As a kid I remember the adults around me as well as my peers asking me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I never really had an answer for them because what I had in mind didn’t seem like a “real” job; I always made something up or gave them a generic answer like doctor or teacher. What I actually wanted to be was an artist. At the time I didn’t understand that there are so many jobs that artists can have, and I didn’t find this out until well into high school. It was in high school that I began to discover many artists, particularly illustrators, online in social media and thought I could maybe make a career from my own art. However, it seems life had a different path for me. It was in my senior year of high school, when I was struggling to decide on a major for college, I worked to create a poster for a theatre production. It was then that the graphic designer that worked at the school saw my work and gave me encouragement to pursue it as a career. Him telling me that spurred me to really look into art, specifically graphic design, as a career. Choosing graphic design as a career finally felt like a right answer to that same old question I had never been able to answer.
As I’ve been delving into my own education in design these past few years, I’ve learned so much about how I want to present myself to the design world. At the start of all this I knew that one day I wanted to be an independent designer so I could have more freedom in the way I design projects and be able to choose what I want to work on. Until then, my main focus is ever improving my craft and my own style.
From my education I’ve also learned what types of content I like to design for. I knew from the start I would love packaging design, and while it’s still my favorite, I didn’t realize was how much I would love UI/UX. This recent semester has allowed UI/UX design, particularly for mobile apps, to worm its way into my heart. I find that the reason I love both of these types of design is because of the structure and detail that must go into them. I have always had an eye for detail, which only makes me enjoy working on these types of projects more and more. But while I love working on details, I know I can overwhelm myself with them during the design process. Because of this I know to constantly step back from my work and look at it as a whole instead of a portion of it. I find that this reminder helps me to create better work.
Starting a project is always a daunting task for me, so I try to keep the beginning process as simple as possible with rough sketches. After I’ve gotten past the starting point, I find that ideas flow much easier so I go between paper and digital within the first few steps of a design. Paper is good for me to work with because I get much too meticulous in the digital, which makes work tedious and mind-numbing. When I work, I strive to keep designs simple but pleasing to look at and I achieve that mostly through color. I find that color can make all the difference in how people view a design, so while I don’t have too much meaning behind my process, I try to make people feel nice when looking at my work. I care deeply about what others feel so I always hope that my work can make them feel something, even if it’s just a calmness.