Instagram Competition Judges

106th Judge

Steph Muwangi

Steph Muwangi is an interior designer based in Paris, France. Having worked with various clients and projects, his specialty is in residential and hospitality design. As a versatile designer, his attention to detail, focus lay on the well-being of the people utilizing the spaces and the structures he designs. After graduating from ACU in 2016, Steph went to Paris College of Arts in Paris to complete his Master’s degree in Interior Design. His past experiences include: Missionary Tech Team in Longview, TX, La-Z-Boy in Harrisburg, PA, Courtay Architect in Paris, and teaching technical drawings and architectural sketch at Paris College of Arts.  

105th Judge

Keith Jernigan

After graduating from ACU in 2013, Keith moved to Arizona where he has worked at Fervor Creative as a Graphic Designer and Art Director ever since. He’s had the pleasure of working on branding and UI/UX projects for clients big and small across the globe, including Meta, NASA, and more. He enjoys spending time with his wife and three kids and never updating his portfolio. 

104th Judge

Sonia Seguin

Sonia graduated from ACU in 2022 with a BFA in Graphic Design. She loves photography just as much as designing. She now works as a designer for Cheil, an ad agency based in Plano, Texas

103rd Judge

Ashlyn Garone

Ashlyn is a graduate of ACU class of 2017. She earned her Bachelors of Science, majoring in Graphic Design & Advertising, while also earning her Masters of Art at UT in Design Health. She is a Product Designer at Harbor Health located in Austin and builds technology that enhances experiences in health.

102nd Judge

Kortland Judd

Kortland graduated from ACU as a Graphic Design major in 2022 and is currently the Art Director at Jyra Films in Southlake, TX. As an Art Director for film, she collaborates in pre-production, designs sets, and brings ideas to life.  

101th Judge

Matt Maxwell

Matt is a professor and Filmmaker in residence here at ACU. He is known for his film, Finding Home in Boomtown, and his help on the set of the show Wipeout. Be sure to also check out IMDB profile!

100th Judge

Rhett Davis

Rhett graduated from ACU in 2021 with a BS in Graphic Design and a minor in Business Administration. He is a Graphic Designer out of the Fort Worth area and is the owner of the creative marketing agency, The Fort Creative. 

99th Judge

Myrranda Sabater

Myrranda graduated from ACU with a BFA in Graphic Design. She is the lead Graphic Designer at CK Creative Studio and has worked with corporations such as Amazon and small branding projects! Outside of work she’s heavily involved with church, coffee, her two dogs, and taking pictures of signage for Typography. 

98th Judge

Paige Dority

Paige graduated from ACU in 2014 with a BFA in Graphic Design. She is now Sr. Product Designer at LTK (Like To Know)! She loves coffee, tacos, painting, and watching sports. 

97th Judge

Lydia Buchanan

Lydia graduated from ACU in 2020 with a double major in Graphic Design and Piano. When she first graduated she got the opportunity to rebrand a church in San Antonio. Now she works as a Graphic Designer at Leadhub, a marketing agency in San Antonio. Having a love for all things design, she is very excited to see all your work!

96th Judge

Brandon Young

Brandon Young is an architect at Parkhill and former ACU Art & Design Associate Professor. He enjoys all kinds of creative endeavors including drawing, painting, building, and music. He has three kids that are growing fast and enjoys time spent with them!

95th Judge

Will Riggs

Will Riggs, ACU Class of ’07, graduated with a BFA in Graphic Design. Since then Will has worked his way up to Senior Art Director of many known companies! Will also is a Pickle-ball Enthusiast and loves the adventures his jobs have given him through the years.

94th Judge

Mel Ristau

After receiving a MFA in typographic sustems from The University of Kansas School of Fine Arts, Mel Ristau developed and taught ACU’s intial graphic design curriculum. More recently, his day-to-day includes dialog with other design and architecture professionals regarding the placement of interior suspended  sculpture in corporate, healthcare and university facilities. 

93rd Judge

Sarah Welch

Sarah graduated from ACU in 2020 with her degree in graphic design and advertising. Shortly after, she started working at Dialexa in Dallas as a Digital Product Designer. She has spent the past 2 years sharpening her UX/UI design skills by providing solutions for many clients in diverse industries. When Sarah is not working, you can find her in Dallas hunting for the best restaurants!

92nd Judge

Caleb Gravitt 

Caleb is a recent ACU graphic design alum with a passion for branding. Caleb recalls his ACU professors describing him as “a star student” and “my favorite Gravitt I have taught, by far!” Now, he works as a designer for Canales & Co., a creative studio in Austin, Texas, creating branding, packaging, apparel and more for awesome clients all across the country!

