Cody Bass, Friendly Font Poster


April 20, 2016 - 5:00pm - 7:00pm
Gallery of Art and Design - George Hurst Building
Mark Rigsby mark.rigsby@usm.edu 601-266-6788


Featuring senior projects by: Christen Austin, Cody Bass, Parker Brewer, Chelsea Christopher, Wyatt Cote, Austin Courrege, Gavin Donaldson, Katherine Frye, Julie Gore, Kacey Holifield, Paul (PJ) Ladner, Blakely McNeely, John Ragland, Melanie Santiago, Cat Schmidt, Kameron Smith, Mallory Stubbs, Courtney Sullivan, and Hunter Sullivan


Christen Austin


I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream. Add some alcohol and it makes it even better. Twysted is an alcohol infused ice cream shop that calls the heart of the French Quarter home. With late night hours and haunting desserts that cater to adults and kids alike, Twysted is a fun and exciting place to make new memories.

Christen Austin, age 23, is from Kiln, Mississippi. Inspired by her mother, Art has always been her passion. In the final weeks of her high-school days, her art teacher asked her what she wanted to do in college and from that day forward she knew she wanted to be a graphic designer. Currently, she works as a freelancer for Pine Belt Graphics designing t-shirts.


Cody Bass

Friendly Font Co.

Friendly Font Co. is a type foundry focused on making fun fonts that other people can use to add some whimsy to their designs. In a world filled to the brim with dull corporate branding and stale graphic standards, Friendly Font Co. is a type foundry with a mission; to do everything possible to bring more joy into the design world. Making fonts is serious business, but it doesn’t always have to be! 

Cody Bass, age 22, was born in Brandon, Mississippi. He grew up playing music with friends and began designing logos, flyers, etc. for local bands. While studying design at Southern Miss, he developed a strong love for lettering and typography. Bold colors and shapes are a constant throughout his work, and he believes that design should be fun whenever possible. Aside from design, Cody enjoys riding bikes, traveling, and playing with his dog Harper. After graduation, Cody plans to stay in Hattiesburg for a while and pursue a career in design.


Parker Brewer

Sip Mississippi Tea

Sip Mississippi Tea is a company that grows and harvests tea in Mississippi. As anyone who has traveled to Mississippi knows that the climate here makes growing tea impossible if not properly attended to. Sip Mississippi Tea offers tea in three forms, Keurig cups, loose leaf, and tea sticks. The brand is intended to be quirky and show Mississippi in a positive light.

Parker Brewer, age 22, has grown up in Hattiesburg. When in high school, Parker discovered through working on the yearbook that her love for art and computers could be a career choice. She applied to The University of Southern Mississippi and declared a major in graphic design. In May, Parker will graduate with a Bachelor of Fine Arts. She plans to move wherever the career field takes her after graduation.


Chelsea Christopher

Nyx Nightclub

Nightclubs are as popular as they are plentiful around the world and despite an extreme attention to detail paid to the actual venues of these clubs, a key piece of branding has seemingly been forgotten. Nyx Nightclub, a Greek Underworld themed venture, aims to change the modern approach to nightclub branding by bringing the nostalgia and individualized experience from back in the day combined with a modern love of moments worth collecting in the form of items one can take home. Illustration plays a key role in both the look and overall ambience of the club’s aesthetic and is the standard in which it sets itself apart. This project sets out to prove that just because an audience is only looking for a night out it doesn’t mean their experience shouldn’t be elevated through thoughtful and purposeful design.

Chelsea Christopher, age 25 and originally from Jackson, Mississippi has spent the last 4 years in Hattiesburg while pursuing her BFA with an emphasis in graphic design at the University of Southern Miss. Despite having always had a love of art, it was only after working within the field of design that she decided to change her major from English. This worked out for the best as she excelled within the degree, in particular as both a member of the student run Rise Creative agency and Secretary of the AIGA student group. Her work utilizes a lot of illustration, specifically of the vector kind and she has a distinct love of branding and page layout. 


