Stuart Alden (he/him/his): I was born in Moscow, Idaho in 1967, but grew up in the country in northern Colorado. As one of four kids, with 2 older sisters, it wasn't uncommon to find myself tagging along to Girl Scouts or 4-H and learning all sorts of skills. By the time I was in 2nd grade I could knit and needlepoint, run the sewing machine, skin a rabbit, and make pizza from scratch. I was also a shy little kid who often had a pencil or book or camera in hand and found myself getting lost in these activities. As I got older I took violin and swimming lessons that led to scholarships and part-time jobs. My university years were also a bit of an exploration as I spent 6 years and studied art, music, education, math, photography–and finally received a BFA with an emphasis in graphic design.
Much of my curiosity in other cultures and society comes from travel as we lived in New Zealand 2 different times growing up plus my wife and I try to travel as much as possible for work or adventures.
My parents were educators which is where my passion for teaching comes from. They were also involved in many community programs and initiatives which is where my sense of community involvement comes from.
After college graduation I was fortunate to work with some great design companies and became active in AIGA, the national design association, that helped shape my early design philosophies. My international travel with Icograda, the Peace Jam Foundation, and personal have continued shaping the direction of my career and outlook on life.
A little secret, Ink Lounge was sort of an accident. As a graphic designer it was something I dabbled in on the weekends at home. Then it became a side project that my wife (Nicky) and I opened in a 600SQFT studio on nights and weekends. I think we ran about 6 workshops and 8 art openings in our first year. Little did we know what we created.
It was a great success and we simply let it evolve for about 10 years and moved the studio twice, growing to 3,700SQFT. From 2013-2017 we had part time staff and were teaching 90+ workshops a year, commercially printing 60% of the time, and hosted many types of events and art openings. Unfortunately we found we were spending 90% of our time at the studio and realized we needed to find some harmony.
So in 2018 we decided to reduce our footprint and scale back the screen printing services. Nicky become a graphic designer for the State of Colorado and I shifted the studios focus to 100% paper screen printing music/art posters, educational workshops, and Good Ink Missions.
To wrap this up–currently I define myself as a creative explorer as I am continually seeking new experiences and knowledge and find tangible ways to apply my skills to projects and initiatives that are meaningful to myself and the community around me. I am fortunate to do what I do, which inspires me to find people and projects to support.
Thanks for your time and don't hesitate to ask any questions.
Ink Lounge would not have been possible without the support of my wife Nicky! My sister Susan is also always lending a helping hand. And of course Squeegee has her eye on things too. Woof.
I'm a Rambling Man
It's true in many ways as not only can I talk your ear off, I've traveled to all 50 states including Puerto Rico & driven Route 66, traveled to 6/7 continents, including Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Cuba, England, France, Guatemala, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, and Venezuela.
Creative in Other Ways
I enjoy learning and applying new skills in other creative ways and have built many items in the studio including washout booths, exposure units, workbenches–plus added doors, walls, and a small room. I also tend to have weekend projects. I've restored a few old vehicles and built a pretty speculator garden shed and dog house, well at least that's what the ladies say.
I consistently volunteer my time, skills, and resources to support the community. Please visit the Portfolio page to see non-profit and donated design, or the Good Ink Missions to see community objectives.
2022 received recognition in Westword's Best of Denver 2022 issue for Community Service. Read Article
In June of 2020 I started a monthly event at the studio where people bring a shirt and I screen print one of several designs I've done for free. My wife and usually 1-2 volunteers help out to keep everything moving along. More Info
June 2020–Present > Denver, CO
Good Ink Youth Workshops
I currently donate about 5-10 hours a month, including supplies, to schools and youth nonprofit organizations to give them a chance to experience screen printing. I am able to show how I use my artistic skills professionally and it also allows me to have discussions on how art can be used for social justice. More Info
Community College of Denver Advisory Committee
Specifically for the Graphic Design department.
2018-2021 > Denver, CO
Denver Art Museum Design Studio Advisory Group
Sat on committee that advised on opportunities and intent for the new DAM Design Studio, part of the remodeling.