91st Judge

Chera Brooker 

​Chera is an ACU Graphic Design alum! She worked as an Art Director for Mary Kay Global before going out on her own, working as a muralist across the state of Texas! Chera’s work is full of beautiful and colorful botanicals. Make sure you check it out. She has some wonderful work just down the road in Merkel as well as right here in Abilene at!

90th Judge

Polly Jones 

Whether painting still lifes or landscapes, Polly’s work is instantly recognizable for its mixed media approach using bold color and collaged ephemera that are layered together to create images full of intensity and joy. She has had several solo exhibits in Tennessee and Texas, participated in numerous group and juried exhibits, and has work in collections all over the USA and many other countries. Polly received her BFA in painting from ACU, and now lives and works in Abilene with her husband Kenny, our very own professor!

89th Judge

Jamie Hill 

After graduating in 2015 with a BFA in Graphic Design, Jamie worked at a boutique agency in Dallas for a few years before joining Tide Cleaners where she continued building her experience with brand & marketing. Since transitioning toward UX/UI, she has now become a full-time Product Designer where she solves problems on an enterprise level from a consumer, driver, and guest care perspective.

A little note from the judge herself: “I can’t wait to drool and “ah” over all of the work featured. HAVE FUNNNN!! See you online xoxo, Jamie 🌚”

88th Judge

Kurt Vidrine 

​Kurt graduated from ACU A&D in 2006 and is now a local craftsman here in Abilene. His interior design and architecture degrees were a great foundation for a small business consisting of period style cabinetry and trim work. He has completed numerous projects for local businesses and organizations here in the Abilene area, with local hardwoods and reclaimed lumber as a point of emphasis.

87th Judge

Corey Hale 

​After graduating from ACU with a BFA in graphic design, Corey moved to NYC and found his way into the world of user experience design as part of a small start-up UX team. Now living in Heath, TX with his wife and four kids, he’s currently working as a Senior UX Designer at Thomson Reuters, designing user-centered legal, tax, and accounting software. Corey is excited about the competition: “I’m looking forward to seeing your work and process, sketches, messes, in-progress anything and everything!”

86th Judge

Claire Victoria 

​After working in Portland, Oregon as a digital designer, Claire moved back to Texas and is now an art director at Hawkeye Agency in Dallas. Her main client is Capital One, who she collaborates with on digital marketing materials and has made trips to NYC to present to their design team. Claire has also worked with brands such as Walmart, GM (Chrysler, Buick, GMC, Cadillac), and Williams Sonoma.

85th Judge

Christopher Jimenez 

After graduating from ACU, Chris moved to Nashville, Tennessee to pursue his dream of becoming a film director. He is currently studying and working towards an MFA in Film and Creative Media at Lipscomb University. Chris is also an award-winning photographer best known for his photography series titled “Architecture Is Powerful” which earned a Top Talent selection in the 2019 global Adobe Achievement Awards competition. He’s excited to see what everyone has in store: “I love all forms of art, illustration, interior design, branding, painting, animation, film, and especially photography! I love it all and I can’t wait to see what you all have created.”

84th Judge

Lauren Payne 

​After graduating from ACU, Lauren moved to Nashville, Tennessee to work in the paper industry. She currently leads a team of designers that work on stationery products, including gift bags, boxes, and other products for companies across the globe. You can find her work at quite a few big names like Walmart, Dollar Tree, Dollar General, and Aldi. However, her first love will always be the letterform and exploring new ways to create amazing typography.

83rd Judge

William Reid 

​​Will is bringing in some experience that’s a little bit different from our other judges: film! After getting a BFA in Studio Art from ACU and an MFA in Film and Electronic Media from American University, Will has gone on to work on documentaries that primarily focus on food and agriculture. He also works as an educator and in design fields that highlight human rights issues.

82nd Judge

Marilyn Salazar

After graduating in 2020, Marilyn has since become an interior designer and photographer at Rebecca Gibbs design, as well as working on her own personal side projects—including the remodeling of a tiny home! As a graduate of our own department, she has some advice for our students: “always design with the function first, not the color.”

81st Judge

Alanna Lively 

After graduating from ACU in 2018, Alanna has since become an interior designer at Perkins & Will in Dallas, specializing in corporate and multifamily design. She is also a LEED Accredited Professional in Interior Design + Construction, as well as now being a registered Interior Designer in the state of Texas. She enjoys every aspect of the design process, and has come to appreciate how exceptional design can really impact a space.

