Long ride to work? Make it a #creativecommute

Duarte Circle D logo

Written by

Paula Tesch

storm trooper on train

Just a couple more stops until the Death Star. @sean_voegeli

Many of our employees live a long way from the office. One of our designers has a particularly hellish trek. Instead of whining about it — or just staring at his phone like the rest of us — he started making it a #creativecommute.

Sean Voegeli* is a talented illustrator, avid Instagrammer, and loyal Star Wars fan. He combines his passions into clever mash-ups of illustration and photography featuring some well-known characters, and a few new ones.

First, where can we find your work?
You can follow me on Instagram @sean_voegeli.
Or just search the hashtag #creativecommute.

What tools do you use?
An iPad
A random, like, $20 stylus
Adobe Draw, exclusively

I like Adobe Draw a lot. I can just import the photos directly in there and draw into the scene. And if I want to keep working on it, I can send the files to Adobe Cloud and keep editing them on my desktop.

How has your #creativecommute affected your day?
It’s great. When I spend my commute being creative, I can hit the ground running in brainstorms. It used to take me awhile to warm up in the morning, now as soon as I walk in the door my brain is, like, ‘All right, let’s get weird.’

On the way home, it’s a good way to unwind and transition into dad-mode. If I draw on the train, I’m more relaxed when I get home — and I have something cool to show my daughter.

How do you decide what to draw?
My four-year-old is my Art Director. She loves to draw monsters. The first thing I drew was a zombie for her.

Which comes first, illustration or photo?
It depends. Sometimes I’ll draw a character without a scene in mind and then I’ll find the perfect spot for them. Like with R2D2, I had already drawn him, then I took the photo on a trip to Disneyland. I’m always on the lookout for photos with good lighting and composition. There’s a lot of cool industrial scenery on the commute.

How long does each piece take to make?
I can usually knock one out in a day. I’ll start in the morning and finish on on my way home.

Why Instagram?
It’s just a fun place to share art. Hashtags can help you find other cool artwork, and might even lead to collaboration. The @starwars account and #starwars tag are fun to look through.

Do you have a favorite piece?
I love this one.

R2D2 going through park gates

“All strollers and droids must enter through the gate please.” @sean_voegeli

And this one. I love it because he’s a pig man… selling hot dogs.

Star Wars character at Disney

Don’t you dare order a hotdog at this Disneyland stand. @sean_voegeli

Last question, who should we be following on Instagram?

@draplin – he’s just awesome
@strongstuff – has really good print work and vector art
@xamthespaniard – amazing tattoo artwork
@joncontino – my graphic design hero
@icreature – really good variety, fun cute characters
@thebeastisback – he makes toys and action figures and draws video game and comic book characters


Even if you can’t draw, you can spend your commute being creative and productive. And chances are it’ll make your day better before, during, and after work.

So we dare you. Get inspired. Quit looking at your phone. Make your next trip a #creativecommute.

*Voegeli is pronounced “vaguely” in case you were wondering.