A creative thinker and a visual designer, KATO WAKE has a 25 year history of successfully creating ads, books and logos, building web sites, writing copy … and designing just about everything else in between. Some describe Kato Wake as a bit of a renaissance woman, as her talents and skills are far reaching. Her passion for art & design, hospitality, food & wine, and teaching has led to vibrant work as an art director, graphic designer, instructor, painter, and most recently, tour guide. She has helped businesses market and brand themselves, and has designed an impressive spectrum of materials for a diverse client base – for both corporations and individual owners. Kato is passionate about helping organizations and entrepreneurs grow their businesses, and is a talented and efficient problem solver. As a former store owner for seven years in Stratford, Ontario, she understands how small businesses work – and knows first hand the tight margins businesses are up against. They require the biggest marketing impact for the smallest possible investment.
For the past decade Kato has been a partner with Billy’s Best Bottles, in charge of print and digital communications, training restaurant staff in hospitality and service, and co-planning and hosting Wine, Food and Adventure tours. Previously, she taught design fundamentals and computer graphics at the International Academy of Design in Toronto. Kato was in the inaugural new media class at the prestigious Canadian Film Centre, and after graduating was creative director and lead designer for the largest funded project initiated by the CFC to that date – ‘The Great Canadian Story Engine’. This included designing the web site, all promotional materials and the interior and exterior graphics for an airstream trailer which travelled across Canada.
Years of experience working with corporate clientele has given Kato the opportunity to understand and appreciate corporate culture communication. As an associate of Aviary Group, she implemented creative solutions and produced videos for Hydro One.
Before moving to Cherry Valley in Prince Edward County four years ago, Kato was a production designer at NOW magazine in Toronto – a vibrant culture where she designed hundreds of ads for a wide audience, while keeping up to date on new media, programs, and print production.
She appreciates the meticulous work that goes into any branding project – in 2011 she led a branding workshop for 80 delegates at a hospitality conference at University of Toronto. Having designed over a dozen books, (most of which were Canadian best sellers) she has a strong grasp on print culture – and is adept in preparing files and talking to printers.
Experienced in teaching colour theory and art, and a skilled painter and adept graphic artist, Kato understands the different colour requirements for both digital and print outputs. She has designed numerous websites over the past ten years, and can communicate and help clients articulate their business for print and web.
In 2012 and 2013 Kato was contracted to produce Taste the County publications and marketing materials, including The Insider’s Guide to Prince Edward County, The Arts Trail and The Taste Trail, Maple in the County, Taste community grown events. Through that work Kato gained a thorough understanding about the County brand as it relates to both the visitor and resident. She redesigned The Regent Café, and designed the acclaimed ‘Farm to Table Breakfast’ cookbook by County B&B owner Elizabeth Pulker. Currently Kato offers her creative services pro bono for The Regent Theatre.
In 2014 Kato was contracted by the Corporation of Prince Edward County to design and deliver a print and web flip book in both French and English entitled 25 Things to Know About Prince Edward County. This publication was developed for new and prospective residents of the County, with the intent of making their transition to County life more seamless and enjoyable. It won the 2015 Award for Best Marketing Publication by the Economic Developers Council of Ontario.
Recent clients have included Prince Edward County Music Festival, Oeno Gallery, Soup Opera, Prince Edward County Museums, Prince Edward Learning Centre, and Sugarbush, TerraCello and By Chadsey’s Cairns wineries.
Kato is hard-working, reliable, honest, self-motivated, organized and goes the extra mile to deliver excellence on time and on budget. She likes people, excels as a team player and is easy to get along with. Each fall and spring painters and wannabes flock to her painting classes at Baxter Arts Centre to be inspired.