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Meet Rodney Bissell of Bissell Design Studios

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rodney Bissell.

For over 14 years, Bissell Design Studios, Inc. has provided fresh, new design concepts and product to businesses and organizations worldwide. They are proud of their heritage.

Their founder, Rodney, comes from a long line of artists and entrepreneurs working in industrial and interior design, graphic design, and even the fine arts. For three generations, each family business has earned a reputation for integrity and loyalty.

Maintaining a healthy relationship with their clients is a top priority. Most of their clients have been with them since the beginning and they consider them family. Bissell Design Studios Inc. is committed to providing creative solutions customized for each client.

“Finding art in everything” is more than a tagline. Everything they see has designed. Their job is to find the true potential that each design holds for their clients. Their goal is to help you find the “art” in your company and then express that art creatively in your communication and design pieces.

Owner and Creative Director, Rodney Bissell, started Bissell Design Studios in 2004. He had been working as a senior designer at a marketing firm for seven years and felt the time was right to follow in his family’s footsteps and open his own graphic design company. Since the beginning, Bissell Design has helped its clients stand out from the competition. They work diligently to create the best design possible to reach the goals of each project, meeting clients’ needs and exceeding their expectations.

Bissell Design offers a broad spectrum of services to their clients from print design, catalogs, magazine and publishing to marketing, branding, web design, event marketing, and more. They’ve even designed skateboards with Dale Smith the product manager for several well-known major surf and skate brands and one of the most knowledgeable historian’s of skateboarding with his 50 years in the industry. (Rodney is an avid skateboarder, surfer, and mountain bike rider when he can find the time).

Many of their clients are non-profit companies. One that stands out to them and they are a proud and active member of is CAI (Community Association Institute). They work closely to help the Coachella Vally and San Diego County with their branding, events, and monthly award-winning magazine. They  have seen firsthand the invaluable commitment CAI shows their members and look forward to participating in the community in the future.

They are so fortunate to be apart of the San Diego County and its creative community. Bissell Design Studios is proud to call it home.

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As an active design firm in the area, they strive to serve businesses, organizations and communities by:

• Focusing on creating the design that will best communicate the clients’ mission and brand as well as motivate and engage their target audience.
• Providing creative services for effective print/web media and mobile devices.
• Collaborating with and directing freelance designers.
• Managing production deadlines and clients’ budgets efficiently, while juggling several projects at once.
• Assisting clients with website updates through CSS, HTML and other CMS.
• Maintaining long-term working relationships with satisfied clients.
• Increasing clientele through recommendations from past and present clients.

“Our job is to find the true potential that each design holds for our clients.”

Has it been a smooth road?
My first job was with Outreach Inc. which was in Vista but now in Colorado. When we had our first child Ashley we needed to start making more money somehow. As a designer freelance was one of the ways I was able to create an alternative income.

Working day and into the late nights for a few years was not going to work for me. It became down to a tough desition to cut back on one or the other. My amazing wife of 17 years says “if I knew all that was to come from starting our own company I might never have agreed to it.” But as you know we stuck it out and have pushed through sense 2004.

In the beginning, there were slow months because of the lack of clients. We had to learn how to really budget well and put money aside for rainy days. We are proud to have no loans and overall have no debts but our home mortgage. Insurance is a must and one year we even went into a situation where I was working at Trader Joes in Escondido to get their insurance. But long term that did not work out because the time I needed to spend there and on my own work was almost impossible.

But on another note, I loved working there and felt it gave me such a great understanding of how to treat people and a great work ethic. I ended up leaving on a medical leave witch at the time gave me more time to work for my own company which then took over and I never went back. The manager did say I could always come back and that they enjoyed working with me.

A few years ago my wife began her lifelong journey of cancer. I use the word lifelong because she had a surgery and went through chemo treatments and radiation and is now cancer free but there is always that scare in the back of your mind or if it might come back. When she was going through the thick of it we were so glad to have the opportunity to work from home or even out of the hospital giving us time to be together at some of the most difficult of times.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Bissell Design Studios – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
When I was starting out in graphic design, I was told I should find an industry I liked and focus on it to find my “niche.” I did find my niche at my first job and soon learned it was too limiting.

