James Wikle

The name Wikle: Pronounced Why-cul. Possibly an Americanized spelling of German Weikel, a variant of Weigel. 

James Wikle is a graphic designer, product innovator, licensed captain, sailor and motorcycle adventurer.  These aren’t career choices, but a lifetime of passion beginning as a child when was given an antique drafting table from the famous WWII Manhattan Project which his Grandfather worked as an Architectural Engineer. He taught himself perspective drawing at an early age, but chose to mostly draw plan views of fantastic futuristic crafts of all types. These developed into fanciful sailboats and motorcycles. As a boy, he was an avid sailor in Newport Beach. In high school he worked as a dishwasher to earn money to buy a motorcycle, but his parents would not allow it, and a compromise was made to purchase a 125cc Vespa Scooter. This vehicle was always ridden at its top speed of 50mph and crashed many times riding in dirt. The most infamous crash, with him on the back breaking his leg. He wore a leg cast to his high school graduation..

Design is a great adventure. Adventure requires great design.

James went on to win an architectural design award and a scholarship for City and Regional Planning from the Irvine Company while a high school senior. Naturally using the some money to finally buy a real dirt bike.  After graduating with a B.S. in Applied Art and Design from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, he went on to become an art director at a fast paced real estate advertising agency.  

2 years later, he began his freelance career and became an associate creative director for a medical ad agency in Orange, CA.  Working for clients such as Toshiba Medical and Edwards Lifesciences he developed a reputation as an innovator and project leader.

The scope of his work increased to corporate event graphics, product and promotional design, interactive, architectural, consumer, direct mail, branding, web and video production.  A brief period as creative director for his own 7 person design agency with a business partner brought him to Hewlett-Packard and Olson Events Group as a senior designer and brand manager for the HP IPG (Imaging and Printing Group) annual marketing event held at venues around the US.  James is now working alongside his wife, Susan Young as a Creative director, designer and art director.  Presently working on branding, print, experiential design and video projects..

When he isn't diving into a design project, James spends time with his designer and studio painter wife, Susan and riding, traveling and sailing with his son Alex and daughter Kylie.  

Staring at a computer screen for weeks at a time makes him unhappy. So his adventures take him outdoors.  Way outdoors — Death Valley, Utah, Nevada  or Colorado.  Generally riding cross-country on off-road motorcycles, hiking or skiing. He owns a small “racer/cruiser” sailboat named “Travel Plans” which he uses to teach beginning cruising and windy condition sailing.

James Wikle is also an innovative product designer, having produced and marketing Lithium Phosphate batteries for power sports as well as customizing and designing off-road performance and weight saving parts for his own adventure motorcycles.

Look for his new adventure as sailing and land navigation / group leader.