March 6, 2014 | 0 comments
As most of you know, I am in my final semester of my 2 year Graphic Design program (though it has taken me 3 years with the extra 12 months of a co-op placement). What most of you may not know is that graphic and web design is something I have been doing since I was about 12, without even knowing it. Back when Piczo sites still existed, I taught myself basic HTML/CSS by googling, researching, and a lot of trial and error. I managed to convince my mom to buy me a copy of Paint Shop Pro (like Photoshop, but cheaper + not as advanced) on eBay and started making simple graphics with lots of moody teenage quotes and way too much glitter, and it went from there. But that is another tale for another time, because this post isn’t about me!
I have been meaning to post more design related topics on this blog, as it is a big part of my life. Instead I spend my time at school, working on assignments & haven’t had (or made) the time to come up with some design posts. Instead, after some brainstorming with my new friend Emma Bauso, she is going to be a guest blogger on the blog today! Emma is a very talented graphic designer and I have loved following along with her blog. It’s not purely graphic design but it has just the right mix of design, home decor, her adorable son & more. She has some amazing posts on the topic of design like A little bit about education vs. no education, Why bother giving up? & also shares her designs like these adorable Baby shower invites inspired by John Lennon’s Animals. So, Emma & I came up with some questions and today she’ll be sharing her answers with you (with commentary by me in italics).
What are your favourite/least favourite things to design, and why?
It’s hard to pick because my niche is mainly birth announcements and invitations right now, so of course I love those, but I also like doing business card and resume design. I don’t think I have a least favorite right now but when it comes to logos, they can be hard when what you envision doesn’t match with what the client is envisioning. So that can be disappointing.
A re-brand done for The Flower Shop. I’d say Emma has a pretty good eye for logos!
Where do you go for inspiration for your designs?
I get a lot of inspiration from the blogs I follow that belong to graphic designers. I like getting ideas from a bunch of different people that all have different styles so that I am really versatile and have fresh ideas all the time. I don’t want anything I do to look similar to work I do for another client. I also find that searching Pinterest for specific types of brands helps a lot! For example, I worked on a logo for a local tea drink business and I started out by searching “tea branding” just to get a sense of all the different ways I could take my design in.
How many fonts do you have on your computer, and which are your top 3?
I have a bad habit of downloading fonts and forgetting to add them to the Word document where I keep a preview list for my reference, but I’d say I have about 25 right now. My go-to favorites are Quicksand, Lavenderia and Ostrich Sans!
Thinking long term, would you rather work full-time for one company or do freelance work?
Definitely freelance! I’m a mom and eventually I would love to be able to stay at home with my son (and any future kids) and work on my designs from there.
One of my favourite designs by Emma.. a fox graphic to be printed for her son’s room. So adorable.
Of all the projects you have done, which one are you most proud of?
This is hard! I love all of them! I was really proud of my vector Rolls Royce for a project I did through school because it was really outside of my comfort zone, and it took me about 13 hours over the span of 4 days! There’s something I love about all my projects, even if I didn’t like them during, the end result always makes me fall in love with them!
What is/was your favorite design or art related class in school?
I didn’t finish my design degree, but I did really like my typography class. I learned a lot about the history of some typographic eras, famous type creators, and famous fonts. It’s easy to get so caught up in learning how to be a designer that you don’t pay attention to those who came before you, but it’s always cool to compare today’s design styles to those in the past.
What is something you want to learn more about or improve on in the area of graphic design and why?
I’m not the greatest with coding and developing, but I know that if I really want to be versatile, I have to know the basics. I really admire those who can code, so I would love to be able to say one of my skills are development someday! I’d also love to learn more about photography because it would benefit my blog and product photos a lot!
Blog design done by Emma for The Tiny Professional. I love the colours!
Where do you see yourself as a designer in 5 years?
In five years, I would love to have a steady flow of work as a freelance designer. I doubt that I will be successful enough to quit my day job, but I would love to be able to supplement my income with income from design jobs. I’d like to be branding more small businesses, building websites, and continuing to do smaller projects like invitations and birth announcements.
