Lead Designer (Art Director) - Vehicles

  • Full-time
  • Location: California - El Segundo
  • Company: Mattel HQ, Inc.

Company Description

CREATIVITY IS OUR SUPERPOWER. It’s our heritage and it’s also our future. Because we don’t just make toys. We create innovative products and experiences that inspire, entertain and develop children through play. Mattel is at its best when every member of our team feels respected, included, and heard—when everyone can show up as themselves and do their best work every day. We value and share an infinite range of ideas and voices that evolve and broaden our perspectives with a reach that extends into all our brands, partners, and suppliers.

Job Description

The Opportunity: 

We are looking for an experienced Lead Designer (Art Director) that is highly skilled in conceptualizing and expressing big ideas across multiple touchpoints for Mattel’s Vehicles Brands. Your background must demonstrate not just creativity, but strategic thinking—from developing campaigns to creating consumer-focused communications. Teamwork is essential; you'll align with multiple internal teams, including marketing, product, packaging, content, and live events. You must demonstrate the ability to not only follow a brief but understand when it is necessary to push or question the brief. You must be a self-starter and able to manage a variety of projects at once. Deliverables span from brand guides to digital campaigns and a wide variety of assets across all touchpoints. You will be responsible for creating new, and refreshing existing brand identities, making them contemporary and engaging. Your work will not always be a blank canvas. We have existing brands and campaigns so finding fresh ways to express those identities is a critical part of this position.

Above all, you must have a passion for what we do every day – helping to foster the imaginations of our future leaders, it’s all about the kids!

What Your Impact Will Be: 

  • Develop top-tier creative across various marketing communication touchpoints.
  • Function as a role model, enriching team culture and mentoring junior designers.
  • Function as a brand steward to ensure standards are maintained with our cross-functional partners and external partners.
  • Innovate and execute on-brand with forward thinking ideas across all business areas.
  • Efficiently manage and deliver multiple projects on schedule.
  • Present persuasively to gain alignment with key organization stakeholders.
  • Oversee work from concept to final delivery.
  • Take a strategic approach to address challenges and create solutions.
  • Work with internal and external stakeholders to gather feedback on our work and our processes to ensure the project aligns with expectations.
  • Translate core branding equities and strategies to cross functional teams and partners
  • Analyze brand challenges and provide expert advice on solutions, strategies, or processes to improve the outcome of our work.
  • Take personal accountability and collaborate positively with team members including copywriters, producers, marketing partners, fellow designers, and with all our cross functional business partners.
  • Maintain a self-motivated approach with a consistently positive attitude.
  • Engage as a creative thinker, always seeking solutions.


What We’re Looking For: 


  • Versed and on-top of current trends (design, art, pop culture, design & typography, advertising, automotive, social media, digital, entertainment, etc.)
  • Excellent computer skills: Adobe Suite, and all relevant software tied to graphic design, animation, and content creation (a plus)
  • Ability to effectively communicate design ideas and strategies.
  • Ability to art direct for logos, branding, video, photography, and illustration.
  • Knowledge of global youth-focused design and marketing trends.
  • Detail-oriented while keeping the broader picture in mind.
  • Eager to learn from others and inspire peers.
  • Experience in developing brand campaigns that are youth and shopper targeted and that span across multiple touchpoints
  • Ability to mentor and train new designers
  • Show ability to quickly grasp new concepts and be a fast learner.
  • Effectively operate in a dynamic, fast-paced environment.


  • 7+ years minimum in Art Direction, Graphic Design, or similar field
  • Design Firm/Agency Experience as Art Director strongly preferred
  • Branding, graphic design, and campaign development experience a must
  • Digital and Social experience a plus!



  • Ability to set ego aside in service to the brand and maintaining strong partnerships.
  • Creative, energetic, and tenacious.
  • Unyielding passion for impactful work.
  • Strong design capabilities adaptable across mediums.
  • Curious about current and upcoming trends.
  • Strong collaborator that loves to work in a team environment.
  • Embraces a hybrid workplace, works well both virtually as well as in person.
  • Entrepreneurial spirit, open to challenges.
  • Effective multi-tasker and team player.

The annual base salary range for this position is between $102,000 and $125,000.
**This range is indicative of projected hiring range, however annual base salary will be determined based on a candidate’s work location, skills and experience.

Additional Information

Don’t meet every single requirement? At Mattel we are dedicated to building a diverse and inclusive workplace, so if you’re excited about this role but your past experience doesn’t align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyway. You may be just the right candidate for this or other roles.

What It’s Like to Work Here:

We are a purpose driven company aiming to empower the next generation to explore the wonder of childhood and reach their full potential. We live up to our purpose employing the following behaviors:

  • We collaborate: Being a part of Mattel means being part of one team with shared values and common goals. Every person counts and working closely together always brings better results. Partnership is our process and our collective capabilities is our superpower.
  • We innovate: At Mattel we always aim to find new and better ways to create innovative products and experiences. No matter where you work in the organization, you can always make a difference and have real impact. We welcome new ideas and value new initiatives that challenge conventional thinking.
  • We execute: We are a performance driven company. We strive for excellence and are focused on pursuing best in class outcomes. We believe in accountability and ownership and know that our people are at their best when they are empowered to create and deliver results.

Our Approach to Flexible Work:

We embrace a flexible work model designed to empower a culture of growth, optimism, and wellbeing, where every employee can reach their full potential. Combining purposeful in-person collaboration with flexibility, our focus is to optimize performance and drive connection for moments that matter.

Who We Are:

Mattel is a leading global toy company and owner of one of the strongest catalogs of children’s and family entertainment franchises in the world. We create innovative products and experiences that inspire, entertain and develop children through play. We engage consumers through our portfolio of iconic brands, including Barbie, Hot Wheels, Fisher-Price, American Girl, Thomas & Friends, UNO and MEGA, as well as other popular intellectual properties that we own or license in partnership with global entertainment companies. Our offerings include film and television content, gaming, music and live events. We operate in 35 locations and our products are available in more than 150 countries in collaboration with the world’s leading retail and ecommerce companies. Since its founding in 1945, Mattel is proud to be a trusted partner in empowering children to explore the wonder of childhood and reach their full potential.

Mattel is recognized for the second year in a row as a Great Place to Work™ and as one of Fast Company’s Best Workplaces for Innovators in 2022.

Visit us at https://jobs.mattel.com/ and www.instagram.com/MattelCareers.

Mattel is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer where we want you to bring your authentic self to work every day. We welcome all job seekers including minorities, females, veterans, military spouses, individuals with disabilities, and those of all sexual orientations and gender identities.

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