Sunday, October 31, 2010

Day 6 — I wanna puppy!

Today, my charge is to talk about an animal I want as a pet. I'm not going to go obscure and want a koala or anything (though that would be awesome), but I really do want a puppy. Right now, I have Maia, and she is really all I can take care of, so I am happy. But if I ever settle down somewhere and have a yard and more cash, I really want to get a dog. I'll get it from a shelter, and it will probably be a mutt of some kind because of the great experience I had with my childhood dog, Chrle (spelled that way, my spelling has since improved, but his name stuck). He was recently put to sleep at the age of 15. He was really the best dog ever.

Here's my younger brother, Erik, myself and a very young Chrle.

This photo was taken last year. Isn't he handsome?

Day 5 — Be profound!

For Day 5 of the 30-day blog challenge, I am to post a picture of me two years ago. This was as not a challenge because I was in a very cool place in 2008. I went to the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games (read my Beijing blog here) as a volunteer. I lived in China for two months, and it was one of the most life-changing experiences I have had. Not only did I get to help out and make connections with people for the Olympic Games, but I also got to live in China and experience a culture that is so different than my own.

The picture is from my solitary adventure through the Olympic Green, where the Bird's Nest and Water Cube were located. I was taking my own photos of the Bird's Nest, and this guy walked up to me and wanted a photo with me. I gave his friend my camera to take the same. (Yeah, I had black hair, get over it.)

The peace sign became a staple of pictures from China ...

I have been wanting to get a tattoo with my name in Chinese for a long time. Some of the Chinese volunteers taught me how to write it, and I think it would be a good commemoration of my trip. I just have to suck it up and do it. Also, sometime after I got back from China in August 2008, I set myself an e-mail to be received in 2010. I had completely forgotten about it, but I got it a few weeks ago. I told myself to not forget what I learned in China and to be profound. I think I might incorporate that into the tattoo, too.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Days 3 and 4

Hello, friends. Time for another round of the 30-day blog challenge. Because I missed yesterday's posts (in my defense, I posted design-related things, so I am fine.), I am going to double up tonight.

Day 3 – Thwarted by the rain
I could have seen this yesterday!
(Courtesy of Coastal Empire Fair)
On Day 3, I was supposed to describe my idea of the perfect first date. The truth is, I had every intention of posting this blog yesterday complete with a photo of my own. The Coastal Empire Fair began yesterday, and I wanted to go on a photo adventure on my day off. Then, it started to rain. Oh well. That pretty much answers the question though. A carnival or fair would be an awesome first date. It's not (too) corny and it's not a cliche dinner and a movie. Its fun. There is always something exciting happening, and it's a great way to get to know people. Take it from someone who has gone on MANY first dates these past few months. It's gotta be fun to be memorable. You also have to not suck at life.

Day 4 – One of the best nights of my life
I didn't even have to think twice about the photo I would pick for Day 4's blog: my favorite photo of my best friend. She had I both gone through some hard things our senior year, and we deicded that our senior prom would be ours. Needlesstosay, we had a lot of fun.

That's me, my friend Sarah and my friend Hannah.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

'Union,' a typography assignment

About a month ago, one of my best friends asked me to design a poem for one of the pages in her wedding guest book. She is designing her own book (awesome idea, right?) with her engagement pictures and other things, and she wanted this poem to take up one of the pages. I got free reign on typography, color, etc., but I chose to not stray too much from her original color scheme for the sake of consistency. So, without further ado, my finished products!

Type choices: Bickham Script Pro; Champagne and Limousines (my favorite ever!)

This is the first one I created. I decided to draw emphasis to certain words in the this one and the third one, but in different ways. It was a lot harder than it seemed in the beginning because the poem is so long. I also needed to find a way to travel seamlessly from one segment to the other.

Type choices: Bickham Script Pro; Champagne and Limousines

After seeing some of the pages my friend had created, I felt compelled to also use one of her engagement photos as the background for the poem. This is a simpler version, but I feel that the emotion in the photo also supports the context of the poem.

Type choices: Orial; Champagne and Limousines

I realized that every time I designed a new version of the poem, I liked the newer one better than the others, so I stopped after this one. This one was completely inspired by the typeface. It's called Orial and I thought it was really elegant. I used the font to come up with my own pattern for the crossing bars, and I also used it to call attention to some of the more important words. This one, I feel, is the most contemporary, but probably not the most romantic.

My client (best friend haha) hasn't gotten back to me on which one she likes the best, but I also just e-mailed her the PDFs, so no rush. In the mean time, what do you guys think?

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Day 2 – You can't go wrong with cheese

So, for my second installment of the 30-day blog challenge, I am supposed to post a photo of something that I ate today. Well, I eat this food almost every day: cheese. I always tell people that if I were trapped on a desert island, and I could only choose one food, I would pick cheese. It is by far the most compatible and versitile food out there, and it tastes AWESOME! So here is my picture of cheese:

Courtesy of Google images

BONUS! In my search for a cheesy picture, I also found this sweet website. separates cheese into countries, textures and milks and even offers CHEESE FACTS. More than you wanted to know about cheese? Probably. But isn't it awesome?

