2 blogs 2 jobs not 2x the time

I'm merging my life into one blog. I know, crazy. Beyond the Gutter will now be incorporated into Manic About Manhattan -- my life blog on design, new york, events, spaces and places.



The big move. Check.

I apologize for not updating recently. I have been moving things from one state to another, and then forwarding boxes to another address. Well, I finally have a permanent address. A permanent Manhattan address. 10023 to be exact. While I keep this blog about design, I have another blog that I update frequently with my adventures while living in the City again.
Before leaving Missouri, I packed most of my life in boxes labeled "for NY" or "for HOME." Most everything that was to go home found a nice little resting place in a climate controlled storage room about 7 or 8 miles from my parents house.

When I got to New York I arrived at a friends house, slept on the floor, then upgraded to a twin air mattress while I searched for the perfect apartment. Once I found my new home in the Upper West Side I walked 13 blocks to Bed, Bath & Beyond to purchase a full size, pillow-top air mattress (I know it was a big step)!!! Three weeks after living out of UPS boxes, a suitcase, and an empty apartment, I made the upgrade. I bought a real mattress. I also purchased a bed frame, but like half of the furniture I wanted, it is on backorder until September sometime, which in delivery terms means I might get it around October. Surprisingly, I am able to fit a lot in my little apartment in the sky.

I found this desk and bookcase at Crate and Barrel. My wonderful 27'' LCD Cinema screen for my computer is still in Arkansas, but when it arrives, it will have a place to live. Check it out.

I only have room for two pieces (this picture displays all three). The bookcase has arrived and I put it together easily, but the desk, like my bed frame, is backordered until September sometime. But when it arrives to New York, I can finally have my big computer screen shipped up. Aren't the lines great?
Living in a small apartment there is not much room for a lot, but according to designers on HGTV, the more vertical furniture that breathes in a small space, the larger the room will appear. So true. My apartment is taking shape and beginning to feel like home.
My design radar has been focused on furniture lately.
When all the pieces finally come together, I'll fill you in, but until then, you'll have to deal with photos from Crate & Barrel.


check this out

I know I have written about the Storage web site for several weeks but I haven't shown you all the link or anything about Storage so... here's a screen shot of the home page. Link to come, honest, but until then this should quench your thirst.
As of 8:00 a.m. tomorrow morning, the prototype for Storage.com will be finished. Finished whether we like it or not, but I am really happy with the way things have come together. 

The design styles of my group members have come together to create a cohesive package that I am proud to show Meredith Corp. next week. 
We still have tweaks to make to night and a few more-than-minor adjustments to make but the end is in sight. I'll give you a sneak peak of the past four months of my life and how I dove into web design and have basically become obsessed. 

Good news

The semester is winding down, insanely fast. I only have 3 days of class left. (Don't be fooled, this includes tomorrow as well as next Tuesday and Thursday) As much as my friends have been complaining about motivation and "senioritis" I don't think I have actually had time to give up on school, or get burnt out. I'm just as in love with my classes as I was the day the semester began, although I really wish I had the knowledge I have now back in January --- I believe I would have had a lot more sleep. But that's besides the point. If you sleep all the time you miss all the fun. 

Okay for my exciting news of the week -- 
Earlier in the semester a friend of mine was working on her senior capstone class. Her project was to put together a campaign plan to raise awareness for STD testing on college campuses. (Six groups would be coming up with different concept for the same campaign). She told me what they were looking for and commissioned me to come up with their logo. I said cool, no problem. Since I did the logo and art for their prospectus I haven't thought twice about it. 

On Monday the group was told the Center for Disease and Control had chosen their project as the winner. On top of winning, they received a $40,000 grant to execute the campaign and put it in action. My friend called me and told me my logo will be on college campuses in the south and be put on banners, flyers, everything promoting test awareness. 

I can't wait to see it all happen. I'm still in shock that something so small has turned into something so big! 

Question and Response

How many magazines is to many? How do you know which ones to keep and which ones to toss? Slowly, (emphasis on the slow part) I have started packing up clothes and frivolous items that I either do not want to take with me to New York or stuff I should just donate to Good Will. In an effort to make the moving process smoother in May, I am asking myself a serious question --- “Can I take all my magazines with me to New York?”

Don't laugh. I know if my dad is reading this, he has already rolled his eyes and probably cannot believe I am even asking this question, but seriously, I have magazines that I have read forever that I have marked and tabbed with post-its, and there are the essential years of Esquire, GQ, Domino (sadly, the complete collection), and stacks upon stacks of fashion, health, alt weeklies, crucial inspiration magazines, niche magazines that just make me smile (i.e. Scrapbook etc.), and countless news and entertainment magazines. 

And people say the industry is going to die? Not if my weekly financial allotment depends on it! You would think I subscribe to numerous magazines but honestly, I only subscribe to five. The main reason being that in the past four years, I have had nine addresses -- across the country. I would rather pick up the newest copy of Beautiful/Decay or Frieze the day it hits news stands than wait impatiently to see if they have received my forwarding address. 

