My name is Francis Almeda. I’m a Freelance ACD/Art Director based in Chicago, IL. Simply put, I love to make things. Cool things. That’s really it.
I drew a lot of ninja turtles. And my mom said I cried a lot. Stop laughing.
I attended DePaul University, initially majoring in Computer Science. Let’s just say it wasn’t my passion. So, I switched my major and graduated with a degree in Computer Graphics & Animation. Yes, I should be making 3D films like Wreck it Ralph (I wish). But I chose a different path. I took one design class with an inspiring instructor. The first assignment was to create a logo and I was hooked ever since.
My first portfolio was built by finding my own clients on craigslist. I landed my first job at a small, hispanic advertising agency, Alario Group, by creating a 30 second animation as an intern. I then moved to Blue Cross Blue Shield as an Interaction Designer. After that, freelancing was my way of life for 3 years. I worked as a designer, art director and/or animator at numerous digital shops, ad agencies and animation houses. I broke my freelance-4-life streak and spent 3 years with the talented folks at Proximity Chicago. After realizing that I have spent my entire life in Chicago, I wanted a change. I moved to San Francisco and freelanced at a variety of agencies. Being curious, I wanted to see where else my design/art direction skills could take me. I eventually landed a gig at some website company called Google. I’ve worked there for the past 2 years.
I also work on numerous side projects that help keep me on my toes. In fact, I just launched a tiny pin brand called Reppin. I have also taught design and art direction at Chicago Portfolio School and Miami Ad School in San Francisco. I have a beautiful wife that I travel with often and have 3 dogs in which I resemble a dog walker when walking.