graphic design coach

5

REASONS YOU MIGHT NEED A DESIGN COACH

YOU HAVE ACCESS TO THE TOOLS, BUT WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT CONCEPTS, STRATEGY, HISTORY and other facets of the graphic design business.

 

YOU HAVE TRIED D.I.Y. OR ARE CURRENTLY ENROLLED but not making any progress, don't understand the instructions or aren't being challenged enough by the assignments.

YOU ARE IN A DESIGN RUT !
def: An uninspired routine or pattern of behavior that one continues unthinkingly or because change is difficult.

YOU LEARN BETTER WITH ACCESS TO HUMAN INTERACTION - 
including q/a, demonstrations that you can stop and talk about, and assignments that have challenges as well as feedback in critique.

YOU PREFER NOT TO WAIT FOR COLLEGE OR TO PAY FOR THE HIGH TUITION 
because you have found a passion for the craft and business,

have limited time for traditional education models,

or prefer not to spend 4 years and lots of $ in age of pandemics on a campus where you can only take one design class at a time.

Coach Val

Gets to know you as a person and a creative problem-solver.

I help assess your creative box and provide solutions in terms of basic tools, exercises or larger projects that can help improve your repertoire, type sensitivity, or get you out of your rut of same old tricks.

 

Whether you are a novice, self-taught, or a mid-career professional I will customize a program suited to your individual goals and needs with numerous projects and tasks in my back pocket for our work together.

Tool is just a Tool

The proliferation of the tools we use to implement the creative solutions to problems are pervasive in society along with a long list of default typographic choices and colors.

 

Some people think you can sprinkle magic fairy dust on the machine and out comes a solution. Nowadays people can drag and drop, plug and play, even purchase a logo for $5 on fiverr and even automate much of the production of design objects.

 

What makes you a competitive creative is your brain and how you use it. As your coach, I can help.

Why a Coach,
not Professor?

As a coach, I work to inspire, motivate, nurture, challenge, and relate to you on a human to human level. I watch how you solve problems and attack the work to be able to provide advice on how to refine , improve your workflow and push your solution boundaries.

 

My path in becoming a better teacher every day lead me to these strategies and innovative techniques and coursework moving away from a professorial mode.

 

In 2018, I walked away from tenure and more than 20 years of teaching at the college level to work one on one with different types of students from all walks of life.

coachvalsloan_designposter inspirability

Why now?

Are you yearning for the freedom and flexibility to work on fun non-client projects that can inspire, rejuvenate, and inject a new energy into your creative practice?

 

Are you yearning for a break either a weekend, a month or up to a year to transform your life, give you energy and a new work/life balance?

 

Don't put yourself

on the back burner any longer!

Customize your design plan of study from basic just advancing your skill set to an entire college level graphic design curriculum at a fraction of the costs and time commitment. 

TYPES OF PROJECTS AND COMMITMENT LEVELS

01

basic

I'm just looking for a brief coaching consultation session and feedback on my work.

I'm just looking for one or two projects to kick me into gear that I would work on my own and check in once in a while.

02

basic plus

I would like to have a creative assessment project so that I can be coached and develop an individualized plan.

The plan would include one or two projects that I can work on with some engagement and critique thru the work.

03

souped up

I'm very interested in an assessment, mentorship, and an individualized plan of study that includes up to three courses that will help me rejuvenate, and focus on improving areas of weakness while also targeting my strengths in flexing my solution skill set.

04

max injection

I'm all in. I want to take as many classes as I can to have a full portfolio by the end of a 6 or 12month period. I am looking for a longer term coaching relationship instead of formal schooling.

sample student work

BCariannagerrior_patternrecognition_Page_1
BCariannagerrior_patternrecognition_Page_2
BCjaquielinebole
BCjacquelineboleposter
alyssadanielewiczvs2
edit3_edited
r.ochab_blurb -5
Venomous
Dazed
Disloyalty
CITYBOOK_maloan_pdx_Page_02
harpersmithMG
BCrosemaddenposter
momaipad_Page_06
coachvalsloan_ikko tanaka project

MORE ABOUT ME

1. A Designer. When I was in high school I didn't know the term graphic design, but I was on the yearbook staff. As an active photographer and art club member by then, I loved combining image and text; organizing a narrative, theme and chapters, and I thought maybe I could work on a magazine someday. It wasn't until I started college as a Business major did I discover graphic design because of friends I made in the dorm. I was hooked (and changed my major). Eventually I went to grad school for an MFA in design to have the qualifications for a teaching career and to further improve my craft while discovering my voice as a creative person. Design permeates through my existence as a person on the planet.

