Featured Graphics: Bright Spot in the Pandemic! “Heroes’ Exit” Mural at Dell Children’s Hospital

Dell Children’s Medical Center has a new addition – a Heroes’ Exit! Ready for a great story? You may have heard of Owen Coulter, a 5 year old boy who went to Dell Children’s Medical in December of 2019 and had a miraculous journey that included a life-saving experience by staff upon his arrival. Owen’s father is a firefighter in Austin. As Owen left the hospital after a 56 day stay, there was a “superhero” departure celebration with dozens of firefighters, police officers, 18 fire trucks, balloons, t-shirts, and even a few costumed super-heroes. The experience was wonderful for everyone there, but especially the hero being celebrated, Owen.

Days later a Dell Medical Children’s Medical Center Foundation board member dropped by the office of Susan Hewlitt (executive director of the foundation). The board member, Marcella Maxwell (who also works at Dell Children’s) said that she couldn’t stop thinking about the wonderful exit Owen had. “How can we have every child feel like a hero when they leave?” she thought out loud. They quickly began brainstorming and walking the hospital for ideas.

At the entryway of the hospital is the HEB Auditorium, which happens to be a perfect passageway and private exit for the kids. Susan immediately went to this spot and an idea came to her for a “hero’s exit” – what if they had a mural here and kids could take pictures as they were released to go home? The idea was positively received by the foundation board, and Susan could not have been more pleased with their unanimous agreement to support the project. The next question was who the artist would be – Susan knew that Becca Borrelli would be perfect!

Becca had designed a coloring book for the kids at Dell Children’s. Becca is an illustrator and has a background in teaching. For Becca this was the perfect project- it combined her love of children with her passion for design. Becca began to weave a compilation of happy imagery from areas in the hospital, making the final memories in the hospital a way to remember Dell Children’s in a positive way.

The final product is a brightly colored mural printed on DreamScape wallpaper. Images include a StarFlight helicopter, the stone water wall from the courtyard, a replication of the donor butterfly wall, and spotlights on art found in the hospital such as the art by Graciela Boulanger gracing the bridge in the lobby as well as the blue dog featured in a George Rodrigue piece found in the hospital.

Becca contacted Miller after having printed with us before. The experience was pleasant for Becca and it was easy to communicate with Destenie (Customer Sales and Service Rep) from the beginning. Becca had been contracted to paint the mural on the wall, but had worked with DreamScape in another hospital setting and knew that it holds up to cleaning and is long-lasting. “DreamScape was the perfect solution we didn’t know we needed, especially with how clean we have to keep it,” said Susan Hewitt.

As the final joyful touch to this fulfilling project, note that it was accomplished during COVID! Installing the piece during this difficult time made it an even happier win!

October Artist of the Month: Pama Monfries

After graduating from University of Texas at Arlington with an art degree, Pama worked as a graphic designer then creative director for 25 years. After that, she worked for 8 years painting portraits and murals full time. Pama was able to make a very good living being a professional artist. 

During that time, she taught adults and children at the art center in her town. She also took ceramics, life drawing and glass fusing classes. Every year she does many commissions of pets and people as well as special memories from clients’ photos.

Pama moved to the Austin area (Point Venture) from Dallas 10 years ago and loves it. Since moving here, she has made several bronzes, lots of jewelry and numerous mobiles. She still makes fused glass and has started incorporating fused pieces in her paintings.

“I come from a long line of strong, creative women who have always inspired me. Creativity was a part of their lives and so it has become a part of mine. We always encouraged our children to explore their creativity. Two of them are art teachers in AISD and one is an actor.” It is important to Pama to always be experimenting with many kinds of art, as it helps keep the creative juices flowing.

Although Pama loves painting, her passion is gardening. She started pressing petals, leaves, feathers and insect wings onto her canvas with paint about 3 years ago. She says she is “gardening” and painting at the same time. “It is very interesting how the petals and leaves change color when dried and pressed. I love to bring them back to life with paint.”