80th Judge

Alice Leese  

Alice grew up on the YT Ranch in Winkler County Texas, where she and her husband Rob live and work. They have two daughters, Laura, and Elizabeth. Alice is part of the fourth generation on the ranch and works alongside the fifth and sixth. The ranch was started in the late 1800’s by her great grandfather who came from Maine to the west, driving a herd of sheep from Colorado to a Texas railhead called Odessa and homesteading there. The ranch now raises Hereford and Angus cattle. Inspired by this landscape, Alice paints the landscape in plein air and studio works. Her southwest landscapes of the ranch usually include cows, cowboys, windmills, wildlife, the oil field, and the people who live there. 

79th Judge

Nicholas Wierzba

Nicholas is a Design Sales Consultant and Drafter for Extreme Exteriors. Where they specialize in outdoor living from landscape, irrigation, and water features to extravagant spas, pools and outdoor structures such as pool houses and cabanas. He has had a hand in building spaces for families and others to enjoy and make wonderful memories in! He has have been with the company for about 4 years and has learned and experienced so many things regarding the different forms design can play in any space. Pool and landscape architecture was never on his list to pursue as it was originally restaurant and hotel design, but God has a funny way of taking us down different paths and smiling down on us regardless of the profession. He truly has been blessed at Extreme Exteriors. 

78th Judge

Jaden Dement

Jaden graduated from ACU in 2018 majoring in Interior design and an associates in Architecture. He has been working here in Abilene at Jacob Martin ever since. Some notable projects he has had the privilege to work on include the Dodge Jones Youth Sports Center, The Local downtown restaurant, and the Houston Lantrip Center for Literacy and Learning. In October of 2020 he passed his NCIDQ qualification to become a Registered Interior Designer. He is currently pursuing his Architectural license and enjoy designing furniture as a hobby.

77th Judge

Mariel Delgado 

Mariel graduated from ACU in May 2019 with a Bachelors of Interior Design and an Associates of Architecture. She now works at Jacob | Martin in Abilene as an Architectural
Associate. She has helped with the
construction documents and design of
multiple projects in town.She is also working towards her Interior Design license right now.

76th Judge

Helga Sierra

Helga, originally from Honduras, graduated from ACU in 2012 with a major in Business Administration and Art minor. After working at ACU for a year in different marketing departments, she went to Lipscomb University to obtain her MBA as part of a select group of international scholars. After working in different marketing and design roles for Mission Lazarus and Epic Life Creative, both based in Tennessee, she moved back to her hometown, Tegucigalpa.
Since then she’s established her art practice focusing in abstract art, having shown her work in both solo and group shows in all the major cultural centers of Honduras, as well as showing her work abroad. Helga currently creates art in her art studio in Tegucigalpa, and since 2019 created here independent branding strategy and design studio Halser Co.

75th Judge

Leanne Kawahigashi

Leanne graduated from ACU in 2013 with a major in Graphic Design. A few weeks after graduation, she moved to San Francisco, CA. While there, she worked on branding and packaging at Turner Duckworth with clients such as Coca-Cola, Metallica, and Visa. Soon after, she found her way into the UI/UX field and now works with tech startups to create seamless user experiences. In the past few years, Leanne relocated to Austin, TX, was a Sr. Product Designer at Favor Delivery (owned by H-E-B) and is now the Founding Designer at an early-stage EdTech startup.

74th Judge

Denver Gravitt

Denver graduated from ACU in 2018 with a major in Graphic Design Fine Arts. After graduating he moved to Austin, where he’s worked on branding, packaging, and illustration projects at Canales & Co for nearly 3 years. His studio and freelance work includes clients such as NFL athletes, Grain Theory, Academy, Whole Foods, Costa Del Mar, Oakley, and Tecovas. In addition to design, Denver is passionate about sports, art, videography, Star Wars, and Chick-Fil-A #2 Spicy Chicken Sandwich combos.

73rd Judge

Nathan Driskell

Nathan Driskell is a documentary filmmaker and designer who since 2012 has served as staff filmmaker and creative lead for the AT&T Learning Studio at ACU. His film work has taken him across the U.S., Europe, the UK and the Middle East, and his 2018 film “Where is Palestine?” explores the plight of Palestinians in the West Bank, Jordan and the U.S. Nathan is a 2007 graduate of ACU. 

72nd Judge

Sergio Hernandez

Sergio studied graphic design and fine art from 2013-2017. During his time at ACU he became the curator for the art department and still hangs all the shows that aren’t student shows. After leaving ACU, he worked for the Grace Museum where he created and curated all the content for their venue social media page called Gracespaces.
He recently resigned from that position this June. And is now the Assistant Curator & Events Coordinator at the AAAP Maker Studio where he is currently hosting figure drawing sessions!

