Computer Skills:
Mac or PC Details, just for fun:
QuarkXPress I've been using this program since college for all kinds of page layout projects. It has some quirks, but gets the job accomplished.
Adobe InDesign I use this at home, and have been toying with it for over a year.
Adobe Illustrator I've been working with Illy 10 at work for about 3 years now, and use CS2 at home.
Macromedia Freehand I used this program in college and at Frances Meyer to design stickers, precise die lines, and other scrapbooking products.
Adobe Photoshop Love this program. I find great pleasure in creating realistic looking environments from a variety of photographs. I need to do this often at work since the studio is too small to accommodate the types of photographs I'd like to shoot. We have a scan-back camera as opposed to an instant camera, so instant shots are impossible.
Adobe GoLive As far as WYSIWYG programs go, it's ok. I've used several (including Dreamweaver), and pretty much just use them for basic framing, then go into the code and manipulate it to my own ends.
Office Suite I've found Excel great for keeping track of all my projects, and figuring out some costing issues. Power Point has been helpful in creating aesthetically pleasing sales presentations. Publisher has been helpful at home for creating quick business cards, and greeting cards. And Word...well, as a designer, I don't really like to use it, but I can.
Additional Skills:
Digital Photography The photography class I took in college has proved invaluable. Both Frances Meyer and DecoArt require graphic designers to do their own photography, and it helps to understand the nuances associated with this skill. While interning at OTT Communications, I learned a great deal about staging photographs of a variety of subjects.
Color Correction It's inevitable...the photograph is not quite as bright and realistic as the real deal. What's a designer to do? Color correct them of course.
While working at Frances Meyer I learned how to precisely color correct any part of a photograph so that when it printed it was as close to the real thing as possible with a press. This skill has transferred well into my work at DecoArt where we photograph and color correct projects almost daily.
Pre press Production Because each press has it's own quirks, I've found it best to ask the printer how they prefer their files. At Frances Meyer each designer was responsible for their own file finalization, and for checking each others work. All aspects of our work have to be perfect to a 64th of an inch, and color had to be precise because the printed pieces were also the products.
Digital Video Creating educational how-to videos for DecoArt has been great fun. The videos are created to encourage new customers to try the paints and promote sales. I even convinced my boss to allow the IT guy to post the videos to YouTube as a means of reaching an audience (for free) which would not necessarily visit a craft paint website. The IT guy only managed to post one of the videos, but it has received an average of 1,000 hits per month.
Website Maintenance While in their employ, I helped update and maintain the Frances Meyer and DecoArt websites.
I created and continue to maintain for a relative. I am working on for another relative.
I also created this website.
Sculpture I always thought it great fun to get messy with clay. In school I discovered even more sculpting mediums. Now I create mock-up packaging when needed, and the time spent in 3-D and Sculpture classes really helps.
Drawing/Painting Drawing and painting have always been a part of my life, I even majored in art in high school. Something about the act of drawing and painting is just very relaxing to me.