Hedonist Artisan Chocolates: Valentine's Day Chocolate Collection

It's not often that I get to design graphics that can be eaten. And by "not often", I suppose I mean, well...never. I can consider this a career first, for sure.

Hedonist Artisan Chocolates, located on South Ave in the South Wedge of Rochester, is a lovable chocolate shop and ice cream store. They sell delicious handmade chocolates and ice cream with interesting flavors and combinations. I recently tried some of their milk chocolate toffee almond bark and I have quite literally had dreams about it since. And then another time I tried some apple cider sorbet with salted caramel ice cream - SO good.

Anyway, Hedonist's social media manager and fellow Geneseo grad, Rebecca Fitzgerald, reached out to Keith and I to see if we would be interested in participating in their Valentine's Day campaign. Typically the shop enlists a local artist to design the artwork for the chocolates and then they also feature them as their "Artist of the Month", meaning the artist would get to display and sell their artwork in the shop for the month of February. Keith and I both were very excited at the prospect. Our chosen career paths work very well together - for this project, I designed the graphics, and we'll be displaying Keith's artwork (and some of my own little doodles) in the store for the month of February.

But the trick, you see, was that what I put on the chocolates and what Keith put on the walls had to tell a story. And it had to relate to Valentine's Day. Oh boy. Keith's body of work is landscapes. How the heck are we going to relate landscape photography to Valentine's Day? And chocolate? As I scrolled through Keith's body of work, I realized that every sky he captured was magnificent - filled with stars, cradling a bright big moon, or ablaze with a sun peaking over or under the horizon. From somewhere in the back of my mind I remembered a quote - "You are my sun, my moon, and all my stars." Boom. Got it. Romance. Landscapes. There's our theme.

I have loads of anecdotes about the sun, moon and stars as they relate to Keith and I and our relationship but they're mushy and cutesy and I won't bore you with them, sorry. Okay, just one. The first summer that we were dating, Keith got an opportunity to be the photographer/media director for an overnight summer camp in the Adirondacks. We had just started dating and were bummed that we'd be apart but both truly excited about the opportunity for Keith. We exchanged daily letters that summer - Keith even more faithful than I, sending two letters to arrive on Saturday so that I still had one to read on Sunday. One time he sent me a flash drive on which he had placed a timelapse video of the sun setting so that we could watch the sun set together. Oh my gosh, I love him. Anyway...

So here are the chocolates! Here's the box they come in:

And then here's what it looks like when you open the box:

Hedonist takes beautiful care of all of their products - I was seriously impressed with the way that they packaged this 10-piece collection. It's refreshing to see a company take really thoughtful care of their brand and products. I love it.

The top 5 pieces display the E.E. Cummings quote "You are my sun, my moon, and all my stars." The cool thing, too, is that you can buy them separately so if you wanted to tell someone "You are my moon" or "You are all my stars", you have that option! If you're really into ampersands, you can also just eat an ampersand. The bottom 5 pieces display a repeating pattern of suns, moons, stars and hearts, of course.

Here's what they looked like on my computer screen:

And, ah, ze transformation is complete:

The other piece to our theme: if you didn't know, I like to draw words and letters and doodles and such, so to go along with Keith's BEAUTIFUL prints and the chocolate collection, I designed some cards! Each card features a hand-drawn lyric from a love song about the sun, moon, stars, or light in general. Here they are!

You've got your Coldplay, your Ed Sheeran, your Temptations - you know, the good stuff. Each design is inspired by one of Keith's photos and on each card, the photo that inspired the artwork is printed on the inside cover. Below are side-by-side images of each hand-lettered design and the photo by which it was inspired.

Glamour shots!

In addition to all of this, we installed Keith's first ever exhibition of metal prints on the walls of Hedonist's ice cream shop. If you think the colors in Keith's photos pop - which is a trademark of his style - you will be AMAZED when you see them on metal - twice as vibrant on metal than on your screen, if you can even believe it! I don't have any pictures of the exhibition because I want you to come see it yourself, please.

This Friday, the 5th, Hedonist is hosting a FREE chocolate tasting party between 6pm and 9pm.

Come in and chomp on some delicious raspberry truffles - made with fresh raspberries from Hurd Orchards - featuring my designs, and come stare in awe at Keith's gorgeous photos. And while you're there, if you haven't gotten your Valentine's Day gifts yet - I'm just saying, a box of chocolates, a metal print, and a hand-lettered card is a pretty well-rounded gift... ;) Also, Keith and I will be there if you just want to stop by and chat!

Check out/RSVP to the Facebook event here.
If you're out of town but still want some sweetness, you can order the chocolates here.
And if you want some of Keith's majestic photos on your wall, you can click here.

And, uh, here's one more awkward image for your brain. You're welcome and also, we're sorry.