding and collateral project. longterm..

one of the greatest clients ever. challenged me to deliver some of my best work of all times. they were supportive to the point that — when i suggested we print the business cards on aluminum sheets? no problem. my clients take stage front/center, i'm the support system, i work the background, empower their success with real collaboration and strive for their roi projections.

view my portfolio more samples + bio




™<teachable moment(s) my 3 main mentors

the most influential font of the 90's (according to critics) pffffft, i am not, never have been, nor will ever be better than emigre.


brand identity that makes cartier envious


brand identity for design firm thirst / i was offered a job at tiffany's nyc based on this project and just 2 others that i showed. left behind as gifts.

ebru</a>ry post #2

master mentor (1) rick valicenti, thirst /



a tale of 3 cities + 4 rockstars (1 actual rockstar, name of mick) and me mr. wideeyes pictured above.

thirst identity / collaboration with my mainman / rick valicenti, aiga gold medalist / my best director ever / why best? firstly, who else would or could direct me in a custom identity font, plus i learned how to art direct esoteric talents from this guy, after just 3 conversations, and he put me on the map as a founding member of thirstype, led my corporate crusade attempts towards dot com history, helped me deliver my greatest story ever, etc.etc. great designer dividends on a human scale. one art direction session consisted of 1 sentence — "frank, relax. it's only rock and roll" for a stones fan since 1967 thats all that was necessary. but i learned how to read between his edges — that advice was stronger coming from rick than from mick. and OMG the foreshadowing. next entry below) it clicked, that little voice inside one's desinging head. saying to myself i have no fear — since then i never feared working with "the big boys" in the "big league". pffft.

i've had many interviews when they reach this sample in my book?
1 or 2 things have and will happen — 1. they totally check out / a minute passes, all the sudden i'm pounded with a million questions. or, 2. they give me the ole "too much experience" line (pc formatted, and deliverd subtley ofcourse) because this package makes many viewers feel like they are at the counter of an expensive jewelry store and they haven't brought enough money. ruh row — frank has too much experience, now he looks expensive. a recruiter in manhattan told me to cut it from my book. pfffff — we stopped seeing each other that day. i use it to reverse interview.

™"the most influential font of the 90's" moi? uh whatever. nice praise, i disagree + don't need that pressure

rick is one of the most influential mentors +collaborators of my career. it was a career–high experiencing his work and mine joining forces multiple occasions. this one in what is the most handsome identity i've ever seen. anywhere. you don't have the advantage of it's touch, it's perfectly odd yert acceptable color pallette and manifesto meets 1950's blush pink-funk with perfect chicago gold engraving throughout. thats a plug for my engraver friend at artistry, chicago. i can't seem to top this damn thing, everyone goes gaga over it. its never been in or out of fashion. careerbuilder or careerdamper. more importantly for me it was (and still is) one of 3 samples that i use to qualify a potential job, boss, client or recruiter — if showing this disqualifies me, thankyou very much, you've done me a huge favor because you've let me know ahead of time — the work i potentially do, you'll piss on it. you obviously dont know good work, even when it shakes you up. pass. you just failed my interview. yeah, they didn't teach us that stuff in school.

(ok rick, final suckup) back to that magical day of direction: it stuck. like a new mantra. not much time elapses. as manifesting or serendipity would have it — look at that! frank, he's working in boston, and look who he's working for! fuckin A and i ain't skeert i reply. i'll never delete this next one from the portfolio either. like it, like it, yes i do. (love it actually) >whats that by now? about 7 lessons–learned from one very-human art direction session? i hope i can impact students like that. a word of caution for those new at graphic or visual design:viewing other designers work is healthy, it helps you develop your vocabulary, but when you encounter a high level of quality? do not get either dissapointed or infatuated. we are working on you. not other peoples work you admire.a warning on rick and michael or any pther rockstar: thou shalt not covet thy fellow artists work. they are them. you are you. the best you can do is focus on you. you are also unique in the way you see things. never borrow, never envy, never emulate. onluy you can design your way. in web trolling, barnes + nobleing, try your best to not ever be influenced by what you see as this months flavor of the month! if you do, you will drive yourself nutZ. you could have spent that time on you. developing your touch. that word is so strong and relevant, i must stop and come back to it. in essence we all have our "touch" i dont have yours you dont have mine. great. you dont like your touch at the present time? hang tight, like everything else that takes time and other inputs. (more later).