2. A PUZZLER. Some of my friends call me this and another one refers to me as a Swiss army knife. I love puzzles. My brain really enjoys problem-solving which is the key to graphic design. I love learning and graphic design allows you to dive into all sorts of subjects. I love exploring and have created a philosophy of the art of accidental adventure because in order to have creative inspiration you must regularly break away from routine to be able to see things from different perspectives.

 

3. A WONDER WANDERER. I believe in the art of accidental adventure as a way to live a creative life. It's important to challenge your conventions and safe comfort zones to be a better designer and problem-solver. I do this by exploring place. The way that navigating in unfamiliar terrain can cause your brain to fire rapidly and notice things from colors to textures and lines helps me stay fit as a designer. I would love to take you on a journey with one of my many unique assignments.

4. An ADVOCATE. I have been working with people basically my whole life. I was a day camp counselor in high school and a writing tutor in college. I was a girl scout through silver award and then a leader for 5 years after undergraduate school. I have spent more than two decades working with people in my role as a professor at small schools which also went beyond the classroom into advising individuals and the design club. I have taught numerous courses from introduction to portfolio and regularly innovated my curricular practice. I think about students, their work, and if I have ideas for them I will communicate those.

5. An EDUCATOR. Most people teach the way they were taught and never really stop to think about the instruction method or the needs of the student. I have spent a significant portion of my career focused on becoming a better educator with conferences and even leadership training. Understanding that active learning has better retention and that most attention spans cannot last hours on end, I respect your time and your goals. I have spent so many hours in teaching digital tools, I have lost track, but I because of this I have transformed my methodology based on the needs of students from diverse backgrounds and skill sets from novice to comfortable.

EVEN MORE ABOUT ME,

BEFORE WE WORK TOGETHER

Would you like to see my portfolio? Head over there now.

I'm an INFJ-A - an ADVoCATE
(i think i used to be an ENFJ and at another point an ENTJ/P)

"The Advocate personality type is very rare, making up less than one percent of the population, but they nonetheless leave their mark on the world. Advocates have an inborn sense of idealism and morality, but what sets them apart is that they are not idle dreamers. These individuals are capable of taking concrete steps to realize their goals and make a lasting positive impact. People with this personality type tend to see helping others as their purpose in life." - www.16personalities.com

I am one of 3 people in the country to be president of 3 AIGA chapters. I was the charter President for AIGA Orlando and then AIGA Nashville a year later. I spent much of my extra time over about 10 or so years dedicated to the activities on a local and national level.

AIGA, the professional association for design has experienced some changes after celebrating it's centennial in 2014. It is a grassroots organization that has been a very powerful aspect of my life. I recognize that as only a member currently and not active in leadership that the organization is being met with some challenges in the new decade with issues such as diversity and I hope to be a part of the positive changes that can happen.

I walked away from tenure and the academic environment because a) it was a toxic workplace that embroiled students, myself and others in a very challenging bullying by the other person teaching design and b) I saw from the inside that many institutions cannot be innovative because the faculty and administration like status quo. I wrote about my experiences here if you want to know more.

Why don't I have more followers on IG or YouTube?
I admit I'm a late adopter to these social media channels. However, you may understand more about how my time was occupied if you look further into my resume, my activities with AIGA and professional development, and the toll that being a target of constant bullying/harassment in the work place meant that I could not adequately focus on my social identity nor paying clients. I freelanced for many years and have had experience in the industry. I've also attended many conferences, workshops and international opportunities.

Check out my LINKEDin Profile.

I've been to Japan 7 times as an adult. My family was stationed in Okinawa twice so I wanted to return as an adult. I audited a study abroad course there as a site visit to run my own study abroad the next year. Then I spent 5 weeks during my sabbatical and had the chance to return several more times to document the experience with place and the seasons. The most recent trip in 2019 I lead a group of artists in a study abroad style 2 week trip. I would like to do that again in the future so ask to join my list!

Check out my travel blog: Globetripping.xyz

Get in touch for free consult

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Venomous