Featured Graphics: Patika Coffee & Superthing Coffee

We are thrilled that we were called on to print signage for Patika coffee on South Lamar.  We produced their safety guidelines and temporary outdoor menu on coroplast and aluminum which make for a durable duo. The folks over at Patika cleverly hung their signage with removable hangers, making sure the signs were secure and weatherproof.

Located at 2159 South Lamar, Patika is open for online and in-person orders. They have plenty of parking at the back of the building and space to wait for your order while maintaining distance from employees and other customers.

We also helped Patika’s sister company, Superthing Coffee, develop contour cut coffee stickers as well as business cards, which created a distinct look for their coffee bags and branding. Superthing is roasted locally and served at Patika as well as Mañana, Brew and Brew, Olamaie, Creature Coffee and a few other places. It is also available online for single purchase and subscriptions at superthingcoffee.com

As you can see, Miller’s takes pride in working with local businesses. Let us help when the time comes to open your business or office. We’d appreciate your support! 

 

 

 

June Artist of the Month: Rachel Hurst

 

Rachel Hurst moved to Austin with her family when she was in fifth grade and is the eighth and youngest child of famed western artist Oleg Stavrowsky and her beloved mother, Carol Stavrowsky. Growing up, she was surrounded by world-class art created by her father and siblings. In this way, she was lucky to be trained in the principals of good painting design and technique through exposure.

No stranger to competition, she spent her childhood devoted to competitive figure skating, she holds a national 8-ball title, and she won a tournament qualifying her to play on the World­­ Series of Poker (where she was summarily kicked to the curb… you can’t win ‘em all!). She formerly competed on the Women’s Professional Billiard Association Tour.

Hurst earned a BA in Psychology from the University of Washington and lived in Seattle for about 10 years before returning to Austin. Hurst is an avid cruciverbalist and lives with her husband Travis and three cats in Austin, Texas.

Rachel began discovering her passion for fine art incorporating two of her favorite things: animals & design.  She utilizes color, pattern, and abstract design to frame the animals in the way they make her feel when she looks at them.  She is well known for her pet portraits, and she donates 10% of all of her art sale profits to animal charities, most notably Safe In Austin.

“Most of my work incorporates some kind of abstract background juxtaposed with a representational animal. I like the contrast of the two styles and think it brings a dynamic to a painting that a traditional background does not. I do paint the occasional traditional background, but it doesn’t usually compel me like creating a complimentary abstract background does. I’ve been painting fine art for just under two years, so my style is definitely still evolving.”

“Part of that evolution includes branching out into what I call more stylized paintings – ones like “American Chicken.” That kind of whimsical, interpretive painting feels like pure joy to me.  I equate it to being like a little kid playing in the mud. Many people don’t really understand that kind of art… so it doesn’t tend to have the same wide commercial appeal as my more representational stuff, but those who appreciate that style really do seem to enjoy it as much as I enjoy painting it. That’s extremely gratifying! The design requirements are the same in an abstract or stylized painting as they are in a representational painting—the composition, balance, and color juxtaposition all need to be diligently designed. In that way, it isn’t any less work for me as the artist—but the freedom to be funny and sometimes goofy with the compositions makes it a different process than with the representational paintings.”

“American Chicken started out as a representational painting. I was sketching it out when the song “American Woman” came randomly into my head. As songs sometimes do, it just wouldn’t stop! The lyrics just naturally evolved from American woman to American chicken as it was playing in my mind. This made me laugh—and that was that. The whole design and structure of the painting changed. Because the chicken is so complicated in pattern, I wanted to balance it with a very simple background, and I wanted to use primary colors to reinforce the associations with the USA. That’s how art is—the work itself evolves as I paint. I’ll typically start with one idea in mind, then something will happen and I’ll sit back and watch where the painting goes. It’s really fun to be a part of that process—and know that I’m not really the one determining how it comes out. The paintings come through me—some are better than others, but I don’t really take responsibility for any of it. I just sit back and enjoy the ride and I’m happy and grateful to be allowed to be a part of it. I’m not a religious person, but I definitely know that I’m not in control of this artistic process.”