™<teachable moment> with more moral / more intertwined entanglements of irony to the story> inspiration + education for this next project also came in musical format: "you shouldn't take it so hard" solo record by keith richards.get the project done, move on, keep learning.

i've been around this block10 times — you cannot experience this level of joy at a corporations art dept., nor from now magazine or bookflavor of the month by expert–x. my advice? go explore whats next, who's next. a perfect fit is out there for you. but only you can find them. safe to say the safe 9 to 5 won't provide the "satisfaction" we desingers crave. but are you willing to work all day monday through all night wednesday when your boss catches you a big fish? a fish of say mick jagger proportion?  (no. mick will not be asking you to come hangout with him on the conrer of the west 8th street and the 6th avenues) for how long will you be willing to sacrifice your personal life? are you planning on frank's lesson learned #103? and like me marry your career? know the + and the – before taking that plunge. yep, i married my career thirty years ago, and we've been together ever since.i think it's time we start seeing other people.

be a sponge not a rock. that completes your freshman year


album cover designfebru</a>ry post #2: goin to a go-go with my 2 favorite jagger's


master mentor (2) michael jager / jdk founder: +


album design for vh1 + mick jagger / i made while at titanium / but was it all me, was it manifested via rick? michael? myself? did they unknowingly assist, inspire and prepare me for this? oh yeah. this one and so many others in my days spent sqeezing in the big league. Oh the glamour! bullshit, they also instilled in me the danger of idol worship and how style–lies! what makes these guys great, why do they endure? they know the art of art deirection, they find your strengths and they play them up. all the while they're building your confidence, they are boss/mentor all at once. more importantly, they create and radiate positive vibes. have you noticed your best work happens when you feel good? (more later)

lessons learned from my supervisor + mentor michael jager (1 sentence of thoughtful direction ≥ 1 million words of a bs critique) michael jager had a hand in a lot of my work.resisting his style was not easy. he was there, albeit ghostly. one lesson learned in his studio remains a memorable right turn on my path.on a blistery cold june day, yes. june. it was effing snowing! there at jdk in burlington he defended my use of my favorite 2 letter word i had placed on his client brochure. everyone else thought my headline was lame. too lazy. too eay. too this / too cranbrook compadres were consequently bitch–slapped by michael at my desk. omg, i cannot express those 5 minutes adequatley. he stepped up and toweled me off on another occasion that same summer. i was being teased that i had a bizarre use of color. i admit that. but michael said boldy in front of everyone "you guys, you dont see it. frank's use of color has a european sensibility, and it's obvious to me he knows his art history. bingo. he nailed that one too. ever since then i used the headline "go" every chance i could get away with it.and have not changed my strange color theory.and here again i attempt it for vh1. more + karma unknowingly arrives after the creative brief. mick had titled his work "go" also, insisting vh1 use it. i already had! my career is packed with much nuttier. stay tuned. point being — things like michael jager did? they stick. they transform your development and they prove  you dont have to be a salesperson to be the cream of the crop director in the usa. but you do have to provide a supporting rationale for your work.take note from rick + from michael and after a lifetime, myself.

*that* is how you art direct–it's not a title, it's your duty! learn your staff's buttons + press them. gently. thoughtfully. get out of their way, teach them to see, and show them how they get in their own way! be the impetus. yeah! i have spoken.but isn't it nutz the detail you remember when you respect another artist and their work! its not silly, this path can be full of magic, serendipity andextreme love and lust and wonder. i will never drill it in enough — you choose your destiny, you decide who you work with. based on your criteria. do not ever appear needy or hungry to anyone in this biz. and youre better off as starbucks best barista for a year than you be acquiring uninown damges of a job that does not fit you or your soul. hey! weve got to protect that creative spirit. screw around and let that heart, that spirit get damaged? age 30? done. toast. creatively spent. then what? start over with a new major, another 4 years? doubtful wouldnt you say.

class project / i'm not here to force your hand. i'm merely a guidepost. my job is to force you into realworld exercises like our next one: your assignment: write a graphic novel or letter, or whatever / to your 50–year old self. tell the old you what you wanted in your life! tell that older version of you exactly the path you chose, why and explain what you accomplished, and anything you think you may have missed out on. i want to see you attack this project in huge detail. (hint: a big sketchbook creatively crammed, illustrated would be great) because this is a no-rules design and writing project serving as chapter 1 of your career survival manual. this project will inform our next class, next class, next next next until you're ready for survival in the digital jungle. we will grab any fears by the horns. and tackle it now.another morale? be patient, absorb. your day will come. just dont force it.the droolworthy designer job, it can have a way of finding you when your're ready. especially in the cloud of social media. (more later)

