• Post category:Design

Looking for Some Local Portland Style in Your Marketing and Design Efforts?

As a niche community, Portland has always been a little bit different. In recent years, people have flocked to our city, and started to take note that there is a dynamic design community that continues to emerge while setting Portland apart. In Portland, analog and digital innovators collaborate and create daily. In the process, they manipulate tried and true materials to accomplish new things across various market sectors.

As Portland’s design community grows and evolves, it creates a brand, so to speak, that is distinctly Portland. Various groups of creatives and creative agencies are defining Portland graphics, fonts, logo styles, and more, that collective let people know exactly who’s a local, and who is not. But how do these graphics come into existence, and who curates and sustains tenets of Portland design? Read on to find out.

The Drivers Behind Portland’s Unique Graphics

WeMakePDX, Ladies Night, XOXO, and a host of other design-driven groups are thriving in the Portland community. These groups, along with independent agencies, are responsible not only for the creation of Portland graphics, but also for the display of Portland-owned designs. And one of the best places to gain exposure to graphics that let everyone know you’re a local is at Portland’s Design Week.

Studying Portland Graphics at Design Week Portland 2017

According to its founders, “Design Week Portland is a week-long, city-wide series of programs exploring the process, craft, and practice of design across all disciplines. Our mission is to increase appreciation and awareness about design and its far-reaching effects on matters of cultural and social relevance.”

If you’re ready to dive in and understand which graphics let everyone know you’re a PDX local, Design Week Portland is the perfect opportunity. Here’s a preview of what to expect at this year’s Design Week Portland 2017.

Portland graphics


Broad Strokes and Trends in Portland Graphics

While each Portland design agency distinguishes itself through narrative, services, and ideology, there are common threads that run through many Portland graphics. Font is paramount in Portland graphics.

At Design Week, you’ll find events that touch on the role of letterpress fonts in modern texts; you’ll encounter talks that revolve around choosing text for a beer brand. And throughout the festival, you’ll notice that Portland design agencies merit careful attention to font and text, often trending towards thin, thoughtful graphics – a streamlined font, or a modern Helvetica.

Agencies That Really Showcase the Portland Graphic Style

In Portland, the Design Week event “was built on the strength of hundreds of independent Events and Open Houses, conceived and hosted by the creative community of an entire city.”

At this year’s 2017 Design Week Portland event, you have the opportunity to visit over 100 Portland-based design agencies. While those hosting open houses range from traditional book printers to cannabis retailers, from architecture firms to creative advertising agencies, each group showcases graphics that represent Portland design.

Here are a couple local Portland agencies that we are looking forward to checking out during Design Week Portland:

FINE, a creative digital agency, showcases Portland design everyday as designers and developers join forces to bring wine and hospitality brands to life. Stop by the FINE Open House on April 26th, 4-7 PM to get a closer look at their uniquely Portland graphics.

Citizen, technology and design agency, believes in prototyping with a unique Portland style. Visit their warehouse space in NW Portland and mingle with the Citizen creatives to study their style.

East Side Printing Co.: Your Guide to Portland Graphics

If you’re ready to delve into Portland’s graphic scene, Design Week Portland is the perfect place to start. Check out the full list of events and open houses here, and start planning your journey to understand what makes for great local graphics in your marketing suite.