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creative lead


Built upon a 25+ year foundation of academia and industry visual communication experience, I specialize in building and guiding creative teams while formulating brand design strategies that emotionally connect with the intended audience.

My design philosophy focuses on formulating a strategic design vision, actively listening to clients, mentoring creative teams and leading the creative processes that expand imaginative horizons. When it comes to design, I’m truly a rogue and don’t accept the standard, formulaic solution from my team or myself.


core creative lead skills

  • Hands on creative direction, brand/graphic/interactive design and strategy development
  • All areas of visual communication including traditional (print), digital (responsive, mobile, HTML5, CSS3, social media) and avant-garde (ambient, environmental)
  • Set the vision, drive the concepts and create innovative visual communication experiences
  • Provide strong creative team leadership, vision, oversight and mentorship
  • Develop unique, stand out ideas in partnership with designers, strategists, developers, marketing, account managers, sales and clients
  • Guide the creative process from concept through fruition
  • Engage closely with clients, understand their marketing objectives and proactively contribute to their brand’s evolution and success
  • Effective verbal and written communication, as well as high degree of comfort and proficiency presenting in a small-large group setting


the dezignrogue brand philosophy

Think of branding as connecting the dots. All points of contact must visually relate and project a consistent message. If one piece of communication is conservative, another aggressive and yet another demure, your visual voice will present as splintered resulting in a confused consumer who doesn’t know what to expect when viewing a message from you. Most people you’re talking to don’t know you personally and are relying on your effective use of design elements to become familiar and comfortable with your brand.

A brand promises an experience and result we can count on. A brand becomes part of the mental picture in our mind and we’re conditioned to expect a certain quality, consistency and benefits when engaging with it. Vital brand elements we must consider to create messaging that means something to the consumer…

Consistent, creative and innovative design: Can consumers expect the same quality in everything we say/touch/do? Do our different communication pieces match? Do the visuals reflect what we’re saying?

Understand our target audience: Know whom we’re talking to and talk to them in their language. Is what we’re communicating making sense to the consumer? What are their needs? How can we fulfill them? When viewing a design everyone asks “what’s in it for me?” Together, let’s definitively answer this question.


supervisor recommendation

Michael Weeks | Director | Roper Mountain Science Center — Greenville SC

Dean Ballas is creative, determined, extremely efficient, and gifted. It has been a pleasure to work with such a multi-talented and engaging visionary to rebrand and define Roper Mountain’s outdated visual communication over the past year.

In a very short time Dean has worked closely with our administrative team and staff to determine a modern, fresh, and appropriate creative strategy and design for Roper Mountain. Not only has Dean set a clear vision and provided the framework for success, but he has also modeled a collaborative and open process that included all stakeholders. He took the time to engage with and understand the many programs and layers of our organization in order to lead an exciting and fitting graphic, marketing, and overall design to modernize our center.

Dean is truly a professional and is not only extremely gifted at design, but is also an excellent facilitator. He provided strong leadership and oversight to our team while patiently and purposefully mentoring us through the process. His graphic and visual design skill is evident but his ability to multi-task, innovate, and lead is what separates Dean from the rest. Dean has provided the creative vision that will set our organization apart and provide us with the clear, consistent visual communication that was so needed to excite, engage and expand our brand. I highly recommend Dean to anyone and am happy to speak to his many talents.

Want more information? Contact Mr. Weeks:


client recommendation

Hyram Laurel | Manager | Community Health Care Network — NYC NY

I am very pleased to recommend Dean, Creative Director at I am the Manager of the Education and Outreach Department at Community Healthcare Network (CHN). We are an inner-city nonprofit organization focusing on exceptional medical and social services to diverse populations. Dean has volunteered his design services to CHN for over six plus years and has provided excellent guidance through the creative process of developing marketing health education materials that are appropriate for our demographics. He has helped enhance the overall quality of how we promote our services and how we provide health education and resources to our patients. As a non-profit, we do not have the funding to pay to produce high caliber materials, but with Dean’s guidance, this is now part of one of the things we our most proud of as an agency.

Dean’s award winning talent has lead us as an agency to develop a whole Health Literacy Department that will work closely with our marketing team to design materials that are simple to read and understand, provide useful information to all our patients while addressing education limits, language, culture, and comprehension. Dean is a dedicated, talented, driven and generous professional, as well as a born leader. He not only does great work, but also motivates others to do great things, both as the expert in charge and team member helping the group achieve new heights.

Want more information? Contact Mr. Laurel:


design team member recommendation

Jared Strouse | Graphic Designer | get READY girls — Doylestown PA

Dean was my creative director at get READY girls while we were developing the brand elements for the company. As I see it there are three parts to what makes Dean a great creative director. First is his ability to inspire. You can tell he has examined an extensive amount of design because he always pulls out examples that get your creative juices flowing and lead to a great concept of your own. The second aspect Dean does exceptionally well is push you past what you thought was your limit. The final creative concepts and designs are always where they need to be because Dean pushes you beyond “just good enough” on to “something you’re proud of.” The third thing that makes Dean a great creative director is his attention to detail. As we would prepare projects for press or web, Dean would show me how to nail every detail to the wall before the project would leave our hands. From color choice and kerning to crop marks and bleeds, the attention to detail I have learned from Dean has been indispensable throughout the years. I have an easy time recommending Dean because he has helped me grow as a designer throughout my career so far as I’m sure he has done for so many others.