<teachable moment> it's only rock and roll. don't beat yourself up! you'll kill it next time up for bat. i've learned more from michael than even he knows,but it takes time to deploy. first of all—you need clients who will allow you to bust out! btw: he designed one of the top 10 brochures in the history of design named "living brand" recieving it was a true gift. the gift of a realworld education. a co-worker stole it from my office. yeah it was that good.he continues to contribute in a big way. watch him beat the drum of solidarity.i'm going to paste a recent email from jaeger here. even us older dudes need a pep–talk now and then. jaeger does it without even again, with the use of thoughtful language.remeber—we are communication professionals, that's what's on sale here! so let's get the basics done's an excerpt—he edited my subject line to read "design lifevolution (like myself and rick—always making word plays) his timing was cosmic. i was feeling shattered from working without much sleep or much reward—a huge influence on my career as an artist, david bowie had died early that morning., everything in my world was on a system of a down. bowie's passing was a pretty big deal for me and my friends. but there's always light in those dark paste:

Frank, welcome to the new now! wonderful to see your voice and thank you for your shared sentiments and heart felt insights on true creative hero David. Your thoughts we’re pure of heart, respectful of his art and his decades of resonating positive and relentless impact on the world, its ideas and ideals. I too felt the respect and loss to the core. I too was the kid who lovingly painted lightening bolts across my jean jacket to wave the Bowie flag others feared so. Frank—it’s great to know you are still creating, inspiring and making a positive presence felt in the world.And thank you for your kind note and thoughts on our time explored in the creative cloud of JDK design.

inline graphic here >

Be well, be inspired. Create fearlessly! Time is waiting in the wings!
Peace/Posi/People/16 / Michael Jager
“Nothing is a mistake. There’s no win and no fail. There’s only make”

years later and the guy can still inspire me with his smart choice of words. remember that! words are poiwerful things. and we are in the word business.

when you're a sponge, not a rock? the smallest of things will spur you on. when you're head is clear and your heart open simple things like a word from a friend can really snowball into a mountain of positive energy. that's a key ingfredient to my secret sauce—positive energy. it's required to deliver your best creative.i've seen it in myself and in my colleagues so many times. you think i'm zen? i have colleagues that dosome really out-there stuff for positive energy flow. it's required for your foundational development too.your first job should be with a creative director who shares this philosophy, most of the really good ones do. avoid negative energy at all costs. naysayers or deadwood directors will program your entire circuitry incorrectly. plus, they're a effing buzzkill. who wants to be around that shit all day. we'll converse on this topic via skype.

master mentor (3) dann de witt / the name de witt is a perfect fit, every minute was an education in rarified, esoteric branding and advertising. like me, he doesn't do self promotions, so you may not have heard of him either. you think he cares? pfffft...dann is all about the new new way to *think* about the new new thing.


workbook of 101 lessons learned + not learned. for my mentorship class with favorite fellow artist robin wrig + the inspirer michael jaeger of solidarity






9/11 painting +sculpture while living life during wartime in manhattan / sorry for poor image quality


priv%te work / on a very large scale


void, by frankford / created while adman in nyc / in the "fall" of 2001

thick high gloss finished plexiglass + backlit: casts a reflection on the viewer / and imposes with 9 foot height / 7 watt spot reveals the following artists statement which was applied in subtle deep indigo reflective metallic

inscrption — "in a thick black cloud i am choking on the lost intentions of nearly 3,000 souls floating over my head"

it's my personal favorite of a 30 year moonlit mountain to climb creative career / technically masterful? nope.. meaningul? oh yeah, more than words can say. injured during a seperate surgery that day but i survived. other injuries i cannot disclose. art therapy was required. this was built in my studio apartment which itself was suffocating, i could hardly navigate around the mess, indoors or outdoors, with the armed sodiers at my buildings door monitoring bomb threats, i was in a war, a witness to horror, duct taped windows, heartbroken by 7 days of dark events. forgot i was on an no trains or airplanes out. art baricaded my bunker making it a soft place to fall. enough for now, further details are not pleasant.

i survived. building this beautiful documentary helped. never wrote a poem before. or since.



i remain proud + grateful of this monument. it's true–there's no joy without pain.



