Shepard’s Birth Announcement

When I found out that we were going to have a boy, I started to think about my own childhood and all of the things I loved when I was a kid. So I wanted to design an announcement that celebrated those things and captured that particular idea of boyhood wonder and adventure. I created this illustration and worked with the incredible team at Studio on Fire to have it letterpressed on 220lb. Lettra paper. They did a fantastic job on the printing. It really turned out great. I think it’s safe to say that this is my favorite project of all time. And definitely my favorite client.

This my original rough sketch of the idea.

And this was the actual illustration. I couldn’t be happier with the way it turned out.

- Ty + 7.22.10 | 4:00 pm


Ty, this is wonderful.

- Skylar Hartman + 7.22.10 | 4:24 pm

Gawd, letterpress artifacts are so sexy. This is awesome, Ty.

- Treavor + 7.22.10 | 4:27 pm

dude, this looks great! and the letterpress makes it classic! awesome job!

- Matt Roeser + 7.22.10 | 4:28 pm

Utterly Gorgeous!

- Jeff Andrews + 7.22.10 | 4:28 pm

Congratulations sir, this looks outstanding!!. love the colors and the pressing! amazing work for an amazing dad!.

- Chris Leskovsek + 7.22.10 | 4:40 pm

Stellar, dude!

- rob schwager + 7.22.10 | 4:40 pm

This is such a beautiful piece, well done!

- Nick Fracture + 7.22.10 | 4:44 pm

This is gorgeous Ty. The most beautiful and unique birth announcement I’ve ever seen.

- Weylon Smith + 7.22.10 | 5:01 pm

I want one just to look at… looovvee that its letter pressed!

- Jen Miramontes (Goodman) + 7.22.10 | 5:40 pm


*discovered this post via @papercrave

- Lauren + 7.22.10 | 6:07 pm

Studio on Fire – Repping Minnesota, AWESOME work. This piece is beastly. Very nice!

- Anthony Lane + 7.22.10 | 6:15 pm

Awesome awesome work. Love it.

- Owen + 7.22.10 | 11:52 pm

You can check with Rhea for my whole, long thesis on why I adore the announcement, but basically I said that all I know to say about it is how utterly astonishing it is. Every inch of it. You have outdone yourself. (And you and Rhea outdid yourselves with the son you created this for.) It weighed so much that for a minute I honestly thought you put the announcement on a c.d.

- Michelle Doerr + 7.23.10 | 12:06 am

You rule.

- Aaron + 7.23.10 | 6:09 am

Wow. This is beautiful….in a boy-sort-of-way…

- Megan Clark + 7.23.10 | 9:08 am

Killer illustration work!

- Ty Wilkins + 7.23.10 | 9:55 am

WIthout doubt the greatest
announcement for this lovely and
lucky little baby boy. My
goodness you are talented Ty.

- Ann Griffith + 7.23.10 | 10:00 am

absolutely perfect! i love it!

- stacy + 7.23.10 | 11:00 am

Seriously, Ty. All other graphic designers should just throw up their hands and quit. They can’t compete with your stuff. Beautiful, as always!

- Leslie Bonifay + 7.23.10 | 11:40 am

Um……..amazing. I agree with Leslie!

- Tanya + 7.23.10 | 1:36 pm

shepard is one lucky little boy!

- rachel thomas + 7.23.10 | 1:57 pm

Just adore the spaceships. Brilliant colour scheme too

- Anthea + 7.23.10 | 3:43 pm

This is absolutely gorgeous! Lucky him! And lucky you.

- Hannah + 7.24.10 | 12:05 pm

Stunningly beautiful card. Great combination of illustration and tactile texture. I’d love to touch this card!

- Albert Kiefer + 7.25.10 | 2:33 am

Wow, incredible! Great work!

- jpk + 7.25.10 | 3:00 am

One of the best Letter pressed pieces I’ve seen out there… congrats on all levels… being a dad rocks…

- Jeremy + 7.25.10 | 4:51 pm

would you list all fonts you used? would love to know! Amazing job!!!!!

