Title: Graphic Designer
Number of Years in design: 4
Past Companies: Spartan Innovations, Redhead Design Studio, Brim by Design
Education: Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Art with a concentration in Graphic Design from Michigan State University
Member since: 2013
Who has been the most influential person in your career?
Wow, starting off with a tough one! I wouldn’t say one person has had the most influence on my career, everyone I’ve met and worked with in this industry has had an impact in some way or another whether it was my college professors, past and current bosses and coworkers, or my fellow design community members. I will add that I would not have chosen this career if it wasn’t for my friend, Meagan, who had suggested the degree path back at the start of college when I was a wide-eyed Freshman with no idea in mind of what to do with my life.
What is your favorite thing about design?
I love that as a designer you can create work for any industry—one day you could be collaborating to create a campaign for invasive species awareness and then the next day you could be developing a brand for a small locally owned grocer down the road. The versatility of the work is still there as well even when you’re working in-house, you’re never doing the exact same thing over and over again and that in my opinion adds a spice to life that other people might not find in their careers.
What is the most memorable moment of your career?
Hmmm, the most memorable moment of my career would have to be when I got my first full-time job at Redhead Design Studio. It was the first big step through the door to the advertising and design world which was an exciting adventure that shaped me into the designer I am today.
What advice would you give to someone just getting started in the design world?
It sounds cliché but I would tell them not to be afraid to fail. We as designers should sweat the details but should not fear mistakes. When you’re too scared of failing you limit your mind and the endless amount of ideas stored in it. When you get it all out on the table (in your sketchbook or on screen), mistakes and all, you learn more not just about design but about yourself.
What is your favorite thing about AIGA Detroit?
I’ve got a two-pronged answer…My favorite thing about AIGA Detroit as a graphic design professional would be the networking events. It’s so important to surround yourself with as many creatives as possible and these events make that easier. Also being an adjunct instructor on the side, I enjoy the opportunities the chapter creates for students especially the portfolio review days.
What inspires you as a designer?
This is a question I am actually exploring as a resolution this year. It’s so easy to say “the world around me” but that’s not completely true so for a challenge I am trying to make myself more aware of what truly inspires me. So far I’ve found that I feel most creative after walks in nature and bookstores, rocking out at concerts, grabbing coffee with humans, and attending art exhibitions.
What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced as a designer and how have you handled them?
I think one big challenge we all deal with is the balance between perfection and imperfection which typically creates another challenge of getting projects done or sometimes even starting them. I can’t say I’ve found a good balance yet and I may never but I do find this challenge easier to deal with when I remind myself to let it out in my sketchbook whether I’m trying to just start a project or I’ve hit a roadblock on screen—that’s the safe place where you can be messy and imperfect.
What are you excited to learn or work on next?
I am currently dabbling in two very different areas but both beneficial to design: hand lettering and web development. I’m excited to see what opportunities the new knowledge and skills will create as well as what other “curiosity doors they will open.”