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Erin Shigaki opened Purple Gate Design in 2001. She worked in New York City design firms beginning in 1996, following a brief career in child advocacy. Erin earned a BA in East Asian Studies from Yale University and has done additional design and fine art study at the American University in Washington, DC; the Yale Summer Program in Graphic Design in Brissago, Switzerland; School of Visual Arts; Cooper-Union; Third Ward, Lower East Side Print Shop; Torpedo Factory and Pratt Fine Arts Center.

Erin is also a mixed media artist and is honored to have been selected to be a 2018 member of the City of Seattle Ethnic Artist Roster.

She is inspired by the art education work she has done with Lower East Side NYC public school kids, kids facing illness (through the incredible Ink Well Foundation), and teen artists in the YouthCan program at the Wing Luke Asian Museum. She has also been both a volunteer and staff tennis instructor with the Knick Kids Program, New York Sports Club and the Amy Yee Tennis Center.