Category Archives: People
Since co-founding Modern Dog Design Co. in 1987, Robynne Raye has continued to do work for entertainment and retail companies – both local and national – and counts posters, packaging and identity projects as some of her favorite work. Recent clients include Coca-Cola, Adobe Systems Inc., Blue Q, Olive Green Dog Products, Shout! Factory and Seattle Theatre Group.
Outside of work, Robynne’s always been a serious “foodie” and her best friend has been calling her the “Cake Queen” for over 25 years. Once every 3 months she joins forces with other foodies cooking elaborate meals and trying to one up each other. An avid gardener, she has 22 Japanese Maples in her small city garden (11 different varieties – GARDEN NERD ALERT!). Her gardens – Modern Dog and home – have been featured in local newspapers as well as national publications. In 1998, she won a Golden Trowel award from Garden Design Magazine. Her spare time outside of work, cooking, and gardening is spent recovering from one trip while preparing for the next (she’s travelled to over 28 countries and counting). She is mother to two Cairn Terriers, Winnifred and Conan.
Robynne has received recognition from every major design organization in the U.S and her work has been featured in numerous books and magazines. Her posters are represented in the permanent archives of the Louvre (Rohan Marsan wing), the Library of Congress, Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Bibliotheque Nationale de France, Museum Fur Kunst und Gewerbe, the Warsaw National Museum, and the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum among others. For more than 16 years she has lectured and taught workshops, both nationally and internationally. Currently, she is an adjunct instructor at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle.
Michael Strassburger, co-founder of Modern Dog, grew up in Richland, Washington where he and his friends would ride their bikes in the clouds behind mosquito-killing DDT trucks, which might help explain his off kilter sense of humor (but maybe not?). But it’s exactly this “8th grade sense of humor” that is responsible for our 15 year relationship with Blue Q head honcho, Mitch Nash. Mike and Mr. Nash have collaborated on such products as the best selling Cat Butt and Mullet brand series (magnets, gums, car air fresheners, and bath products), Go Intercourse Yourself Lip Balm, Handz-off Anti Masturbatory Cream and “Does this gum make my ass look big?” gum packaging, among many others.
If Mike has a free moment you can find him trying to record himself or one of his daughters in his home recording studio, fixing things around the house, or man wrestling (he has a brown belt in Brazillian Jiiu-Jitsu and black belt in Aikido). He enjoys reading the Huffington Post and watching live martial arts on television. Most recently, The Buckets, – a 90′s band Mike played guitar in – have decided to reunite.
In 2006 Graphic Design magazine identified Mike as a one of the “People to Watch”. He has received hundreds of awards and recognition from every major U.S. design publication/organization, including Graphis, AIGA, Type Directors Club, American Center for Design 100 Show, and Communication Arts. His work is represented in the permanent archives of the Louve (Rohan Marsan wing), Warsaw National Museum, Smithsonian Institute’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, the Library of Congress, Denver Art Museum, Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Experience Music Project and the Museum Fur Kunst und Gewerbe, among others. Michael currently teaches design courses at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle.
In his formative years, Shogo Ota’s parents thought they could keep him out of trouble if they kept him active: soccer, swimming, piano lessons, Kendo (Japanese fighting with bamboo sticks) and Shodo (a type of Japanese calligraphy). He came to the United States in 2002 to attend the University of Idaho, where he earned a BFA in Studio Art. He landed an internship at Modern Dog just a few months out of school. This past year he applied for the much sought after H-1B visa and we’re thrilled he got it.
In the studio he incorporates a lot of illustration into his design and loves using big brushes and sumi ink. His favorite design work is posters, website design and packaging. Shogo also loves running errands for Robynne on his fixed gear bike. When he’s not in the MD studio, he’s out stirring the pot. Shogo enjoys making stencils and wheat pasting posters with friends in Seattle. His street art is influenced by Faile, Banksy, Space 3, D*Face, Blek Le Rat and Dave Kinsey. Most recently he has taken up Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu with Mike and he’s still waiting for the day he can beat him up. Currently he’s nursing a broken rib (no joke!)
A partial list of his current clients include: Live Nation, Blue Q, Seattle Aquarium, YouRepresent.com, Chronicle Books and Shout! Records. His work has appeared in Communication Arts, and will be seen in several upcoming design books.