Wyatt Cote

Al's Landing

Al's Landing is a space themed amusement park based in Houston, Texas. The project was a mix of branding and contemporary design. The goal was to explore modern media in design while maintaining traditional design tactics. The fun and eye popping illustrations were created to live in tandem with the bright colors and inviting typography. These stylings were inspired by contemporary artists like T. J. Reynolds and Jeremiah Shaw along with Nick Slater and Jeroren van Eerden.

Wyatt Thomas Coté is a 22 year old that was born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi. His love for the arts began at a very young age and were explored in his schooling. He was enrolled in a liberal arts school throughout his elementary and junior high schooling for visual arts. This education carried over to his college career when he enrolled at the University of Southern Mississippi for a degree in Graphic Design. 


Austin Courregé


When starting their college experiences so many students consider and dream about the potential of having a study abroad experience. Thousands of students every year start the application process, but are often left more confused and turned off from the possibility of going abroad all together. This is where the concept behind the project All’estero derived.  All’estero, from the Italian word meaning “to be abroad,” is a curated exhibition that presents informative design while presenting helpful, visually appealing, and informative media on studying and living abroad. The project is geared towards visual learners and thinkers who find the clinical approach behind applying for study abroad programs more confusing than helpful.

Austin Courregé, was born and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. It was during his time at the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts (NOCCA) that he discovered his passion for visual communication. After four exciting years at the University of Southern Mississippi he will be receiving his Bachelor’s of Fine Arts degree on May 13, 2016. After graduation Austin will be continuing to pursue his career in graphic design and visual problem solving.


Gavin Donaldson

Bozo's Rebranding

This project is based on the branding of a small seafood restaurant in Pascagoula, Mississippi named Bozo’s. This business was chosen because it has been very successful in the Gulf Coast area, since 1956, and is part of the fabric that makes up that area. Branding this business will add to it’s success because it will be easier for consumers to learn and recognize their new branding identity through consistency of appealing design.

Gavin Donaldson, age 24, is from Gautier, Mississippi, and began his engagement with graphic design as a profession in 2009.  Since, then Gavin has been continuing to learn about design and experiment with a diverse range of design techniques.


Katherine Frye


Zoofari is a family-friendly zoo safari. It was designed based on research into successful wayfinding systems as well as children-oriented graphic design that encourages fun and learning. The goal of Zoofari is to encourage people, mainly children, to learn more about animals and animal conservation. Zoofari targets three major locations: Africa, Asia, and Australia.

Katherine Frye, age 22, is from Ocean Springs, Mississippi. She chose graphic design as her career during high school when she was working for her school’s newspaper. At the time, Katherine was also interning with a local newspaper and enjoyed designing the paper more than writing for it. She enjoys incorporating animals in her designs when appropriate. Her love for animals started at a young age, particularly when she visited her grandparents who raised a few litters of hunting dogs, and it helped influence her to design Zoofari. Ultimately, Katherine hopes to one day design books and see her book designs in stores.


Julie Gore

Stevie's Cafe

After Julie Gore and her brother Kirk’s rambunctious childhood pet cat, Stevie, passed away, they wanted to find a way to have her huge personality live on forever. Combining their love for coffee and Stevie, Stevie’s cafe was born. Focusing on upscale ingredients with a playful atmosphere, Stevie’s is a place where anyone could come enjoy a meal or coffee in a welcoming and lively cafe.

Julie Gore, age 23, is from Hattiesburg Mississippi. Growing up she was very creative and involved in music. She entered college at the University of Southern Mississippi as a member of the Pride of Mississippi Marching Band and a history major. Julie felt unfulfilled with future plans and her mother suggested graphic design due to Julie's constant interest in the arts. Immediately she fell in love and it became her favorite thing to do.


