Yes, I’ve been stomping through a design career for quite some time. So far, it’s been a hell of a ride. Lots of great, wonderful clients, lots of enlightened, interesting people.
Along the way I managed to win a bunch of awards and lead the design field into new eras and new technologies. I produced the very first totally digital brochure and continued to lead the desktop publishing revolution to what it is today. And then came the net/web and I hopped on board that train about as early as any designer in the country. In fact, because of my knowledge and experience it was almost forgotten that I also do print.
The thing I like about being a designer is you get to learn so much. Each new client or assignment brings a wealth of new knowledge. I’m looking forward to it continuing. New clients, new assignments, new tech. Never a boring moment.
I took my first, full-time design job, Art Director, at MTS Systems Corp. It turned out to be a great job and set up my whole career. MTS was a very forward-looking, high-tech company that, though small, did marketing communications like the big boys. While there, I designed a complete literature system that encompassed everything from tech documents to multi-lingual, full-color brochures as well as the Annual Report and shareholder communications. And even though I was young and dumb, I got to work directly with upper management. It was a young designer's dream job.
My father was always self employed (or as far back as I could remember) and thanks to MTS, I had a portfolio to die for. Others had taken notice. Encouraged by my outside clients and contacts, I struck out on my own and formed Geise Design. Been independent ever since.
I had several clients in the medical products business and they needed more than just design so I teamed up with some old MTS colleagues and formed a full-service, boutique ad agency specializing in medical. We had a very prestigious group of clients including Medtronic, one of the most noted in the industry. During this period I got even deeper into marketing communication systems and multi-lingual communications. Alas, the agency business wasn't my cup of tea and more of my time was spent managing than designing. Still a worthwhile diversion, it focused me towards what I really wanted to do when I grew up.
In addition to medical, I've always had a lot of computer technology companies as clients so it was a natural for me to get into computers myself, in fact, I was the first designer in my area to own one and incorporate it into my design business. Then came Macintosh and again, I was the first in and producing a wealth of assignments and pushing the envelope. This early adoption culminated in a speaking engagement at "The New Designer" conference in New York sponsored by Pratt Center, the premier design conference at the time. I presented my work and explained to a packed ballroom of designers how they too could use computers. This set me up as an electronic/desktop publishing guru and many interesting assignments came from it.