71st Judge

Lana Dismassi

I present to your our 71st judge Lana Dimassi!!! Aka Dancing Banana Girl!!!! Lana graduated ACU in December 2019 with a BFA in graphic design. She is currently working at Jadelynn-Brooke where she designs apparel, gifts, and more! In her free time she loves to hand letter for her small business DBG Designs!

70th Judge

Andrew Godfrey

Andrew graduated in 2016 from ACU with a major in Christian Ministry and a minor in Graphic Design. Since graduation, he served as the Worship Pastor at Radiant Life Church in Abilene. He now lives in Dallas where he works as a Graphic Designer at The Infinite Agency. He works on brands like Gold’s Gym, Varidesk, Gateway Church, and Carter Bloodcare. Andrew recently got married to the love of his life, Tevah, and now they are designing their future together.

69th Judge

Ryan Smith

Ryan graduated from ACU in the fall of 2017 with a Bachelors degree in Graphic Design with emphasis on photography. Post graduation he worked creating branding and collateral as a freelance designer in various retail spaces. Now Ryan lives and works in Washington State, teaching elementary.

68th Judge

Hilary Comer

Hilary graduated in 2015 with a Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design and Advertising. She has since worked as a freelancer with clients including Boston University, Geneva School of Bowen’s, Google Fiber, Orderup Restaurant, and Fetch MD. She now works full time for the H.E. Butt Foundation as their sole designer, designing for and managing a brand with six sub-brands and designing a quarterly magazine!

67th Judge

Stephanie Fink

A native Texan, Stephanie Fink currently resides near Atlanta GA. She graduated from ACU in 2015 with a BFA in Fine Art, and just completed her MFA in Illustration at the Savannah College of Art and Design, where she has collaborated with the school for companies such as Coca Cola, Atlanta Magazine, Southbound Magazine, the CDC, and Peachtree Publishers. Nature, history, design, and storytelling are her passions, and she specializes in children’s books and licensing work. 

66th Judge

Trey Jackson

Trey graduation from ACU in December of 2017 with a BS in Graphic Design/ Advertising. Currently, Trey is Director of Creative Services at Rice University in Houston, TX. 

65th Judge

Carli Nicole

Carli graduated from ACU in 2017 with a Bachelor of Science in Interior Design. She completed her internship at Droese Raney Architecture in Dallas. Upon graduation she moved to Nashville, Tennessee and is now the Lead Interior Designer for Nine12 Architects, where she works primarily on the interiors + interior architecture for historic residential additions, custom new builds, and local developers. She is also the Owner of Carli Nicole Studio, providing interior styling and interior photography services


64th Judge

Savannah Joy

Savannah graduated from ACU in the spring of 2017 with a BFA in Art Education. She now teaches at her alma mater, Birdville High School in North Richland Hills, Texas.

63rd Judge

Carlos Mejia

Carlos Mejia graduated in 2016 with degrees in Interior Design and Architecture. He was born and raised in Tegucigalpa, Honduras where he currently lives and works at the local architecture firm Clima Development. Carlos has been a part of a variety of projects in the healthcare, hospitality and residential industries.


62nd Judge

Alicia Gregory

Alicia Gregory graduated from ACU in 2017 with a major in Interior Design and a minor in Art. Originally form Boerne, TX, Alicia now lives in the Dallas area, working at Thiel & Thiel, a Hospitality and Multifamily design firm in Colleyville, TX. At Thiel and Thiel, she has been a part of numerous projects throughout the country and has been blessed with the opportunity to travel to multiple new places due to her work. In addition to living out her passion of designing Interiors, her favorite aspect about her job are the people she works with, as they have quickly become her work family. A part from work, Alicia is involved with Northway church in Dallas, TX and co-leads a women’s home group through the church which has been a fulfilling and life giving experience. She is constantly learning a growing from her job, as well as her church family.


61st Judge

Brynner Aldrich

Brynner graduated from ACU in 2017 and moved to Dallas with glitter in his hair and fire in his eyes. He was quickly hired as an art director at Tracylocke and works on the VisitDallas account. When asked about what he wants to see from this competition, he responded with the iconic line from musical supergroup TLC: “I don’t want no scrub.” So, you know, y’all better werk!

60th Judge

Rachel “Cleo” Sansing

Rachel “Cleo” Sansing graduated from ACU in 2017 and went on to intern with the ad agency Belmont Icehouse in Deep Ellum, Dallas. With a background in studio art and a BFA in graphic design, Cleo continued her career working with ad and marketing agencies focusing on both print and digital. Now she is with the Dallas Museum of Art as a graphic designer, where she hopes to stay for a long time!


