The Curt Doty Company rebrands the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival

A new Logotype and a new Poster kicks off the 10th Anniversary

November 13, 2018, Santa Fe, New Mexico – Film marketing veteran Curt Doty got his chance to contribute to the 10th Annual Santa Fe Independent Film Festival by helping elevate their brand with a little exploration and a little help from his wife and creative partner, Debra White Doty.

The creative duo set out to understand the history of the festival and it’s iconography. A lengthy download from the festivals founders Liesette Paisner Bailey and Jacques Paisner, led to a greater understanding and appreciation for the festival’s mascot, the Dog.

Curt Doty adds, “At first glance we did not know whether it was a coyote, a tyrannosaurus rex or what. Looking back through the history over the past 10 years, we learned to like this dog kicking back and watching movies.”


Part of the discovery process was to evaluate what branding elements had any equity. The dog had evolved and created a quirky and eclectic sense of identity unique to the festival. What was lacking was the clarity of an ownable logotype, the SFIFF identifier.

Doty adds, “We did an initial poster exploration that included some prototyping of a mark that could provide some consistency, year over year. Surprisingly, Liesette and Jacques liked a few of the directions and we were able to tweak and present a final round.”


Debra White Doty’s poster was the winner, which presented an abstract image of a cinematographers focus grid, which was also reminiscent of local native basketry weaving. Set against a New Mexico sky, the poster feels more like a museum piece and less of a visual pun, which is so dominant in the festival circuit.

Jacques Paisner, Executive Director of SFIFF adds, “Curt and Debra were very thoughtful and professional when rebranding and designing a logo and press materials for the 10th Annual Santa Fe Independent Film Festival. They were able to solve longstanding and ongoing issues, by cafefully listening to SFIFF concerns and guidelines, then by providing several options and layouts for marketing materials.” 

As a further evolution of the festival mascot, Doty pitched long time friend and sculptor Richard Downs, to reimagine the dog in his dimensional wire sculpture technique as a silent auction item to benefit the Santa Fe Film Institute.


Richard Downs added, “I was inspired by the challenge that the SFIFF Dog had never been dimensionalized before. My process is one where I enlarge the iconic dog drawing for accuracy, then I build out the structure in 3D with my twisted wire approach to sculpting. The ambiguity of the icon, is it a coyote? A dinosaur? Lent itself to my interpretation and I thoroughly enjoyed bringing him to life in a new way. I like contributing to good causes and the support that SFIFF gives the Santa Fe Film Institute is notable.”


The sculpture was bought by filmmaker Hunter Robert Baker, whose film “The Blessing” premiered at the festival.

Curt and Debra went on to ripple out the rebrand over print, social and online.

Photography by Linda Carfagno

Photography by Linda Carfagno


The Santa Fe Independent Film Festival invests in the advancement of independent, innovative, and cutting edge cinema bringing 5 days of excellence in filmmaking to the inclusive and diverse community of Santa Fe, New Mexico. SFIFF was named one of Moviemaker Magazine's 50 Festivals Worth the Entry Fee for four consecutive years. In addition to the annual festival, the SFIFF hosts screenings throughout the year including a free outdoor community screening every summer as part of the annual summer series "Festival de Santa Fe."



Curt Doty is an award-winning Creative Director, Strategist and Storyteller, who brings leadership experience across the entertainment, marketing and branding worlds. His creative path started as an illustrator in NYC and led to a career in Television specializing in network branding all over the world. He moved into the movie business as a creative executive at Universal Pictures where he led many integrated marketing campaigns for many movies. Focusing on Poster Design, packaging and AV, he promoted many famous movies. His print and digital work continued in Public Relations at Weber Shandwick, creating many activations with a focus on content marketing for Fortune 500 companies. His recent ventures include launching Vertuoso and Now Now Events. He and his wife, Debra, have been coming to Santa Fe for 30 years, live here part time and opened here. They are passionate about the arts and both went to Art Center in Pasadena. He is, and continues to be, a thought leader, visionary and outspoken creative on what is happening in Tech, Content and Design.



Santa Fe Film Institute is committed to the advancement of independent film, filmmaking, support of the local community, and underserved youth.



Northern California artist Richard Downs transfigures steel, twisted wire, painting and printmaking into a visual mythology celebrating human connectedness. Classically trained, Richard emerged out of Art Center Pasadena as an accomplished printmaker and visual storyteller inspired by Russian Constructivism and the “Kustomizer” car culture of the 1950s and 60s. During his more than 30 years of dedication to the fine arts, Richard Downs exhibits his sculptures, etchings and paintings throughout the United States and galleries in Atlanta, GA, Seattle, WA. And Santa Barbara, CA.

In 2017 Richard was named a finalist for the Fire Station 15 Public Art Project for the city of Sacramento. Richard’s Monotype Couple #303 was selected by The Hunter Museum of American Art for their 2015 Art Auction. Richard's work was selected for the Crocker art museums 2012 Art Auction. His monotype, "Couple #203" was auctioned at the Crocker art museum and enjoyed a record price for one of his works on paper. Richard's sculptural work Couple #276 was selected for the Crocker art museums 2014 Art Auction and enjoyed a record price for one of his sculptures. His work was profiled in the June 2013 Issue of Sactown Magazine, the Winter 2013 issue of Studio Visit, the January issue of US Airways Magazine, and the June 2014 issue of San Francisco Magazine and a feature cover article in the August 2014 issue of Designer Magazine published by UCDA (University & College Designers Association) titled, “Reinventing Richard Downs.” Richard is represented in Santa Fe by Curt Doty, (505) 467-8212.




Curt Doty