Why I Love Google

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For my summer class I have been asked to write a blog post about my favorite search engine and to post for everyone to see. Instead of creating a new blog specifically for this assignment, I figured why not share my love for Google right here.

I have been an avid Google user for as long as I can remember. A life before Google is one I cannot tell you about as I have no memory as to what search engine I used before I fell head over heels for the Palo Alto based company.

Why do I love Google? Let me count the ways… When I type a keyword or phrase into the search engine, I rarely need to look beyond the first page of results to find what I am looking for and if I spelled something wrong, Google reads my mind and suggests the correct spelling. The program is quick, precise and uncluttered. It provides everything I am looking for when I’m in a bind and need answers in a speedy fashion. I appreciate Google Image search and how once you click on a photo on the results page it shows you the actual size without hyperlinking to a new window or page. Boy do I hate when I click on a link and my current page is redirected to a new place on the web.

Not only do I use Google on my laptop, but I use the application on my phone. It’s one of my favorite icons to click on and use. If you’re not a Google user, I highly recommend you convert now!

Right Path

This has nothing to do with this post, but I just got my hair colored and cut! Lightened it up for spring and loving it!

This has nothing to do with this post, but I just got my hair colored and cut! Lightened it up for spring and loving it!

In December 2008 I graduated from ASU with a degree in Design Management. The economy was dreadful and I was lucky to already have a job at a company I had worked for over the past year. My job wasn’t in design, it was in grassroots marketing for an athletic company. In January 2012 I left the company I spent nearly 5 years working. The day I left was liberating and terrifying since I had zero plans.

I spent the first month looking and interviewing for jobs around the country. At some point I realized I needed to be choosy of the job, not just them in regards to hiring me. So I turned down a couple offers in places I hope to never live, ahem LA. At this time I also realized I didn’t want a lateral move and ultimately I wanted to better myself by going back to school.

Graphic Design seemed like the right choice. I continue to say, I want to go into product design and I believe a masters in graphic design will help me get there. And it might or I need to alter my path slightly!

Over the years I had made the switch from high-fashion to interior design to athletic gear design to graphic design. I have been enthralled with my Graphic Design courses and I began asking my graduating friends the annoying question of, what are you going to do NOW? I know it’s obnoxious, but I’m curious as to how they’re going to turn their degree into a job. The most common answers have been either a print shop or agency.

This is when I realized I have very little desire to work in print. And this is where I had a cow.

WAIT… don’t leave me here! I don’t want to deal with just paper… I want to work with textiles and create products! That new running shoe, yeah, I want to design that! Or that new hydration pack, my design, no.big.deal. Am I running out of time? What am I going to do? OMG OMG OMG!

Once I got that out of my system I felt a bit better and able to get my bearings. I have options! And I think I just need to combine an Associates Degree in Graphic Design with Interior Design with Architecture and then I’ll have the skills I’m looking for and be capable of doing what I dream of doing. Which would be designing products! Not daunting at all, eh?

It’s time to seek out help. To venture further outside my little bubble and see who I will meet and what kind of opportunities I can create.

What I’m Loving

Spring is definitely in the air! Well, at least here in sunny Scottsdale. All sorts of creatures are out, the temps are going up and we see the sun earlier and later, finally. This all means 110F is right around the corner, but I’m willing to overlook that in lieu of excitement for ditching my winter gear and bringing in spring colors!

Here’s what I’m loving right this moment.

What I'm loving21. Anthropogolie: Caridad Ruffled Dress $198.00

OMG I love this dress! I definitely fill it out more than the model on the website and I think that’s a good thing. The bust area is not sewn in, which means it doesn’t stay up unless you have boobs. We have two weddings to attend in a few weeks and I can’t wait to wear this to one of them! I’m thinking I’ll wear either navy or black pumps, I have a black pashmina (so if it’s cold I’ll wear black pumps) and maybe purple studs in my ears (we will see once I put the look together if it’s cute or not) as I want another color accent. You bet I’ll post pictures after the wedding(s)!

2. Anthropologie: Level 99 Sailor Shorts $78.00

I was at Anthropologie this weekend falling in love with item number 1 on this list and I saw these shorts. I think they’re adorable and now, in hindsight wish I took the time to try them on. My only concern is my legs are short/sturdy and they might accentuate the negatives instead of flatter my positives.

3. Maybelline: Dream Fresh BB Cream $7.44 (at Target)

I have never worn a bb cream and now that I think about it, I haven’t worn foundation either. I was curious to see if I would like it, but didn’t want to spend a lot of money on something I was unsure of. I usually use a powder from Bobbi Brown, a little blush, lots of mascara and call it good. When I saw someone rave about Maybellines Dream Fresh BB Cream I made note to pick it up next time I went to Target. Based on the shade on the bottle I grabbed the medium hue. I layer it on after I use my daily moisturizer and it evens out my skin tone and provides a bit of coverage. It’s definitely not a foundation (not that I would really know how to compare). It’s light and does well with a dusting of powder on top. I’m totally hooked! And I just noticed on their website that it has SPF30, I had no idea and that’s a huge selling point for me.

4. Bath & Body Works: Lemon Mint Leaf $12.50

How freaking cute are these mason jar candles from Bath & Body Works? They totally hit the mark this spring! The lemon mint leaf is an excellent scent for the kitchen (where we predominately have a candle burning). It’s clean and cute and burns for 30-40hrs.

