I am Mitch Linhardt and I am a curious, creative thinker and life-long learner that is not afraid to roll-up my sleeves and do what it takes.
A builder by nature, I began a love for drawing and visual thinking at an early age. Combining all that with a child’s imagination set me on the path to my adult profession. To this day, when I get into that creative zone, I still feel that same freedom and excitement I did as a boy. Many artists in various mediums have fanned my creative flame throughout my life, most notably Charles Schulz. Getting to experience their individual connection to the human condition through their work is not only a great influence, but at the heart of what drives what I want to accomplish with my own work.
I am also naturally observant and curious. Beside the tradition and not-so tradition tutelage of a digital designer, I have earned a Marketing Degree from Missouri State University’s accredited College of Business. I have also studied improv comedy at The Groundling and Improv Olympics West in Los Angeles. These are two of the top such schools in the world where many stars of comedy got their start and it has brought an added way of how I think about and approach design and illustration. Ongoing learning is a big part of my core and I have a broad reading list, listen to industry related podcasts and take advantage of online tutorials on services like Lynda.com, SVS Learn and Skillshare to keep my skills and mind-set fresh.
I have gained experience working for various companies, both large and small, as a full-time employee as well as freelance. I also have several side projects, including illustrating and writing my own children’s picture books. The books started out as a one book side project that would help improve upon my illustration skills and showcase my capabilities, but they became much more. True passion projects and great learning experiences. The road of planning, illustrating, writing and designing the books was long, but well worth the travel it took.
A final note and one that I feel sets me apart is that is that I am a former Cold Stone Creamery franchise owner. As a partner in running three ice cream stores, I wore the many, MANY hats of a small business owner. I also learned first hand the importance of “brand” in a more practical way and how it directly effected my family’s financial survival. Everyday I worked hard to improve both the customer and employee experience.