A good design and marketing company should be able to create concepts and designs that are a unique fit for each client. Some clients require a clean, crisp look, where others may be best served with designs that are packed full and heavy with color. Large corporations need a different approach than start-up companies who just want to get “off the ground.” Designing for a wide range of clients helps keep the creative juices flowing every day.

While working at Outreach Inc. I was their marketing designer for all 6 of their departments. Working with each of the heads of those departments was another way I grew my company. When one of them left Outreach they would then use me as a freelance designer at the next company they went to. We now work with a handful of companies that have just been brought on this way. When we work with someone we build relationships that go further than just one company. It has now turned into a lifetime friendship and helping them and the new company shine in all their projects.

There are some jobs we do that are not exactly what you might think of when you look at our company. One is our technical illustrations for city lighting and signage. One of our clients South Coast Lighting provides lighting throughout the CA coast. When they need a proposal for a city they contact us to draw out some poles and signs to show what they are talking about. This company was the first we worked for and got Bissell Design Studios off and running.

It has been fun branding and marketing large conventions and Galas. Save the Date cards, Social Medea and emails to the programs, flyers, banners, booths and more. Non-profit companies are a passion of ours. We want to make them look their best in front of their donors year after year making each event new and inviting for them to give.

Catalogs, magazines, brochures, programs and other large print peace jobs are some other stand out work. At some of our large events, the attendees get workbooks to fill out as they are there and we make sure they are engaging and eye-catching getting them into each session they are at. We are grateful to CAI-CV to be able to create a monthly magazine that has now won multiple awards for them.

Also helping with square inch analysis and consulting for a Muslim somewhere catalog, Splash Gear. Also, book layouts that have been over 1,000 pages long. Large print peace work is some of our best work and a passion of ours.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
As I was growing up I was raised in a family that went to the beach regularly. My mother came from Santa Cruz and my father from Pasadena and we ended up being raised in a small town of Glendora in the foothills in the East County of LA. I mention Santa Cruz because even though Glendora was not to close to the beach we made an effort to get there because of the foundation Santa Cruz had in our lives. With that foundation in my past, I always wanted to live closer to the beach. So living in Oceanside gives me pride in following my dreams and making it a reality. When I go for a run and can make it to the beach and back it always reminds me how privileged we are to live so close to the ocean.

Another amazing thing about Oceanside is the surf industry. I have not had many boards in my life but those I have bought has been straight from the surfboard shapers themselves. Its great to be so close to those who make what you love and meet them not just buying boards from a chain store. Its great to collaborate with another artist and making the best board that fits my needs and it also provides them with a way to get their name out there.

Not sure if you can relate or if it is just a creative outlook on the world around me but growing up I picked my athletic teams by the colors of their uniforms. Being that I am more of an alternative sports person I do have some favorite teams. Just by chance my favorite team “by color” was the SD Podries. Every time we go to a game it reminds me of when I was little checking out all the different teams and their logos and jerseys. Even back then it was built into me to find the “Art in Everything.”

As for Oceanside and our love for it. This has been our town since the beginning and we are proud to call it home. A large part of its pride is the city’s military that lives here. Just living here gives us pride for our Country and those who serve. Not only the military but just the people that live here have such pride for the city and you can feel it as you get to know those around you.

We are also proud to be apart of our local church in Vista. We call North Coast Church home and have found lifelong friendships there. We love the Bible teaching and the community service they have been able to provide each year.

One day each year they have a weekend with no services and the whole church goes all over North County working on service projects that have been carefully planned out all year. They have provided on those weekends over 2 million dollars + of work all over North County. But that is just for that one weekend alone. There are other service projects going on every week provided by the small groups at the church. We love that it is a pillar of hope in our community and abroad.


  • Hourly design and consulting rate is $75.

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Getting in touch: SDVoyager is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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