Social Media Content Creator
Back in graduate school, I did a work-study assignment with Planned Parenthood in Reno. I worked for a woman named Dana. I should have known it was not the right assignment for me. We went to a training where she gave me the wrong parking directions so I ended up getting a ticket that they would not reimburse me for. I ended up teaching most of the class even though I was not a subject matter expert. Dand criticized posters I made for her even though I was not a graphic designer and they had only supplied me with Word and Clip Art. Remember, this was 1999. So the final showdown came when we were all asked to write a draft op-ed piece. I did that and one morning Dana pulled me aside and said that the Communications Manager liked what I wrote but she was going to borrow lines from everyone’s drafts. I said okay. However, when I saw the piece, it was 3/4 of my op-ed piece and the Communications Manager added a paragraph. They refused to give me credit or acknowledge what they had done. I was not an official employee of Planned Parenthood–my student aid was paying for the assignment. So I e-mailed the journalist involved at the Reno-Gazette Journal and he pulled the piece. Needless to say, when I went in, Dana had some harsh words. I told her that since she had a J-degree, she should know better than plagiarize. She told me that I was to refrain from representing Planned Parenthood or writing as an employee or member of their organization. I had no intention of doing either but it was at that moment, before I packed up my desk, that I realized just how good and powerful my writing was.
That experience also made me really hesitant to work in that capacity either professionally or as a volunteer ever again.
For starters, staying within style guides is really boring for me. I don’t like corporate stale or stodgy standards, but I get why they have to be safe. Brand is crucial–it is why I control my brands.
Next, I have an excellent eye for style but making graphics is not my path or passion.
Finally, I am definitely not a graphic artist or graphic designer.
These were some designs I came up with for Willamette Writers as a member of their social media Buzz Team. They were kind and gracious about it, but my vision and work were not their cup of tea. I wanted to help the organization and local writers, but it just was not the right fit for me.