03 | graphic design & fashion
August. 2018

“Rebelle” is a project which was born from the Experimental Type class at ArtCenter College of Design. “Rebelle” can be understood as exploring and practicing typography through fashion and clothing. From a more macro standpoint in the fashion industry, “Rebelle” is a graphic designer’s response to the wide-spread notion of breaking the boundary between high fashion and streetwear. It is essentially an upper level streetwear (also called “luxury streetwear”) created by a Gen Y generation designer, revealing the will to be part of other existing luxury streetwear brand explorers, such as Off-White, Vetements, Undercover, John Elliott, and Fear of God.

The project contains clothing designs, fashion photography, a promotional video, stationery, the brand catalogue with a line-sheet, a brand manual, a packaging design set, and collateral. The core design philosophy of Rebelle is using typography as the primary approach to deliver direct and indirect communication to a broader audience then the Gen Y perspective. For Rebelle, typography is an intrinsically aesthetic language carrying meaning and content through various mediums, such as clothing, jewelry, books, posters, motions, etc. One major design approach is to use words, sentences, and paragraphs along with powerful imagery to directly present Rebelle’s audience with seasonal themes. Rebelle also inspires, presenting its own attitude and raising specific social topics through indirect communication like using subtexts conveyed by paralanguage. This can be largely found in Rebelle’s “Ré•volution” campaign posters, such as “This Is Not a Rebellion” and “This Is Not an Execution”. By placing the word “Re•volution” up-side down shows a parallel with many Renaissance paintings used, indicating information could only be seen by God. Using imagery is the secondary approach for Rebelle to communicate with its audience. For Rebelle’s first season (“Rebelle Collection” and “Ré•volution” Collection), it is applying paintings and visual elements from the Romanticism period to imply that rebellions have occurred throughout human history. Each period has its own type of rebellion. Three Romanticism paintings that documents the revolutions occurred in Spain, France and Belgium are, “The Third of May 1808” (by Francisco Goya), “Liberty Leading the People” (by Eugène Delacroix), and “Episode of the Belgian Revolution of 1830” (by Gustaf Wappers).  

Rebelle’s tone is established as a nostalgic sensation mainly by a set of 80s–90s color palette in contrast to the overall sophisticated design and tender visual execution. Fashion photography is a major part of “Rebelle” achieved with the help of a professional photographer, a fashion stylist, a hair & make-up artist (HMUA) and two professional models. The emergence of Rebelle can be seen as a millennial’s response to contemporary graphic and fashion designs. It can be also understood as a brave reaction to the counterculture that keeps breaking the boundaries between luxury and streetwear. In fact, Rebelle may be seen as an idea that “officially” makes graphic design and fashion design collaborate with each other. Rebelle, as a newborn fashion brand with a graphic spirit, reveals a sense of unruliness, rebellion, and optimism that have long been in existence. Additionally, it is an expression of its own type of millennial zeitgeist somberness and effervescence.

Art Direction: Yi Mao
Photography: Charlie Sin
Stylist: Sondra Choi
HMUA: Shu Zhang
Model: Kaylin & Pierce (Wilhemina)
*specially thanks to Chelsea Phuong and Oriana Ren. 

*DISCLAIMER: This project is not for any types of commercial uses. 

Instructor: Cheri Gray 
Text Editing & Instructor: Polly Geller
Client: ArtCenter College of Design

*for further and more comprehensive information & imagery, please visit https://www.behance.net/gallery/70755539/Rebelle

04 | graphic design
August. 2018
Kanna—a recreational cannabis brand

Kanna is a hypothetical line of products targeted for recreational cannabis markets. It intentionally aims to offer customers a luxurious and unique cannabis brand experience.

The first challenge in designing this product line, is how to successfully create a premium and aesthetic appearance to audience through visuals under the strict laws of California cannabis packaging. Another main challenge is how to reveal a sense of joy through packaging and label to formally demonstrate the education of cannabis use. The solution is to apply minimal design approaches with appropriate illustrations and vivid colors. Using black & white to simultaneously create a sense of clean, premium quality, and rigor.

Colors are intentionally used to reveal the strength of the product.
Alce (red): strength level 8–9 (max.10)
Toco (orange): strength level 7–8 (max.10)
Hope (green): strength level 3–4 (max.10)
Gouldian (blue): strength level 0 (max.10)
Lori (purple): strength level 1–2 (max.10)

Art Direction: Yi Mao
Photography: Charlie Sin
Stylist: Charlie Sin & Yi Mao

*DISCLAIMER: This brand is a hypothetical project for the Package Design 1 at ArtCenter College of Design. It is not for any types of commercial uses. It may not fully follow the cannabis packaging regulation of the States of California. It is only trying to indicate a specific design aesthetic that potentially apply to the future products in Recreation Cannabis market.

Instructor: Dan Hoy 
Client: ArtCenter College of Design

*for further information, please visit https://www.behance.net/gallery/70790145/Kannaa-recreational-cannabis-brand 

05 | graphic design
April. 2018
Comerica Rebranding

Assignment: I was assigned to rebrand Comerica for a communication class at ArtCenter College of Design. Comerica is a financial services company that operates within business banks, retail banks, and wealth management. One of their corporate responsibilities is “sustainability”.

Concept: The new identity system is named “Oakes”. It is a dynamic identity composed of three icons of an oak leaf. A single oak leaf icon contains two parts. The top part is a silhouette of mountains. The bottom part can be read as lakes, waves, or rivers. Two parts join together to form the “Comerica Oak Leaf”, correlating with Comerica’s philosophy of sustainability. Three leaves are positioned together to frame a circle-like icon, indicating an attitude of sustainability and trustworthiness.

Instructor: Gerardo Herrera 
Client: ArtCenter College of Design

*for further information, please visit 

06 | graphic design
February. 2018
Great Writer Series

This project is to design an 8 page plus cover, text-heavy publication based on the research of a writer's life and work. The writer I choose is the Argentine short-story writer, essayist, poet and translator, Jorge Luis Borges and his famous short story, The Garden of Forking Paths.

The requirements of this project:
01—letter size
02—double-sided printing
03—black laser (no bleed, no colors)
04—collated, saddle stitch
05—any choices of paper stock

*One experimental approach I do for this project is the use of paper stock. What I do is producing three versions of brochures based on two papers, Clearprint 10001416 Design Vellum Paper and Neenah Translucent Gold Paper.

*Design concept: Borges's works mainly deal with topics of time, space, self-identity, bizarreness, and contradiction. His works have inspired so many contemporary movies like The Matrix, Inception, and Interstellar. In order to present his writing style, the arrangement of layout is using type glyphs, lines and juxtaposition of texts to reveal a sense of passage of time. From the first page to the last page, all the spreads would be able to compose a timeline.

*One version of brochures is using only vellum paper for printing. The initial idea is that when audience see the closed brochure, they would see the translucent pages overlap each other, creating complex layers. This approach is to mimic one of the Borges's writing styles, which is about contradiction.

Instructor: River Jukes-Hudson 
Client: ArtCenter College of Design