Coffee Roasters: a cool illustrated coffee bag from Isla Vista.

Lately I worked with Cajè Coffee for a t-shirt design and we’re drawing a new T-shirt, but last year I worked on their first customized, illustrated coffee packaging bag design, based on an illustrated composition of summerish elements.

Customized, Illustrated coffee roasters bag
Cajè Coffee – illustrated packaging design

After a little chat with Ryan, we thought about creating a seamless vector pattern.

We thought about a pineapple, a shark, a donut, some coffee beans, a palm tree and a milkshake, because we wanted some symbolic graphic elements inspired by summer and the southern California.

We wanted a vintage & old-school graphic for the coffee illustrated bag, but with the appeal of something freshly-made, not too old.

A creative window into the vintage Californian graphics with the vibes of the modern times. I drew a sketch of the composition of the elements, in order to create a fresh combination.

Why? Because we cared to give to the final customer the idea of something locally roasted, nice to sip. Then I sketch the main font; I wanted to create a nice connection between the old color palettes from the 80s-90s and the cleaner shapes of the modern designs.

Customized, Illustrated coffee roasters bag
Cajè Coffee Isla vista – illustrated packaging design by Joe Tamponi

After finishing the composition I vectorised the single elements into a seamless vector pattern.

Customized, Illustrated coffee roasters cup.
Cajè Coffee mug – Designed by Joe Tamponi Illustrations

As you can see from the image above, the same coffee bag graphic has been used to create a nice colorful coffee mug! Are you thinking about creating some bags and new packs for your roasted coffee?

If you liked the coffee bags and you were already thinking about looking for a graphic designer to hire well, you should text me to let’s work on something great!

I wrote a blog post that talks about my work experience as a freelance illustrator, take a look here!

If you’re on the road struggling for a nice cup of coffee because of a hard day well, then you should stop by Isla Vista and take a look to Cajè Coffee, the page it’s here!

Craft beers: my first beer can design.

Last year I drew an illustration and designed my first beer can.

The whole concept of the beer can design was based on a road trip in California designed in a super eye catchy, vintage, 80s skateboarding lowbrow style inspired graphic.

The client after seeing my Instagram illustration portfolio basically told me to do draw whatever I wanted to draw there. So I thought about drawing a concept based on a three weeks trip all across California that I did in 2017 with my brother.

We landed at the LA and spent a couple days there, then we went to Indio, San Diego, Oceanside, Fallbrook, and then up to Santa Cruz and San Francisco to find a couple of friends.

The idea was to design how stoked I was about what I was seeing. A lot of palm trees, all the crazy colors of the signs, the ocean & the waves.

So I started sketching a popping eyes crazy skull with sunglasses and my hairstyle, with a brewery logo tattoo on the head.

Behind him I drew the Palm Springs windmills with the long road where we were driving, a motel sign because of all our bookings down the road, and the ocean, the palm tree and the surfboards.

This is the label:

Beer Can design – Illustration by Joe Tamponi / Art & Illustrations inspired by skateboarding, surfing and psychedelic art

As usual I choose a warm color palette with bright yellow, red, aqua and light blue, to create something that make you think about some 80s-90s vintage skateboard graphics, with some bubbly text inspired by the psychedelic art world, for the mandatory government texts.

Here some images of the finished beer can.

Boomtown Brewery – Superturbo Beer Can Design by Joe Tamponi / Art & Illustrations inspired by skateboarding, surfing and psychedelic art
image by Untappd – designed by Joe Tamponi / Art & Illustrations inspired by skateboarding, surfing and psychedelic art

Are you a Brewery looking for someone to draw your beer can?

Or maybe you’re doing some labels for your glass bottles and you want something eye catchy to fairly represent the taste of your beer?

Text me to and let’s see what we can do together!

If you want to know something more about me, I wrote a little blog post which talks about my work and my experience as a freelance ilustrator, you can read it here!

Who am I and why I love being a freelance illustrator

I’m Joe Tamponi, I’m 32 and I started working as a full time freelance illustrator three years ago, after spending three weeks in California. First off I want to suggest you something to listen reading this thing, and it’s this album. Check out to this other post that analyze some colors from some punk rock covers!

Joe Tamponi - Illustration & Graphic design inspired by Skateboarding, Surfing  & psychedelic art.
CA – Hometown

I started skateboarding when I was fourteen, and surfing when I was sixteen. When I was a teenager I started with the wrong board and I was lost in a bunch of other things. Thanks to a friend in California some years later I re-started and fell in love again. But stop with the boring stuff.

I love drawing bold, eye catchy, super colored illustrations that make you feel like you’re in the 90s again. Pushing that stunning Santa Cruz skateboard deck in a sunny road with a bunch of palm trees over you, with the Nofx pumping in your headphones.

Thinking about nothing, heading to a flat spot to learn some tricks and kill some time with your buddies.

What I’m looking for in a successful artwork is to create something that looks like a vintage skateboard sticker. With all those flat colors and badass punk fonts. Let’s see some examples:

Take a look at these, and you can see what I love the most. In the 80s ( and even earlier) legendary graphic designers like Jim Phillips and Jimbo Phillips, Vernon Courtlandt Johnson, Kevin Ancell, started an incredible art style.

There were a lot of different branches I know, but their work inspired generations of young skateboards, illustrators and graphic designers.

pic by Cridar – 2013

But I always been that kind of person who loves a bunch of stuff, and something that seriously inspired me it’s all that poster art which came out from the psychedelic era.

For example the legendary gig posters of the Fillmore Auditorium in San Francisco from 60s/70s, by Bill Graham. I mean look at the composition and the color palettes of this stuff. they’re just incredible.

The study behind that fonts inspired by the psychedelic trips, the colors are vibrating, sometimes they’re hard to read, the composition looks like is moving into weird shapes.

So, as a freelance illustrator usually I like to do something in the middle. I love the psychedelic art of the 60s because of those flashy, drippy, bubbly psychedelic texts. But I also love the strong, bold lines of the punk-rock, skateboard, surfing inspired illustrations from the 80s and 90s. Punk rock badass fonts, popping eyes, flying slime and all that crazy stuff.

When I was younger I was always adding a bunch of lines to my artworks and everything was super messy.

Always struggling to find the way to catch the right thickness with a fair amount of details. It’s something that it’s always on my mind when I’m drawing. The perfect balance between a bold minimal piece and something detailed.

Well, the research and the study never ends, nothing it’s perfect, and it will never be.

If you liked my works and you were already thinking about looking for a graphic designer to hire well, you should text me to let’s work on something great!