What is a company whose design/image you admire and why?
This is a hard one, because there are so many amazing designs out there, and a lot of companies are catching onto the “less is more” concept which I personally abide by. A constant favorite is Target because they do an amazing job with graphics in all forms- advertising, print ads, website design, product packaging, in-store displays, and even their products are all really great looking.
What is one thing you would like potential clients to know about you or your design before they hire you?
I would like people to know that at this point in my design career that I’m still learning. I’m figuring out my process, my pricing, my style, my strengths and my weaknesses as I go. But I’m confident that I’ll deliver them a good, personalized experience, I’ll work with them to achieve a great final result, and that final result will be the best that I can offer. And also that if they don’t like a decision that I made, I expect you to be forward with your opinion and we will work together to find a solution that is what you envision, but that also makes sense and will be something that I am proud to have designed.
Emma’s personal branding. Inspires me to get my own branding figured out!
Thanks for having me on your blog, Meredith! I’m so glad to have found a bloggy friend who also happens to be a graphic designer!
Thank you, Emma, for your insight on graphic design I love getting to talk to other designers because they understand it in a way that my friends just don’t. Be sure to check out Emma’s blog at emmabauso.com for some great design posts & amazing inspiration from her portfolio. You may even stumble across a guest post by yours truly
March 5, 2014 | 1 comment
Is anyone else absolutely shocked at the fact that it is March already? March means spring (hopefully), and being one month closer to graduating. Six weeks left, I can do this! Since it’s March, it’s time for my monthly goal recap! I did pretty well with my February goals, with the exception of one. 3 our of 4 isn’t bad though! Here are my goals from last month:
1. Post at least twice a week.
Failed. Explained more here, if you really want to hear my excuses.
2. Stop skipping classes.
Well with reading week & some classes being online, I did pretty well with this. I never skip *important* classes, but I need to stop all together. I was pretty successful with this for the month of February, and hopefully it will continue until the end of the semester.
3. Complain less to Zachary.
I have a habit of complaining about very tiny things to Zachary. He didn’t answer his phone when I called, HOW DARE YOU?! He forgot to tell me something, HOW COULD YOU?! Things that I don’t get mad over, but I admit that I make a way bigger deal than I should and I know it doesn’t make him feel the greatest. So I’ve been making an effort to let the smaller things go, because they really don’t matter. I think I did pretty well this month, but will continue to try to do so even more. I never want him to think that I don’t appreciate & love him, even (especially) in moments when I’m not the happiest.
4. Take more pictures that aren’t just cats or selfies. Maybe even *gasp* use my real camera instead of my phone!
Success! I had a mini-photoshoot with my cats (don’t judge me) that resulted in some beautiful pictures of them both. I also took my camera along to the aquarium when Zach & I went which resulted in some awesome pictures. Post on that will come later
And my goals for March…
1. Start/finish assignments earlier than the night before they are due.
2. Post one PL layout a week (or more).
3. Comment more on other blogs, rather than just stalking them.
4. Get my online portfolio finished to a point where I can have it live & share the link for possible job opportunities, even if I need to keep updating it after.
5. Spend less money on myself/crafting.
Do you have any goals for the month? Or if you don’t set monthly goals, how are you doing with your New Years Resolutions?
March 4, 2014 | 0 comments
February, you were a short & cold month but so far, you’ve been my favourite of the year. I got a week off school, some time off work & plenty of time spent with friends, family & Zachary. From our first valentines day together to (finally) going to the Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada, our 9th month together was a
goodgreat one. Other highlights include a girls night out with Morgan + Haley, seeing Jason Aldean, Florida Georgia Line & Tyler Farr in concert, amazing Target clearance deals & as always, adorable kitties. You definitely made up for the suckyness of January and left me a bit more excited for the rest of the year. You also signify the half way mark of my final college semester, and I could not be more excited for that to come to an end.
Until next year, February.