purchased by my nyc neighbor, a film producer with incredible taste



rv italy

ebru</a>ry post #2


™<moral: inspiration hides in the strangest places. or to use rick's word's "doors can open in the darkest of days"

global collaboration so to speak / digital postcards from the edge, between the edges. / magical, miraculous, moments shared with my mentor rick v. while i was in dallas he was in italy. the reults (other than the one above) remain un–published.





my paintbrush (see images below)

ebru</a>ry post #2


what is a hybrid creative? a lot of people are calling themselves a hybrid. what it means—experience that is broad and deep across the discipline. in my case: product design / cosmetic design of body parts. i've designed cars, motorcycles, products, ads, fonts, photos, paintings, sculpture, on + on + on. you could say that i am a hybrid. i don't brand myself that way because it's overused and under delivered upon. 15 years ago it was quite hip to be a hybrid. photo above: my minimalist bmw m3 aka "dreampuff" complete makeover 2015

view my portfolio more sporty works uploading soon / work for nike, reebok, ferarri + lots more








designing for different countries





april flowers + logos / confession: the moment this sketch began i knew i had it nailed / rare!



mon© furniture / colors to finalize / deep asian metallics with spot varnish is my plan. like the red and purple above. whew. if you only knew how long i've been wanting to work on a modern furniture account! modern furniture / japanese influence with france as the target. hired to create the name, logo, tagline, business cards and a mailer. this shoots me right in the sweetspot. a typical FF branding project. i shouldn't even be showing(off) before © process. looks and feels like them, their products, their philosophy.

the french should love it."mon" translated from french means — mine. spelled backwords it means — name. i love that to death! sounds like a photo–op using refelection may be on the shot list. mais oui trébienbien et bonchance a moi.

™<teachable moment> considerations for global client work
for instance: use of the color red symbolizes something entirely different in morocco than it does in france.

good benefits about being raised in casablanca? you grow up speaking french. and with new orleans as a french city i'm well versed in the language. those 2 things have helped me win several international clients. clients know that i'm sensitive to cultural relevance. what i design in america i would not do in paris or casablanca or milan.



ghetto prince™ is a gift to visitors who contribute anything to improving this "chalkboard"

ghetto prince—began the movement of elegantly wasted, drawn way ahead of it's time. 93

</a>  ghetto prince: inspired by jow strummer + alan ginsburg


my passion for type design / is now a gift to you: 7 of the 20-something fonts i created for commercial sale / connect with me at below are samples of each that t i've used on client projects.these are now for sale direct, no middlemen. fyi: these are display fonts (meaning they are intended to be used youuuuuuge! if you're googling my fonts, you've found them. previously marketed by thirstype, t26 + prototype.i took them off the market five years ago. making 50% for wrist-cracking work while the foundries made 50% while sleeping. ugh. no .

i still make custom corporate and identity fonts. some of them are at my LI online portfolio. technoiire is my most popular typeface (in terms of sales and influence). a big family of 7 styles. 2 of the styles were in wide use in television, film and graphic design. technoire is deemed by typographical gearheads as the most influential font of the1990's (topping 4 emigre fonts) a career–thrilla! pricing? dirt cheap. all fonts are free to students and faculty. also free if used on a high exposure project with credits. email me, we'll work it out. / custom typefacces available with retaiiner,


7 of my fonts now available: technoire™ | ghetto prince™ | stroke | zydeco | paradise | loving the alien < free sample

"loving the alien" is a free download (yes. it was drawn when the song by the same name was released)


view my portfolio more samples + bio  




1970's casablanca

ebru</a>ry post # life


frank ford / the american african

that's me saddled with my first girlfriend ever. fatima is her name. pure as the driven snow. when i would give her an american penny she would drop to her knees in tears.1 penny. imagine that if you will. that was also the daily salary of her mother our housekeeper and nanny. you can imagine when i gave her a dollar bill. queen for a month she'd be:-) every time i think of fatima an old U2 song enters my head—"she is a refugee, and someday, one day, she's gonna live in america." thank god i'm living here.

