Alumni Profile: Kurt Bielema
Hometown: Urbana IL
Year graduated: 2002
Currently working as: A self-employed designer in Champaign IL. My studio is called Single Stereo Creative.
How does it feel to be a professional designer: Bliss.
How do you like your job: Love it. It's high stress at times, but highly rewarding. I love having direct contact with my clients, and also setting my own schedule.
Why did you decide to strike out on your own: After working at Taylor Studios (Rantoul IL) for 3.5 years, I felt the need to grow. The bulk of freelance work I had piling up had something to do with it, too.
What was the most exciting project you've worked on since graduation: Burpee Museum of Natural History. It was a big job that happened extremely quickly, so most of the decisions had to be made on the spot. There were a couple of marathon meetings and brainstorming sessions that I was a part of — they were exhausting, but ultimately dictated the course of the project.
What were some of the most important things you learned while at Parkland: Presenting my ideas professionally to a group of people (class critique sessions), preparing for a project before starting on design (creative brief), and being excited about choosing such a kick-ass career!
Who is your favorite designer and why: Carlos Segura. His style resonates with me. He embraces the dirty and the pristine, anime and photography, wood type and digital type, and mixes it all up and creates something wonderful and new.
What is your favorite typeface and why: That changes from job to job. I really like the faces designed by Lucas de Groot: theSans, theMix, and theSerif. They have this subtle, unique personality to them. Right now, I really dig Denim by T-26. I like it because it looks like the typeface used on a lot of old records from the sixties.
Web link: singlestereo.com or
Last updated: 5/15/12 Webmaster: Paul Young