We had the good fortune of connecting with Rodney Bissell and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Rodney, as a parent, what have you done for you children that you feel has had the most significant impact?
As parents, it is key to model what we teach to our children. They are our kids and we need to influence them before society does. We also realize it takes a village to raise our kids. Teachers, friends, and family are all a part of that village. The quality of the community around them is critical to their future. Also, we want them to know it’s okay to fail. This is difficult at times because we want them to do things perfectly and to succeed. Allowing them to fail teaches them to deal with the consequences of their actions and learn from them.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am the owner of Bissell Design Studios Inc., a graphic design company located in Oceanside, CA. I knew I wanted to do something with my life using my creative art background when I was junior high. Design has played an important role in our family for several generations. After I graduated from college, I went to work as a marketing designer for Outreach Inc. in Vista, CA. I learned a lot during my seven years at Outreach. They handled everything inhouse, from concept to print. The jobs ranged from large format backdrops to small postcards and brochures. One of my responsibilities was leading the design team for Outreach’s quarterly catalog. I also helped with the design and launch of their magazine. During my time at Outreach as the inhouse marketer, I was fortunate to work with all the department heads and their teams on our various accounts. Each account team had specific marketing campaigns and creative that changed monthly. Some months I was handling up to six different campaigns at a time. Some of the department heads stayed in contact after they left Outreach for other organizations and businesses. Now, as a freelance designer, I continue working with them as part of my current clientele. I worked hard in the beginning of my career because I could not start my own company until I had the necessary resources in hand. For a few years, I was working fulltime and doing freelance work when I got home in the evening. I even took a job at Trader Joe’s for about a year to save on health insurance for our family while working halftime as a freelancer. All that to say, I’ve learned how important it is not to burn any bridges along the way. Maintain a relationship with your contacts. You never know how those relationships will turn out in the end. Now we have a few loyal clients that keep us going and many companies and organizations that come to us each year by word of mouth. We do what we love and do it well. By keeping good relationships strong, work remains consistent. It’s amazing to look back over the last 20+ years and see all the different companies we have been able to work for and support creatively.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Some of our favorite spots in San Diego are the beaches. My kids and I love chasing the waves for some good surf. We always take friends to Oceanside harbor for some of the most constant waves in North County. Another fun experience is swimming with the sharks at La Jolla Shores and then swimming/snorkeling around the bay until you get to the caves just under downtown La Jolla. You can always find something interesting there. You feel like you’re on a grand vacation even if it only took you 35 minutes to get there. (Swimming with the sharks only takes place during August and September so visit soon before they’re gone. You’ll never forget it!) Once we are out of the water, food is a must! We can always find a good taco shop close by and grab some great Mexican food. San Diego is so close to the border you can’t really go wrong. After good food comes a scoop or two of great homemade ice cream from Handles or Salt and Straw. Don’t miss out on one (or both!) of these if you are visiting from out of town. And if you’re in the San Diego area over a weekend and prefer your own cooking, the farmers market is an amazing place for locally sourced food and tasty homemade treats!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
We would have to give credit to several individuals, as well as organizations. Our parents for one! Another deserving a big “shoutout” is our church, North Coast Church in Vista. We have also learned a lot about parenting from Jim Burns at HomeWord.com. Dave Ramsey has taught us the value of budgeting our money wisely. (Our kids have learned as well and are already creating their own budgets!) There are so many friends and family members I could mention — we know we have been surrounded and supported by some of the best!
Photos are of my kids and I taken by myself and all images are some work I have done for clients of mine.