59th Judge

Taylor Mcdaniel

Taylor Mcdaniel, who graduated from ACU in 2016. She has plans to illustrate a sequel to “Joann and Jane” in the coming year, and highly recommends everyone make a visit to the Monet exhibit currently showing at the Kimbell Museum in Fort Worth.


58th Judge

Paige Aronson

Paige Aronson is a newlywed and 2014 graduate. Whilst in school, she studied Vocational Missions and 2D Design finding her passion in figure painting. Originally from Houston Texas, she now paints from her home studio in Roswell, New Mexico. She enjoys donating her time to local ministries providing graphic design and marketing services and seeing God use her background in art to take part in the work he is doing in the city of Roswell. You can find more about her work at Students


57th Judge

Morgan Roden

Morgan (Hudson ’13) Roden graduated from ACU with a BFA in Interior Design. After graduation she worked at Weatherl & Associates in Abilene, working on high end residential and historic preservation projects. Morgan, still lives in Abilene with her husband, Tyler, and is now a registered Interior Designer with Rebecca Gibbs Interior Design, working with clients on renovations and custom new homes.

56th Judge

Jill Crandal

Jill Crandall graduated from ACU with a bachelor in Interior Design and an Associates in Architecture in 2015. She works for Life Time as an Architectural Technician in Chanhassen, MN. She is looking forward to continuing her experience and becoming licensed in her field. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀

55th Judge

Kishya Greer

Kishya is a full-time Fort Worth graphic designer and owner of the Great Exhibition, an e-commerce packaging design studio. She has a passion for making design easily accessible to all and mentoring young designers.

54th Judge

Joseph Rodriguez

Joseph graduated from ACU in 2017 with Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis on Graphic Design. He now works as a Web Designer for Keller Williams Realty International in Austin, Texas.

53rd Judge

Amelia (Amie) Carnagey

Amelia (Amie) Carnagey graduated from ACU in 2014. After graduation she began teaching design, digital art, and sculpture courses collegiately at Texas State Technical College and Hardin Simmons University. Amelia is working towards an MFA in Illustration through Savannah College of Art and Design, and aspires to illustrate a series of children’s books based on the animals she paints. Amelia is currently working at a non-profit as their Marketer and has recently begun a degree in health care. “No clue where God is leading me, but I think it will be a great adventure!”

52nd Judge

Jared Schuetze

Jarred graduated from ACU in 2016 with a BS in Graphic Design & Advertising. He is now the Associate Art Director for The Bend Magazine, a local lifestyle publication in Corpus Christi, TX.

51st Judge

Julie Baugus

Julie graduated from ACU in 2016 with a BFA in Graphic Design. She is now working as the graphic designer and photographer for East Texas Baptist University in Marshall, TX. 

47th Judge

Brandy Rains

Brandy graduated from ACU in 2014 with a BFA in Studio Art Education and in 2015 with her Masters in Education from ACU. She is now an elementary art school teacher at Greenbriar Elementary in Forth Worth ISD where she teaches Kindergarten through 5th grade art.


46th Judge

Ashlyn Stewart

Ashlyn Stewart, who graduated from ACU in 2017. Ashlyn is now a Brand and Marketing designer for Dig Inn based in New York City.


45th Judge

Ray Kelley

Ray graduated from ACU; she started in graphic design, but made the switch to sculpture after falling in love with the class. She is currently in her second year of grad school as a theatrical set designer.


44th Judge
Josh Fralick


43rd Judge

Riley Scroggins

is an art teacher who graduated from ACU in 2014. Throughout her career, Riley has worked on several small art projects, but she has found the act of reviving creativity in her students to be her biggest motivation and accomplishment as an artist.



42nd Judge

Bryana Guy

Bryana graduated from ACU in 2015 with an interior design degree. She started her career at Heritage Design Studio, a custom luxury residential architect firm. Shortly after, She started her business, Inside In Mind, and now does commercial consulting with builders and general contractors as well as residential decorating and design. Her most recent project is with KLZ Stone for their new showroom in Fort Worth, Texas


41st Judge

Simon Walker

Simon is a freelance designer and custom letterer from Austin, Texas. He is known for his work with both Austin Eastciders and Modern Times Beer, and has worked with a variety of other clients including Nickelodeon, Target, author Brené Brown, actor and comedian Ed Helms, Penguin Books, and Pepsi


40th Judge

David Singer

After graduating in 2013, David returned to Austin to intern with Foxtrot, then spent four years designing brands and packaging with the fine folks at Ptarmak, Inc. He currently lives in Denver where he’s a freelance designer focusing on visual problem-solving and design systems. 


