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  • Jennifer

An Artful Business Trip to Dallas

I have had the pleasure of working with the Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas since 2011. Together, we have collaborated on print and digital materials for 8 years worth of annual meetings, special events, fundraising campaigns, holidays, advertising, infographics, social media, website pages, emails, presentations, posters, newsletters, direct mail pieces, annual name it. Whatever the creative team has dreamed up, we have produced. I have a wonderful relationship with my clients and, until last week, had only actually met one of them in person.

Federation President and CEO Bradley Laye and I met many years ago when he was Chief Philanthropy Officer at the Jewish Alliance of Greater Rhode Island (then called the Jewish Federation of Rhode Island). When he joined the Federation in Dallas, I was thrilled that he contacted me to do some freelance graphic design work. Now that he is moving on to bigger and brighter things, I thought it was time to travel to the "Big D" to wish Bradley well, offer my appreciation for the continued partnership in person, and finally meet some of the wonderful women I have been working with all these years.

Bradley Laye, President & CEO, Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas, and me

At the reception in honor of Bradley's departure, it was somewhat surreal to step into a world that I have grown to appreciate and know for the better part of a decade—it was as if I had watched several seasons of a TV series and then suddenly was on the show. So many faces looked familiar even though I only knew them from the annual reports and event program photos I had placed, and names I recalled from philanthropic recognition lists. Here they all were, alive, breathing, drinking cocktails.

It was also nice to see my most recent design work for the upcoming annual meeting in action. This year's event has a Broadway theme. The annual meeting is a professional business event so we wanted to keep the look clean, professional, and within Federation branding.

Jewish Federation of Greater Dallas Gallery (click to view larger)

I am incredibly grateful to work with the creative and talented Hillary Burlbaw, Jamie Moore, and Amy Principe and just wish we lived closer to each other. Meeting them, along with future CEO Mariam Shpeen Feist, was the biggest highlight of the few days I spent in Dallas.

Of course, if you are going to fly across the country for a cocktail party, you may as well see some sights. My father, sister, and stepmother joined me for the brief trip, and we took in as much Dallas as we could in two and a half days. Hope you enjoy the following galleries and that they give you some ideas for what to do, see, eat, and experience in Dallas.

The Eyeball in Downtown Dallas and Spiral Diner Gallery (click to view larger)

The George W. Bush Presidential Library Gallery (click to view larger)

The GORGEOUS Bronze Cattle in Pioneer Plaza Gallery (click to view larger)

The large sculpture commemorates nineteenth century cattle drives that took place along the Shawnee Trail, the earliest and easternmost route by which Texas longhorn cattle were taken to northern railheads. The trail passed through Austin, Waco, and Dallas until the Chisolm Trail siphoned off most of the traffic in 1867. The 49 bronze steer and 3 trail riders sculptures were created by artist Robert Summers of Glen Rose, Texas. Each steer is larger-than-life at six feet high; all together the sculpture is the largest bronze monument of its kind in the world. Set along an artificial ridge and past a man-made limestone cliff, native landscaping with a flowing stream and waterfall help create the dramatic effect. As a work in progress, an additional steer is occasionally added to the herd. (Wikipedia)

The Nasher Sculpture Center—Outside Gallery (click to view larger)

The Nasher Sculpture Center—Inside Gallery (click to view larger)

Public Art in Deep Ellum and Farmers Market Gallery (click to view larger)

In addition to the above, we also visited the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza where I became re-convinced that John F. Kennedy's murder was executed via conspiracy. My family partook in Texas barbecue, and I ate vegan tacos. And we spent an inordinate amount of time in the Dallas-Ft. Worth Airport when our return flight got delayed and then cancelled. As far as trips go, it was fun, memorable, inspiring, engaging, full of color, and well worth the time and travel.

Many of my clients live or work outside of Massachusetts. Wherever you call home, if you have a graphic design or creative communications project, be in touch. I am happy to collaborate!

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