I am a passionate graphic designer with over seven years of professional design experience. I have cultivated a diverse set of skills from my in-house design experience at two different colleges, and my freelance design experience at Emma KG Design.
In 2014, I received my Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design from the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD). I gained skills through a variety of graphic design classes including typography, layout design, digital design, branding, informational design, web design, interactive design, app design, strategy design, educational design, motion graphics, video, photography, professional writing, design technology and more—as well as many classes related to my art minor.
During my final two years of college, I worked as the graphic designer for UMD’s Health Services Department. My work focused on providing college students accessible access to mental and physical health resources on campus. I heard students talking about campaigns I created and I saw students taking pictures of my posters. Witnessing these little moments showed me design can truly help others in profound ways. As I saw how much my design work helped connect students with vital mental health services, I realized first-hand how design has the power to change people’s lives.
In 2015, I was hired as the graphic designer for Bellingham Technical College (BTC). Over the next 3.5 years, I created all the internal and external design assets for BTC. My work included design support for every department, promotion for all technical programs, event marketing, fundraising efforts for scholarships, external marketing for enrollment, and more. I created various large-scale marketing campaigns and ad campaigns that were featured in local and national magazines, newspapers, online, as well as on local buses and in businesses throughout Whatcom County.
My editorial design work at BTC included annual reports, magazines, viewbooks, and quarterly schedules. My digital creations included eblasts, online ads, presentations, templates, and a wide range of digital assets for the web. The role of being the college’s only designer was incredibly demanding, but knowing I was making a difference in promoting affordable, accessible education made it all worthwhile. I heard stories from new students who said they realized they could be the first in their family to attend college when they saw BTC’s inspirational ad drive by on a bus, or BTC’s poster hanging in a downtown cafe. It was rewarding to see the direct impacts my designs had on the college, from improving BTC’s campus to increasing enrollment numbers. It was empowering to see my marketing campaigns break fundraising scholarship records and my event promotion increase attendance at BTC’s community events.
In early 2019, I transitioned from my full-time position to a remote, contract role with BTC. I simultaneously started Emma KG Design and began taking on a variety of freelance design clients. Since then, I have worked with diverse clientele ranging from small businesses in the Pacific Northwest to large media companies around the country. Starting my own design business gave me the flexibility to travel the world in 2019, and later the opportunity to take care of my family in 2020—all while living a more intentional life.
My years working as a designer in higher education taught me how to manage a demanding workload in a fast-paced setting. My freelance contract work has given me a different perspective in managing clients’ projects in a variety of industries. My personal and professional journey has taught me that design has the power to change lives and bring people together—and it’s my life passion to be a part of that process.
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I find the most joy in life when I’m spending time outdoors in nature, traveling the world, being mindful, eating delicious food, caring for others, and when I’m noticing the little moments and being grateful for all they offer. My grandmother taught me how to find appreciation for the little things and live intentionally. In my professional life, I strive to bring elements of mindfulness, gratitude, intention, and beauty into all my designs.