39th Judge

Gracie Conner

Gracie Conner (Ferreyro, maiden name) ggraduated from ACU in 2014 with a Bachelors of Science in Interior Design and Minor in Business. Two short weeks after graduation I started working at Thiel and Thiel, a full service Interior Design firm working in multifamily and country club rehabs and a few new build projects around the country.
Shortly after getting married and moving to Austin in 2016, I started to work at Sixthriver Architects, in their student housing studio as a lead designer. Currently, I’m working on new build student housing developments in Austin, Texas, Flagstaff, AZ, Phoenix, AZ, and Chicago , IL.”


38th Judge

Rebecca Gibbs

Rebecca and her husband, Lucas, live in Abilene, Texas with their sons Brock and Grayson. Since beginning her design career in 2008, Rebecca has gained the reputation of being an insightful, fresh and down-to-earth interior designer. Travels to Europe, Asia and South America have also played a part in developing her appreciation and understanding of global influences on design.


37th Judge

Eric Grasham

After graduating in 2011 from ACU, Eric began working for production potters across Texas for 6 years. First for Bridget Hauser in Dripping Springs, and then as a resident artist at the Chicken Farm Art Center in San Angelo. Now he works independently, making his work and teaching in the Dallas area.


36th Judge

Hayden Walker

Hayden Walker is a graphic designer & illustrator who graduated from ACU in 2016. After graduation Hayden relocated with his wife Hannah to Portland, OR to pursue a career in design. Hayden is currently working with Blend Design Co. a multidisciplinary design studio who primarily works with Whole Foods creating environments and designing signage.

35th Judge

Rosemary Gutierrez

Rosemary Gutierrez graduated from ACU in 2007. She had the opportunity to intern and eventually work full-time for lifestyle brand Fossil Inc. after graduation. At Fossil, she worked on seasonal graphics displayed in all Fossil retail stores. She currently spends her days as a designer for the Dallas Museum of Art where she develops exhibition identities and print collateral.

34th Judge

Andrew Munoz

Andrew Munoz is a User Interface and Experience designer who graduated from ACU in 2012. Since his graduation, he as had the opportunity to develop web and mobile experiences for brands such as PetSmart, Chipotle, Sony, LinkedIn, Southwest Airlines and Whole Foods. Currently, Andrew is working as a Senior Visual designer at VMware, where he supports the design for multiple applications on the iOS and Android platforms.

33rd Judge
Bryan Couchman

Bryan Couchman is a Senior Designer at Upperquad. He’s had the privilege of working with a wide variety of clients ranging from big companies like Google and Facebook to little boutique shops out of North Carolina. One project that he really enjoyed was for Google’s Santa Tracker. For the past 6 years or so, Upperquad has had a very close relationship with the Santa Tracker team designing and developing new games and experiences for users to enjoy. Another notable project was when Upperquad worked with Facebook on a renewable energy initiative helping corporations become green and reliant on clean energy.

32nd Judge

Hance Taplin

Hance Taplin is a designer & photographer who graduated from ACU in 2005. After graduation, Hance pursued a career in the fashion industry working with Nike, Lululemon, 10 Deep NYC, The Dallas Cowboys and others related in the industry. Aside from work, Hance loves spending time with family and mentoring young designer/photographers.

31st Judge

Allen Smith

Allen Smith is the Fine Arts Lead Instructor at Logos Charter School in his hometown, Medford, Oregon. After graduating in 2009, Allen pursued an MAT from Southern Oregon University and won the 2014 Rookie Oregon Art Educator of the Year award. He is highly involved in mentoring young artists and maintains a rigorous personal studio practice. He was recently awarded a competitive artist residency at the Morris Graves Foundation and was previously an artist in residence at the Contemporary Artists Center in Woodside, NY. His latest series of paintings, Noumenon, has been featured in two solo shows in the last six months. His work can be viewed at

30th Judge

Hannah Bruce

Hannah Bruce graduated in 2015 with a degree in graphic design and moved to Austin to work for Ptarmak Inc., where she serves as a designer and illustrator. Ptarmak specializes in brand strategy, identity, and packaging systems for natural foods companies. Since being there, Hannah has had the opportunity to develop brands for companies like Kellogg, Ripe Craft Juice, and Cookie Chips.

29th Judge

Paige Baumgartner

Paige Baumgartner graduated in 2014 with a degree in Graphic Design, though fine arts was her first love. After graduating, she moved to San Francisco to pursue a job as an Interaction Designer at Favorite Medium. She has since moved to Dallas but continues to work remotely out of Common Desk. Paige enjoys the challenge of designing and building digital products for notable clients including the Smithsonian Institute, War Ink, UCSF, LA Clean Incubator, Steelcase and Facebook.