- Olive + 7.26.10 | 1:17 pm

Thanks for all the compliments! I’ve received a few questions about type, so here are the technical specs: This is a 2 color piece, printed on 220lb Lettra. Primary type: Cyclone, Secondary type: Hellenic Wide & Futura

- Ty + 7.26.10 | 1:36 pm

hellenic wide… that’s the ticket!


- Olive + 7.26.10 | 1:46 pm

Awesome work — I’m glad I got to see how cool the letterpressing looks in person

- Erik + 7.26.10 | 2:16 pm

Wow. This is an incredible piece. The letterpressing really pushes it over the edge, I just wish I could touch it!

- Jason + 7.29.10 | 9:43 am

Fan-friggin-tastic! Truly!

- Jacqui Garcia + 8.2.10 | 3:35 pm

I don’t know what more more can be said: CONGRATULATIONS! B-B-BEAUTIFUL!

- Roger + 8.3.10 | 6:10 am

you made me back to childhood
Awesome work!! Congrarulations!!

- Xavier A. + 8.3.10 | 6:18 am

Absolutely beautiful!

- Cheryl Savala + 8.3.10 | 9:22 am

this is amazing. truly :)

- Michael + 8.3.10 | 6:21 pm

Genious. Great parenting

- JB + 8.4.10 | 1:58 am


- Hans + 8.4.10 | 4:07 am

Great stuff!

- Brandon Bennett + 8.4.10 | 5:49 am

Absolutely gorgeous piece! Amazing work of art.

- Eric Washburn + 8.4.10 | 10:43 am

Absolutely awesome piece of work. I hope you don’t mind I posted it up on my blog!

- Ben + 8.5.10 | 6:40 am

We always create the best stuff when it’s the most dear to our heart! Nice Job.

- Marek Hosek + 8.6.10 | 8:17 am

Gorgeous and Sentimentally beautiful. Congrats on becoming a father too!

- Doug Human + 8.6.10 | 9:45 am

A beautiful announcement for a beautiful boy!

- David Tolleson + 8.24.10 | 6:25 am

fabulous work Ty! congratulations on your son…Love the “rough sketch”… it celebrates the process.

- jeffrey DeMure + 8.24.10 | 10:49 am

Very cool Ty – congratulations! And what a lucky little guy to have such a beautiful piece of art to announce him to the world. I’m sure he’ll treasure that piece of his baby book.

- Chelsea Morris + 8.25.10 | 10:36 am

Greatings from Eastern Europe! You make a great design, like it a lot!!!

PS: I would be very greatfull if you can share with me this font, with witch “carlyle” is written:)

- Dewinn + 8.29.10 | 7:41 pm

Brilliant! Love it so much.

- EranDarki + 12.28.10 | 6:57 am

[…] Last but certainly not least is Ty Mattson’s birth announcement for his son. Using his considerable illustration skills, he included all his favorite childhood amusements as a frame for the information. It’s a great limited-color-palette design using only three colors. There are more images on Ty Mattson’s site here. […]

- Beautiful Birth Announcements + 11.1.11 | 10:14 am

[…] You can see more work by Ty Mattson here>> […]

[…] Über famous designer Ty Mattson created these announcements when his son was born. I love that you can see the process from his […]

[…] BiplanePress, Oh So Beautiful Paper, BiplanePress, Mattson Creative, Elum Designs, Design Work Life, […]

Thank you for inspiring my own handmade baby card. (It’s a “thank you for the baby gift” rather than a birth announcement.) Your circle motif on a square card inspired me to design my own template in Adobe Illustrator and output to laser engraving machine. To create the cards,. I used the L-Letterpress and Big Shot machine with 3 inks on 140-lb watercolor paper. Click my Flickr link to see a photo! Thanks again.

- Cheryl Watt + 10.22.12 | 11:49 am

This is just so incredible….

- Marshy + 12.5.13 | 5:09 pm

[…] the annual, which catalogs the best projects in the graphic design industry. The Lost posters and Shepard’s birth announcement were selected as winners and published in the magazine which is on news stands this month. […]

Very good post! We are linking to this great post on our site.
Keep up the great writing.

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