$40 us  supplies 1 moroccan with clean water for life. yes, life. 

for every $40 you give to this charity—i will give you 1 FREE hour of creative services. having your life saved is a beautiful thing.


view my portfolio 55 more samples + bio in online portfolio




making soemthing from nothing? it's a beautiful thing. makes it hard to walkaway from.


ebru</a>ry post #2


work in progress / brand identity for web startup killabyte / symbolizing the maze of internet security with the company initials kB

hired for: the company name / tagline and logo. hopefully followed by me as keeper of all collateral and brand's certainly not my best work and it's lowest price i've ever charged for an identity package. but when your client jumps for joy during your presentation? what's an artist to do? hang tight and hope for more funding. the challenge will be how we execute it in signage because it has a recessed ridge on it's perimeter. we might do it in translucent plastic instead of stainless. big fun, big respect for this young group of entrepreneurs.

™ <teachable moment> startups seem to always blow their budget just before they call you. let's talk pricing guidelines


view my portfolio 55 more samples at linkedin = 110 total






above: personal logo—i call him fisheye




©fordesign | all content is intellectual property of frank ford. be aware, the brand cop robot prowl 24/7





"the sky is the limit" my working tagline, based on the brand promise: "music that is far superior in it's category, selection, message, taste and relevance. presented by intelligent dj's who provide context for every song played." that sentence comes straight from our brand definition workshop: 3 action–packed days at the marina in saint petersburg (home of the legendary skyway bridge pictured below) it was by pure good fortune that this bridge became my impetus during those 3 days. metaphorically speaking: we're building a bridge. a soundbridge. to connect listeners to a community of kindred spirits. how? i've recommended 2 radical branding touchpoints: 1) the human voice + 2) the human touch. i preach differintiation in order for companies to survive in the digital jungle. this brand will deliver on 10 attributes that will provoke the listener to turn their radio on. that will force our multiplication —as we hit our numbers the ad buyers will be turning on. florida will experience social media in it's purest form. online social media music will seem like anti–social media in comparison.

that's what's on sale here brandbuilding with a clean, esoteric, witty touch. the human touch. from my human hands. 

logo treatment
febru</a>ry post #1 rough comps / repeat rough



a top pick as a logo–treatment for collateral / based on brand criteria client and i developed

1 of 2 / b®andnew client works in progress / sky 107.5 radio florida. charged with naming, logo and collateral.i will be incorporatinng the bridge above. i got so incredibly lucky with that photo. i just held my camera out of the sunroof going about 80mph. 10 shots total. 2 are awesome. saving me on location time and expense photography.2 0f 2 below / drawing the letter S? a unique S? extremely difficult. try it. below: hand lettering of logo. not happy with it yet. it looks too much like a commercial font. Let me tellya, that S? has been a big problem ever since i cut it intoo 21 pieces.


view my portfolio  bio, resume, client list, industry posts + 50 additional samples



logo design

febru</a>r spring post #1

much time wasted on slicing S's, k's, and y's. i had to reject this one because it began looking like a commercial font. we're keeping the air pilot map drawing for a weather promo


2 of 3 / 20 others on the backburner
multiple concepts in progress, checking web colors, display, etc. it may be too obscure, hard to discern the 107 unless i come up with a brilliant color method. dunno, this one's odd, but i like it, like it, yes i do.not there yet. this is a tough one.too this. too that. seems trendy. i need a timelless beauty here, all the parameters plus the client is sold on the bridge photo as logo treatment because i screwed up, showed stuff too early.reminder: these are rough comp mood–boarding-tests excercises of the more advanced sketches for online testing. inching forward towards a solution. they are still sketches. i dont show final work until it's final–final. this work has far to go yet. it gets pushed as hard as far as 107 will allow


<teachable moment> explain why i'm not showing 107's outdoor boards

"actin' funny, and ya don't know why? scuuuze me, while i kiss the sky"—107fm. the sky. the image kills it! believe it or not? me and my awesome intern did it by hand. the human hand! radical i know! we hit it hard with broad 7" brushes—it's a summer of love 1967 meets digital jungle 2016.


t h e n d of client work samples










plastic© is a new client service coming soon from fordesign / a full posting of plastic© on a private-client-page asap



oh no, your 5 year old couldn't :-)
the paintings and prints that follow are originals, straight from my hand, my heart. they're meaningful to me and many others. lots of folks can relate to stories of the road. FYI: these won't display correctly online as the detail, scale, color and unique texture become lost. most paintings range from 6 feet to 10 feet. imagine coating hot asphault or concrete over 60 square feet, coming back and painting in—it's a lot of work and materials expense.


painting in the louisiana snow. yes, snow! seized that day last winter.
above: ©frankford unpublished photography set / raw, cropped only. couldn't sharpen if i wanted to bc they're so delicate


fun + fresh work this winter / not sure i will sell these. 5 panels connect to form a bridge composed of tiretracks

