Joshua Ross Gilbert

Hometown: Milwaukee, WI
Sign: Pisces
Hairline: Bald by Choice, Balding by Nature
Ride: Volkswagen New Beetle
Occupation: Graphic Designer

Favorite Musicans:
Aerosmith, The Beatles, Billy Joel, Bob Seger, The Eagles, Elton John, Eric Clapton, Green Day, Jimmy Buffett, Joe Cocker, John Fogerty, John Mellencamp, Juno Reactor, The Nylons, Phil Collins, Queen, R.E.M, The Rolling Stones, The Seatbelts, Steve Miller, Tom Petty, U2, Van Morrison, ZZ Top

Favorite Directors:
Michael Bay, James Cameron, Martin Campbell, Alfonso Cuaron, Guillermo del Toro, Richard Donner, Terry Gilliam, Paul Greengrass, Peter Jackson, Ryhuei Kitamura, Akira Kurosawa, Sergio Leone, Doug Liman, Hayao Miyazaki, Christopher Nolan, Sam Raimi, Guy Ritchie, Robert Rodriguez, Ridley Scott, Bryan Singer, Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino, Matthew Vaughn, Gore Verbinski, The Wachowskis, Shinichiro Watanabe, Joss Whedon

*takes a breath* That enough?... Okay, moving on...


"So I'm being a narcissistic douche and googling myself and I find this art piece from one of the weirdest moments of my life. Killer, man! Can I buy a print?"
Christopher Titus, Actor/Comedien

"Amazing! That's what comes to mind when describing Josh's work. Each and every time he delivered results that were above and beyond what was expected. His creativity is very unique and his ability to take a concept and turn it into what the client is looking for is outstanding. It has been my privilege to watch first hand Josh grow into in my opinion one of Milwaukee's top graphic designers."
Chris Kokalis, President, CKME Group Inc.

"Simply put, Josh is one of the most talented graphic artists I have ever worked with. Present him with a product, service or event that needs to be seen (and remembered), and he will provide concept art and final designs that far exceed expectations. The "wow" factor feels like an understatement, especially when you also consider the speed in which he works."
Dan Underberg, MSSM, Vice President, CKME Group Inc.

"Josh is one of the most talented Graphic Designers I have worked with. He is able to take a customer's vision, no matter how vague it may be, and make it a reality. From logos to business cards to corporate literature, Josh creates designs that compliment each other and keep a consistent image throughout. I would highly recommend Josh's work to anyone!"
Shannon Harring, Business Development Coordinator, CKME Group Inc.

"From the day I discovered the content of his portfolio when he was hired by the CKME Group until today. Josh has always impressed me by the quality of his work, his creativity and how he can read between lines to create exactly what is expected from him. Great talent and an asset to any company requiring out of the box graphic design services."
Jean-Claude (J-C) Kortleven, Founder - President of Sales & Operations, Zelena, Inc.


Download my Resume (604 KB)
I am currently seeking full-time employment.


  • Photo retouching
  • Typography
  • Page layout
  • Mockup design
  • Freehand illustration
  • Creative writing
  • Proficient in:
    • Macintosh / Windows PCs
    • Adobe Photoshop
    • Adobe Illustrator
    • Adobe InDesign

    ...and open to learning more!

Work History

  • August 2007 - December 2008
    CKME Group Marketing & Entertainment, West Allis, WI

    Clients: MaggieModa.com (company logo / website mockup); Milwaukee Bonecrushers (sales & marketing flyers / brochures / print advertisements); Midwest Strategic IT (company logo); Peak Resource Center (service flyers); Six Degrees Bar & Lounge (print advertisements, specials promotions); Adonis Limousine (company logo / service brochures)

  • January 2009 - Present
    Shok Xone Studios Graphic Design, Milwaukee, WI

    Clients: LaCrosse Spartans (team logo / sales & marketing flyers / web layout); Nexus Wines (logo / web layout); Barefoot Office LLC (logo); Bodhisattva (band, CD packaging); Eve's Demons (independent film, key artwork / DVD packaging); The Symbol of Peace (independent film, key artwork); Mid Coast Concepts (logo)


Good Hope Elementary, Class of 1994

Glen Hills Middle School, Class of 1997

Nicolet High School, Class of 2001

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Class of 2007
Bachelor of Fine Arts, Peck School of the Arts
Related coursework: Computer arts, studies of issues in contemporary art, web design, design survey, art history (ancient to modern)

The story so far...

My family discovered at a very early age I had an artist's touch. From grade school through high school, art was my one redeeming social attribute. I may have been the out-of-shape, squeaky-voiced, pimply outsider, but - to paraphrase one of my father's songs - with a pencil and paper in my hand, there's wasn't a thing you could show me. So naturally art education was in my future. And yes, the Graphic Design program was in my sights.

Problem was, they didn't want me. Twice I applied, twice I was rejected. Maybe I wasn't wearing the right cologne.

So I majored instead in Painting & Drawing, which was not a path regretted. I had the pleasure of meeting better artists and making better friends than any I'd made before or since (with the exception of my best friend Ted who I met my freshman year of high school...SHOUT OUT, BUDDY! WOOO!).

But unless your name is Drew Struzan, painting and drawing doesn't draw a lot of attention so far as employability goes. (And if I'm wrong about that, which knowing me I very likely am, feel free to set my dumb ass straight; I'll be the first to say I had it coming.) But then, neither does trying to get a graphic design job without a graphic design degree on your resume. Thankfully, I've managed recognition for my skill on the strength of my portfolio, rather than a line of text on a piece of paper.

(This is the part where I got kinda preachy and philosophical, so if that crap bores you to tears you might want to go and get something to drink.)

While my degree is mostly due to the restrictions of UWM Graphic Design program, I continued persuing graphic design because I partly feel there's really no such thing as "formal training". Being a desginer, or artist of any kind, is akin to being a writer, director, or composer. You either have the talent in you, or you don't.

If you have the capability within you to put together something that makes the guy next to you stare in wonder and proclaim "That's awesome", "training" only amounts to somebody telling you a lot of things you already know. Which is not to say proper education is a road to nowhere; Lord knows there's plenty I don't know about either the production or history of art. What I know, I build on; what I don't know, I learn on the spot if need be. Things like composition and color can come as naturally as deciding what is pleasing to the eye; technique, I believe, is not taught so much as developed.

A classmate had the good sense to tell me something I would pass on to anybody in or out of a design education program who knows they have a gift for this kind of work:

If you want to be a designer, be a designer.

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