What I Designed Today: Billboard Artwork for “The Real Inspector Hound” for Theater Bartlesville

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Final billboard.

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Final poster.

I ran a test vote on Facebook with my 777 friends and the red poster won out over the sideways-text white one by a thin margin. We’re using the red poster with the spyglass from one of the others. Good combo. This made the billboard much easier to do!

What I Designed Today: Steam Train Tickets

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A steam train engineer requested tickets for an upcoming birthday party for a local Steam Train No. 940. He wanted a punch card for the kids to use for the party. I love trains!

What I Designed Today: Climbing Logo

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Here’s what I did today:  which would you choose?

What I Designed Today: Kara’s Party Ideas

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I’ve been keeping this part under wraps for a bit but I think it’s safe to show you some of the work I’ve been coordinating and creating for Kara’s Party Ideas. Party goods are so. much. fun. to create compared to my more business-oriented clients like dermatology and politics! Check her site out: she is so the next Martha Stewart except she’s much more beautiful (inside and out)! Kara just launched sales of party goods on her site and I know she’s adding more so be sure and stop by Kara’s Party Ideas and you just might see something I helped design. The Superhero set is being printed in fabric and will be for sale soon! Adorable, no? Be sure to check out the Native American themed party – so cute!

What I Designed Today: the Basics of Designing Effective, Simple Black & White Ads

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In 2006, a good friend asked me to redo the NMDEA black and white ad that had been running at their annual convention. It was a quick job so I agreed. I have now been doing their annual ad since 2006 and through two long distance moves! She approached me again this Spring for the 2012 ad and I thought it would be a good time to compile and compare past versions before I make something new. Sometimes I find an effective black and white or grayscale ad is much, much more difficult than a full color one. You have to really try to stand out from the crowd! My favorite was 2011, with the Nebraska outline used in the center. It’s funny how I can see a definite progression over the years to a better design – something I hadn’t noticed until they were side-by-side. Thanks to my friend, Marilyn, for the annual one-color challenge.

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What I Designed Today: Do It Yourself Water Bottle Labels – Jesus Christ is the Living Water John 4:13-14

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So my husband was in charge of refreshments at the youth activity this week at church and since he was helping me with a client’s custom WordPress install and website, I pitched in and helped him with the food and drink. Since I recently have been working to help a party goods designer (more announcements and info to come on that later!), I knew I could quickly throw together a water label with a fitting scripture: John 4:13-14. Free jpg file for download here. You will want to use packing tape to adhere them to the water bottle. I found the easiest way was to remove the official label off the bottle, stretch out a piece of packing tape a little longer than your new label and center it on your tape and wrap it around each bottle – voila! So cute. I think I’ll have to use this for seminary, too.

Photography for Christmas Lights

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So our neighborhood is having a Christmas lights contest and, since ours is relatively tasteful, one can be assured we will not win. At any rate, I thought it would be a good time to learn how to use my Nikon D90 and get some pictures of the lights. My hubby is a very experienced photographer so he tried patiently to explain ISO and shutter speed to me. It still doesn’t quite make sense but here goes: ISO goes as high as your camera will go – I set mine at 3200. Interestingly enough, the shutter speed varied – some pictures came out good at 1/10, some at 1/8 and some at 1/25 and lastly, be sure that the camera is in manual mode and the flash is off. We found the interior tree pictures came out best if surrounding lights were turned off, too. It was fun to change the speed and see what happened. Now if I could only figure out how to get the dang camera on and off the tripod…I’m pretty much hopeless when it comes to photography! If composition were the only factor, I’d have it made.

What I Designed Today: Adorable Pink Pigs

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You don’t even want to know why I needed to draw pink pigs. But aren’t they cute?! Cole had a good time fixing up the ears for me. Feel free to download and use the high res jpg. If you need vector artwork for this item, check out Bigstock for vector download – it should go live in a few days.

What I Designed Today: Christmas Songs Book Cover

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So my smarty-pants friend is, among many things, very good with words. He compiled this testament of a book as a Christmas gift for friends and family and asked me to do the cover. I can’t wait to see the final product!

(Not So) Recent Design Work: a Book Cover for Jack Weyland’s “Cameron Meets Madison”

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Hmph. I know that title should be italicized but I can’t find in my WordPress where it will allow you make it italic (there’s no place for HTML encoding or formatting of any kind). Oh well. Please forgive me, dear readers who might possibly care (cough, cough). I know I’m the only one who probably cares about such things considering I is (sic) an English major and all.

So I’ve decided to go back through some old work and post it on here so this blog can include more of the graphic design I’ve done over the years. Someday I’ll get that professional site up, but blogging is way more fun. Here’s a cover I did a year or two ago for Jack Weyland’s book entitled Cameron Meets Madison. The publisher had strict instructions to make it similar to his other bestselling works but I wanted it to look a bit fresher and I think it hits the mark. I have not read it — yet — but if you have, let me know your thoughts either here or on goodreads.

Brooks’ Run Happy Ad Campaign

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I remember a couple of these signs from Brooks’ running ad campaign around 2008/2009 — when I was in Omaha and hitting the gym regularly and running on the treadmill. I love to run outdoors, too, but I don’t mind 9 miles on the treadmill at all, either. It goes so fast with an mp3 player or a tv (if you want that!). While I prefer the right kind of tunes and no television, I enjoy the treadmill because you can pace yourself. Intervals is my idea of a good time!!! I love sprints on the treadmill. Crazy, I know. But I do enjoy the perspective of running outside — and there are days in the spring and fall when I would not trade outdoors for anything. This morning was a perfect example of one of those days!! Hooray for running! Hooray for design! Any mix of the two gets an A+ in my book.

What I Designed Today: Organic Food Book Layout & Book Cover Design

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I picked up a new client from California and was asked to help out on the interior and the cover. They pretty much had everything already how they wanted it, they just needed someone to professionally lay it out in the correct software. It was a fun (if long!) job and it seems I made a new friend along the way. I love when I have nice clients who respect my time and efforts. It makes for a win/win all the way around. Now, back to unpacking boxes for a few more days — all in an effort to avoid the boys’ clothes closet, I can assure you.

What I Designed Today: Graphics for Educational Systems

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I’ve been busy with some recent design work. It’s for kids so it’s relatively fun and kid graphics are so much easier! The teen segment, however…a little more difficult. Take a look at a few of these babies. I am not sure how they are being used, exactly, but once they’re outta my hands I don’t really care (unless, of course, it’s MY end project and I have a vested interest)!

What I Designed Today: Dorothy Keddington’s Book Cover – Finally Done!

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I haven’t worked on a book cover for a little while and I’m really enjoying working again. Good thing since I’ve been burned out for nearly a decade. Just kidding – it just has felt like that with four kids and fourteen years. Since my kids are aged 4 to 14 I guess I did have one full decade there, didn’t I?! Well, back to some creative endeavors. This book cover has only been in the works for almost a year… I finally read the book and it’s a fantastic, quick read.

What I Designed Today: Drafts for Dorothy Keddington’s Book Covers

Two more book covers to get done and then it’s VACATION time!!! I’m not loving any of these but here’s what I’m working on today.