As if this is the biggest decision of my life right now, which honestly, it's on the bottom of the totem pole in reality, I started asking myself this question on Friday night while I was working on end of the semester projects, portfolio work, and my Web site. I was reorganizing sections of my room and I started to tackle my shoddy bookcase. The pure weight of books have broken two of the shelves so they all lie on top of each other --- organized but looks dreadfully messy. So, instead of writing a paper that night I ventured to Staples. I went to get new tape for my label maker but since I was there, what could be the harm in looking around? 

Well, a few Jackson's later and I have a whole new way to store a quarter of my magazine collection --- and it all coordinates. I picked up a few matching magazine holders while I was wondering around Staples and then had a field day putting everything together and having my bookshelf look somewhat less like a tornado hit it. 

Check out these cool magazine holders I found:

So back to my original question, which magazines are crucial in the packing dilemma and which ones, *hold your breath, are worth parting with? 

In reality if I were moving anywhere I wouldn’t ask twice about which mags to toss and which to take, but considering the fact that I will most likely be living in a shoebox of an apartment, this subject becomes excruciatingly difficult. If you have any suggestions, please tell.



I should be stressed out. I should be worried about getting everything done before graduation but I'm not. It is all going to get done. I know myself too well. I won't let anything go undone. 
Easter weekend was different this year. Usually I spend it with my family, visiting my cousins, and enjoying the "Spring" weather back home... implying that home doesn't ever see the season... it goes straight from semi-cold to hot. 

This past Easter weekend was spent learning languages. No, not dialects from around the world, more like a special interest "love language." By this I mean the love of design: action script, CSS and HTML were on the forefront of my mind for 72 hours. 

I took a long run on Friday afternoon to clear my head and get out all the built up energy that was accumulating over the week. Afterwards, I sat in front of the computer, learning codes and building our Web site for Meredith Corporation. I really can't be more pleased with our current product. It isn't finished yet, but by next Wednesday it will be and I will probably be more excited.
Some people learn more from other people but in my 21 years of life I have learned that if I jump right in, I'll figure out how make something/anything work. As I've gotten older I have become a bit wiser. I realize and believe you can't do everything alone -- if you think you can, you'll go crazy trying. 

Working with a team of people for numerous projects this semester has had its ups and downs, its challenges and its successes but the result isn't the big picture -- it's what I have gained through the process. Seriously, I have learned a great deal from my peers this semester and I credit them with a lot of my creative inspiration. They have opened my eyes to a lot more design elements and ways of execution. This is one of, if not the biggest reason I love what I do -- I'll never stop learning, and I'll never know it all, and that's so cool!! 

So if Adobe comes out with CS5 in a month (which as far as I know, nothing of the sort is happening) I might complain because that would be ridiculous, but in reality, I would be so excited to learn the new shortcuts and updates. 

This past week we have been discussing conversations we have all had with design directors, graphic artists, and many others in the industry. Not only have I posted two countdowns until graduation around my house, I have been looking at apartments in New York every night before I go to bed --- but I promise I have a life, although design is and always will be a huge part. I interviewed Kristin Fitzpatrick, design director of Marie Claire magazine earlier today and just thinking about my future makes me smile subconsciously. 

The country might be in recession but it won't stop me. The job market might be tougher now that than in the past, but the good news is --- the real estate is lower that it has been in a long time in New York.  I am literally on the edge of my seat waiting, a tad bit impatiently, until I move. Columbia, you have been good to be for four years but I believe it is time to move on... hopefully somewhere ten times bigger... at least.



Last week is over! I can't believe I was in New York for spring break a week ago. It seems like that was months ago. More than two-thirds of the semester are complete and in the large scheme of things it has gone by faster than Phelps, but on a day-to-day reality it's more on the level of training for a half-marathon -- long and tedious. 

Things have become easier over the past 10 weeks and new challenges have surfaced. The phrase 'take it with a grain of salt' has become more of a daily reminder towards everything and the feeling of stress has become a medically unsolved mystery, but other than that, life couldn't be more great! I keep asking myself what I am going to do on Monday, May 17, and honestly, I have no idea. I don't know what I am going to do with myself when I don't have 500 things to do in each 24 window -- somehow though, I think I will survive.

After completing two editing exams, a Storage presentation, a personal web site critique, and a couple of papers (for those other classes I'm taking but never write about) the week finally finished with a gorgeous sunny Friday afternoon. Although I can't boast about much, I had three cover designs for the April 16 issue of Vox. I did a couple of very simple typography covers about Earth Day but it was pretty pathetic. Luckily, we got the weekend to work on our originals and resubmit them this morning. 

The cover story, as of last night, was still not finalized so I was designing around two different themes -- Earth Day and School Safety. Very opposite I know, but both were fun to work with. Here are the designs I submitted this morning. 

For Earth Day:

For School Safety: