Nicole Lavelle

Hire me


I’m a designer, artist, and writer working on social, cultural, and community-driven projects. Let’s work together!


Rural Futures Deck

A card deck for generative, collective imagining, brimming with poetic inspiration. 

Co-created with Hi-Vis Agency and Springboard for the Arts’ Rural Regenerator Fellows
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Tokyo Seeds

At a design residency with Japan’s national train company, I researched and pitched community engagement strategy to the company’s culture leaders.

Yes, it was a little bit like MTV’s The Real World for designers.

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End of Life Times

A community newspaper exploring death and dying, in an effort to live more fully.

For Reimagine
Download here

Personal Voice Workbook

A workbook for introspection, exploration, and finding your voice. 

Dropbox.Design Culture Kits, open-source resources for the design community. 

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Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit

A multi-faceted tool for taking steps towards more diverse and inclusive culture at work and beyond.
Dropbox.Design Culture Kits, open-source resources for the design community. 

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Team Values Toolkit

A toolkit for teams to align and establish common values.

Dropbox.Design Culture Kits, open-source resources for the design community.

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Research at Dropbox

As the dedicated designer for the Research Team at Dropbox, I helped user researchers transform their complex findings into clear, narrative artifacts for product teams. 

I also created a tangible library of engaging tools and materials for co-creative user research workshops.

Illustration by Rob Moss Wilson


Virtual First User Journeys

Day-in-the-life maps to help employees understand their new relationships to the office.


Future-of-Work Consulting

Creative consulting on ways to nurture community and build culture for newly decentralized teams. 


Company Culture Workshop

An engaging, social, and playful workshop for every single employee of a large biotech corporation, to help drive meaningful adoption of new company-culture tenets.


21st Century Design Skills

A mainstage presentation on the Future of Work, for Dropbox Staff Researcher Jennifer Brook.

Presented at the the Awwwards Conference

Open Engagement

Design direction for six iterations of an annual art conference, all with an eye for flexible, living identity systems and DIY modes of production.

Complete design archive coming soon!

Jennifer Brook Identity

Visual identity and website for a brilliant multi-hyphenate design practitioner.

With Multi Studio

Visit the site


Yes, I love making decks. The more complex the information, the better. The bigger the ideas, the better!

Sample slides from pitch decks, thought leadership, workshops, toolkits, All-Hands, visioning, and funding rounds.



Playful visual projects for artists, musicians, creative businesses, and cultural organizations. Branding, merch, illustration, graphics.



Place Talks

A lecture series about location, presented with the Prelinger Library in San Francisco.
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Paper Road

A multi-media research project, exploring personal and collective California narratives.
With Publication Studio San Francisco and the Headlands Center for the Arts.


Green River Publications

Community publications made with residents of a small, rural, desert town in Utah. 

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An Incomplete History

A public history project about community publishing, presented at the Jack Mason Museum of West Marin History in Inverness, California.
More soon

Common Source

A public library installation and participatory event at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, exploring the public commons.
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Plant Family

A multi-media narrative project weaving tendrils of personal loss, family history, and a changing San Francisco. 
Watch video

Wild Cards

A tool for creativity, a game with no rules. For getting un-stuck and finding unexpected connections.


A Substack mostly about art, design, community, and place.

The Relation Between Things in a Continuum

An essay about growing up in San Francisco. Politics, power, nostalgia, myth, hyperobjects, and their interlocking tendrils.
Published by Flower Press

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Codes and Questions for Anyone Who Goes Anywhere

An essay about small towns, tourism, West Marin, and how to be a good visitor. 
Published by Office of Virtue

Read it here


An essay about grief and the ocean.
Performed at the Headlands Center for the Arts and CENTER. Collaboration with Daniel Melo on guitar

Read it here

See a full list of articles and publications here in my CV

I approach design holistically, engaging creative strategy, research, co-creation, and visual design. I believe design is a social practice. 

In my art practice, I create conditions for participation and collective experience. 

In my writing, I am thinking about place, identity, community, and inclusion.

Here’s my CV if you want to read a big list of projects I’ve done

In residence at Blue Sky Center, New Cuyama California.

Let’s work together!

I’m always interested in new relationships with agencies, studios, and in-house design teams. I offer holistic design support to small businesses and cultural organizations.

I’m often available for project-based contract positions.

I’m open to a full-time position with a purpose-driven organization; if it’s the right fit, it’s the right fit!

PDF resume
Email me

If you’re looking for a thoughtful, experienced, hard-working designer (and a fun, chill co-worker), I’d love to hear from you.


COMMUNICATIONGraphic design for communication artifacts: print, digital, social, (etc.) with special attention to publications and presentations. I am *an expert* in Keynote and InDesign.

LEARNING EXPERIENCES Iterative prototyping and development of toolkits and workshops, with a spotlight on spontaneity, play, introspection, and generative experiences.

RESEARCH: Complexity Clarity Translation of complex research findings into narrative artifacts grounded in clear communication and digestible ideas.

NARRATIVE / CONTENT Strategy and design to help you decide WHAT you want to say and HOW you want to say it! Give me your wall of text and folder of images, and I’ll help you organize your thoughts.

I’ve worked with companies like IDEO, Dropbox, Figma, and Patagonia, as well as user researchers, cultural orgs, non-profits, and boutique creative agencies.
I’m a proud design generalist with experience in print, digital, social, marketing, human-centered design, brand, product/UX, research, and consulting.  I contribute as a thought-partner to interdisciplinary teams. Often I’m brought in as a graphic designer, but I always bring more to the table.I’m excited about working with purpose-driven and people-centric organizations. I’m drawn to work for the public good. 


The Justice Collaboratory at Yale Law School
The Institute of Ecotechnics
Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive
Bolinas Art Museum
Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy
Headlands Center for the Arts
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
For Freedoms
Reimagine End of Life
Point Reyes Books
Floodplain Projects

Design Instructor
School of Art + Design, Portland State University

Design Director
Open Engagement Conference

Art Director
Portland Mercury

Graduate Fellow and Affiliate Artist
Headlands Center for the Arts

Resident Artist
Prelinger Library

Designer in Residence
East Japan Railway

See the details on LinkedIn