Steve Jones

2022 AIGA SF Fellow

Steve Jones is an award-winning graphic designer and educator, with over 30 years of experience in professional practice and design education. He earned his BFA (Graphic Design) from the California College of Arts and Crafts; and MFA (Graphic Design), with honors, from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). He is the principal of plantain studio (Oakland, CA).

He was an AIGA SF Executive Board Member (Education Co-Chair,) 2014–2016, where he helped to organize AIGA SF’s Enrichment Scholarship program, annual Portfolio Day, and other mentoring and education opportunities. He served on the AIGA Design Journeys Advisory Board to help choose the first 25 BIPOC designers to be featured—his story has been featured, as well. Additionally, Steve served for eight years on the Alameda County Public Arts Advisory Committee.

Steve has taught at San Francisco State University, RISD, and the Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts (Kingston, Jamaica). He has taught at the undergraduate and graduate level, as well as pre-college (high school) students for over twenty summers. Currently, he is an adjunct professor in the Critical Ethnic Studies Program at CCA.

In 2001, he founded the NEA (Negro Emancipation Association)—a loose collective of Black graphic designers, interior designers, and architects. His interests focus on Black icons, and their representation in mass media and popular culture.

He recently contributed an essay to The Black Experience in Design: Identity, Expression & Reflection (Allworth Press). For the Letterform Archives’ “The Black Experience in Graphic Design: 1968 and 2020,” he was among the designers interviewed.

Since 2015, Steve has been a mentor for CCA’s Alumni/Student Mentorship Program (formerly Designers of Color Mentor Program at CCA), offering one-to-one mentoring to students.