Folks I Admire: Daniel Solis
I’ve said to some that Daniel Solis is the creator I want to be when I grow up. I was overjoyed to work with him on the Origins Award-winning Do: Pilgrims of the Flying Temple, helping him navigate some early waters in that design space—and I could tell then that I was talking with a genius. Today, he’s a respected and fascinating card game designer and a powerhouse of a graphic designer.
- His wordplay games like Happy Birthday, Robot! and Do: Pilgrims of the Flying Temple showcase a design space I don’t think we do enough in.
- His range of games available on DriveThruCards (with his Smart Play Games imprint) is impressive—more so when you understand that he as a “no violent themes” rule. Same goes for his games published by others, notable Belle of the Ball (featured image).
- His layouts for other companies are masterworks.
- Between his excellent blog (where he designs in the open), Helpouts, Patreon for making game icons, and Skillshare course on card design, Daniel offers a host of ways to learn from him and use his expertise in your works.
- He’s an expert champion of language-neutral icon and card design.
On top of that, he’s a genuinely lovely human. When I asked him if I could write this post, he responded with this:
There are so many number of other people who ought to get a spotlight instead of me. In lieu of anything about me, I’d kinda rather share some links to charities and services that I support.
That’s Daniel for you. When Tim Rodriguez and I were doing the pre-Kickstarter work of Backstory Cards, I knew I wanted him to design the card that would be used for the back and throughout the campaign.
And Daniel designed the wedding coins Lillian Cohen-Moore and I commissioned from Campaign Coins, which gives him a special place in our personal story. I can’t think of anyone I would have trusted or wanted involved, because there’s something just truly warm and generous about the spirit of Daniel Solis.
So here’s to Daniel Solis, a human whose magnificent talent is matched by his amazing heart.
 I won’t let that I’m technically older than him get in the way of that dream.