"5 gears in reverse" / painting the road in a new way / an unpublished set of photography that looks like paintings
raw, sized and cropped only. couldn't sharpen if i wanted to bc they're so delicate. the high–res looks like paintings but they are photographs.the panels line up like the golden gate bridge to babylon. some are beautiful mistakes that look like actual oilo paint. inspired by my mentor robert rauschenburg—a great artist, teacher and humanitarian. i think of him often. believe it or not? bob was a perfectionist (worse than me) which is saying a lot. you'd never know by seeing his finished work, but yes a major stickler for details.

image below: my paintbrush: 1 of 5 large panels reading left to right. painting a suspension bridge on my snow covered street this winter in south louisiana. maybe global warming is true. it has never snowed here before so i seized this day. reversing and forwarding at 45 degree angles. stopping to take a shot and repeating the entire day.


low resolution samples of my asphault paintings:

frank ford / fine art paintings + sculpture. made of concrete, asphault + plastic.

"no" a sample of 10 new sumo size paintings. a lot of physical effort + expense goes into their making


fyi: am seeking a new gallery to show these. if you know of someone...

new asphault + cement paintings / with huge barcelona-sized brushstrokes. critiques say that i am "emerging" as a painter.<whew> after just thirty years. where were these critiques when i was starving. the critique comes at a time where i'm shifting'll be seeing many more canvases +sculptings from me in this vein. more context soon: learn how my yellow stripes almost made me famous. full story this summer.

view my portfolio my fine art is best viewed in person / doesn't display well digitally. the next 3 in particular, you'll need to imagine a 10 foot width of real asphault aka: hotmix underpainting with reflective stripes fresh from the streets of manhattan. they come alive at night. fyi: i add tiny glass beads to the wet yellow paint, they bond together and create a reflective surface.


asphault + reflective yellow / it can energize a room / a very large room / office lobby for most


asphault + relective silver = pure energy especially at night.


©frankford set of unpublished photographs taken at rauschenberg's studio. and will remain unpublished.


febru</a>ry post #1

hideaway / somewhere near the gulf of mexico is my little slice of heaven on earth. but the no tresspassing sign? that's for websitescrapers to whom i say you pirate, you die. brandcop robot prowls.

fyi: just ask for permission! all work is intellectual property of frankford / pirating will get your ship sunk.




<teachable moment> save the best for last. and keep a good one in your back pocket.



priv%te / unpublished set of beautiful photographs (if i do sayso myself)


febru</a>ry the mentor who gave. even after his death.


priv%te / the happiest days of my life are when i sit in bob's chair–it's a reject from one his final works of art. all because of one teeny-tiny flaw in the patina. he made me feel at ease about being such a perfectionist. believe it or not folks? raushchenberg was an extreme perfectionist, putting me to shame, and that's saying something.

seems i can only think clearly near large bodies of water these days. i think of him often. i feel his ghost when i come here seeking inspiration, or to regroup from a crappy life experience, or just to chill. i feel the dude's soul, it's weird our connection, i won't go into it. the definition of innovator, the king of paying it forward: a TRUE louisiana boy. he loved helping students. many of us wouldn't have the courage to even apply for a bfa were it not for this awesome human being. so blessed—i was honored by the robert rauschenberg foundation / the ultimate high. b e y o n d words.

robert raushchenberg is the reason i became an artist. it makes my other awards seem trivial. it makes thirty years of commercial art ugh nevamind. i am eternally grateful to pam at the foundation. the greatest gift i have ever recieved. if you ever read this? i'm working on a gift for you but it's taking for ever. rarely will you see me boast about accomplishments it creeps me out. and i'll never reveal the wonderful set of photographs. the feeling is undescribeable. the rareity of it. having something only available to a dozen people on planet earth. i'm such a proud–poppa on this one. it makes my other awards feel insignificant. they just can't touch this. the pride of such rareity—it keeps me going. it gives me reason to believe the next thirty years can be better.





T  H  E  N  D












design intern program -- FREE

interns: you make the syllabus



internship + mentorship submissions / applying is similar to the realworld–artworld: sell yourself in a presentation:
create your best pitch. convince me we're a good fit. its your pitch.your rules. simply email your presentation file: phone it. text it. mail it. anyway you want to do,just make sure it contains plenty of YOU in it. with a class of only (2): individualized mentoring is now possible. you'll learn more, we'll have more fun, i'll be more available when you need a hand call or emai or message any questions.for the right people? i will put my neck on the line + ensure you are properly matched. in the usa, uk, italy or france. your sincere commitment guarantees mine.