“I appreciate Dana so much!  She always works in a timely manner to get my images done, and she’s been SPOT ON in getting the color matching correct so that the reproductions look like the original artworks.  I trust her completely – and for an artist to say that about someone who is in control of their reproduction color and quality, that’s saying a lot.  She’s the best – and really sweet and pleasant to work with.  Everyone there has been great.”

Contact Rachel at rachel@rachelhurstfineart.com or visit her website.

May Artist of the Month: Josue Jimenez

Josue Jimenez has always loved drawing. He produces artwork for his living as a tattoo artist at Royal Tiger Tattoo with Ben Fiedler. The motto for the South Austin tattoo shop is ‘We are proud to say that we live to tattoo and we love what we do’.

‘Corona Nurse’ is an example of American Traditional. American Traditional tattoo art has clear definition and sharp lines and the images often take an emotion or thought and push it through to the maximum.

They are realistic with a limited color palette of highly saturated black, yellow, green and red. Designs are often iconic and easily recognized by the viewer such as roses, anchors, skulls, eagles, daggers, snakes, and portraits. Death, love, anger, patriotism, and happiness are common themes.

 

Featured Graphics: Cushman Wakefield

 Cushman Wakefield was moving into their new space, and with that in mind, they wanted to do some creative and inspiring interior signage. Jordan Newman, Senior Graphic Designer, reached out to us for help.

We installed some awesome wall wraps, one being in the main kitchen area that made a bold statement. We also wrapped a dividing wall that was half glass and half drywall in an image of the Austin skyline. They had one wall that was office space and was divided into 3 parts which we wrapped with a city street map graphic.

Throughout the office space we installed several small wall decals with just graphic text that brought the space together. We used laminated adhesives for the wall coverings. The overall look is very sharp and cohesive, and it was a very fun project to be a part of.

 

Contact one of our sales associates for more details at CSSR@MillerIDS.com.

 

March Artist of the Month: Calhan Hale

Calhan Hale’s maternal family has been rooted in Texas for over 100 years. She grew up in a family of creative, independent and individualistic female role models. Hale received her BA in studio art from the University of Texas at Austin in 2016 and decided to stay in Texas to pursue her art after graduation.

In her most recent work, Calhan uses painting as a way of re-examining and reclaiming parts of her Texas upbringing by bringing Texas iconography into conversation with elements informed by digital experience. She is particularly interested in the ways information is gained and lost as it moves from our own experiences, to our memories, to digital interfaces and then back into a physical object. 

“Texas iconography is naturally loaded; Ideas related to tradition, geography and stereotype meet those surrounding trend, irony and self-expression. Objects, along with people and places, can be the holders of multiple, often contrasting, things at once”, and Calhan is interested in how their context and our own experiences greatly inform the ways we encounter them. 

Calhan believes, “At the intersection of time, place and identity, these works also aim to explore the simultaneous confidence and self-doubt that accompany self-awareness and the attempt to own all of who I am at once”.

“The Miller team has been exceptionally kind to me and beyond helpful with all of my printing needs. I’ve been especially lucky to work closely with Dana and Larry. Before working with Dana at Miller, I didn’t know anything about the process of having artwork professionally scanned or printed. Over the past 9 months or so, Dana has personally walked me through the entire process and has worked carefully with me to ensure that each scan and print of my paintings is as representative of the original piece as possible. And every time I come by the shop, which is often several times a week, Larry greets me with the most genuine warmth and friendliness. Dana, Larry and the Miller team make every printing experience feel like working with trusted friends, and I’m so grateful to get to share a creative community with such wonderful humans! Thank you, Miller!”

Featured Graphics: Raise Your Hand Texas

This past February, alumni teachers, administrators, and influencers in education came together in Austin to raise their voices by sharing ideas to look beyond the status-quo and guide the reinvention of public education in the State of Texas. At their Leadership Symposium this year, Raise Your Hand Texas looked to push its marketing and event materials to the next level through its interactive displays, banners, easel signs, directional signage, as well as a 20’ stage backdrop and 20’ experience wall.