5. Bath & Body Works: Oceanside $20.00 (or 2 for $22.00 RIGHT NOW!!)

These are by far my favorite candles ever! The scents are fabulous and make your home smell wonderful. It’s a sad day when our candle dies. In our home we have two different scent preferences: I am a huge fan of fruity, coconut smells and my man prefers a more relaxed, less in your face smell. I’m okay with either so we lean towards his taste and Oceanside fits right in. It does get to be a bit too much (for me) after a while and I end up blowing it out. I highly recommend finding your scent, buying during their sales which seem to happen all the time and have your home smelling delightful all day every day! The 3-wick candles last for 30-45 hours.

 

 

Magazine Article – mock up

For one of my classes I needed to create a magazine article. I had to create a 4-page article to fit the feel of a current magazine.

I’m afraid to admit, this Graphic Designer doesn’t read magazines that often. Maybe that’s because they cost money or because my dream is to design product instead of print. I don’t know how, but sometime shortly after I graduated from undergrad, I also graduated from reading magazines.

That explains why I felt like i was banging my head against a wall when it came to coming up with an idea for this project. Fortunately I was at my moms house one day, so she could take me shopping to Bath & Body Works (this is another story for a different day – love their candles!) and I found a Real Simple magazine laying around. I asked her if I could take it home with me and that’s essentially how I came up with the below 4 pages.

I will also admit to reading my fair share of food blogs. I grabbed the four recipes and photos from blogs that I will link to so you can reap the benefits of their fabulous recipes!

FINAL_Real Simple Recipe Layout

Photograph from  KERF

Recipe & Photography from KERF

Recipe & Photograph from Daily Garnish

FINAL_Real Simple Recipe Layout3

Recipe & Photograph from KERF

Recipes and Photography from How Sweet It Is

Recipes & Photography from How Sweet It Is

I believe the feel fits in quite nicely with Real Simple magazine. While my font choices are not spot on (meaning I couldn’t buy the fonts used by Real Simple), I do think they blend in well. The article was created for the May issue, you can see I used Spring/Summer colors for the spread and kept the look clean. I used a grid to keep each page uniform. And the numbers to help you flow from one page to another.

While it took me forever to figure out what I wanted to do, I’m quite pleased with how this turned out. Sometimes during projects I rethink my desire to build products in lieu of designing for print, this was one of those times.

Now it’s spring break, which really means time to design, design, design for my portfolio I need to send off to the printer in 6 weeks – yikes!

What I’m Loving Right Now

Each week I’ll post a list of what I’m obsessing over right this very moment.

Here’s what I’m dreaming about right now…

what i'm loving 1

Jcrew:

Cece Liberty floral ballet flats – These are shoes I could wear for years. They add extra oomph to a basic t-shirt and jeans kind of day! I also have this style in a couple different colors that I scored on clearance back in the day and they’re pretty darn comfy.

Merino Boyfriend Sweater – warm peacock – I’ve been obsessed this winter with wearing boyfriend sweaters. The v-neck is a big plus!

Anthropologie:

Mother Runway Skinny Flare – I think these might pass the man’s butt test, a hard test to pass. And even though they’re made by Mother, I don’t think he’ll refer to them as mom jeans.

Sunstream Eyelet Dress – it gets warm here during the summer and I love the ease of a dress. Especially one with cute details! I love the models boots too, they’re just not realistic for the Arizona heat.

Toms:

Earthwise Orange Classics - a life without Toms is not a life worth living. They’re like slippers you’re allowed to wear around town. Thumbs up for the bright color or a cute pattern.

Shabby Chic Strappy Wedges - These make me want to put the cart before the horse. I have a few weddings to attend this year and I think these are too cute not to wear. Now I say that not having a dress to wear with them. I’m a sucker for a floral print this season!

 

Travel Brochure

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Assignment:

Create a 12″x9″ tri-fold travel brochure of a destination of choice. Research destination, audience, purpose and how the brochure will be distributed.

My Process:

The first part of the process was figuring out what destination I wanted to use. I am in love with New Zealand having spent nearly a year living out there and I thought what better town than Queenstown. I did my research and it was overwhelming. Queenstown is filled with adventures and activities for tourists. There was just too much information and too many great websites already created. After spending several hours on Queenstown I scrapped it and went back to the drawing board. My teacher threw out a few ideas when I told her my conundrum and that’s how Istanbul began. I fell in love with the idea of traveling to Istanbul once I started researching and not only learned about all the history but saw how colorful the city is.

Once I finished research and gathered several photographs I knew I wanted to showcase the color of the city. The other purpose of creating a brochure is to ensure it sticks out next to others. My brochure briefly explains the must-see sights of Istanbul. Each description is either in a block of red, yellow or blue.

I created the piece to appeal to a younger audience with a simple format, blocks of color and pictures attached to each locale.

Directional Poster

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Assignment:

Design a poster with traveling directions from my house to school. Can only use typography, no photos or images. Should not be a traditional map. Communicate to the viewer in a clear and easy to understand way that is visually stimulating and exciting.

Objectives:

Explore how typography can be used as an artistic element.Provide a functional project.

My process:

With the assignment in hand and after seeing a few examples from previous students, I knew I wanted to do something different. I enjoy large, clean typography mix that with bright colors and we have a winner in my eyes.

I thought about how I get to school, do I take public transportation, walk or drive my car? Well, I drive my car. And from that point on I could not get the image of my car out of my head. As for colors I have dreamed about using full on cyan, magenta and yellow (also know as CMY…k (but I didn’t use the ‘k’ aka black).

This was one of those projects that came together quickly. After sketching a few ideas, I came up with the idea you see pictured above. I began working on the poster and it all came together seamlessly. I love when those days happen (they don’t happen often).