@ DENVER ADVERTISING
PROCESS JOURNAL | CDES 3980 | FALL 2021
This process journal will reflect steps taken on work that has been accomplished at Denver Advertising since August 2021. When I chose this agency for my internship, I wanted to learn more about running one much more than just being an employee. I felt that this location would be my best bet as it's smaller and I've been able to get more hands on training on how to run one. Learning directly under the owner/creative director has helped me gain skills I would not have been able to get elsewhere at an agency with multiple employees and no time to really sit down and discuss important things that need to happen to run a business. There are a lot of different elements involved in running an advertising agency that needs to bring in millions of dollars a years to profit and stay afloat. I've also worked with a lot of businesses that bring in millions of dollars in revenue a year working here, so it's been a great experience for me overall, and I will be showing process work from some of my favorite jobs over the semester that enabled me to grow as a designer.
Develop an understanding of how interactive design evolves within the office/studio context:
I understand more about how to build websites, sitemap them, and work on their SEO and content from the backend now.
Develop UX/UI/front-end development skills in Wordpress and Wix along with other app software where appropriate:
I have been learning a lot more about Wordpress this semester doing backend SEO work, along with more features of Wix.
Understand file management needs of project
including issues such as resolution, size, naming conventions and format:
While I have a good understanding of it already, I have also learned how to keep company files more organized at this position.
Understand production timelines, workflow
processes and time management needs:
I have been able to complete projects on time and learned more about management of them than in the Summer semester.
Continue to develop skills and understanding of creative process and internal approval;
concept > sketches > digital comps > final:
I haven't done a lot of sketching this semester as I have only designed one logo. Websites are typically site mapped as we go.
Gain an understanding of the entire scope of project development based on client/project needs and desires:
I've worked with a lot of clients that have bigger needs this semester, but have also been doing weekly jobs that pay the bills.
Office Time is the way that I keep track of my hours at work. I previously had to sign a contract with my employer as well stating that I wouldn't compete with his company or take his clients. It was pretty standard stuff but taught me some valuable lessons in making sure to have policies in place that prevent people from stealing clients from you, along with ensuring that workflow stays productive by keeping track of hours in an honest manner. Integrity is key when you have a lot of employees to juggle and can't always keeps track of who is doing what. Having an account manager is very helpful when you have 10 employees or more and need to make sure jobs are staying on track. This is a sample of Office Time's format and how I have used it to keep track of my hours on a monthly basis.
I keep track of my jobs in Asana, which is an online app that helps manage everything to keep it on track. It can tell me how many hours are allotted for each job, change deadlines, upload files to for final proofs, and write notes back and forth with my boss so we stay on track. The slideshow contains jobs I still need to complete, many that I've completed since I started, and a sample page of a job when it is open with completed work inside.
This client already owns a company called Davis Contracting Group, a company that does a lot of landscaping work along with professional lawn care. Their new business is geared toward making contracting proposals for building houses and they wanted their new logo to match the old one in a lot of ways, but be more geared towards houses so they could expand their overall goal of being able to build full properties in the future. While I thought their original logo and this new one aren't very great, the clients were very happy with what I came up with, and are happy that it keeps their brand identity aligned with their vision.
PROPOSAL PROS BRAND PROCESS
The clients current logo for their contracting group is pretty hideous, but they wanted something that would match it in their new logo for housing contracts. I ran with the idea of the gradient across the middle, and also tried to match the "Contracting Group" typeface in the new one.
This client wanted to rebuild their website, which I started on over the Summer semester then completed in early September, but they were lacking good content. I was asked to go on an adventure up to Loveland with my boss and the owner of the liquor store to take photos with my camera, then had to go through the editing process. My boss owns a camera as well, and took a few photos where his white balance wasn't correct. My process selections for this section illustrate the editing steps, along with some thoughts on rebranding their company which I've started. You can also view the website I built for them by clicking the button below.
NORTHSTAR LIQUOR PHOTOGRAPHY PROCESS
After doing the shoot at the clients liquor store, I brought all the RAW files into Lightroom Classic and sorted them. We ended up with 270 final selections, though not all of those were used. You can see my boss in some of the photos below taking snaps of their employees.
