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  • Writer's pictureKayla Lopez

Watershed Work and Watershed Work

Updated: Feb 1, 2021

As I was hoping in the back of the work pick-up for a day of surveying, I received an exciting message from one of my favorite companies. Watershed is having their 25th Anniversary this month, and I was asked to design a logo for them! Despite a 40 hour work week of capturing data to help the local watersheds, wedding photos to edit, living in a van, I knew I could make it happen.

I had to cut my four-week logo design process into a mere week to make the project happen. Challenge accepted! I figured I could wake up an hour before work to sketch ideas alongside my morning brew, and then after work I could wind down with a few hours a night of design work. I usually say sleep and good food fuels a healthy lifestyle. However, in these moments I only need passion and excitement to get things done. Is this what makers do?

So that is what happened, I spent my mornings doing my usual process of many scribbles in my sketchbook, toned with accidental coffee spills. I usually spend my weekdays living at a in the middle of the mountains for my other job. After a dusty days of work measuring stream beds I washed up in the trickling creek, drove into the nearest town and became absorbed in hours of designing. Thank goodness for public library wi-fi and car inverters!

After the work week was over, I drove back to a town a few hours away, where I have a room I use to design in and occasionally fall asleep. Despite the mini van office, there is nothing that replaces a good desk with all the tools at one’s disposal. I could spread out all the sketches, and use my second computer screen to easily layout all the logo versions.

The design was very natural for me. I have been a fan of Watershed bags for close to eight years, as soon as they became the go-to bag for everything in my life. Life gets wet, and as an artist, it’s important to keep things dry! (Although I recommend not carrying drinks inside your bags.) As an adventure designer and boater, I am already constantly sketching water. I have loved the Watershed logo for its relation to the company’s roots… the rivers. The Grand Canyon, to me, holds a deep wealth of whitewater experiences and river history. When designing the 25th Anniversary logo, it felt right to capture a sense of the canyon walls and the ripples from the company logo. I have been feeling more comfortable leaning into my sketchy style that makes me happy and recognizing it may make others happy too! It's been a hoot to be apart of the Watershed team and work together to propel the stoke of adventure and art.

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