Gary Chen is a graphic designer at the San Francisco Planning Department working in the Information & Analysis Group. He is responsible for designing visual information in the form of infographics, mapping, and illustrations for the department’s various publications, presentations, project web sites and other public outreach. He has been with the department for over 8 years.
Originally trained as an painter/illustrator in an arts high school and early in art college, he switched to graphic design after working part time in a small urban planning firm. There he learned how to use Photoshop and Illustrator and fell in love with the scope and accessibility of what could be done with the digital tools of graphic design. Since then, he’s honed his skills in typography, publication design, cartography, branding and web design. He has also worked with city planners ever since.
Some major projects he’s worked on and provided creative direction include major area plans for the City such as the rezoning of the Eastern Neighborhoods; the launch of the Pavement to Parks program, the Green Connections project, and Invest in Neighborhoods program.