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jessCan you tell us a bit about yourself?
In one sentence: I am a design nerd who loves adventure, animals, the great outdoors and learning new things.

I am also a mom, wife and have 2 dogs named Ellie & Nora as well as a 14 year old chinchilla named Chili Pepper. Fun fact, I am allergic to rabbits and also chilli pepper (the spice not the chinchilla).

 

How did you get into design?

I grew up on a dairy farm and didn’t have a computer with high speed internet until I was 17. In my school years I spent most of my time drawing, painting and crafting. It wasn’t until grade 10 when I took a com-tech class that I realized ‘graphic design’ was even a career option and jumped into it with 2 feet and never looked back. Actually, when I took the careers test it suggested ‘tattoo artist’ as a career path for me – which would be fun and all but I am glad my young self decided to go the marketing route instead.

 

What did your teachers think of you?

I remember my art teacher in grade 11 asking what I was planning to apply for and him laughing that graphic designers don’t get jobs – suggesting I should do fine art instead… which now seems so bizarre to me… it’s the other way around! 

 

What kind of work are you responsible for at Green Monkey Creative?

As Creative Director I oversee all design work from logo creation to social media posts to print projects to graphic creation on website design. As Partner I am involved in all things Green Monkey including our dedication to the community through the various events we support and assist throughout the year.

 

What does a typical day look like to you? And what makes a day, a good day, for you?

A good day is a productive day.

Weekdays start around 7 for me. Once I get my son off to school I head into the office to work. I usually work 2 days from my home office in Shelburne and 3 in the Orangeville office. 

I start each day off by reviewing my emails. I am very strict about following the zero inbox policy – if you haven’t heard about this please Google it, it helps me stay organized and focused. I then create a list of tasks or projects I plan to complete that day in Trello (my favourite app!) and dive into my work. We try to schedule any meetings between 10-2 and try to book them in the beginning of the week so I can focus on design the remainder of the week (it doesn’t always work this way – but I do try!)

In terms of my daily workflow, it is very sporadic and really depends on what is on my to-do list. Some days I focus on 1 – 2 large projects and others I am literally doing 40 projects for 20 different clients. 

I head out of the office at 2:30 to pick my son up from school and continue to work from my home office between 4 to 6 pm.  Before I close my laptop for the day I will review my task list and emails to make sure all emails have been answered and organized for the next day. 

 

Where do you find inspiration for your work in brand design?

Everywhere. I start every project with research – usually starting with a Google and/or Pinterest search to look at what competitors are doing. I create a visual board of images for each project that I refer to when designing. Sometimes these visual boards include photography, colour palettes as well as other designs that have a similar feel to what I am trying to achieve with the project.

 

What areas of marketing/design are often overlooked?

I could probably ramble on about the things that are important when designing however it comes down to the tedious LITTLE things that make a HUGE difference such as how your Facebook business page profile picture should be your logo, it should be square with your logo centred and visible. Your profile information on all social media platforms ESPECIALLY Google My Business is very important. This should be reviewed and updated as needed on a quarterly basis. 

When creating a brand, consistency is always key so there are many things that help pull a polished brand together however you should always stick to a brand colour palette & limited brand fonts which will help you achieve a consistent brand look.

 

An Interview With Our Marketing Strategist Julie Thurgood >