Thursday, October 24, 2013

Education is Continual

I am one that loves my Adobe programs. I use them for practically everything I do! However, I'm not a fan of how they created the Creative Cloud and only have a month-to-month subscription now... so I am currently loving on my CS 5.5 version of the software, which in all reality suits my needs just fine. On another note, I do need a new computer and that's currently what I am pursuing. Any suggestions out there?

I'm debating building one (with help from my tech-savvy brother) or buying one from a bricks and mortar store. Or I might reformat and rebuild some of my desktop to improve its functions and then look at buying a new laptop for portability purposes. Hm... the choices!

But on to the 'education' reason for this post...

 I've been enjoying CreativeLive and it's many wonderful (and FREE) videos and trainings. Currently they are running "30 Days of Photoshop" and while I haven't been able to catch all the videos, I have watched a few of them and am learning some new things here and there. (It's tough with a toddler running around to find a big block of time to watch these live - which is how/when they are free. But sometimes they'll do replays and I can catch bits here and there.)

There have also been trainings from real estate photographers, newborn and maternity photographers, editing of images and portrait styles, selling your products online, etc etc etc. And there are many many more videos for purchase if you missed the LIVE showing and would like all-time access to watch a specific class, artist, etc. I think it's such a neat idea and a great asset to people out there who want to learn more in their craft...or learn about a completely new craft. :)

**I have not been paid or solicited for my comments on any of the companies discussed above. Although if they ever see this post or come across my blog, I would be happy to test out products for them and give an honest opinion about them if they need another 'real life' tester. ;) *wink wink*

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Utah Valley University

The Lord has really been blessing me lately. I received a message awhile back from an old coworker, who now works for a university in Utah in their business school. She was wondering if I was still designing and if I would be interested in being their freelancer for the business school, since the university marketing department didn't have much time for the other schools within the university.

Of course I was ecstatic! I loved working with her back at our old stomping grounds and the thought of partnering together again was too much to say no to. :) So we've been working these last few weeks on some new materials and overall designs for the business school. It's been a real pleasure and so far everyone has been very easy to please (Patti says it's because of the way her and I communicate and I do agree with her).

Here are a few of the many pieces we've worked on lately:

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Sadie Monroe - Newborn...and a little extra

Sadie Monroe was born just a few weeks ago. She is a gorgeous little lady that has already made her mama so proud! I was blessed to be able to take a few newborn pictures of her, although we were limited in time as she had many visitors over that entire weekend - family visiting from out of town, shower guests, etc. Popular little lady!

I was asked to take pictures of the shower as well. Here are a couple from the event:

And then a couple of the proud mama and her little lady...
And some with Nana too!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Reagan - 6 Months

This little lady is just darling! I can hardly stand her sweet little smiles and giggles and grins. It took her awhile to 'warm up' during our photo shoot...she kept looking at us like 'what in the world is going on?' But we did manage to get some great pictures of her!
I love it when I am asked back to take pictures of the stages of someone's life, especially children. They grow and change so much and it's so very important to catch those memories. We took her newborn photos back in March and her mama called me to schedule Reagan's 6 month session. I can't believe it's been 6 months since this little one was born!!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Water District Piping Map

I received a request to clean up an engineer map that showed the different well pumps, sizes of pipe, and roads within a water district. The original map had so many pencil marks and updates and cross-outs and was getting a bit beat up from the years of abuse.

So they had the map scanned for me and I created a new map in Illustrator with clean lines, detailed locations of the well pumps and such, and clear street names for the engineers, operators and fire marshals to be able to locate what they need to in the district.

Most designers would say it is boring work, but I actually enjoy this type of stuff. It's a good break from the 'creative side' of the brain and gives me time to work on fine tuning my simple skills and keyboard shortcuts.

