We had the good fortune of connecting with Chad Michael and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Chad, what do you attribute your success to?
I believe what has made the studio gain such recognition and growth over the last 6 years is the passion and conceptual thinking behind each project. From strategy, naming, design, print production, to photography – everything has to resonate in the eyes, the mind, and the gut. This is a small, intimate design studio and clients have always appreciated that. It creates a strong, direct relationship between the designer and client that is difficult to obtain with larger agencies. Within each new brand I design, no matter the client or size of the project, I approach each with just as much passion and want for it to succeed as the client. New clients often state that they see the thoughtfulness within my work. The ability to tell a brands story in a unique light and attention to conceptual details are pillar of the studio’s success. The fact that this is recognized means a great deal as some brands do not come easily. Product design specifically requires an extensive exploration of trial and error. Successful design is well considered, immediate, and should exude a unique character that is not currently in the given market category. Even more so, when it comes to spirit design the package needs to grab the consumer within a few seconds or they you’ve lost them forever.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I specialize in the branding and package design for what I’ve deemed to be “products of indulgence”. This consists of market categories like spirits, beer, cannabis, gaming, perfumes, etc. It’s a niche area that I feel in love with during my career as a designer and then creative director while working at various New York design agencies from 2012-2015. But my love for package design even preceded this period and was actually born in high school with my affinity for sculpture and any tactile assignment. It all comes from a need to create physical pieces of work. Work you can hold and examine personally with no detail being missed. The road to building brands for distilleries and other companies throughout the globe was not easy. Nothing rewarding ever comes easy. It took hundreds of sleepless nights, education from others, and self-teaching on how to run all aspects of a successful business. The key, as with most worthwhile careers, is passion. Passion is what continues to drive me each day. The ability to be inspired and let that inspiration light a fire in your belly is what continues to push me forward.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
A tour of Dallas’s best food and drink. We’d hit all the iconic distilleries like Deep Ellum, Herman Marshall, and Duckworth. We’d probably make a trip out to Fort Worth to tour and taste at TX Whiskey who is also a client of the studio. For food, places like KRIO and The Last Stand in the Bishop Arts area will be mandatory.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Rusty Hill. The studio’s primary product photographer who we’ve been working with since the first year the studio opened in 2014. The final product photography contributes greatly to the success of the studio. To capture the final design in a way that not only accentuates the detail work but also the printing is a learned craft. Our standards for photography are very high and Rusty hits the mark every time.
1. Rusty Hill Photography
2. High Proof Preacher Photography