As with Northstar Liquor, Stonecrafters is a giant warehouse but sells granite, marble, and other kinds of stone countertop materials to contractors at wholesale prices. It is also open to the public however, and offers an array of different products beyond stone. They needed to have a giant vinyl banner made, along with some printable ads to hand out to people, but lacked in content. I was asked to go take photos of their warehouse then design the marketing materials, which was no small task. The client who owns the business has a lot of money, and thinks he is a designer too on top of it. Needless to say, it was difficult to deal with but I managed to get the content, complete the banner and ads, and move on to bigger projects. I have also been working on their website some, but aesthetic appeal doesn't seem to be a huge concern of the business who is much more interested in their bottom line.
STONECRAFTERS PHOTOGRAPHY AND ADS
These images speak for themselves in many ways, without having to go through the entire process of how I edited them again like the Northstar ones. I was however made to get up on a scissor life with one of their employees to capture these around 40ft off the ground, which was terrifying.
The work for this client has been pretty straight forward, although it required a little more creative intuition for the first month or so. I was tasked with creating social media ads to boost on Facebook on a weekly basis, and eventually made a magazine ad as well that is shown in my paper. Most of the process behind this was finding cool concrete photos, getting a sound layout going, then plugging the information in weekly with a different background. The first month was designed with several layouts that featured multiple photos, while later designs have been a little more straightforward but have needed some rearranging to look aesthetically pleasing. Since it was basically start from some information I was given, no notes needed to be written down and I have shared some different looks that have been produced over the course of several months beginning in late August when I started the Fall semester.
CENTENNIAL CONCRETE WEEKLY SOCIAL MEDIA ADS
This is all that was provided to me in Asana when I first started on these. I was given direction to copy the information and put it on an ad however I wanted to do it. I fed off some of the information but the body copy wasn't really necessary. The services were so they made the final cut.
Pure elation began when I got to start this project, which is the capstone of my internship experience. This is my boss Mike and his wife Marcia's other company, and while they already had a website and store going for it, wanted to upgrade it to a more user friendly website with a lot of features. The goal was to take the information off the old site, while adding an organic and aesthetically pleasing appeal to the new one. The old one was also a little messed up in some parts on mobile, so in a mobile first society where everyone is on smartphones, it needed to be functional. I have included process work and some videos of process work to show how it came together from a starting template. I have also included links to the new site and old site for comparison.
BPURE WEBSITE UPDATE
While the header and footer were already complete by the time I took this process video, I wanted to show the general format of the original template to compare with some other slides. A lot of work was done to this website to make it complete, and it's been very exciting to work on over the past month.
While my time at Denver Advertising has been great, it will be coming to an end soon and I will moving on to my last semester in college before graduation! I am so extremely thankful to Mike for giving me the opportunity to work for him and grow as a designer and marketer. While I did a lot of design work here, I have also been doing some very tedious SEO work on the backend of Wordpress websites, which have enabled me to get outside of my comfort zone and learn more about what it takes to run an agency. The work isn't always pretty. You have to take on jobs that pay the bills sometimes and help businesses grow by people finding them online.
While I have more process work to show on that front, this program is geared toward communication design, and I have thus chosen not to show spreadsheets of work where I had to do backend updates, then do page counts on how far in websites are on search engines after I had optimized them. I did however do some other fun work, such as doing this van wrap for the Fireplace Store that was eventually printed and put on as a wrap. Building multiple websites along with making sure I stayed on task brought about some hard challenges for me that I needed this semester.
I've also learned a lot more about the business than I did during the Summer, learning how to have a base amount of money that needs to come through the door hourly to stay open and profit, along with learning how to maintain your workload and get things done in a timely manner. It's been hard at times too, some days I just didn't feel creative or want to do work that was boring, but projects must be done even on bad days and it's an important lesson in business to learn. It's been a great Fall semester and I'm so thankful that I got to work for an amazing boss in Mike. Can't wait to see what else the future brings at a larger agency that's still small.