Design Sioux Falls II: An art show founded on Exposure Gallery owner Zach DeBoer’s love for Sioux Falls history. His idea for the show was to expose the artists and viewers alike to all the interesting people, places and things that once made up the great city of Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

With that in mind, he gave out a set of topics to local graphic designers with the task of exploring and designing something that would encourage viewers to learn and appreciate our city. A number of Lemonly designers often take part in the creative Sioux Falls scene and jumped on this chance of creating some creative pieces outside of their typical work day. The four Lemonly designers that contributed to the show were Amy Colgan, Michael Mazourek, Ashton Dockendorf, and Molly O’Connor. Let’s learn a little more about their topic and creative process.

See their pieces below:

What was your topic?

Amy Colgan: I had a former bar/music venue called Acme Drink Co. (Formerly Jamz, formerly Nite City, Formerly Macomba Club).
Michael Mazourek: Olympia Theatre – A Phillips Avenue movie theater that was open from 1909-1924.
Ashton Dockendorf: The Barrell
Molly O’Connor: Shriver’s Department Store

Have you designed for an art show before or is this something new to you?

AC: I participated in the design show last year. Oddly enough, my given topic was the Pomp Room (another former bar/music venue).
MM: Throughout college I created work and showed it in many gallery showings, but the act of making artwork for a specific show/theme is unique. I have participated in a few shows like this, and I feel there is a higher reward from the challenges that come out of making work for a specific topic or theme. I have been a part of this show twice now, and each time I have been given a topic that I didn’t initially have much knowledge of. By researching my topic, I became more aware of Sioux Falls’ unique history and I became passionate about teaching others about my findings. Creating the artwork was my method of telling this story to the community.
AD: I participated in last year’s Design Sioux Falls Show, but besides that, it’s something pretty new to me yet.
MO: After college, I only showed my paintings in a gallery setting, even though I graduated with a graphic design degree. I felt it was difficult to present graphic design as fine art. However, last year I was asked to participate in the first annual Design Sioux Falls show, which opened the door to show graphic design as fine art. Since then, I’ve found myself creating more and more illustrations to display in a gallery setting.

Is there a particular technique you used throughout your design?

AC: Last year I had a similar topic. As I was working on some ideas, I kept coming back to a series since it was four different bars over four different decades. Last year I used simple, iconic elements of the venue in a poster series tied together with the same color palette. It was fun to do a 2.0 of that concept. Since the theme of the show was Sioux Falls places or things that  no longer exist, each poster had something broken about it.
MM: I focused mostly on textured line-work when creating “Olympia Theater.” I love using line-work; using the integrity, weight, texture, direction, and pattern of lines to depict an illustration. In college, I loved doing realism drawing, but it became mundane and overly technical to me. Using line-work and blank space gives me the ability to not only depict my topic, but to interpret it.
AD: I wanted to bring in a retro vibe to evoke the spirit of the drive-in diner. I actually tried several new techniques for this piece and even watched a tutorial to achieve this desired style.
MO: My piece was inspired by mid-century modern illustrations and advertisements. In order to give my illustration a retro look, I created simplified and slightly exaggerated silhouettes and added texture throughout.

What is your favorite part of your piece?

AC: The colors printed great. The ideas was “stage light” color–super saturated.
MM: The beard of the simplified Hermes was my favorite part to illustrate. It was the most elaborate and difficult in process, but it is the most technical and uniquely illustrated aspect of the full work.
AD: I tried to keep the piece as accurate to the true 60s version of the sign as possible. I really liked how the original angled shapes of the sign came together.
MO: The dog. I purposely make him a focal point in the piece by having him break the border and walk within the white space.

To see the entire collection for Design Sioux Falls II visit Exposure Gallery on Phillips Avenue until April 29.

More pictures from the show below!

(Learn more about the show and Zach’s role with Exposure in our interview with him here.)