2011 NVA Winner: Jessica Walsh

By the Print staff

Title/Type of Work: Designer, Art Director, Illustrator
From: New York
Lives in: New York
Age: 24
Education: BFA, Graphic Design, Rhode Island School of Design

Jessica Walsh might get just as much done while asleep as when she’s awake. “I have crazy visual dreams which often inspire my work,” she says. “I dream about design solutions for projects I’m working on—multitasking even while asleep!” Her work ethic has certainly paid off, earning her gigs with Pentagram Design, Apple Inc., and, one point, as the associate art director of Print. Walsh received her BFA from Rhode Island School of Design, but says she finds inspiration in her hometown, New York City.

“I’m inspired by the vibe of the city, I love it here,” she says. Her work has appeared in The New York Times and has popped up in kinetic Levi’s billboards. “I like to combine different materials and mediums to create an image that conveys a message.Visually my work tends to be more sculptural and tactile. I value the message very highly; I don’t like to design for the sake of design,” she says. “I like to add in humor when I can; I think designers (and even myself sometimes) take our work way too seriously.” She now works full time with Stefan Sagmeister on a variety of different projects, including branding, identity, typographic installations, advertising, and interactive work.

Show, RISD XYZ, illustration and photography: Jessica Walsh; Arti director: Criswell Lappin

“What I love about working with a small team is that I can constantly assume different roles whether it’s being a designer, art director, illustrator, or photographer.” Walsh says she’d love to one day have her own studio and believes success just might lie in uncertainty. “I want to take on work that I’ve never done before, where I feel in over my head. I do my best work when I don’t really know what I’m doing; it is more exciting and forces me to work harder. This often leads to better results.”

What I love about working with a small team is that I can constantly assume different roles whether it’s being a designer, art director, illustrator, or photographer.

Minis campaign, design and art direction by Jessica Walsh. Creative director: Stefan Sagmeister; Model making: Jessica Walsh and Maria Nogueira; Photographer: Bella Borsodi.

Click here to learn more about Jessica and to see more of her work.

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