Just the facts: no mud

Remember when I got the chance to design the Savannah Morning News' primary election guide? Well, because I already had experience with things like this, I was dubbed the general election guide designer, too. I got to come up with a whole new concept for a whole new tab, which published Oct. 24, but this time I was a little more informed. I knew exactly how to format the inside, and I even had half as many pages the second time around.

For the cover, I came up with a concept of  "clearing the mud away" from all of the candidates' mudsluging. My initial idea was to shoot mud cleared away by wipers on the windshield of a car, but after talking to one of the photographers, we decided that a piece of Plexiglas would work just as well. And he came up with having a squeegee wiping the mud away so there would be a reason for the clean space.

The best part? We got to make the mud, play in the mud and figure out the right consistency for the perfect shot. Who would have though that we would be playing with mud a professional journalists? Anyway, so here are some before and after shots courtesy of Richard Burkhart and myself.

Here is before I wiped away the desired amount of mud.

The raw image before all the Photoshopping happened.

And the finished product.

To get a dirty effect on the text as well, I duplicated the original photo, then cut out the "clean" part of the photo so I had three photo layers. I placed the text on top of the original photo but behind the "dirty" and "clean" layers. Then, I duplicated the "clean" part several times. On each of the "clean" layers, I used the magic wand tool at differing strengths to delete sections of the photo so that different parts would shot up on different layers. Finally, I set most of the "clean" layers to different opacities so the black letters could be seen beneath them. Overal, I reall like the effect, and I have gotten many praises on the cover. The best part is that from beginning to end, this was my baby, and I took full ownership of it this time.

What do you think?

Day 1 — The experience of a lifetime

I promised to start this blog challenge after my awesome weekend, and I need to tell you guys about my awesome weekend, so we are killing two birds with one stone. I am also sorry about the run-on. Technically, I am supposed to post a picture of me today and tell you how my day was, but I am going to post a picture of me this weekend and tell you how that was. It's similar enough that I'll accept it.

That's me! Thanks Allie for taking this photo!
I went back to Columbia, Mo., this weekend for Homecoming. I did so much while I was there, so I am going to bullet point it for you.

  • On Thursday, I made my long journey from Savannah, Ga., to Jacksonville to Dallas to St. Louis and then to Columbia, Mo. I took several planes and several cars, but I managed to make it to Columbia before band practice. At practice, I was tackle-hugged by many of my favorite people, not to mention the two favorite people I was staying with. It felt really awesome to be known by people. Seeing my friends was unbelievable, and that was only the beginning.
  • I hung out on campus and at the J-school on Friday, which was another form of catching up with people. I went back to some of my journalism professors, and they were all so proud of me. We talked journalism, which is kind of all I talk about besides football these days. Friday night was rally night, where the Missouri Band Bunch plays at bars downtown and has a generally amazing time. 
  • The next morning, I went with some of my best friends to the live broadcast of College Gameday on the Francis Quadrangle with the columns and Jesse Hall in the background. It was the first time the program had come to MU. We had roughly 18,000 people there, and we broke the Gameday record of participants. 
  • I participated in the Marching Mizzou Alumni Band for the football game, and it was incredible to be back on the field even though the practice was unbelievably long and all I wanted to do was tailgate. It's OK though, because the football game was totally worth it. 
  • Just in case you have been living in a box or you don't follow college football, we beat the No. 1-ranked Oklahoma team. It was the first time in 40 years that MU has done that, and it was well deserved. The crowd rushed the field, the goal posts came down and the whole town partied. It was one of the best football games I have ever been to!

    So that was an extremely shortened version of the major events of the weekend. I was so lucky to have been there! I will definitely remember this weekend for years to come. Next year is the 100th homecoming celebration. Could it get even better?

    On a more serious note, though, I am still happy to be back in Savannah. I didn't think I would feel this way at all. I really have left the college lifestyle. I live on my own, with my own responsibilities, apartment and  my own bills. As much as I love my friends back in Columbia, I can feel myself moving on from that part of my life. I won't move on from the people, just the lifestyle. I'm glad to be home. In Savannah, that is.

    Sunday, October 17, 2010

    30 day blog challenge

    In an effort to update my blog more often, I have decided to steal this challenge from someone I went to high school with, who keeps a blog of her family. I figure that not only will I have a reason to post here every day, but I can also give the general public a little info about me. Tomorrow is Day 1.
    Day 1 – A photo of yourself and a description of how your day was.
    Day 2 – A photo of something you ate today.

    Day 3 – Your idea of the perfect first date. 
    Day 4 – Your favorite photograph of your best friend.
    Day 5 – A photo of yourself two years ago.
    Day 6 – A photo of an animal you’d love to keep as a pet.
    Day 7 – Your dream wedding.
    Day 8 – A song to match your mood.
    Day 9 – A photo of the item you last purchased.
    Day 10 – A photo of your favorite place to eat.

