For this issue of the Featured Designer we have an interesting interview with the lovely and talented Lauren Marie, the creator of Creative Curio design blog, a must read graphic design blog.
Q : I know you are really passionate about art. Before you started as a graphic designer, what sort of work did you do ?
A : I was originally studying Psychology and Spanish but when I met my (now) husband, he was at Design school. He started showing me how to edit pictures in Photoshop and I fell in love (with design and him!). I’ve always liked art, but had been told it’s not a way to make a living because it can be so unpredictable. This is a way to be an artist (of sorts) and still make money!
Q : You’re running quite a lovely design blog. Tell us a little about how you started blogging and what drove you into it?
A : Thank you! I started getting into the blog world back in May 2007 when I found Tara’s Graphic Design Blog. I commented (a reeeeally long comment) on her post about inspiration, that Vivien invited me to post as an actual article on Inspiration Bit. I guest posted one more time for Vivien, another time for Tara and started a meme (with help from Tara), When Do You Consider Yourself a Successful Designer? After much pushing from the bloggers I had become quite active with, I started my own blog focused on learning graphic design.
Q : You graduated in 2006 as BS in Multimedia Design Technology from Mt Sierra College, Monrovia, Summa Cum Laude. There’s a well known debate in the design community regarding the role of education in a designer’s work versus no design education and loads of design experience. What do you think about this ?
A : Experience is the most important teacher, hands down. I think it’s good to go to school for design, but it’s certainly not the only way to learn. School gives you a head start and for the less self-motivated lot, it provides a structure for learning the craft. But it really is very recent that schools have even started offering graphic design specific majors (formerly they were generally art majors). And even if you do go school, you’ll learn more about the field in your first six months than you did your whole time in school! There are some things only experience can help you learn.
Q : You are curently a graphic designer for Prudential Real Estate and Relocation. Tell us a little bit about that.
A : Most of the work I do for Prudential is internal. The national advertising and such is handled by another firm. I have created graphics for our intranet, annual sales convention, individual broker marketing materials and a whole lot of recruiting materials (to convince real estate brokers to buy a Prudential franchise and sell under our name). 98% of the work I do is for print and I really love it!
Q : As your resume mentiones you are very well qualified for both bitmap and vectorial graphic design. Do you enjoy one type more than other and what’s your favorite graphic design software?
A : I am by far the most familiar with Photoshop, so it’s what I tend to work in. Because of the heavy emphasis of my print work, though, InDesign is becoming one of my favorite programs! I can’t stand trying to lay out text in Photoshop or Illustrator!
Q : Your websites are packed with quotes from famous people. It’s quite clear you are very well read. What’s your favorite quote regarding art / design ?
A : Oh man, there are just so many good ones!
Art is either plagiarism or revolution. – Paul Gauguin
Creativity without strategy is called ‘art.’ Creativity with strategy is called ‘advertising.’ – Jef I. Richards
Or I like to replace “art” (first quote) and “advertising” (second quote) with “design”!
Q : You are an active member of one of the best design forums on the web, Estetica Design Forum. Do you follow other design communities?
A : Hehe, yes, I wish I could get involved more often. Estetica is the only forum I am a member of right now, but I try to get around to quite a few design and writing blogs.
Q : In your opinion what are the top 3 resource websites for designers?
A : This is a hard one, because a lot of it depends on what kind of designer you are (web, print, motion graphics, etc) and what you are looking for (technical help, inspiration, resources, business advice, etc). If I had to only pick three…
I Love Typography
Google.com – because I couldn’t decide on one more, I didn’t want to leave out anybody, and it really is the best place to find everything!
Q : Besides design, what do you like to do in your spare time?
A : I am a person of many interests! Among my favorites are blogging, scrapbook, backpack, SCUBA dive, waste time online (read: social media!), airsoft, bellydance, read, video games (RPG/adventure, FPS like UT, and MMOs), letterpress, theater (as in going to stage productions) um… that’s all I can think of right now!
Q : And for the last question … a classic : Where do you see yourself in 5 years ?
A : I hope to still be running my blog and keeping up with design, but I’ll probably be in the full swing of parenthood by then! I hope to continue designing by moving more into freelancing and/or consulting.
Here are some of Lauren Marie‘s designs :