Kacey Holifield

The Secret History

The Broadway play adapted from Donna Tartt’s novel, The Secret History, explores the mindset of a group of classics scholars who are led astray from real life into one of corruption, betrayal and evil. After the group murders a member of their clique, they must face the consequences of their actions and learn how to amalgamate back into the real world. The branding for The Secret History is a unique exploration of historical Broadway promotional materials. By incorporating illustration and typography throughout, each aspect of the play’s identity is cohesive and befitting for what the audience will view on stage.

Kacey Holifield is 22 years old and was born and raised in the small town of Laurel, Mississippi. Art has always been where she has found solace. As a child, she would draw on hundreds of Post-It Notes and stick them to the refrigerator. Eventually, this would develop into a true love for drawing. In high school, graphic design became her particular area of interest. Kacey loves the idea of communicating with audiences through art. In her spare time she enjoys reading, watching films and playing the piano.


PJ Ladner

Tribe Fest

Tribe Fest is a three-day music festival in Roanoke, Viriginia. Tribe Fest is the first music festival that divides the performing artists by genre. Tribe Fest aims to bring an audience together by letting them choose a “tribe” or genre when purchasing their ticket. Tribe Fest hopes that in creating tribes for each day, customers will make long lasting relationships with their peers and come back every year to visit their tribe.

PJ Ladner is a graphic designer and musician from Diamondhead, Mississippi. Growing up he always had a love for creating and designing. He has spent the last six years designing and creating and pursuing his passion for design. After graduating he hopes to work for a design agency and work toward his goal of becoming a creative director.


Blakely McNeely

The Golden Goose

A new age with a new look has never been truer for furniture in the twenty first century. The Golden Goose is a midcentury modern antique store, advertising the idea of finding one of a kind pieces resembling the mid century modern look of simplistic yet minimalist design. The company’s goal is to create a unique experience with hopes of finding your one of a kind piece and stopping your goose chase.

Blakely McNeely, age 22, born and raised in Mobile, Alabama. After discovering her interest in art while in High school she then perused it in college discovering graphic design. As an artist she enjoys abstract art and the use of geometric shapes creating a sense of uniqueness that allows design to be interpreted in many ways. Blakely will be receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis in Graphic Design from the University of Southern Mississippi in August 2016. After graduation, she plans on pursuing a career in Mobile, Alabama as a graphic design artist for a local company, with the hopes of expanding her horizons and knowledge in her chosen field.


John C. Ragland

The Any Doll

The Any Doll is a capstone project that explores the classic tradition of storytelling and the historical process of producing children’s books.  The book produced for this project is an original work in both story and illustration that follows and expands upon the formula of classic children's literature and fairytales.  The story portrayed within the book itself follows a very personal struggle and tells a tale of the challenges that we all go through trying to find our special place in the world that we were all made to fill.  As such, the book itself sets out to instill a valuable moral of looking into oneself and realizing ones desires, potential, and purpose by using relatable characters that thrive in a world that is as vibrate and exaggerated as them.


John C. Ragland, age 24, is a graphic designer and illustrator who was born and raised near central Jackson.  Whenever he wasn’t on long trips with his father or outside going on grand adventures and sharing ice pops with his dog, John spent the majority of his time drawing and creating small toys.  His fascination and passion for storytelling and illustration was fueled by the ability that animation, literature, and video games had to bring characters and their worlds to life.  Art had always been an analog process meant for fine art until John entered the realm of graphic design at USM.  Since then, John has been developing his skills through freelance work, internships, and personal projects.  After graduation, John ultimately intends to pursue a career path in illustration while continuing to work and grow in the field of graphic design.


