Strategic Brand Design & Marketing Implementation

Sure, a newbie or a “guy from craigslist” would be cheaper, but you won’t get the same results.

Working with an experienced design firm isn’t cheap, but it’s worth the investment to get it right without the hassle.

Some background

I started my design career in the corporate office of Circuit City Stores in the 90’s. Since then I have worked for several in-house corporate marketing teams as a graphic and web designer – with my last role in a small creative agency in downtown Richmond.

In 2009, I founded my own design business and began working on a few freelance projects a year outside of my full-time design roles. In September 2019, I began the adventure of working for myself full time.

Jolinda Smithson Design Shapes Colors colorful designer at workMy passion is to help business owners use visual communication to make their companies or their marketing work better. Our team’s focus is in graphic and web design…but we have a network of creative partners who specialize in photography, videography, brand messaging, copywriting and social media. So if what you need is more than what we do, we happily play with friends!

We love to see people excited about who they are and what they’re here to do in the world. If you’d like to learn more how to work with us, get in touch!

Wanna get updates on life as a working creative in Richmond, VA? Hop on that newsletter list.

Our Team

As the lead graphic and web designer on most of our projects, I still love being directly involved with our clients’ work. Solving a WordPress problem or designing a logo to reflect the expertise of an established business still gets me excited to show up to work every day.

As our client list has grown, I have brought on support over the years based on our project needs.

Maria Stone, Jolinda Smithson Anderson and Cierra Fountain sit around a table in a professional office setting.In the Fall of 2022, Maria Stone joined Shapes & Colors as a Project Coordinator and in January 2023, Cierra Fountain came on board as Junior Designer. Our team of 3 is small but mighty.

We aim to deliver a boutique level of service with a smile. Our clients appreciate the systems and processes we’ve developed to keep their projects on track. We are flattered to be able to work with some of the nicest people and truly celebrate when our clients win.

treat people how you want to be treated

Growing up in rural southern Virginia on a farm, I learned the power of community and the power of keeping your word.

I strive to bring the highest level of service and communication to my clients.

Live by the golden rule
colorful rulers laying on a bright pink background
My favorite ruler is from Color Factory, NY.

Illustration and digital imaging from VCUarts, graphic design from client experience

My composition, drawing ability and color theory are all thanks to VCUarts.

My on-the-job experience designing for corporate retail, the financial industry, educational institutions, freelance projects and small agency clients has given me a depth of technical and production skills as well as creative and relationship building skills.

designing for over twenty years
scratchboard illustration of a doll being painted in front of a globe
The Doll, Scratchboard illustration.

design, strategy, and smart execution can transform your business

It's a great honor to help someone create an expression of who they are or what their business stands for.

I take that honor very seriously and strive to work in a collaborative and positive way with each of my clients. In life and in business, things don’t always go as we would like. Even in times of complication or struggle, I try to work toward a solution, remaining respectful, patient and helpful throughout the process.

partnering to create great solutions
Tweaking the shapes and colors in my personal brand.

Brands We Love & Leverage

We work with and trust the brands listed below and leverage them all the time in my work – or to run my business. In full transparency, some of these companies offer affiliate perks to us if you decide to work with them (by clicking on the links provided), but we confidently recommend them all.

As a true partner to our clients, we discover what platform works best for them and we never force my clients to choose a platform or tactic that is just not a fit. We have built this website on WordPress and host it on WP Engine. However, we have clients on many platforms including WordPress, Weebly, Wix, Squarespace and Odoo.

WordPress logo
WP Engine

Get 3 months free when you sign up for WP Engine through my link!

Wix logo
Squarespace logo
greetabl logo
FreshBooks logo
Gusto logo
Bench logo

Notable Creative Partners

We love giving credit where it’s due!
These are some of the local creative folks we trust. We have partnered with them personally and can confidently recommend their work.

bellrae marketing logo, cream text on dark blue background
Erin Braford
Tina Take My Photo logo
S. Helena Photography
Emmaline's Personal Styling
Journey Seven Media
Zooom Printing logo
keith fabry let's create something great
Total Printing Company
Worth Higgins & Associates
41Active clients in 2022
548Cups of Decaf Coffee
17tabs open on my browser
155-star reviews
I adore our partnership.
- nonprofit retainer client

Our clients say the nicest things. Check out how they describe their experience working with us.