I geared up for my final semester of college. This meant Senior Show, Capstone, and just a few other classes to finish up. In addition, I helped curate and participate in 4 gallery shows that semester as well as my graphic design internship with the University Promotions Office and position as AIGA GVSU President. looking back I couldn't be more proud of how I handled my work load.
Between Senior Show and Capstone I learned to love installation art. I read more books than I had in years and I realized just how many things I was interested in. I dove headfirst into research and loved every minute of it. It didn't come without hard work though and countless nights were spent without sleep or eating properly. I managed to make it through and even though the final outcome wasn't originally what I intended it was a culmination of everything I had learned that semester and that, I believe, really showed.
The end of the semester brought Graduation. Finally finished with college (on time and everything!) I walked across the stage with some of my best friends at my side. As celebratory as it was this was a rough time for me, Graduation brought uncertainty and fear as to exactly what comes next.
Winter turned into Spring, Spring into Summer. Certain relationships ended and new ones began. I fell in love and I had my heart broken. I met new friends and got closer to old ones. I learned how to fish. I got over the fear to dance in public (sort of haha) I did non-profit design work. I took photos, not nearly as many as I should have. There were concerts, trips to Chicago, and nights spent on friends porches. There were tv show marathons with the awesome boys I lived with all summer. There were trips to my lake house spent with family and long-time friends.
I adopted a kitten. As cheesy as this sounds she lights up my day almost always (unless she's chewed through another hair tie or broken her 15th Christmas bulb)
I visited Mike in New York with Jen. It was an awesome trip, hands down. I could go into details but it would take up so much of this entry!
I moved into what feels like my first adult apartment with my roommate Evan in downtown Grand Rapids. New furniture was purchased and art was hung on the walls. I absolutely adore it and it's crazy how much more at home I feel here every day.
I went to Phoenix, AZ with a group of incredibly talented young designers, both alumni and current members of AIGA GVSU. We attended Pivot, the National AIGA design conference, as conference associates and had an incredible trip.
I officially introduced myself to Debbie Millman, drank cheap beers at an art show opening with DJ Stout, partner at Pentagram, and cheered on my friend Sarah at Command X Season 3. This trip reaffirmed what I so loved about design. I am a designer by profession and heart, it's always what I will long to do.
Speaking of design...I became a collaborator at NotDesign, a little letterpress studio here in GR. Founded by my mentor, and one of my most favorite people, Chris Fox. I am falling even more in love with printing (and learning a lot!) I met new friends and colleagues, all who are great people and designers that I can spend Sundays in the studio with, or cards at the bar, or coffee on the weekends.
2011 brought my step-dad home, safe and sound, from Afghanistan (I cried...a lot) It also took three of my very best friends away to the east coast (I cried...a lot) Two amazing people in my life lost parents and I reminisced on the two year anniversary of losing mine. (I cried...alot) Hah, noticing a trend? Tears are good though, they remind us we are alive. That's what 2011 in a nutshell felt like for me. I crossed a few things off my personal bucketlist: I kissed a stranger, I dyed my hair pink, I started training for my first half-marathon. It was a year of endings and beginnings. It was a transition year full of experiences I'll never have again; ones I will cherish.
I rang in the new year drinking champagne at a bar in the city that I live in and love. I did the cupid shuffle in my living room. I hugged people I cared about a little longer than normal. New Years has never been my favorite holiday but the evenings festivities were all I could have asked for and for that I'm grateful.
Welcome 2012, I'm glad you're here :)