It's nice to meet you!
Hey there, Elaina here! Since you’ve taken the time to check out my website, I figured I would take some time to explain who I am as a designer, dreamer, and believer. I’ll give you a glimpse into the beginning of my journey into design. I’ll explain why art is everything to me, and how it changed my life for the better.
Since I was very young, I’ve always seen things a bit differently than most, and it caused me to feel like an outsider. I chose not to speak much, because when I did, it came out “wrong” to others. This void in “proper” communication led me into a deep frustration and sometimes even trouble. I got in trouble with my parents, and even in school. The problem was, I just wanted to be able to express myself without getting strange looks or rude opinions.
I knew that I needed to find a way to communicate with others without using my words…because that wasn’t working out so well. I started drawing. That choice seemed so simple and meaningless at the time, but it literally changed my life.
Drawing became my outlet. Each and every time I felt unheard or unimportant, I would pick up a paper and pencil and just let my mind unwind. My drawings were always strange, to say the least. The absolute best part about art, to me, was that there was no wrong way of doing it. My art was everything that I felt, and there was no way that anyone could tell me otherwise. I had finally found my voice, through art.
I continued drawing for most of my childhood. This new outlet allowed me to learn so much more about myself, my emotions, and my thoughts.
When I got into high school, the basic art classes that I was given bored me. I found myself getting into trouble again. I knew that I didn’t want to be seen as “bad”, but I also knew that I needed more. I needed more ways to express myself. I wanted to learn and grow and take my love of art to the next level. The only artistic practice I had was with my pencil, but that would soon change, and I was going to make sure of it.
There was an Advanced Placement Portfolio class that I walked by every single day on my way to my locker. I used to look in the window and see absolutely beautiful works of art being painted by students. I needed to get in there…my soul was yearning for it.
I asked my guidance counselor to be switched into that class, and I quickly learned that it wasn’t going to be that easy. She explained to me that the kids in that class had a lot of experience with painting, and the teacher couldn’t just let anyone in. But, my soul wasn’t going to take no for an answer.
I bothered the art teacher every day on my way to my locker, by showing her my sketches. I remember hearing a heart-piercing “no” the first few times that I asked her to allow me into that class…but I kept coming back. After a few weeks of bothering her, she finally agreed to sign the transfer paper to switch me into her class. And THAT was when my life really began.
I spent the last two years of high school completely engulfed in art. I entered art shows, and even won a small art scholarship through one art competition. My art was featured in local museums and magazines and my soul finally felt free again. This new release through painting was exactly what I needed.
I was lucky enough to have teachers that completely understood my passion and allowed me to leave their classes to go to the art room to work on projects, almost anytime I asked…as long as my assignments were completed. That gave me something to look forward to, something to work harder towards. I started completing assignments way before they were due, and my teachers knew exactly why.
Once it was time to graduate, I had to choose a college and a major. My guidance counselor suggested Graphic Design to me, and I wasn’t sold…at first. At the time, I thought that art was meant to be created with my hands, not a computer. It took some convincing, but I ultimately gave in to her suggestion and decided to give it a try…and I am SO THANKFUL that I did!
10 years and A LOT of sacrifices and hard work have passed since I made the decision to learn graphic design. Maybe one day I’ll tell you all a little bit more about those sacrifices and hard work between then and now. Until then, I’ll let you know that I couldn’t be more thankful for the support and guidance of everyone in my life at that time, that pushed me towards a career that I have completely fallen in love with.
It’s ironic that art started out as my avenue of communication. Today, I am able to communicate my client’s needs and marketing goals through strategic digital designs. Knowing that I am given an opportunity daily, to bring someone else’s vision to life, is beyond fulfilling.
Since the very first day that I picked up a pencil to express myself, I knew that art was going to change my life. It has done just that. I never took “no” for an answer…and I never allowed others to drown out my voice just because it wasn’t what they wanted to hear. I found my voice, through art…and I’ve made that voice loud and clear every since.