    Day 11 – What’s in your makeup bag?
    Day 12 – A photograph of the town you live in.
    Day 13 – Your favorite musician and why?
    Day 14 – A TV show you’re currently addicted to.
    Day 15 – Something you don’t leave the house without.
    Day 16 – Your celebrity crush.
    Day 17 – A photo of you and your family.
    Day 18 – Something you crave a lot.
    Day 19 – Another picture of yourself.
    Day 20 – The meaning behind your blog name.
    Day 21 – A photo of something that makes you happy.
    Day 22 – A letter to someone who has hurt you recently.
    Day 23 – 15 facts about you.
    Day 24 – A photo of something that means a lot to you.
    Day 25 – What’s in your purse?
    Day 26 – A photo of somewhere you’ve been to.
    Day 27 – A picture of you last year and now and how have you changed since then?
    Day 28 – Your favorite movie.
    Day 29 – Something you could never get tired of doing.
    Day 30 – A photograph of yourself today + three good things that have happened in the past.

    I actually do have a few design-related posts to put up eventually. I have a few projects that are coming to a close. Stay tuned!

    Wednesday, October 6, 2010

    Living the American dream ... kind of

    When I was 17, I decided to change my life. At first, it wasn't my choice. I was kind of thrust into it when all the plans I had for the future suddenly disappeared. I went from planning to stay in Missouri my whole life with a boyfriend that loved me to a single, prospective journalism student at the University of Missouri. I decided to live my life for me, follow my dreams and work at a place that I really loved. I wanted to move. I (still) want to see the world. I don't want to be stuck in a boring job that I hate.

    After college, I was lucky enough to do just that. I moved to Savannah, Ga., to work at a newspaper that I got a great impression of when I visited. I love my job. I am doing what I love, and I don't dread coming into work every day. However, like most other journalists in today's world, an awesome journalism job doesn't actually pay all the bills. I decided to take up a second job about a week ago and began the rigorous application processes. Since I am working nights, I have all day off. I don't have high hopes for my second job, but I really do draw the line at fast food places (maybe Sonic ...  I can fuel the habit that way).

    However, when filling out the copious amount of applications, I found that I am ridiculously underqualified for a simple customer-service-based job. I worked for Dierbergs for 4 years in high school and college; I have a short 6-month blip at a coffee shop, but no other actual menial job experience.  My hope is that I will pick up some type of seasonal job somewhere to tie me over until next year.

    I have applied to: JoAnns, Bed Bath & Beyond, Starbucks(es), Barnes & Noble, Target, Kroger, Walgreens, JCPenney, Michael's and Best Buy. Wow, that's a lot. So far, I've gotten zero calls back.

    But does anyone else find it absolutely ridiculous that I have a bachelor's degree, full-time job and I still can't make due? Or that I have a bachelor's degree and department stores would rather hire kids in high school over me? (I don't really know if the second part is true, but go with it, OK?)

    Basically what it comes down to is that my dream isn't enough. Not for now at least.

    Pink papers, preparing for the worst and prancing puppies

    It's been at least a week since I have blogged, but that definitely doesn't mean that nothing has been going on. Welcome to my bulleted list.

    • Newspapers preparing for the worst

    Last week, former President Jimmy Carter was hospitalized for a viral infection in his stomach. That day at my newspaper's budget meeting, we held a short "what if" session mainly focusing on if the former president were to die. What would we do in the paper? How would we treat it? Would we go poster-size on his photo? In case you didn't know, Carter is also a former governor of Georgia, and he announced his bid for presidency at a local restaurant in Savannah. Since that conversation, we have started to compile photos the paper has taken as well as AP photos for the inevitable day when he passes. I actually might create a multimedia project to go along with it ... That could be exciting!

    • Wiener dog races

    The starting gates for the wiener dog races.

    The Savannah Morning News helps to sponsor the wiener dog races for Oktoberfest, which I volunteered for this year. I know what you're thinking: If you're not absolutely disgusted, you are absolutely confused. Yes. Wiener dogs. Racing. Adorableness. We raced about 150 dogs Oct. 2, and the fastest dog of the day, "Frankie" of Savannah, made the 50-foot trek in 2.3 seconds. Not all the dogs came running when the gates were lifted though. Some were too scared to leave, some just wanted to play with the other dogs. It was super entertaining.

    I was in charge of getting the dogs ready at the starting line. I handed each owner a bandanna, and I made sure that all the correct dogs were racing in their correct heat. I tried to at least. People were crowding and confused, and I tried to make everyone happy. After all, this event is about Dachshunds! How could it not be happy?

    • Breast cancer awareness in Savannah

    Courtesy of Savannah Morning News

    I never knew how incredibly HUGE Breast Cancer Awareness month was in this town! SMN and St. Joseph's/Candler hospital team up every October to "Paint the town Pink." The SMN building was "flocked" for the event (see the photo), there's a large ribbon in our main window and a bright pink golf cart in our foyer (Apparently it's a prize for a raffle of some sort at the end of the month), and the paper sports a pink ribbon on its masthead the entire month of October.

    One of the more interesting things the paper does, though, is it publishes a pink newspaper. On Oct. 3, the newspaper that people bought at the grocery store or had delivered to their home was entirely pink. So, this is my pink 1A. Thankfully I didn't have to design on a pink computer screen that night.

    I think what the community does for breast cancer awareness is really cool -- especially when several big organizations in the community come together for a common cause.