If you are looking for a business to execute a mass mailing to 10,000 anonymous people, don’t call Stacy Nguyen–she won’t take the job. “We’re not good at direct marketing or lots of repetitive touchpoints,” she says. “It’s just not the way we work.”
But, when you find yourself spinning in circles trying to describe an important but complicated and jargony City initiative, look no further: Stacy Nguyen Creative is your go-to. High-energy, clear-minded, and no-nonsense, Stacy Nguyen is passionate about using visual design to awaken peoples’ emotions and communicate messages that resonate.
We recently collaborated with Stacy to spotlight some amazing individuals, organizations, and businesses in the Chinatown International District who were nominated by their neighbors to receive grant funding for doing impactful work focused on community safety. Check out these stories at: www.frontporch.seattle.gov/tag/rainmakers-fund/ and watch her reels on our Instagram page: www.instagram.com/seattle_neighborhoods/
“First and foremost we honor relationships and center community. We tend to people’s emotions and we facilitate collective decision-making. But that doesn’t mean we aren’t efficient—we’re just efficient in a different way.”
For Stacy, process is key. They frontload the creative process by establishing group agreements that foster direct communication, get very clear about roles and timelines, and don’t take a lot of notes. “We use an inverted pyramid decision-making structure, which means we engage the collective at the beginning of the process so we as designers know the priorities when we are making decisions in the implementation stage.”
Nguyen started her career in corporate graphic design and social media for a tech company where she honed her design skills but sacrificed her soul. When the recession hit and she was laid off, the crisis of sudden unemployment forced her into free-lancing. It wasn’t comfortable—she says, as an immigrant kid, she’d been taught to choose a career path that was economically secure. But she’d also been taught discipline and a caring for her community that built steady work over time. “At some point, I realized—hey, I can make a living at this! I can be of service to people in the community who are doing phenomenal things that more people should know about!”
Stacy Nguyen Creative LLC has been buzzing along for six years now. They have 2 full-time employees, a number of part-time employees, and a bevy of subcontractors with whom they love to collaborate. Their clients run the gamut from Doc Martins and Subaru to Wing Luke Museum and RVC. They produce illustrations and infographics, and design print and digital materials that are oriented around public information. But the lion’s share of their work is in brand identity. “We’re great at listening for the throughline, synthesizing, and then distilling a message that people can look at and say, “Yeah, that reflects us—that’s exactly who we are.”
Stacy Nguyen is the owner of Stacy Nguyen Creative LLC and a former journalist with Northwest Asian Weekly. You can learn more about her company at www.stacynguyen.com and see more of her work on Instagram at www.instagram.com/stacynguyencreative
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Seattle Department of Neighborhoods provides resources and opportunities for community members to build strong communities and improve their quality of life. Through our programs and services, we meet people where they are and help neighbors develop a stronger sense of place, build closer ties, and engage with their community and city government.