By ALEXANDER VO ’16
Businesses and organizations looking to keep up with the current generation must also keep up-to-date with their image. Now more than ever, logos and brand recognition serve vital roles to shaping any organization’s representation. This graphic designer maintains the challenge of improving obsolete content and ameliorating timeworn designs from older marketing schemes that still haunt many businesses from flourishing today.
Hailing from the lush evergreen forests and bi-polar forecasts of Spanaway, Wash., 22-year-old senior Nick Mann works as the art director for Impact, Pacific Lutheran University’s student-run ad & design firm. The ad firm helps design flyers, posters, and advertisements for various clubs and other organizations on PLU campus to further spread their causes or to promote upcoming events.
Mann first started graphic design at Pierce College in 2012. “There were some challenges at first, like pen tool was extremely difficult to use. I do remember the first problem I encountered was how to change a square’s color in Photoshop,” Mann said.
Mann currently works as the overseer and mentor of five other design students. “It’s only been a month so I don’t believe the best hasn’t arrive yet. But the worst-case scenario is when we get a project that is due in two to three days and none of my designers can fit that in their schedule in such a short amount of time,” Mann said.
“Me, being the director is usually the one who has to do it, but because of that tight deadline I can choose to decline. But I don’t, because I believe it comes with the job and to never turn down paying clients. I’m fortunate enough to say I’ve never missed a deadline.”
At his first internship, Mann received a task for re-branding a 13 page food drive kit on the various ways a donator could create their own food drive for FISH Food Banks. He accomplished his task within three days. His finished work can be found at the FISH Food Banks website.
Michael Rubalcava, a friend of Mann and business major at PLU also concurs to the benefits of how graphic design can significantly help shape an organization’s image.
“I have seen webpages and pamphlets Nick has redesigned and the change in quality is almost unmeasurable. He understands the style you’re going for and has a very strong understanding of design elements,” Rubalcava said.
Mann also worked with the World Trade Center of Tacoma and The Humane Society of Tacoma by creating brochures and illustrations for improving public awareness to other companies and supporting various programs they sponsored. He has worked on projects for updating The Humane Society of Tacoma’s P.A.W. program, Humane Heritage Foundation, and the Spay/Neuter application process.
In his spare time, Mann enjoys reading news articles which fill up quite a chunk of his week. Mann reads around 700 news articles per week. “I’m not joking, you can check out my reading list, I currently have 853 articles to be read in a couple of days,” Mann said.
Mann plans to graduate in spring 2015 and work as a designer for an ad agency while focusing on his freelance work. His website can be found here. He hopes to one day work for larger companies such as Google or Amazon or even start up his own ad agency.