28th Judge

Leah Rama

Leah Rama graduated from ACU in 2012, and majored in Two-Dimensional Design. Following graduation, she taught art classes though the NCCIL before moving to Atlanta, GA to complete an MFA in Fashion Design at SCAD. She has freelanced in several design capacities, worked on some extracurricular projects with Adobe, and is now a fashion designer for Michael Kors Women’s Collection in New York City where she loves bumping into other ACU alumni!

27th Judge

Danny Flanagan

Danny graduated from ACU in 1991 with a degree in art. He has been with Zachary Associates, an advertising and marketing firm, for the past 24 years. Danny has been the Creative Director for the last 6 years. He also had a brief stint as a lavender farmer.

26th Judge

Shalis Stevens

Shalis Stevens graduated from ACU in 2008 with a BFA in Graphic Design, and earned her MFA in painting from SCAD in 2013. She now works as an illustrator and theater charge artist in Dallas, Texas. She is most passionate about storytelling through art and is in the process of publishing her second coloring book for adults.

25th Judge

Randy Hunt

Randy is the VP of Design at Etsy. His team to builds web products and creates brand experiences online and off. In 2014, they won the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Award. Randy released the book, Product Design for the Web, in 2014, founded Citizen Scholar Inc. and co-founded the design studio, Supermarket. He also serves on the steering committee of NYCxDESIGN.

24th Judge

Ty Pownall

Ty Pownall, ’06 alumni, moved to LA to get his MFA from Claremont Graduate University. He currently teaches art full time at Pepperdine University in Malibu. He is primarily a sculptor that explores the connections between rigidity and fragility. Ty is preparing for upcoming exhibitions in the Netherlands, Mexico and Norway.

23rd Judge

Erin Holland

Erin graduated in 2007 with a degree in Two-Dimensional Studio Art. She moved to NYC in 2010 and now works as an art director for The Museum of Modern Art, where she has continued to glean inspiration for her personal art practice. Upcoming excitements include a MoMA performance with artist #JeromeBel in October, and a new exhibition of works opening in Spring 2017.

22nd Judge

Matt Varner

Matt Varner graduated in 2015 and began working at Canales & Co with fellow ACU alum in Austin doing branding and packaging. Recently, Matt moved to NYC and has landed a job working at Pentagram, the world’s largest independent design consultancy.

21st Judge

Alex York

Alex York (’09) is lighting up Vancouver’s vibrant animation scene. After graduating, he completed a two-year commercial animation program at Capilano University, which he has followed up with a string of storyboarding work at Kickstart Entertainment, Bron Studios and EH-OKAY Productions. York’s most recent credits include the soon-to-be-released feature films Ratchet and Clank and Henchmen, as well as PBS’ just-premiered Ready Jet Go!.

20th Judge

Tanner Freeman

Tanner Freeman is the Owner and Designer at Deuxsouth. Deuxsouth is a creative company in Waco that helps other companies discover their project and audience. Tanner has designed for several companies in the Waco area, such as Dichotomy Coffee & Spirits.

19th Judge

Joshua Schoemaker

Joshua Schoemaker (’01) is an artist based in Dallas. His work is inspired from the purity and simplicity of zen painting, which uses brushwork and bold marks to convey spiritual awareness. Josh recently had an exhibition titled Adornment in Pohlenz gallery featuring of 15 pieces of his work!

18th Judge

Sarah English

Sarah English (‘01) earned her MFA in painting from UNT and currently works for JCPenney managing a team of textile designers. Sarah also uses her background in painting to create her own custom patterns. Her designs have been featured by retailers such as DENY Designs, Urban Outfitters, Nordstroms, and Bloomingdales! She was recently published in “Print and Pattern: Geometrics” and is kicking off a new project through Instagram, “50 patterns in 50 weeks.”

17th Judge

Zack Guerra

Zack Guerra is a graphic designer & illustrator who graduated from ACU in 2014. After graduation Zack joined fellow designer and ACU alumnus, Jose Canales, at Canales & Co. Since being there, Zack has been able to combine his love for drawing and design to develop brands such as YETI, Wild Acre Brewing Co., Independence Brewing Co., and CareerPlug.

16th Judge

Ben Hernandez

Ben Hernandez lives in Dallas and is a Senior Product Designer at Dialexa. He has a background in fine art, music, film making and design. During his career, he’s had the privilege of working with several great companies, including: National Geographic, GameStop, Microsoft, Jones Lang LaSalle, and NBC-Universal.

