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Muralist & TSTC Graduate Thrives with Area Media Venture

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TSTC Digital Media Design alumnus Aristeo Castillo is the owner of Slate Media. (Photo courtesy of Slate Media via TSTC)
TSTC Digital Media Design alumnus Aristeo Castillo is the owner of Slate Media. (Photo courtesy of Slate Media via TSTC)
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HARLINGEN, Texas – When Texas State Technical College graduate Aristeo Castillo was first introduced to graffiti art, it put him on a trajectory to becoming a muralist and eventually founding his own Harlingen-based company, Slate Media. 

“I enjoyed seeing the various styles of graffiti art when I was a teenager,” he said. “I started to create my own designs, then I considered a career as a graphic designer. I was hooked.” 

Castillo earned an Associate of Applied Science degree in Digital Media Design from TSTC in 2020. He said learning about photography and videography motivated him to take his art to the next level.

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“I began to do freelance work for local businesses,” he said. “That’s how I developed the idea for Slate Media, which I started in 2022. We manage the social media accounts of business entrepreneurs. We film, edit and post their content in styles that are currently trending on social media.”

Santiago Villarreal was one of Castillo’s instructors at TSTC.

“In today’s world, the graffiti artwork of an urban illustrator, or a muralist, has been validated by the graphic design industry,” Villarreal said. “As for Aristeo, he didn’t realize that he was employing basic design principles in his artwork at the time. Now he’s becoming a strong force in the local media design market.”

Recently Castillo solidified a partnership with a Canada-based company that he has long admired.

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“I’ve followed this graffiti company since I was a teenager,” he said “I started using their products when I first did graffiti art. It’s an amazing opportunity to create content for them.”

Thankful for his own company’s success, Castillo is giving back.

“I’ve hired some Digital Media Design students because (they) wanted to get job experience,” he said. “I’m happy to help. I also offer an internship opportunity to area high school students.”

According to onetonline.org, graphic designers in Texas earn a median salary of $53,100 a year. The website projected that there would be a 10% increase in the number of such jobs in the state from 2020 to 2030.

TSTC offers an Associate of Applied Science degree and multiple certificates of completion in Digital Media Design, all fully online.

Registration for TSTC’s fall semester is underway. For more information, visit tstc.edu.

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