Using Nuance to Better Understand Then Improve Brand & User Experiences
dba Pixel Relish
pixel-relish.com
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Hello, I'm Sheila Dent, dba Pixel Relish. Pixel Relish is both art and science, aesthetics and applied market analyses. Optimal communication stems from diction and graphics that enhance one another and ideally suit the brand, audience, message, and presentation medium. Pixel Relish is about embracing the pote… Read More
Hello, I'm Sheila Dent, dba Pixel Relish. Pixel Relish is both art and science, aesthetics and applied market analyses. Optimal communication stems from diction and graphics that enhance one another and ideally suit the brand, audience, message, and presentation medium. Pixel Relish is about embracing the potential of these things. It's about engaging, beneficial detail culled to an effective level, and it's about adding an extra dash — even two — of focus and creativity to each project to create a unique, useful result.

I strive for layered communication so smooth it feels natural, perhaps a bit delightful, while undeniably digestible and, therein, successful.

I specialize in helping companies develop succinct, full-bodied, evolving brands, including not only brand definition and review but also HTML and print collateral, content marketing (eBooks and more) and related that live up to and further that company and/or product-line-specific brand. I work either as part of the client's greater team (in-house or freelance collective) or primarily on my own, as suits the client's goals and existing resources. I do accept piecemeal HTML (web and email) and print (large and small format) projects, however my primary goal is for ongoing work that lets my strength — brand and related product idea development — sit at the forefront while my HTML, print, and writing/editing skills lie as mere tools (very good tools) on the development table on which we bring ideas into action.

In college (oh, so many decades ago) I studied Economics, admittedly drawn in more by the strong role graphic elements, coupled with diction, played in fostering comprehension than by the subject matter itself. I come from a family deeply rooted in the art of the written word, and after college I began combining these two: As an editorial intern at a local cycling magazine, as a high school English textbook contributor writing content-based grammar examples, as a freelance typesetter for local print shops, as both an in-house and a freelance newsletter writer and designer, and increasingly as an off-site in-house-like go-to person for creating a consistent, polished public face for bodies of work involving text, graphics, and/or layout, whether presented in print or over the internet.

Throughout most of my career I've been asked to oversee all aspects — concept through design through final production — of small business projects. To a degree, tackling so many fields at once, while suitable to the projects I've undertaken during the era in which I completed them, has held me back from focusing on and truly mastering my core foci: As mentioned above, I'm currently, one, shifting my focus back to brand storytelling and development and, two, looking to team up with some talented, complimentary folks for higher end implementation projects. My passion remains with relevant details that bring dimension (hopefully, too, delight, if appropriate) to a message. I will continue with ongoing education in visual, verbal, creative, and technological tools of my craft, and I'll remain open to handling boutique projects on my own, as appropriate to scope and budget, particularly when such involve brand development and analysis, however I hope in 2016 to convene a talented, complimentary team, whether in-house or freelance, with whom I can tackle multiple larger projects and iterations for years to come. Read Less
  • Creative Director + Visual Designer + Comnunications Mgr (jack of all trades communications-related)
    401k Network — CA, USA
  • Creative/Communications Director + Office Manager
    California Commercial Council — CA, USA
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I have a keen eye and deep appreciation for relevant detail: I peel back the generalized nouns, adjectives, adverbs that laypeople use to describe their products and services; I reveal the underlying, intended, meaningful specifics that speak to who, precisely, this company is, what it represents, what it sells … Read More
I have a keen eye and deep appreciation for relevant detail: I peel back the generalized nouns, adjectives, adverbs that laypeople use to describe their products and services; I reveal the underlying, intended, meaningful specifics that speak to who, precisely, this company is, what it represents, what it sells — beyond a lone product or service. I poke and prod to unearth then polish a clear, multidimensional Who We Are, thereby defining what sets the company apart from competitors and why consumers would (perhaps even should) care that the company exists.

Some companies can take it from there: Once they see such precise a description of their mission, they can translate that into product and marketing materials. Ideally, though, I first take the Who We Are and extrapolate from it the company's How We'll Say It, a detailed verbal and visual style guide that serves as the foundation from which all future iterations — advertisements, websites, email campaigns, apps, and more — will grow, whether under my continued supervision and even creation or in the hands of in-house staff and/or project-specific contractors.

My keen eye for detail, thirst for narrative and rhythm combined with my years of professional editing experience, both verbal and visual, help me hep clients arrive at succinct, useful results. Read Less
In college (oh, so many decades ago) I studied economics, admittedly drawn in more by the strong role graphic elements (not merely the charts and graphs but also their colors), when coupled with diction, played in fostering comprehension than by the subject matter itself.  I come from a family deeply rooted in the… Read More
In college (oh, so many decades ago) I studied economics, admittedly drawn in more by the strong role graphic elements (not merely the charts and graphs but also their colors), when coupled with diction, played in fostering comprehension than by the subject matter itself.  I come from a family deeply rooted in the art of the written word, and after college I began combining words with their presentation:  As an editorial intern at a local cycling magazine, as a high school English textbook contributor writing content-based grammar examples, as a freelance typesetter for local print shops, as both an in-house and a freelance newsletter writer and designer, and increasingly as an off-site in-house-like go-to person for creating a consistent, polished public face for bodies of work involving text, graphics, and/or layout, whether presented in print or, once the technology arose, over the internet. 

Throughout most of my career I've been asked to oversee all aspects — concept through design through final production — of small business projects.  To a degree, tackling so many fields at once, while suitable to the projects I've undertaken during the era in which I undertook them, has held me back from focusing on and truly mastering my core foci.  So, as mentioned above, I'm currently, one, shifting my focus back to brand storytelling and development — to succinct brand definition, style guides, detailed Who We Are/ How We Say It/ Why We Exist, and from there into brand storytelling that reflects this carefully mapped out identity — and, two, looking to team up with some talented, complimentary folks for higher end implementation projects. My passion remains with relevant details that bring dimension, feeling, and comprehension to a message. I will continue with ongoing education in visual, verbal, creative, and technological (html, css, sass, and more) tools of my craft, and I'll remain open to handling boutique projects on my own, as appropriate to scope and budget, particularly when such involve brand development and analysis, however I hope in 2016 to convene (or join) a talented, complimentary team, whether in-house or remote, with whom I can tackle multiple larger projects and iterations for years to come.

STUFF I LOVE
I particularly enjoy things — fiction, music, episodic television, even well-composed newspaper articles — that imbue me with sensation, particularly of movement, of shifts from one place or state to another. Well done short fiction, a lifelong passion and hobby, holds particular appeal, its by-definition limited expanse like a magnifying glass that highlights even minor flaws and missteps, meaning when it's done well, it's unrelenting — and thereby very powerful.

When I'm not at my desk working, you'll often find me outdoors, most likely with my dogs and/or horses. I enjoy open space, trees, mountains, beaches, sun, moisture, and grasslands (again, texture, color, sensory stimulation).

I enjoy working with passionate, skilled, innovative yet compassionate people who are about creating the best product, not inflating their own egos. I so enjoyed a few collaborative writing projects during 2015 that am looking to collaborate far more in the coming months and years in all aspects of my brand development and communications related work. Read Less
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