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Me with my beloved Pugly - my constant companion and biggest fan.

Deft designer. Creative collaborator. Persuasive presenter. Strategic storyteller.

I am Nicole Trudeau, owner of Squid Ink Design. My goal in every project, be it print, environmental or otherwise, is to use design philosophies to create approachable, accessible, imaginative, intuitive, and meaningful solutions. I benefit from a multidisciplinary design background, having worked in the fields of various disciplines: graphic, interior, industrial, environmental, retail, web and advertising. This experience has prepared me well for the complex and layered world of exhibit design. I have worked with numerous museums and organizations to create distinct exhibits, graphics and identities.


Exhibit and graphic design continue to be my focus. Most of my formative experience in this arena was gained while I was Senior Designer at the J. Paul Getty Museum. From 1999-2013, I helped to realize over 75 exhibitions and associated promotional materials for both the Getty Center and the Getty Villa. As an independent contractor since 2013, I have partnered with organizations large and small, and gained a reputation for delivering creative projects on time and on budget. As of January 2023, I am working full-time at the Huntington Library, Art Museum and Botanical Gardens, where I continue to hone my design skills.

I enjoy teaching and mentoring design students. I have worked as an adjunct professor at University of Southern California and an instructor at UCLA Extension. I have volunteered my time as a visiting lecturer at Art Center College of Design, Woodbury University, and Gettysburg College. I’m always happy to provide guidance for young, emerging designers.

Why squids, you ask?


My love of cephalopods (squid, octopuses and cuttlefish) is evident in everything I do! I started studying Marine Biology at a very young age - I blame Jacques Cousteau’s Undersea World - and have been an ocean junkie ever since. When asked by a stranger what I wanted to be when I grew up, I replied: “a squid.” I finally put my obsession into action and became an Education Interpreter at the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach in 2019.

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