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Enjoy San Joaquin Valley Living

Finding Passion for Art and Design with DLB Design

Aug 27, 2019 11:00AM ● By Enjoy Magazine

Well Designed

September 2019
Story by John Dillion
Photos courtesy of Dlb Design

DERRICK BRINKMAN thought he’d never get to chase his dream.

“I’d done art and design my whole life,” he says. “People knew I could draw from a young age.” Brinkman runs dlb design with his wife, Sarah, from his home. Clients consult them on floor plans, furniture and other design elements.

After dropping out from San Diego State University for art and design, Brinkman went to work for his father at a trucking company.

“That door was closed pretty hard on us a while back,” Derrick says. When an unfortunate accident left him unable to work, he turned back to his passion for art and design.

Five years later, he’s experiencing positive feedback from clients about his work.

“I never thought there’d be a need for artists in the Valley, but there is an overwhelming response from the community on what we do,” Derrick says.

While Derrick does the design and marketing, Sarah handles the decorating and ensures the business stays organized. She keeps their website up to date with photos of job sites so clients can see their design versatility.

Sarah also controls their Instagram page, where they display the furniture they sell and smaller elements of their design.

“People want to see great photos and want to know where they can get something like what we do,” Sarah says.

While the couple can design full rooms and even complete house floor plans, they say that they get a lot of diverse business.

“We’re a design firm so our clients are so different,” Sarah says. 
They see people who purchase a lot and want to build a house, 
clients who have a fixer-upper and want to renovate, and even just one-time consultations.

The Brinkmans see a demand for their business all across the Valley. Though most of their work is in the Visalia-Tulare area, they have a few job sites in Fresno. Some clients bring them jobs from the Central Coast, as well.

“I love the challenge of taking a space that’s a blank four walls and making it a creatively pleasing place to look at,” Derrick says. “It’s all self-taught.”

 For him, creative inspiration comes heavily from trial and 
error. He takes a practical approach to his design by physically sketching everything out on paper. Clients love seeing his ideas on a tangible medium.

“It’s literally putting pencil to paper. It could be five strokes on paper that drives my creativity,” Derrick says. “It’s amazing what happens when you get a piece of paper out and start drawing.”

Though Derrick and Sarah run a design business together, their favorite styles of art differ.

“I love everything,” Sarah says. “I love traditional pieces of art and I love the abstract. My favorite thing to do is to mix them both.”

“My favorite art style is Pop art. I love Andy Warhol and color and everything about it,” Derrick says.

While their business is a large part of their life, Derrick and Sarah make it clear they put their kids first.

“Derrick and Sarah have four unbelievable WILD kids that they have the highest honor of being parents to,” they say on their website.

Faith is another major influence in their lives. They all attend Pipeline Church in Visalia, and Sarah served with their women’s ministry.

“Before we started dlb, I was a part of the women’s ministry, but then my last kid came along and I couldn’t do it all,” she said.

Both Derrick and Sarah attribute their success to their faith.

“We would not be where we are without our faith in Jesus Christ,” Derrick says.

The couple jokes about always having had this creative bone in them, with family members giving them the early name “DS Designs.”

“I would come home and see that Sarah would have moved all the furniture,” Derrick says. “I grew up in a household where we never moved anything, so it was refreshing to see that.”

 Derrick prides himself on being able to design anything a client wants.

“We’ll literally take pencil to paper and draw up that space based on what your needs are. Whatever your needs, we can design it,” he says. •

dlb design • • (559) 679-7586
Find them on Instagram @dlbdesign