The nonprofit advocacy group supports public policy solutions that “invests in our students, encourage[s] innovation and autonomy, and improve[s] college and workforce readiness.” This year, for their 11thannual Leadership Symposium, Raise Your Hand unveiled the theme “Raise Your Voice.” The three-day interactive event emphasized being heard both on their campuses as well as at the capitol throughout the symposium. More than 300 educators from the event converged on the Capitol to speak directly to their legislators, to make their voices, the voices of their teachers, and the voices of their students and families heard.

From a marketing perspective, Raise Your Hand always takes the Leadership Symposium experience to the next level. The small but talented team looks for ways to push the creative envelope when it comes to presenting the symposium, and the organization. Unique to this year, they partnered with the third-party app Soundwave Art to “enhance the overall experience and bring life to many of our print materials.” They generated 16 soundwaves that were all scannable and featured their own custom-created videos that shared stories of the many voices behind public education.

The print materials highlighted the theme of the symposium and amplified the overall experience through bright colors and eye-catching designs and innovative signage. Miller provided printing of several of the necessities for a symposium of this size—from the direct-to-print directional signage for the conference space itself, to a 20’ Hop-Up that gave a backdrop to presenters and acted as a background for selfies later during the symposium. Miller can provide fun and informational needs for any event. The interactive aspect of the Soundwave Art App elevated the reach of the marketing of the symposium. It allowed Raise Your Hand to push their message further and provide opportunities for educators and administrators attending the event to interact with the content.

Joel Goudeau, Visual Design Strategist for Raise Your Hand Texas, had this to say about working with the Miller Team: “I’ve been working with Miller’s for almost five years. I’ve worked on several projects with Ryan Bruce, and he has always been incredibly responsive and a pleasure to work with. What I appreciate most about Miller’s, and the reason I keep coming back, is their attention to detail and ensuring that the customer gets exactly what they want and expect. Other members of the Millers team that I have had a pleasure of working with in the last 5 years include, Vittoria Mottler, Tim Dupere, Destenie Rhodes, Micah Frugia, and Melissa Hay. I believe you all have played a pivotal role in the execution of our previous conferences and I will gladly recommend your services to other partners.”

Featured Graphics: Hensel-Phelps at ABIA

Austin Bergstrom International Airport (ABIA) is bringing the Austin cultural experience to all who stop by. The airport, just like Austin, is currently expanding to fit the growing needs of our funky, tech-based town by adding nine new gates and updating three existing gates. The new terminal will also feature an observation deck, a Delta Sky Lounge, and Austin-based restaurants such as 24 Diner, Toy Joy’s Yummi Joy, Parkside, Salvation Pizza, and more.  As we (and the 150+ people who move here each day) know, Austin is a special place with its own unique culture and vibe. Everyone who visits gets to experience that funky, but updated, Austin feel in the expansion and face-lift of ABIA.

One company propelling that push forward is general contractor and construction company, Hensel Phelps Construction who has worked with ABIA since 2013.  Although not Austin-born, the builder and contractor has worked hard to bring the Austin culture to our ever-expanding town and airport. The expanded terminal was inspired by Texas dance halls and the Austin Moontowers. For the past few months, Miller IDS worked with both Hensel Phelps and the Austin-based artist, Mila Sketch to bring new, vibrant and modern art to ABIA.

Hensel Phelps is proud of its Hensel Phelps Way. For them it is a collaborative approach that blends proven processes, innovative technology, and effective communication throughout every phase of the project lifecycle. Hensel Phelps worked with Austin-based, Russian-born artist Mila Sketch to bring her exciting and award winning modern- environmental art to ABIA as a continuation of the City of Austin’s Art in Public Places initiative.  The piece, “Urban Nature,” was drawn free hand on panels and feature recognizable Austin buildings as well as futuristic buildings we could maybe see in the future. The space in front of her mural will be a rotating selection of art as selected as part of the City of Austin’s Art in Public Places initiative.An incredibly accomplished artist, Sketch has produced many memorable murals you might have seen around Austin including Austin Howdy (on West 6th St), Austin Beat (at Encore Records), and These Walls Bring Us Together (between 4th and 5th streets at I-35). Sketch has also produced art for the Austin Parks Foundation, Ramen Tatsu-ya, CLIFF Bar, Google, SXSW Festival, Mazda USA, X-Games, Lifeproof and has won several awards throughout the US. 

