by: Lisa Slagle
Luke Mehall is the man. He writes. He climbs. A lot of times, he writes about climbing. When he is not getting rad on rocks, Luke is the editor and publisher of The Climbing Zine and the author of Climbing out of Bed. He is also one of my most entertaining clients-- our phone meetings always involve a lot of ideas, laughter, and the occasional story about the Gunnison Valley. Here, Luke answers 10 Questions from Wheelie Creative about rock climbing and graphic design.
Name: Luke Mehall
Company: Benighted Publications
Job Title: Publisher
Location: Durango, Colorado
Wheelie Creative: What is The Climbing Zine, and what does it do?
Luke Mehall: The Climbing Zine is first and foremost, a zine, which means its a creative writing based outlet for something a little bit different than any other climbing publication. We also have a website (thanks to Wheelie Creative Design) that has the same focus on featuring well told, interesting stories related to climbing.
WC: What is your job within The Climbing Zine and Benighted Publications?
LM: I'm the publisher and the editor.
WC: Does that mean you are a badass climber?
LM: My Mom thinks so.
WC: Thought so. What are some projects you have worked on with Wheelie Creative Design?
LM: Lisa at Wheelie Creative Design has designed three book covers for me, redesigned our original website (www.climbingzine.com), and built a brand new website that we launched this spring.
WC: Why do you think a good website is important to the success of The Climbing Zine (or any business for that matter)?
LM: It's something people notice if you don't have a good website these days, so it's basically a no-brainer. If your website is up to date, people notice more now than ever. It's expected. Wheelie Creative Design helps us keep up with the times, by offering a user friendly, appealing website.
WC: What is your favorite part about working with Wheelie Creative Design?
LM: Lisa's commitment to creativity. She's not just someone I hire to do graphic design work, or to build a website, I rely on her to see what she thinks of "off the wall" ideas, because at the core of our mission is to remain creative and to avoid being stagnant or boring.
WC: What do you love more-- rock climbing, or this interview?
LM: Rock climbing, but I must say these are some good questions :)
WC: What have you learned from working with designers?
LM: If they are on the same creative space as I am we can work through the inevitable trials and tribulations of doing business, if not, I'm better off finding someone I vibe with.
WC: What are some upcoming projects or events at The Climbing Zine?
LM: We have just released our fifth volume, The Dirtbag Issue, and our first book, Climbing Out of Bed (with cover designed by Wheelie Creative Design). On the horizon is a fall book tour for Climbing Out of Bed, and another book, Climbing Out of the Bathtub, more tales of freedom.
WC: What is your advice to other companies when hiring a designer?
LM: Find someone who not only does professional work, but a person who you get along with, and can have a conversation with, even if it is not about a project you're working on!
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