My Industry

I am studying to be a graphic designer, an industry that is filled with a broad spectrum of opportunities and different design.  That could include the grand scale of working at an advertising firm or the smaller scale of freelancing from home.  Personally, I hope to work at a magazine publication, creating layouts, advertisements, and possibly even the content. I currently intern for a non-profit 501© 3 corporation called Nevada Aids Project.  The company works to keep the public informed about the research, treatment, and cure of HIV/AIDS.   My responsibilities include creating marketing collateral, which advertises Dinosaurs & Roses, a store that they run out of.  One of their goals is to become part of First Fridays and my collateral and posters will help advertise that to their target audience.

         I was so excited when I got a callback for another interview with Nevada Aids Project; one because it is for a great cause and I love working towards something that helps others and two because it is a great opportunity to get portfolio pieces and have my work put out there.  Nevada Aids Project is a great community organization, they help a lot of people, and at the end of the day this will look wonderful on my résumé.  In the past I have worked with The Sin City Sisters on Project Red Dress, an exciting event that raised money for aids research.   Along with this experience looking good on a résumé, I get a lot out of it in the sense that what I am working on makes a difference in other people’s lives for the better.  I have always wanted to design pieces that make a positive contribution to society, and interning at Nevada Aids Project allows me to do just that.

Constructive Criticism

This week I got constructive criticism on a piece of work that I was extremely proud of.

The class was packaging and the assignment was a matchbook re-design.  The client I chose was the Beauty Bar and I created a matchbook in the shape of a compact mirror with my idea being that when women smoke in the bar, they mess up their lipstick, so there’s a mirror inside with the handy-dandy matches.  I was really proud of my design/ idea/concept and I worked really hard on it, 3 weeks total.  I was so excited to get my grade back only to find that I had earned a 79% on the project. Wah wah wah wahhhhhhhh

With the stress of everything that was going on at the time, I got so overwhelmed and just broke down…in front of the teacher.  Not to say that I was sobbing hysterically, but my no good lousy stupid tears wouldn’t stay in my eyeballs. Once I got myself together, I asked for her reasoning behind the grade.  Basically to sum it up she explained to me that had she given me an A I wouldn’t have gone back and fixed it up for my portfolio.  She said she loved my project, but the functionality of it wasn’t all there. (Couldn’t close it properly, and the matches were hard to get out, also my color scheme was horrendous).   She said it was innovative and inventive but the grading scale/curriculum doesn’t take that into consideration.

She is giving the class 5 weeks to perfect/tweak our designs and get better grades on them.  Her giving me that miserable grade was the best gift I’ve been given (or lesson I have learned), at the time I was simply too emotional to see it. I would rather have someone tell me the truth, that my work could be better, than lie and say it looks great.  That 79 is fueling me to work harder, smarter, until my matchbook is truly worthy of an A+.

Ten Ways to Procrastinate

A few tips that can help you avoid getting shit done.  Or it you want to look at it from a different perspective: What Not To Do.  

10. Put on The Newsroom.  After awhile, you won’t even remember where you are, or that there’s a pile of homework awaiting.

9. Make lists, like this very one you’re reading.  The time it took me to write this, I could have my algebra finished…

8. Twiddle your thumbs. Hey, this counts as exercise!

7. Walk the dog. It may be 110° outside, there’s a good chance you’ll melt, and Fido may give you the evil eye all day long, but hey the dog’s not going to walk himself.  Don’t have a dog?  Borrow your neighbor’s.  Procrastinating means being resourceful!

6. Eat stuff. Preferably food, it’s up to you really, as to what you put in your mouth.

5. Make a cape out of your favorite blanket. Then parade around the house in it, feeling so accomplished.

4. Kern. Now that I can kern like there’s no tomorrow, I like to do it to pass the time.  There’s that handy dandy little kerning game that I enjoy so much.

3. Contemplate the meaning of life. Why are we here?  What is our purpose?  What does it even mean?  Why do I have a massive cowlick in my hair?

2. Fall into Facebook. It really is like falling down a deep well, with no stepping-stones to climb out, and no one hears your screaming.  Maybe it’s not that dramatic, but when you look at the clock next you wonder how six hours went by.

1. Look at something shiny. Sometimes you just can’t help your-

…self from looking.

Back from Summer Break…wait that was the break?!

Hey good lookin,

It feels like forever and a half since I last “blogged”  and by blog I mean not social network like my life depended on it.  Basically I had my finals for last quarter, final grades scored all A’s and a B (damn you Copywriting, why did you have to be so early?!?!).

Summer break (three weeks) consisted of me working and zoning out in front of the tube watching True Blood (or should I say drooling over the viking sex god vampire Eric Northman) and Game of Thrones marathons.  Pro: I am all caught up on my HBO, Con: now I have to wait for each episode to air like the rest of the world.  I don’t know how I will go on.

I also made a 300 page yoga manual, complete with illustrations and nifty layouts.  Had my first experience with a large print document and learned that master pages are your friend when doing manuals.  Also learned to make friends with local printers.  Kinko’s/FedEx wanted $150 per bound manual, the client’s friend who just so happened to own a printing press, only charged $50.  Kissing-ass is now on my to-do list.

Hmm what else has happened?  The other night my totally sober friends decided that mini golf in the street was essential to the evening, followed by pushing me in the pool wearing my socks.  I have the nicest pals.

My first business cards for a client were sent off and printed.  Most stressful day of my life, no joke.  They came out pretty snazzy thank heavens.  Whew.

 

I finished branding two three clients, one of them being myself.  Decided that “Kerning Kelsey” will be my brand of everything and how I present myself at graduation.  Having to design your own brand is like having an identity crisis.  At first I thought that having my blog persona as my brand would be cheesy, but having three teachers agree that it works, I’m so thankful.

Also, I have replaced my inconvenient copywriting with college algebra…or as I like to call it: suicide wishing, thoughts of jumping off bridges, complete with a weekly panic attack, seventh dimension of hell.  I hate math, if you didn’t notice.  I am directing a photo shoot this Thursday, so that should be lots of fun.  My client even asked me to be in a few of the shots, which was the most flattering compliment ever 🙂

Well I think I have procrastinated long enough on my Cajun cookbook.  Back to work.  Toodles.

Graphic Design Nightmare

Just woke up from my first ever graphic design nightmare.  I dreamt I had to print out this huge job for a client and I forgot to outline my fonts.  So when I got the prints everything was in comic sans. 

I swear to God, I literally jolted out of bed. The fact that everything was turned into comic sans shows how ridiculous my dream was since it should have been in Myriad Pro or whatever the PC default is.  Haha I’m critiquing the unrealistic quality of my dream.  I’m going back to bed, good morning world!