Melanie T. Santiago

Zenith: Out of the Chaos

Travel time alongside Z, an orphaned heroine, granted time-centric abilities by the mystic Alda. This video game design takes cues from minimalist designers such as Olly Moss and repurposes art deco motifs—flat tones, simple shapes and strict palettes—to create a dynamic, action-packed visual identity that readies the viewer for adventure. Zenith is an illustration-heavy project, with countless intricate typographic and stylistic details recurring throughout the body of work. The project attempts to join indie gaming companies like Campo Santo and Thatgamecompany in bridging the gap between video game design and graphic design.

Melanie is a 21-year-old designer/illustrator from Biloxi, MS. Pursuing an M.B.A. at USM Fall 2016, she hopes to one day apply her degrees to an art directing job. Her love for gaming and illustration led to her interest in branding a video game; however, she is also passionate about sustainability and human rights and currently researches stereotyping involving green marketing and graphic designers’ response to sustainable design. Mel volunteers for Big Brothers Big Sisters, has two ferrets and loves to listen to music. She also hopes you enjoy her work!


Cat Schmidt

ViO Wine Experience

In todays era there is a huge demand for experiences that can be mailed to your house, such as movies, meals, outfits and etc, so for my senior project I wanted to create a mailed out wine kit for true wine lovers or people interested in learning more about wine. The idea behind the ViO wine kit is a package that focuses on a particular wine while also pairing wine essentials to inform and create the ultimate wine experience. The wine kit includes information about the selected wine the customer has purchased, as well as a recipe and cheese that is paired with the particular wine of choice. This kit could be a monthly membership where every month the customer could try a different wine and its pairings, or the kit could be a one time purchase that would be great for a dinner party, a gift, or just someone interested in learning more about a particular wine.

Cat Schmidt, age 27, is from Ocean Springs, Mississippi. Even though art has always been a passion and hobby since a young child, she gives credit to her Ocean Springs for pushing her to follow her artistic side in a career considering that art runs through the veins of the towns heart. Her college years began with the intent of going to school for interior design, but shortly after taking her foundation classes she realized that she wanted to focus more on fine arts, so Cat joined the graphic design program to broaden her artistic skills. Once in the fine arts program she also spent many years intently exploring photography and sculpture which would go on to expand her craft and artistic abilities and also had the great opportunity to study abroad in London. Now approaching many new phases in her life including a new marriage engagement and graduation she is very excited to see what the future holds for a new career in graphic design. She gives great thanks and appreciation to her family and friends for all the enthusiastic support in letting her follow her dreams and rooting her on the along the way.


Kameron Smith

Second Cinema

I am an illustration based graphic designer that also loves to create identities, therefore I combined these two loves into this project. Second Cinema is a historically based Art Deco themed movie theater that only features movies for their second showing.  Each movie release is themed and the posters for it are redesigned for every showing. The theme for this particular release is sex, drugs, and rock and roll. All twice as nice!


Mallory Stubbs


Off-Beet is a health cafe and shop inspired by unique ingredients that are not only delicious, but good for you. Off-Beet embraces the unusual and creates an inviting and one-of-a-kind environment that entices customers to try something new, while promoting a lifestyle of health and individuality.

Mallory Stubbs, age 22, was born in Covington, Louisiana. Growing up with a passion for painting and drawing, art has always been a main focus in her life. Switching majors from Advertising to Graphic Design, a love for typography, layout, and illustration quickly emerged, while developing a strong sense of personal style. After graduation, Mallory hopes to land a career in an inspirational and creative environment that will help further her design skills.


Courtney Sullivan

Front St. Fresh

This project uses nostalgia and design to unify a brand for a local downtown grocery store, Front St. Fresh. Patterns and hand-made qualites act together to make the packaging work as a system. 


Hunter Sullivan

Cottonwood Print-shop

Hunter Sullivan,from Oak Grove Mississippi, will be exhibiting his senior project on Cottonwood Print-shop. It is the branding of a printmaking studio based out of Hattiesburg that focuses on building relationships with the community to expose as many people as possible to printmaking and printmaking culture. All design choices were chosen to enforce the idea of small town personable relationships with the whole community.