™teachable moment(s) + mentorships explained
you won't be doomed to repeat everyone's same ole history; candid group talks with guest speakers regarding our lessons learned prevent that.sweet bonuses like guest speakers: my colleagues, the 1%. they will dial in to inspire and do q+a / schedules permitting. you'll have my letter of recommendation, my rolodex, my dedication + a lot more i'll tell you about later.

the mentor program / deadline may 31
submit asap / only accepting 2 mentors. presentations of your choosing. and you choose it's delivery: phone it. text it. mail it. either way. just make sure it contains plenty of U. now with a class of only two—individualized mentoring is more like a one on one finishing school. you'll learn more, we'll have more fun, i'll be more available when you need a hand. when you're ready i will personally recommend you to my colleagues. for the right 2 students? i will put my neck on the line for you.i will help ensure you are properly matched in the realworld artworld. that being in the usa, uk, italy or france. your sincere commitment guarantees mine.i am honored you've considered me as a mentor so let's go make you historical + have fun doing it / email your presentation file asap these 2 spots are sought after.

my masterful mentors: rick valicenti, michael jaeger, dann de witt, clement mok, and the great robert raushchenberg. 
sometimes people will say oh frank you're so lucky to have worked for those guys. i say luck has nothing to do with it. fyi: i am compelled to give back to the industry that allowed for my unique success. and for another reason—because no one helped us in the 80's. mentoring was not even a word! agencies sharing information? not on your life. and that pisses me off. if i had a mentor 30 years ago, i could have been so much better, so much wiser in avoiding the same ole rookie mistakes that we all make. why do we have to be such mavericks? we prolong our success, get our hearts broken, get fired and a multitude of other stupid stuff, because we have to do it our way or no way. if you can humble yourself? if you can be a sponge, not a rock? you're halfway home.

*program bonus: guest speakers will be confirmed by may 31. i cannot name them just yet, but rest assured—they rock!

plus: the program is designed specifically for you. to fit your needs. we will build your syllabus together as a team. your sincere commitment guarantees mine. and other perks that remain as surprises.

and other fun stuff ill' tell you about later.



2015: class bennetton



2015 interns / benetton commercial come to life
africa, uk, australia, phillipines, italy et le francaise.these 7 students make me so very–very verklemptly proud to represent creative in the you–essay. i've uploaded about 50 branding samples from my adv, design +copywriting books to be used as case studies/lessons learned. then we do work, play, and have FUN with it all.

mar 31: class in session via skype / 7p eastern time usa / check your inboxes for a fun excercise
apr 2: book of the month / and it's a good one!

bonsoire my wicked toade
as you've learned, we always save the best for last. btw should we name this group with something new and relevant? "blackstars" something. ya know rising starts, chunks of coal, diamonds in the rough sorta concept, or something spacey? trans–form, b®anders, b®and of brothers,etc.? (a good assignment for someone wanting name practice) or work with the pentagram above maybe. i do deeply dig "all the young dudes" + dudettes here. and i love that y'all are from around the world! and that you've chosen to land here for a while. but it's not me! it's you that inspires this 2 way–street named "brand avenue" will reveal what lies ahead. remain calm with our "be a sponge. not a rock" mantra all will be well. yes, its tough.this entire sector is tough. what successful venture isn't? not just anyone can create a succesful logo. you are a rareity. the manifested destiny we create will see to your continued success. and i will see to it. i'll pick up the phone anytime day or night for you guys. why? everyone always ask me why i do this no charge? short answer=because no one mentored me or my friends in the 1980's. the guys with real talent? their lips were sealed. i'm paying it forward to make the artworld a better place.

