Back in late-October, I was approached to do a rebranding project for a great organization that’s based in my hometown of NYC. Back then, I was also just hired to be a head lacrosse coach at an international boarding school based in New York’s Westchester County, which I was slowly preparing for the new role. The combination of the two made me think of the growth potential of lacrosse on a global scale, which while we all want, is still overshadowed by not knowing beyond the obvious locations.
Joe Albines and I first met virtually on Twitter years ago, as I was constantly pumping content to build my customer base. We officially met face-to-face at the 2015 US Lacrosse Convention and it was exciting to meet somebody who grew up in NYC playing lacrosse. Joe, or “Coach Joe” as he’s calls himself on Twitter is of Peruvian background. He played lacrosse at Jamaica HS in Jamaica, Queens where he became the captain, and then captained the NYC Empire Team, prior to playing at Queens College in NY, where he was captain, again. Coach Joe, more like Captain Joe!
He started the non-profit, Queens of Lacrosse, so that his daughter can play the sport he loves. His program is his great way to give back to the sport, not only just by teaching young women the skills to play the sport, but to give them the necessary skills to succeed off the field, as well. I always look forward to his posts on social media celebrating his players’ accomplishments on many fronts. But when Coach Joe asked me to do a re-branding of a logo for Queens of Lacrosse, I was more than excited to help out.
Of all the places I grew up and lived in NYC, the borough of Queens was my favorite. I’m a “culture kid” if you can say. I’m an avid foreign traveler and I’m proud to say that I still have never been to Las Vegas. I love to cook and digest international cuisines and I absolutely hate Turkey on Thanksgiving. And most of all, I love hearing different languages spoken, as hearing native tongues reinforces that there’s so much to discover in the world. Before moving to present-day Westchester County, I lived in Long Island City – Sunnyside, to be precise. The neighborhood of Sunnyside is considered the most diverse neighborhood in the United States and with access to the ‘7-train’ you can explore other cultures and ethnicities for just a cost of a subway ride within the ‘melting pot’ of Queens.
Coach Joe and I talked over the phone about the concept of the new logo and the art direction. He wanted to have more of a female lacrosse element to it and we agreed on a licensing to use one of my images for the logo. It seemed that Joe really had the art direction and design expertise because he really knew what he wanted off-the-bat, and that’s very rare with clients and customers when they first approach you for your services. The finished product, below:
I’m very happy to have worked with Joe on this project and to help contribute to his growth of lacrosse not only on the female side, but also on the potential of the global side, as well, considering a trip within the Borough of Queens is like seeing the entire world without having to board a plane.