Sketch first brought her art to Miller IDS’ Fine Art Specialist, Dana Burton, who took special care and 2 months to scan and color match 32 40″x 92″ panels. When the printed panels were not ready in time for their installation from another company, Miller IDS swiftly came in and printed and installed a solution using vinyl.

Phil Randel, Office Engineer for the ABIA Term/Apron Expansion and Improvements team, had this to say regarding working with Miller IDS:  “Working with Miller IDS was great. Ryan Bruce and Dylan Pender did everything we needed them to do to ensure that the vinyl was installed on time and with superior quality!”

You can view and enjoy the vinyl panels in the new terminal of the airport. We look forward to getting to go on a trip and see Hensel-Phelps and Sketch’s collaboration to bring more art to ABIA.

February Artist of the Month: Larry Stephenson Sr

              

The inspiration for Stephenson’s painting, Segerstrom Hall in Costa Mesa, CA

Miller IDS is honored to announce our February 2019 Artist of the Month, Larry Stephenson Sr. and his piece, “Firebird.” Founder of Green Builders and CEO of Green Design Builders Inc, Stephenson uses his knowledge of and passion for architecture and design to enhance the viewer’s understanding and absorption of his work. For “Firebird”, Stephenson was inspired by the “exquisite architecture combined with magnificent sculpture” of the Segerstrom Hall in Costa Mesa, CA.  This building so moved Stephenson that he notes it “pulled at [his] soul to unleash the enhancing of the colors and brilliance in which [he] sees.” Stephenson has worked with Miller for 20 years and continues to bring us incredible thought-provoking art.

               Originally from Northwest Texas, Stephenson has studied and painted his way across the US before settling in Austin. He has studied at Oklahoma State University and West Texas A&M University and studied under artists such as Emilio Caballero, world-renowned portraitist David Rindlisbacher, and Darold Dean Smith. Stephenson’s work draws heavily on moving past the technical and into the emotional joy and soulful fulfillment of his unique vision before placing it on a canvas, thereby introducing concepts of the painting from a new perspective. In his work, he places his soul onto the canvas, creating art that only he has seen, but is made visible for all to enjoy. Moreover, his art is “created primarily and solely for its imaginative, aesthetic, or intellectual content that one’s soul may ponder and enjoy.”

               “Firebird” combines the architectural and urban to understand the interplay between nature and man in Stephenson’s interpretive way. Although the building was not designed by him, Stephenson used this painting as an opportunity to showcase his style to “share a moment, time and place, in history with all those that view [his] work.” Stephenson captures the interaction between metal structure, craftsmanship, and art to show “a painting that would leap from the canvas and pierce [the viewer’s] imagination.” With its distinct contrast between cloudy blue sky, sharp lines, and vibrant colors, Stephenson wishes to bring forth the vibrance of life and give viewers the ability to “take a breath and see the wonders before you.”

Stephenson’s “Villa in the Hills”

Stephenson said this about working with Miller IDS over the past 20 years, “I have been working diligently to establish myself as an artist in the ‘FINE ARTS’. Miller is like family to me, Josh has always taken very good care of me, Dana is a pleasure to work with and very knowledgeable and extremely talented in her area of expertise. I just cannot say enough kind words regarding [Miller IDS Customer Service Representative] Larry Williams. He makes each and every visit I have to Miller very enjoyable, in fact I look forward to every visit I have with Miller because of his professionalism, sense of humor, and his unique personality which makes each and every visit a true pleasure.”

The piece is available to view at both of our locations through the end of February. You can contact Larry Stephenson at lessr@earthlink.net.