27 mar / as agreed, let's post one thing at a time / digest it thoroughly. delete it, then move to the next topic or workgroup or q+a. no portfolio show here! and remember you don't have to show everything. your top 10 hits is plenty. if you can't land the job with 10 samples? is another 10 gunna help? would showing 20 require you showing stuff you're not proud of? don't do it. do you want to be hired on your b–grade work? you are the honors class remember? show a–level work digitally and a leave-behind printed piece. yes, paper, printed! it's a rad concept thesedays. so radical that guess what? it makes you stand out in the crowd! that with a professional thank you note via the postman? you've made an impression your competition has not even thought of.

so you wanna be a rocknroll star / step 1 is building the right library
here's some secret-sauce from the pros. best book of the spring. i read your notes! of course they're a bitch, they're the one thing the other designers in your office dont want to do. why? because a logo is where your talent shines or dimmers the most!. logos are not easy. they're puzzles only the visual wits can crack! any succes ain't easy folks. why do you think paul rand is so respected? :-) but watch how you'll stand out in the sea of sameness when you become the go–to guy for logos. why? logo > identity > brand > all the sexy work being done. it's the core. learn the core and you'll get so much more out of your job.

"logo" *strongly* recommeded reading / well reading between the lines that is. not much text here but it's the best logo book i've seen in 2016. get a used copy for cheap online and we will rip it to shreds next time! and keep the emails coming!

remember — there are no mistakes. no right. now wrong.
if you don't have a logo project going on right now? go to the coolest place in your town, offer them a freebie, no deadlines or directions, just for the practice. hey, don't laugh thats precisely how i started a successful reputation) pro bono, did it my way and beginner's liuck? it was published in the hot book of the day — "the new american logo".if you're too shy for that approach? make up a ficticious company, re-do one from the phonebook. but please practice! exercise that logo muscle, do crosswords or suduko or scramble or a related game. that helps your logo-radar-system identify clever creative approaches in writing and design. sound nutZ? heh. more on that later. it will get nuttier than that. just wait. later this year i will have you throw away your pantone books for a better method, become a wordnerd, and we'll dive deep into typography as it relates to custom wordmarks. thanks for all your suggestions. we keep it a blast yeah? btw, my previous commercial fonts are now available from me directly. no more middlemen.



™ <teachable moment(s)
resume road




30 mar / resume road + rejection / how will you deal?
let's talk interview preperation, protection + professionalism. putting it off until senior year? puts you near the bottom of the design chain.

ff"great idea jen. as mentioned i need y'all to help shape this mentorship / internship. make it yours. make it deliver on your desires. but be careful what you ask for, you might just get it: i will marinate on a survivor competition for y'all. 1st place wins? and is crowned logomaster of the month.
thanks for shaking it up jen. good times, thank you how bout we go all the way and do what we're here for?¿?

not just willy-nilly ok? remember, this is real-world design education. i will furnish you guys with a creative brief to study before executing the brand creation i select secretly and randomly. you'll create not just the logo. you'll attack it like a project on madison avenue. it just got realworld–artworld heh? and this is similar to how it will be any given monday. so be ready.


"there are no m ist ake s. only make" ff


"be a sponge not a rock" ff

replacereplacereplacea very inspiring pep talk he gave me in 09. he has plenty more. a lot better ones. that one stuck to me like glue because of a personal miraculous experience. we're going to discuss about 10 of his all time best. just as relevant today as ever. from the visual explosion that is "emotion as promotion" this is one of many table of contents i've been in, but the only one that got me excited. you'll see some things we've done and will discuss them during lessons learned.





"style lies" finding inspiration. ff

i just remembered something from the year 2000 at ixl/scient/razorfish whatever it is...i was blasted by my pm + ux people for designing a long, scrollable website like this one. i'll never forget when we flew out to san fran for user testing...a lady in our test group says boldly "i like to scroll"! 16 years later, suddenly these 50 yard scrollers, they're in style? pffffft...see what i lies. so does ux research.

everyone's favorite muse? music, but what if i don't want to hear your noise in a studio when i'm trying to think. and there are so many other muses available. we should talk specifics: what kiund of music is best for design-time? music for designing / now playing in my studio: the deezer sessions live / my top 5:

the good stuff
angus & julia stone
selah sue
london grammar
lou doillon
coeur de pirate
margo price








fine art posts here for gallery reviews + submissions

title: "254 park avenue south" by frank ford
materials: asphault, concrete, housepaint, gold+silver spray paint, gold leaf
dimensions: 72" x 48"
details: shot on iphone without tripod or lighting, unable to sharpen most images. sharpening usually turns the asphault highlites into flakes. uploaded on mac airbook without a retina display. actual colors will definitely can normally expect vibrant color and thorough texture.
framing: my work is much more handsome when framed in light ash modular 90 degree cornered frames. i can also apply various finishes to them such as white–washing, waxing, staining, etc.(btw: my first job after college was exhibit designer + framer at the new orleans museum of art)




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