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Well hello there!

In 1999 I started this site (under a different URL) to document all of the odd happenings in our Atlanta neighborhood, including homicides, crackhouse fires and a gravestone found in our backyard.

gravestone

In 2009, even though weird things were still happening in our neighborhood, I also began writing about design, and the things I observed both as an digital artist and freelance designer.

Over the past 10 years working as a designer, I’ve had the amazing privilege to be recognized for my work and write for some pretty awesome design magazines:

Smashing Magazine
MobileTUTS
Web Designer Magazine Feature
Web Designer Magazine Article
Six Revisions

I have a heart for those who desire to learn a craft, change careers and become great designers, or maybe just creators of cool stuff. :) I myself came into a design career much later than I’d hoped.

Rather than jumping into design for my undergrad degree, I chose a major that left me floundering career-wise for eight years. At 29, I finally went back to school to get my art degree.

What’s cool is when I finally did begin studying design I had a completely different perspective on what it meant to love your work, because I knew what it was like to be miserable at work. The gratitude I felt for having the opportunity to study something I loved… I didn’t waste a minute or word of instruction.

I come from a family of dedicated teachers and craftspeople. My mom taught 7th grade pre-algebra and was a math coach and administrator for 25 years. In my dad’s 30 year career, he taught drafting, woodworking, automotive repair and then served as administrator for all vocational departments at Marietta High School. My dad’s twin sister had a long career as a home economics teacher and other aunts and uncles up the family tree enjoyed fulfilling careers in teaching.

My folks during their teaching days.

Personally, I never imagined I’d be a part of anyone learning anything. Growing up, I never developed depth of knowledge in any one subject. What’s happened over the past 10 years? I developed my talent for art and design into a craft, an expertise. And over time, writing about design, working in design, I found that all you really need to teach is a excitement for a subject and eagerness to share that knowledge with others.

Having a passion for a subject also means being a lifelong learner. I am a student of design trends and techniques. I love reading Smashing Magazine, GlassHouse Conversations, TechCrunch and CSSTricks (not because I know a lick of code, but because I design for people who do).

I love both creating and helping others learn the craft of design, whether that takes the form of graphic design, fine art or DIY craft projects. I love fueling other people’s interest in learning a craft. It is so exciting to see someone else take a piece of knowledge and work with it. Children, adults, whatever – it amazes me.

So a lot of what you see on this site and The Conversion Class is just that. Just me creating, deconstructing, teaching and hopefully helping others create too!

If you’ve read this far, send me an email. I like hearing your stories too. :) jen