2018-2019 > Denver, CO
Mo’Print Committee Chair
Volunteered as a committee member, designed collateral and the studio space for a Mo’Print sponsored event.
2016 & 2018 > Denver, CO
AIGA CO Elevate Participant + Sponsor + Mentor
Donated posters for several years and Ink Lounge became an official sponsor in 2017. Students had several meetings at the studio to go over screen printing as an option to produce. We also partnered with VSA/Access Gallery to include their students in the event and ran a 3 week workshop so they had posters at the event. I've also been a mentor several years and worked direct with one of the students
2015–2019 > Denver, CO
Knitting 4 Peace Board Advisor
Worked and met with their board to advise on branding, board structure and initiatives.
2011-2018 > Denver, CO
Think360 Teaching Artist
Created and ran screen printing workshops with DPS K-12.
2008-2019 > Denver, CO
Cushman Club of America Board Member
Volunteered to be the website coordinator in charge of re-branding, new website and maintaining content.
August 2012–August 2015 > National
AIGA CO & ADCD Sponsor
Ink Lounge has donated screen printing for various items for both organizations including: 2 years of posters for the ADCD Paper Fashion Show and assisted them in printing totes and volunteer T-shirts. I designed/printed the AIGA CO 25th anniversary poster and created 3 events over 3 days with French Paper and Brian French for both professionals and students. I've designed/printed ADCD Art Bus posters and assisted printing shirts.
ico-D Conference Photographer
Volunteered to be official Icograda conference photographer.
October 2009 > Beijing, China
ico-D Conference Photographer
Volunteered to be official Icograda conference photographer and awarded Lifetime Friend of Icograda.
October 2007 > Havana, Cuba
AIGA XCD Sharing Dreams Committee Member
Assisted and helped facilitate 2006 event, artist travel, exhibit and schedule of activities.
June 2006 > National
AIGA CO Events Director
June 2005–March 2006
AIGA National Chapter Relief Fund Committee & Chair
Sat on the committee one year, chaired the second to help rewrite the overall mission to include mentoring.
October 2003–May 2006 > National
AIGA XCD Vice President
Was part of the initial group that helped start, but became more involved with my experience with ICOGRADA.
October 2003–May 2005 > National
AIGA CO Regional Liaison
Created and ran a 6-chapter conference in Las Vegas. Nominated Robert Taylor and helped run the first Fellows Awards for the Colorado Chapter.
June 2003–May 2004 > Regional
Scholars Unlimited Board Member
Volunteered to be a board member to help the nonprofit organization focus on marketing and branding.
2004 > Denver, CO
Summer Toast Committee Member
Sat on the planning committee for the creation and running of a industry collaboration (AIGA, AMA, PRSA, ADCD, etc.) summer marketing networking event. Named event, designed the branding and wrote a proposal where proceeds would benefit a local nonprofit focused on literacy.
2003 > Denver, CO
The REVIEW Committee Member & Reviewer
I helped organize The Review, a student graphic design portfolio review that was in collaboration with AIGA CO, the Art Director’s Club of Denver and the Denver Advertising Federation. I've also continued to participate and review every year but 2 through 2019.
Spring 2002–2005 > Denver, CO
ico-D North America Regional Meeting Representative
Participated with other AIGA Presidents from the United States and gave a presentation about design in Colorado.
March 2002 > Vancouver, Canada
AIGA CO President
Restructured board, created director positions and implemented board nomination process. Helped create and facilitate monthly Buzz meetings for freelance designers. Focused on helping create more student groups and involvement. Rewrote National Handbook on Advisory Board structure and recommendations.
June 2001–May 2003 > Denver, CO
AIGA National Leadership Retreat Presenter
2002 led breakout session > Seattle, Washington
2003 led 2 breakout sessions > Austin, Texas
AIGA CO & ADCD Studio Tours Chairperson
Created and facilitated monthly FAC design studio tours as a collaboration between AIGA CO and ADCD.
August 2000–January 2002 > Denver, CO
AIGA CO Board Member, Co-Chaired Student Groups
November 1997–July 1999
AIGA CO member #32115
September 1997–2022 > Denver, CO