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Posts from the ‘Blog’ Category

A Bittersweet Announcement

June 4, 2012


Big AnnouncementI have been on hiatus for a few weeks but I am back and with an exciting announcement! I am pleased (but sad) to announce today is my last day at the N.C. Administrative Office of the Courts. It has been a great run going on three years but I have accepted a job offer with CafePress to join their marketing team as a web designer. is an e-commerce company that specializes in applying customized designs to all kinds of products; from t-shirts and mugs to flip-flops and bracelets. An excerpt from their website gives a little history:

“Wow. To think it all began as a nifty-little idea back in 1999.

That idea – to apply printing & technology innovation to make it easier for the world to express themselves on T-shirts – has today blossomed into a “platform” (as MBA-types like to call it) big enough to fuel a multi-billion dollar industry. We call it CafePress Inc.

In the very beginning, this idea spawned a cottage industry of hundreds of thousands of individuals who created CafePress shops – each selling their unique products online. Early on, it also led to the creation of our flagship brand, – and the CafePress Marketplace (where sellers & buyers could more-easily connect). The innovation-friendly platform also freed us to broaden our product line from T-shirts and mugs to over 600 product SKUs and counting.”

Not only will I be working on marketing and web design projects for but also for their sister brands: Canvas on Demand, Canvas on Demand Pro, great BIG canvas, Imagekind, InvitationBox, and Logo Sportswear. I am hopeful this will provide a great opportunity to learn more about interactive design and marketing, and, ultimately, help me grow as a designer. I am excited about the possibilities and new challenges that await me at CafePress.

As excited as I am about beginning this new chapter in my career, I am also sad to leave behind my colleagues at the N.C. Administrative Office of the Courts. This was my first “big girl” job out of college and I am grateful for the opportunity that the NCAOC provided to learn so much about written, verbal, and visual communications, public and media relations, and the court system.

To celebrate the end of this chapter in my life, I want to share some of my experiences from the past three years in some upcoming posts. Be on the lookout!

Do you have any job transition advice?

Mockingjay: Design in everyday life

March 23, 2012


MockingjayIt’s finally here!

If you are like me, you have been patiently waiting for the The Hunger Games movie premiere for several months now.

If you aren’t familiar with The Hunger Games, it’s a story inspired by Greek mythology that is fast paced with edge-of-your-seat action. It was a great book trilogy and I have high hopes that the movies will be just as great. I caught the midnight showing last night with a few friends but I’m not talking! Go check it out for yourself and let me know what you think!

If you are even the slightest bit familiar with the books, I know you are familiar with the iconic mockingjay graphic. It is everywhere. From book covers to movie posters, necklaces to cell phone cases. Believe it or not, people are even doing Hunger Games themed weddings complete with mockingjay cupcakes.

But, have you ever thought about how this symbol came to be? Who was the designer that first read Suzanne Collins’s story and brought this symbol of hope and rebellion to life? What goes into creating such an iconic symbol?

Tim O’Brien, an American illustrator, is the guy we have to thank for the mockingjay graphic that seems to be everywhere right now. Check out his blog post that details the creative process of the mockingjay and the first Hunger Games book cover.

The Hunger Games International Book Covers

In celebration of the release of The Hunger Games, here are some international Hunger Games book covers for your enjoyment! (Oh, on a sidenote, did you know The Hunger Games was filmed in North Carolina?)

US cover


UK cover


Taiwan cover


Sweden cover


Russia cover


Romania cover


Japan cover


Greece cover


Germany cover


Hunger Games Denmark


First things first

March 21, 2012


First things first

What is graphic design, you might ask?

Yes, I get this a lot and, yes, I do make things look “pretty.” But more than that, graphic design is about communication. A picture says a thousand words, right? Well, it is my job to mindfully create visuals that communicate a planned message for my clients. If the message is unclear or misinterpreted, then I have not done my job even if it is the most attractive piece of art ever.

Top five pet peeves

Top five graphic design pet peeves

With this in mind I have compiled a list of my top five graphic design pet peeves. Be on the lookout for upcoming posts that will explain each pet peeve.

  1. Double spaces after punctuations
  2. Overuse of drop shadows
  3. Clip art
  4. Inconsistency
  5. Times New Roman

Voice your opinion

I’m listening! What are your visual pet peeves?

Comment below or connect with me via Twitter @askaprilr

Ridding the world of bad design one post at a time

March 19, 2012


Good design vs bad design

Ridding the world of bad design one post at a time

Welcome to my new blog dedicated to educating the masses about good design. My name is April and I have been a professional designer for the past three years.

As you may know if you are in this field, to work as a designer is to eat, sleep, live, and breathe all things design. Through my design education and professional experience, I have been brainwashed to notice all sort of details in everyday life that “normal” people will never notice. Let me tell you, there is a lot of bad design in the world. I am making it my personal mission to rid the world of typeface abuse, file type misuse, and content overload.

You don’t have to be a designer to read my blog. As a matter of fact, I encourage everyone to check back soon! You never know when you’ll learn something new that you can use on your next scrap booking endeavor or company picnic flyer.


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