Ryan Feerer

Age: 38

Business: Ryan Feerer Design & Illustration aka Feerer Co. and The Good Things  

Job title: Designer/Illustrator, ACU Graphic Design Program Director, and Professor of Design.

 

Why are you working in this industry? I get paid to play. The work I do is so fun and rewarding. I love having an idea and making it into something you can interact with, evoke emotion, or inspire someone to take action. Branding is my specialty. I love how each logo I create is like a puzzle and is unique to each client.

 

What are three daily habits that have helped you to become successful? Being kind, working hard, and spending time with people I love.

 

Who is the person(s) who most influenced you in business? That is a hard question to answer because so many people in my life have influenced me. I would probably say Milton Glaser, one of my grad school professors that I had a mentorship with. He was a brilliant person, and the way he approached his work and clients was fascinating to me. Two others would be Steven Heller and Lita Talarico for accepting me to their design program. That only scratches the surface. I have many more names I would like to share.

 

What is the best advice you have ever received? Do a lot of work. If you do a lot of work, your work will get better. You will not be great at something unless you put the time and effort into it.

 

What was the most significant hurdle you had to overcome to get where you are? How would you address this hurdle today? I am curious about many things, and I always seem to learn the hard way. Sometimes I get myself into situations I would rather not be in because I dive right in instead of thinking through where my decisions might take me.

 

What is an accomplishment that shaped your career? Creating the art for a series of stamps for the USPS has been the major highlight, for sure. I have been blessed with many wonderful opportunities over the years. Doing work for brands like Academy, Target, Snap Chat, and Facebook have been really great.

 

What changes have you seen in Abilene during your career? What changes would you like to see? I wanted to see more good food, drinks, and life downtown, so I helped open up Abi-Haus in 2012. I was, and still am, very proud of what we did. Although it was a disaster at times, I feel like it was significant. We took a chance creating a place we wanted in Abilene. Unfortunately, it didn’t last. I have seen many people take chances in Abilene over the years. Doing something they’re passionate about and sharing it with us. I want to see more of that.

 

What do you want to be doing in 10 years? Hopefully the same thing I’m doing now, just better. 

 

What was your first summer job? I worked for a catering business at age 14. I would help cook, serve, clean, and everything in between. Many other jobs followed.

 

Where will we find you enjoying your hard-earned time off? With my friends and family eating really good food and having a good laugh.

 

Describe yourself in one word. Thoughtful, hopefully.

If you were to give one piece of advice to someone starting out in your field what would it be? Similar to the advice I mentioned above. Do a lot of work. If you do a lot of work, your work will get better. You will not be great at something unless you put the time and effort into it. Do the same thing many different ways. Fix the thing. Do it again and make it better. Don’t be afraid to fail. You will learn from your mistakes and will be less likely to make that same mistake. Have fun, and don’t take yourself or your work too seriously. Make time for family and friends. You need to have a good life/work balance. Also, try not to have regrets because they will weigh you down.

Community Involvement:

  • Highland Church of Christ – Member

  • AIGA (professional association for design) – Member

  • DSVC (Dallas society of Visual Communication) – Member

  • Open Road/Future Fund Sponsor

  • Abilene Beer Summit benefitting New Horizons Sponsor

 

Family: Cassie Feerer (wife), Rose and Sunday (daughters), Oliver (son), and Crumbs (dog).

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