Part 2 | Graphic Design

  • The Quest for Creativity

I blogged about “Part 1” in my “Quest for Creativity”.  I started a small business painting dishes. How random is that?! Today we’re moving onto “Part 2” and this is the phase when I started to realize that graphic design was AWESOME. I remember getting involved with Yearbook and eventually becoming the editor . My 7th period was filled with layout design, cover ideas, captions etc. etc. I loved it! Now, the yearbook designing process was pretty basic, but what this experience did was introduce me to the world of ADOBE! I had no choice but to MASTER InDesign and once I realized how much I loved this program, I wanted the WHOLE Creative Suite! Now if you’re in the graphic design

field, you probably realize that Adobe’s Creative Suite cost more than our mortgage payment! It’s horrendously expensive! However, I was a student and at the time, students could receive 60% off the educational version! So my senior year of high school, my parents allowed me with get my MacBookPro EARLY and I used my “Katelyn’s Krafts” earnings to purchase Adobe’s full print and design Creative Suite. I started learning Illustrator and making fake logos, I made mock magazine covers and layouts, I used Photoshop to make crazy photo collages (that are STILL displayed in my bedroom at home!) Basically, I started realizing that I liked being “creative” without the MESS of painting and art supplies! I could create professional, awesome pieces of art with just my LAPTOP! I was obsessed!!! Somebody stop me!!!


So as I was finishing high school, I was still doing “Katelyn’s Krafts” because that income helped pay for gas, graphic T’s from American Eagle (they were cool back then), and my diet mountain dews that I bought on my way home from school! However, I knew that I had found something new that I loved. I started realizing just how much graphic design was a part of our everyday lives. EVERYTHING was designed by someone. Bags, soda labels, brochures, magazines, etc. Some designs were better than others and I really started paying attention what made certain designs so GREAT. I was really interested in this stuff! When I got accepted to CNU, I started off as an Art Major…that quickly turned into a Communications major! CNU didn’t offer graphic design at the time and so my plan was to get a degree in communications and then go into marketing and advertising. However, a marketing design job isn’t something you can just apply for without any experience, I knew I needed an internship! CNU has this INCREDIBLE fine arts center on campus where so many AMAZING artists have performed. This building is less than 10 years old and so when I was a freshman, it was still VERY new! The Ferguson Center for the Arts was right beside my dorm and even though they weren’t asking or offering any internships, I showed up one day and asked for one. I explained that I had design skills, I knew photoshop and indesign and I would love a part time job! Looking back, that was probably the BOLDEST move I’ve ever made! They weren’t even looking to hire anyone…. especially not a STUDENT!


In most situations, this would have been a major FAIL…. but because of Bruce Bronstein, I got a JOB! Bruce saw potential in me and offered me a paid internship. I came in whenever I could on Tuesdays and Thursdays and I did everything from spreadsheets to designing banners for the lobby to designing BILLBOARDS!  I still remember when my first billboard went up! I tried taking pictures of it WHILE I WAS DRIVING PAST IT! So dangerous. I was just so excited to actually see my work somewhere BIG!! I worked at Ferguson for 3 years and loved learning from their graphic designer Courtney and being entertained by Bruce. It was a fun experience  and an awesome work environment. However, after 3 years of sitting at a desk, I realized that an office job probably wasn’t what I wanted to do full time. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVED working at Ferguson and I learned SO much about pantone colors and printing and design in general! ….. But I knew I didn’t want to design for someone else my whole life. Maybe that was me being a design brat…. or maybe that was God nudging me to pursue something else…. like starting my own business!!


Tomorrow there won’t be a Wedding Wednesday… I’ll be wrapping up this series with my last phase in my “Quest for Creativity”!! Here are some shots of some of my work at Ferguson during my time at CNU! And if you’re not into graphic design and don’t understand exactly what I was doing, I’ll explain! Basically, artist’s publicist would send their “artwork” (images and sometimes logos) to us and I would use those images to create banners and advertisements. I had a lot of freedom with these designs and I absolutely LOVED it! Enjoy!

These next four are some of my favorites!!

Some billboards off interstate 64 in Newport News, VA.

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