Meet Designer Matt Houtman

Posted on by JLSA


JLSA has grown and has grown very quickly! It’s been quite the whirlwind, but we want to catch you up to speed. So, today, we’re introducing designer Matt Houtman. 

One year ago, Matt was the newest member of our team. Now he sits as the sixth newest. (Like we said: It’s been a whirlwind.) 

Matt was fresh out of Johnson County Community College’s graphic design program when he came aboard in May 2021. He brought with him substantial illustration skills, a knack for making crazy cool designs, and an unbelievable amount of enthusiasm.

He reluctantly took a break from his frenzy of design work to sit down and answer some questions. 

What do you do at JLSA, and what’s your secret to doing it well?

I’m a designer, so I take care of all the visual stuff: typography, web design, branding, etc. 

The secret is simply putting in the time. I love, as our associate creative director Sara would say, “futzing with stuff” — tweaking something until it’s just right. I’m really picky and honestly love getting to make things look pretty.

What has stood out during your time at JLSA?

There’s a great deal of creative freedom here. Everyone’s also extremely approachable and constantly making jokes. Oh, and the beer on tap is nice too. 

How’d you first get into design?

It’s a classic story. I got out of high school and didn’t know at all what I was going to do, so I signed up for a bunch of random classes. I ended up taking an art history class and loving absolutely everything about it. From there, I started exploring other options in that field. 

Somehow, I ended up here, and I’m pretty thrilled about it. It feels surreal to be starting my design career at such a fun agency.

Other than being a seriously talented designer, what’s the coolest thing about you?

Probably my cat, Virtute. He’s a super vocal orange tabby and a real crowd-pleaser when people come over. 

I play guitar and have toured around town a bit! I’ve also been skateboarding since I was three, but I can’t say I’m that impressive. Well, I could, but it would probably be an exaggeration. Actually, since you won’t see it, take my word for it: I’m kind of awesome.