Friday, August 2, 2013

1st Birthday Invitation

A dear friend of mine came to me with an invitation idea for her sweet little boy who is about to turn ONE! I can't believe how fast these kiddos are growing! Time just needs to stop! ;)

She just needed help getting her thoughts into a file that she could send out to get printed, so of course I offered my services. I didn't mean for her to pay me anything for it... it didn't take all that long and goodness, what are friends for?! But the amazing girl knows my heart and sent me a giftcard for Starbucks. Ahhh. Yum!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

RMS - AAPG Logo Design

I've recently been working with a committee member for an event to be held next summer here in Denver. They were in need of a brand for the event itself and I was so excited that they contacted me to create it! I love the variety of projects that come my helps keeps my skills and creativity in a constant rotation, but doesn't allow me to get too focused into one particular area or style of design.

Here was her starting point for the logo - - "We are in need of a logo for our annual Rocky Mountain Section of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists meeting to take place in Denver next summer.  Our theme is Cracking the Source, which refers to the current trend in our industry of targeting and understanding source rocks, which generate the oil and gas we produce."

So off I went to researching and brainstorming and creating some starting proofs. These pieces are always fun to design as it needs to fit the career involved, but also convey the atmosphere of the event itself. Cat wanted some mountains to pull in the location of the meeting and some cracking action to fit their theme, but gave me free reign on pretty much everything else. Along the way, we decided on the basic design, colors, and shape of the overall logo artwork. Then we moved toward fine-tuning the design itself so that it would be completely print-ready for however they needed to reproduce it on their materials. I knew upfront that they wanted to imprint the logo onto bags and to create a large banner, so took those in mind when coming up with the design. These things are always good to know from the beginning. :)

Here are the final pieces:

Thanks Cat for letting me work with ya'll on this!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Busy Summer Months

It's been a busy couple of months for me. I've been photographing and designing every chance I get. I've been running around and trying to keep up with my crazy active toddler (some days I feel that all I do is chase after her!). We've been making some home improvements and working on the yard and garden. I've been attempting to do better at planning meals and using up everything I can in the freezer and cupboards. I'm trying to go through sections of the house and clean out stuff that we no longer need... I've got boxes of trash to throw, thrift store stuff to take, and Muchie's old clothes to box up for the next little one. At the end of the day, I'm wiped out!

Too bad my little kiddo is back to NOT sleeping through the night. Teething, maybe?

But then I look at that face and for some reason it's okay to be up 5 times every.single.night! :P

So it feels that each week I just go through a rotation of things to survive the craziness. We're getting into more of a routine and that's been helping. We've had a couple play dates with some friends and that helps me get some adult time and allowed Munch to interact with some other kids her age. Which reminds me, I gotta think about setting up another one or two of those. :)

Back to a design related post though. Lol! I get so sidetracked sometimes...esp when it's late and I'm tired... and I know Munch is going to be up again right about the time I crawl into bed.

One of my big pieces that I'm working on right now is a logo for the Annual Meeting for the Rocky Mountain Section of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists. It's a mouth-full, isn't it? :) We're just in the beginning phase, but so far this has been a fun project to work on. I can't wait to see what happens next and what the final piece ends up to be. One thing I do know though is that my brain never stops processing when I'm in the middle of a project. It's constantly turning through new design layouts, shapes and color choices. Heck, I even was practicing some ideas out on the driveway in chalk when Munch and I were out drawing today. I gotta remember to take pictures of such things! Lol.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

CCBC Photo Release

We took some pictures today at church for use in CCBC materials and the new website that is being designed. As with anything like this, we needed to obtain permission from those we were taking pictures of, to guarantee that they were okay with the church using their likeness on church materials. So not only did we need to inform them verbally, but I drew up a model release (taken from my own release) for the church to use for this photoshoot as well as any down the road.

We had a pretty good involvement for our first attempt. All participants received a copy of the image for their time and volunteering. :)

Friday, April 26, 2013

CCBC Shopping Bags

I was asked last minute to put together the artwork for a shopping bag that is going to be handed out to festival attendees. It was a simple feat - the church logo and information was all that needed to be pulled and added to the vector file for the printer. The rush came from the printer realizing that they could get the job done in a quick time frame, but they needed the file that next morning. So I took a few minutes to compile the info and email off the file to the Associate Pastor at CCBC so that he could get it to the printer and get the details worked out for the printing. This is basically what it will look like (give or take the final placement of the artwork which was decided by the printer in this case):