15th Judge

Leriam Gonzalez

Leriam Gonzalez is a New York City fashion photographer and our 15th Instagram competition judge! She is passionate about beauty, fashion, and being able to illustrate a story with her camera. Leriam’s work has been published worldwide in publications like Marie Claire, Nylon, and Tatler just to name a few.

14th Judge

Darren Le Gallo

Darren Le Gallo graduated from ACU in 1996 with a BA in painting and moved to Los Angeles recently after. He has shown in gallery exhibitions in Chelsea, NY, Santa Monica and Los Angeles. In addition, Darren has been heavily involved in the movie industry as an actor, set builder and storyboard artist.

13th Judge

Rolando Diaz

Rolando Diaz is a Cuban-American artist who travels internationally and often uses his skills as a painter for fundraising efforts. A documentary film titled “Recapturing Cuba” about Diaz has won two awards at the Sundance File Festival. The film has been an inspiration to many! His work has even been exhibited in many places, including the Grace Museum here in Abilene!

12th Judge

Lauren Kawahigashi

After graduating from ACU, Leanne Kawahigashi moved to San Francisco for an internship with Turner Duckworth. There she worked on projects such as the Coke Zero Christmas packaging. Still living in San Francisco but with a recent opportunity to work from exotic locations like Thailand and Cambodia she currently designs for Expensify.

11th Judge

Sarah Stanley

Sarah Stanley graduated from ACU with a degree in Graphic Design in 2006 and accepted a graphic design position at Fossil in 2008. Her outstanding work was recently recognized in the 33rd Annual Type Director’s Club.

10th Judge

Amanda Martinez

Amanda Martinez graduated from ACU with a degree in Interior Design. She went on to Texas A&M to become an Architect. Amanda currently is a designer for Page Southerland Page, Inc. in Austin.

9th Judge

Dawn Hearn

ACU alumni, Dawn Hearn is an interior designer residing in the Austin area. Her designs have been recognized locally and nationally in such publications as Texas Home & Living, Southern Rooms by Rockport Publishers and Southern Living Room-by-Room Makeovers.

8th Judge

Jordan Bell

Jordan Bell is a proud ACU alumni currently living in New York City. He has worked for Hoefler & Co as a type designer since 2014. After graduating from ACU, Jordan received a Master of Arts in Typeface Design from Reading University in England. He is the designer of a friendly typeface named, Odelay. Aside from his job in NYC, Jordan enjoys taking on graphic and type design projects for others.

7th Judge

Joshua Hale

Joshua Hale is a contemporary artist based out of Abilene. He graduated from ACU in 2008 and his work has been exhibited in numerous art shows. He does mostly 2D paintings and his most recent works explore themes of nature, society, and depolarization.

6th Judge

Jose Canales

Jose Canales is a graphic designer based out of Austin, TX. In 2014, he left the advertising agency, McGarrah Jesse, and started his own company, Canales & Co. He found his passion in branding, packaging, and crafted design and has done work for Shiner beer, Stripes Candy, and Costa Del Mar.

5th Judge

Bobbie Scanio

Bobbie Scanio is an award winning graduate from ACU with a bachelor of science in Interior Design. She started working at Bella Villa Design Studio in 2005 and her creativity and thoroughness makes her an integral part of Bella Villa. She passed the NCIDQ and became a registered interior designer in 2011.

4th Judge

Brent Couchman

Brent Couchman is a graphic designer who leads his own branding and design studio, Moniker, in San Francisco, CA. Brent has previously done branding and illustration for Coca-Cola, Google, Facebook, Herman Miller and Fossil. His work has been recognized by groups such as AIGA, Art Directors Club and many more.

3rd Judge

Nathan Spoor

Nathan Spoor graduated from ACU with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting. Nathan is from Dallas but currently lives in Los Angeles, CA. His paintings often deal with themes of transition and growth and have been featured in exhibitions across the country.

2nd Judge

Kelly Mann

Kelly Mann is an interior designer from Houston, TX. After graduating from ACU with a degree in Interior Design and minor in Business Administration, Kelly started KMann Designs in November 2009. The company was originally created for graphic design, but is now primarily interior design. Kelly’s design style is a mix of modern and traditional.

1st Judge

Jeff Rogers

Jeff Rogers is our first guest judge for the Instagram competition! Jeff, who graduated from ACU, lives in New York and has his own studio based out of Brooklyn. Jeff specializes in custom lettering and has done work for McDonalds, Abi-Haus, ACU Today, Joe’s Crab Shack, and Ace Hotel to name a few!