Steve Shanabruch is a designer. He lives in the imperfect world, constantly wishing that it was more beautiful. That fonts on every sign were expertly kerned, and each color scheme was carefully considered. Alas, the world as we know it isn’t pristine, but his work is.
A departure from the expected, his project, The Chicago Neighborhoods, has a singular, ambitious goal: to create beautiful, handcrafted logos for each of 215 of the Windy City neighborhoods. He’s almost halfway there.
“It’s a passion project,” says Shanabruch. “I wouldn’t like to say I was bored at my job, but I needed a creative outlet.” The project began several years ago, and since then, he’s shipped prints and t-shirts featuring his designs all around the world.
His latest project is a series of color posters, highlighting the best features of a neighborhood. The ambition continues in this new series, where he has already tackled four signature Chicago landmarks, in Beverly, Logan Square, South Loop, and Ravenswood Manor.
In this episode, Joshua and Nicholas consider the logistical concerns of delivering thoughtful design at scale. Tune in to discover Steve’s secrets, and be inspired to create better work yourself.