Why are you involved with AIGA Raleigh?
Because the people involved, especially in the Raleigh chapter, have worked incredibly hard to make AIGA feel like an open, welcoming community where as in the past AIGA has felt more like “The Secret Society of Graphic Designers.” It’s the idea of community, of like-minded people coming together to hang out or network or re-connect. Since I’m currently based out of Greenville, NC, the monthly community meetings are a way I recharge my creative battery and spend a little time with some pretty awesome people.
What is your overriding professional goal?
Have fun and enjoy the ride. My overriding professional goal is to be the best human being I can be, and hope everything else falls into place. My goal is to work my way up to Creative Director or maybe a little further up. I want to keep myself immersed in the design/work process, to keep my hands dirty, so to speak.
How do you explain what you do to “regular people?”
Everything has a design and everything needs a design. Find something common in the room/area/environment that you are both in, point out some of the details of whatever the common item is, then compare it to a similar common item. I’ve found this works pretty well. Showing rather than telling.
What professional accomplishment are you proudest of?
Yesterday I was approached to come back for the fourth year in a row to design posters and promo materials for the Youth Expressions Art Project/Exhibition. The 2013 event was featured on AIGA Raleigh’s site. I’ve won awards and scholarships. I’ve designed pieces for U.S. Poet Laureates, American Book Award winners and Oscar nominees. I create advertising pieces and event items for a major university on a daily basis. I’ve had photography exhibitions in the same gallery that has showcased Smithsonian exhibitions. These are all unbelievably cool and I am grateful for these opportunities, but to date, my proudest professional accomplishment is that I get to volunteer my talent and skills for another year with the people involved with YEAP/E and hopefully produce a poster that the kids involved, who’s artwork I’m representing, will be proud of.
What is your non-work creative outlet?
Photography and bad puns. Did you hear about the fire at the circus? It was in tents.
What’s your biggest design-related pet peeve?
Pitching a potentially great concept/idea to a client only to receive a blank stare. This is usually followed by the comment, “Why don’t we just do it like _____ did?”
What is the last thing that made you laugh out loud?
Buzzfeed or Cracked.com. Probably something relating to comic books or pop culture. I’m a nerd, and I wave my nerd flag proudly.
If you could wake up tomorrow having gained one ability or quality, what would it be?
Time travel, teleportation, and/or shape-shifting, y’know, for those times you need to do six things at once. Yesterday.
Who is your favorite cartoon character?
Bugs Bunny or All-Star Superman.
What have you gained or what do you hope to gain through your involvement with AIGA Raleigh?
I’ve had a lot of fun. I’ve met some amazing people and I’ve been involved in huge events with the Raleigh chapter. Hopefully its been as awesome for the people I’ve worked with as it has been for me.
What led you to volunteer or join the board?
Simple, a call went out for volunteers. So I volunteered.
What have you done as a board member or volunteer that you are most proud of?
Working with the Alina Wheeler Action Team (Jonathan Opp, Kristin McPeak, and Sophia Hitchcock) earlier this year to bring Alina to N.C. State to speak and promote her book. Not to mention photographing the event and the 2013 Student Portfolio Review with Rich Griffis and Kristin Fowler. Not throwing out my back moving the couches at the community meetings has been a plus.