As one of a few female CEOs in the design industry, Jessica Walsh, founder of creative agency &Walsh, has faced criticism from women as well … First of all, many people are not in circumstances where finding jobs they love is possible. Jessica Walsh (born October 30, 1986) is an American graphic designer, art director and illustrator, and founder of creative agency & Walsh. It was a risk, but I learned so much working with her and her team at Pentagram. But it’s hard to imagine aforementioned plumber, dentist or electrician staying at the Soho House Hotel in Chicago’s trendy Fulton Market District. It’s easy to build up your own perception of a notable person from their work, their interviews and the press photos that tend to accompany them—in Walsh’s case, images exuding style, power and often sexuality, reflecting her bold, formidable, striking, seemingly flawless designs. This is where a different Jessica Walsh emerges. Goodman and Walsh Take on Trump. There is nothing that makes me happier than when a client tells us how much they’ve enjoyed the process and appreciates our work together. Even more so than we could have ever expected. Last Call! Katy Cowan She lectures about design at creative conferences and universities internationally. Sagmeister recalls that Walsh’s interests were very similar to his own—and he hoped she would bring her own take on them to the table. Not everyone has to like me or my work. I love the research involved with every new client as I get up to speed with their industry, product or service, competitive set, and target audience. Going nude for the postcard was one thing, but this was another entirely: Here, she was revealing to readers who she really was. We all know the story well, but let’s recap it for posterity: In 1994, Sagmeister formed his own studio, and he announced it to the world via a postcard of himself nude, save for a pair of black socks. A mind-bogglingly talented young person who achieved the fame she deserved far earlier than most, and was left to navigate it. Jessica Walsh can be a divisive figure in design. “It was a huge risk for us, both personally and professionally. “I was obsessed with all the arts and crafts in school. Think exposed brick, reclaimed wood furnishings, an edgy yet refined chic elegance that might be absurdly yet best described as “Midcentury Equestrian.”. Sometimes, when someone is really good at something from a young age, a natural, they know. She describes it as a mix of who she was at the time of the partnership announcement, and her post-40 Days vibe; a sort of duality. A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, Ms. Walsh evolved her lush, tactile style partnering with the graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister when she … In the craft of fiction writing, the No. And then, of course, there’s another colossal risk Walsh took that exceeds even the announcement photo. “I definitely did not,” she says. I am also always looking for new ways to improve our work or strengthen our offerings to our clients. Through college I always had a really big sense that I was faking it or I shouldn’t have been there and everyone else was a real artist and I just stumbled my way into this through the web stuff.”, After school she nabbed an internship with Paula Scher at Pentagram in New York City. [Editor’s Note: This interview was conducted prior to the 2015 event.]. Confident. I spot her on an olive couch across the room, the classic bangs an immediate giveaway. When she was in fifth grade, she found some stones on the side of the street. I mean, it did exactly what we set out for it to do. (After our interview, in fact, she is set to deliver a keynote to a few thousand people at HOW Design Live.) But it is where I’d expect a famous designer to stay. She admits she had to develop a public face for it all. They didn’t know me or who I was or my work.”, “No. (After our interview, in fact, she is set to deliver a keynote to a few thousand people at, But ultimately, it became the project of which she is most proud in her career. “That’s when I realized, Oh shit, I can make money doing my hobby.”, She moved from designing websites for school clubs to local businesses, and when she was a senior in high school, got offered a $200,000 a year gig at a web design company.