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145 Valley Street
Suite 1063
Pasadena, CA 91105

Company Name

Ramp Creative

Company Type


Established In

Ramp Creative & TypeEd


Michael Stinson







Graphis Archives

Philosophy on Work

I came into the design profession through the back door of aerospace engineering, physics and mathematics. I saw, right away, how design was intertwined with math. The use of numbers for proportion to type, images and the page. I've always felt and seen, typography in particular, as music. It can be rock 'n roll or a symphony, dependent on the rhythm of the beat. In typography the beat or tempo, is equivalent to the even and methodical pace in which the words, lines and sentences move down and across the page. I've been known to Tweet "a percussionist is to a band as a typographer is to design." I've always believed that old adage of "form follows function." I've coined my own phrase for this understanding and teach it to my students as "substance before style." To me, it's always about idea-driven design, rather than designing from ego. I use the term "afortiori," a lot in my design practice. It's a Latin word that means "with good reason." This is my personal passion for design that was instilled in me from college. It reminds me to always have a reason for each design decision I make. In other words, make your decisions always relevant and considerate of the reader, the client and the brand. I take every design decision from reason only to be over-ridden by artistic direction to add personality, mystery or charisma. For me, graphic design has always been the perfect balance between the left brain (calculating, strategic, mathematical, logical) and the right brain (subjective, artistic, imaginative, visual). I also say it another way; Engineering (left) and Art (right). The left always begins in design yet the right always has the last say.

Professional Specialties

Vision-Setting + Strategy, Art & Content Direction, Brand Identity Design, Naming, Packaging, Web Strategy & Design, Signage & Wayfinding, Collateral Marketing Design, Typography & Lettering

Graphis Appearances

Logo Design 8 Annual Reports 8 Letterhead 7 Logo Design 7 Annual Reports 7


Communication Arts, Graphis, TDC, LogoLounge, GD:USA, The Dieline, Print Magazine, NIRI Orange County, STEP Magazine, The Black Book AR100, HOW Magazine, International ARC Awards, Mohawk Paper, Orange County Advertising Awards, Stora Enso Paper, Potlatch Paper, American Corporate Identity

Featured In:


February 2017-Guest Speaker-Typography in LA: 20 x 20, January 2017-Guest Speaker-The LA Web Professionals Group, November 2016-Guest Speaker-The Busy Creator, October 2016-Guest Speaker-AIGA National Design Conference, August 2016-Guest Speaker-TypeCon 2016, July 2016-Guest Speaker & Training-Walt Disney Studios, April 2016-Guest Reviewer-AIGA Orange County, April 2016-Podcast-This Makes Me Happy, April 2016-Webinar-PaperSpecs, March 2016-Guest Speaker + Training-Liquid Advertising, March 2016-Lecture & Presenation-Chapman University, October 2015-Adobe MAX, June 2014-Guest Lecturer-Art Center College of Design, June 2014-Guest Speaker-AIGA Honolulu, March 2014-Write Up-Maggie Hicks Designs, May 2012-Guest Reviewer-AIGA Los Angeles, March 2011-Design Judge-The One Show Young Ones Competition, November 2010-Guest Critique-Woodbury University, October 2010-Guest Lecturer-Tyler School of Art, March 2010, Design Judge, The One Club Design Competition, August 2009-Guest Critique-Art Center College of Design, March 2009-Design Judge-Graphis Annual Reports, May 2008-Guest Reviewer-AIGA Los Angeles


Corporate Brochure Designs, Business Graphics, Design Matters: Logos 01, Letterhead & Logo Design 10 & 12, Typography Essentials, LogoLounge 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, LogoLounge Master Library Volume 1 & 2, TDC 29 & 33, Graphis Annual Reports 7 & 8, Graphis Letterhead 7, Graphis Logo Design 7 & 8, The Black Book AR100 1999–2007, Logo 2001–2004, American Corporate Identity 1998


The Dieline, Fuel Your Creativity, GD:USA People to Watch


Teaching 2015–present | Laguna College of Art & Design Adjunct Professor, Typography I & II 2012–present | TypeEd Lead Instructor 2015 | Santa Monica Community College Adjunct Professor, Typography I 2009–2013 | College of the Canyons Adjunct Professor, Typography I & Graphic Design I 2011 | University of Southern California Adjunct Professor, Typography I


Editorial: Los Angeles Business Journal Education: UCLA, USC, UCSF, Cal Poly Pomona Finance: CWS Capital Partners, Christina Development, Coastline Capital, Forte Capital, Gurtin, New Century, Gelber Group, The Seymour Group Food & Beverage: The Counter Burger, La Brea Bakery, Reed’s, Agostoni Chocolate, Domaine Restaurants, 25 Degrees, Pinkberry Hospitality: Koa Kea Hotel & Resort, Kona Village, Cambria Inns, Santa Ynez Inn, The Landsby, Simpson House Inn, Sorrel River Ranch Legal: AIM Radiology Manufacturing: Color Graphics, ELCO Lighting, ProjectStone, Shur-Lock Medical: Edwards Lifesciences, Aporia, Toshiba, Spectrum Pharmaceuticals Non-profit: Planned Parenthood, United Way of Los Angeles, NIRI, PACE Real Estate: CIM Retail: Wet Seal Services: Golden State of Cocktails, Learn About Wine Technology: Canon, Toshiba, Specific Media, SRS Labs, UEI, Cherokee, Local.com, Red Butler



Hobbies / Freetime

Golf, Snowboarding, Lego Building, Cooking