meet your designer
Grace Studio started in 2003 as a tiny photography venture after the dot.com bust (the first one), wherein I lost my job & fled to Europe. I’d been taking photos since teen years but had set it aside when audio work & other business ventures came calling, & it took me a bit to slow down, see beauty again. It felt a bit like coming home. But experiencing both sides of work (art & business) also made me crave projects that had that combination: business & the creative.
When I take on a project, I delve into my client’s business to understand what their challenges are & what they need from design to make their business better, their brand stronger. It’s one of my favorite parts of the work I get to do – getting to know you.
I still enjoy shooting – vineyards, farms, people & product – & I work it into my projects whenever possible. A visual is worth a thousand first impressions & I’m happy to work with you to get that impression just right.
Off the grid, I enjoy shooting stills for indie films, traveling whenever possible & playing in water in any form: snow, river, lake, ocean.
Street cred: I earned my degree in Telecommunications Management from Marylhurst University & hold certificates in Digital Marketing Strategy and Interactive Media Production from Portland State University.
What’s so special about Grace Studio?
When I fell in love with design again, I opted to work with clients I respect & admire, & with whom I could invest my energies . . . in short, a good relationship. I work mostly with wineries, farms and epicures, and because my focus is toward these industries, I invest a lot in learning what challenges they face, what their yearly rhythms are, and what they need for good branding and web presence.
When you hire Grace, you’re getting a company that knows your business and understands what is important to make a design, image or website design that truly speaks your brand.
Who will work with me?
Grace Studio is headed up by me, Tari Donohue, and while I perform all the services listed here, I collaborate with others for things like video production, app development and specialized software functionality. I will be your point person during our work together.
Do you work with companies other than farms, wineries, & food?
Of course! While most of the work I do centers around artisan businesses, if you’re committed to a solid brand effort and want the styles you see here to come forward in your own business, let’s talk!
Do you do social media?
In a word, no. I can help you decide what social media to use, and get you set up to schedule your content, but I firmly believe the voice in social media should come from those that work in your business every day. Social media is so transparent, it’s easy to spot a fake voice.
Why do you emphasize branding so much?
Because without a good solid brand, businesses fail. A brand is not just a logo – it’s a philosophy, a voice and vibe – it’s what makes people remember you in a market that has hundreds of competitors. I conduct day-long branding workshops that walk you through all branding elements (we do worksheets and everything) and give you a solid foundation on which to market your business. Workshops are conducted for your team alone, because branding is pretty personal stuff.
After branding, I work with you to ensure your marketing materials and the look and feel of your website carry that emphasis forward so it’s consistent across all media. Contact me to learn more.
Are you expensive?
That depends. While I love to help new businesses get started, starting up from scratch can be costly. The branding comes first, then the identity design. Photography, print design, label design must reflect your brand and nuance, and your website design will feature all of these.
See the Working with Grace pages for details on each of these.