Eight Times Aaron Draplin’s Instagram Made Us Want to High-Five Him

With some graphic designers, it’s hard to feel like you know the person behind the art, but not with Aaron Draplin. As the Founder of Draplin Design Company and author of Pretty Much Everything, he’s hugely famous for his graphic design work for clients in politics, sporting goods, publishing, music, and tourism. Since he got started in 2004, he’s created iconic designs for everyone from Nike, Conde Nast, and Patagonia to the Obama Administration, Burton Snowboards, and the Ford Motor Company.

But as big as Aaron's professional reputation may be, it’s still no match for the epic scale of his awesome personality. We love when he teaches classes at Skillshare because he’s not only smart and technically detailed, he’s also hilarious, earnest, and down to earth (even when he’s creating some truly incredible artwork). We’ve always known that Aaron’s a stand-up guy, but one look at his Instagram and we realized [SPOILER] he’s even cooler than we thought! Now the next time we see Aaron, we’re totally high-fiving him. Why?

1) He Celebrates Success

....and keeps it in perspective


2) He Takes Epic Road Trips

...and makes friends along the way


3) He Does It For The Kids

...and always honors his ancesters

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DAD: So what, every February 1st from here on out is gonna be a sad one for me? Hell no. Today is my dad's birthday, but damned if I don't celebrate him every day. ▫️ If Dad was still with us, he would've been seventy-five. But he isn't. And I'm not all that cool with that, but I'm not gonna drag myself into the darkness fretting the "what-if" shit. We lost dad, and that's that. Sucks. But if you knew him...HOLY SHIT...I'm starting to wonder if those seventy years were just the right amount? They kind of have to be. They are. ▫️ He's made it to seventy-and-a-half, and lived those years FILLED with laughter, joy, wit, devotion to Mom, great jokes, horrible jokes, Detroit Lions disgust, champion level bullshitting, projects, Killer Pizza, overcooked pork roasts, Sperry Topsiders, Oliver love, tooling invoices, garage sales, good deals, Sunday morning breakfast feasts, Tiger games, "stuff" birdhouses, snowblowing laps, Leah love, Santa gigs, late night Rice Crispies cereal sessions, Detroit lore, "senior coffee discount" abuse, Sharpie peace signs on every piece of his gear, old car shows, beers swilled, Sarah Barah love, trips to Oregon, fried Spam sandwiches, mooned relatives, free beer tokens at the Cedar Polka Fest, gallons of wood glue over-used, mathematical gazintas, holding all the babies, ugly shirts, defending the little guy and generally being an incredible, one-of-a-kind specimen of humanity. ▫️ So I'm not gonna fuck around with the "What-If" stuff. I'm doubling down on how amazing he was...and that shit proudly plops into the "Fuck Yeah That's What Happened" category. ▫️ Here come the waterworks. Now I'm crying. In a hotel room in Lincoln, Nebraska. Damn. I just miss my dad. I had him for 39.99 years and am so thankful for the guy. Shitchyah! ▫️ Come back, Dad. ▫️ (Thanks to Uncle Mike for posting this shot of Dad from 1989! And for the record, Dad was 44 in this shot! I'm 44 now, and that reminds me to kick the shit out of every day.) ▫️ #fordad #jimdraplin #1943to2013


4) He Supports Other Artists

...even when he isn't sure who they are


5) He Delights In The Little Things

...and shows gratitude for the big ones


6) He Designs These Super Cool Posters

...and super cute pins


7) He Isn't Afraid to Nerd Out

...or share his earliest inspirations


8) He Shows Us How It's Done. Literally.

For more of Aaron Draplin’s great personality (and his even better tips for using lines, shapes, and colors in your work), check out his latest Skillshare class.