Shannon Malone

Graphic Designer

Q: Where are you from?

– I’m from Cleveland, OH but I bounce around every few months for work and school. The most recent place I’ve lived in Austin, Texas.

Q: What originally made you want to become a graphic designer?

– I’ve been fascinated by graphic design since about the sixth grade. I’ve never been a fan of the outdoors so I pretty much grew up on the computer and online. Originally wanting to be a fashion designer, I stumbled across this website called goSupermodel, which was just a dress up game of sorts. But they had profiles where you could use HTML coding to customize it. Shortly after, I found DeviantArt, which exposed me to the graphics you could make in Photoshop. Falling in love with Photoshop and basic HTML coding, I told myself that one day I would be able to code my own website. I starting reading every tutorial I could find, and by 14, I coded my first layout from scratch. Graphic and web design stuck with me ever since.

Q: Who or what has been the biggest single influence on your way of thinking when it comes to creating a design?

– My first year of college greatly influenced my designing process. Having extremely tough and nit-picking professors, I learned to become critical of my designs. I can probably tell you 15 reasons why a design does not work or suffice before I can tell you 3 of why it works. This critical eye allowed me to fine tune my development process and my ending product. Whether I am designing an interior space or a website/logo, I have a precise reason behind the font, color, and hierarchy of the design. I’ve learned that design is not only about aesthetics, but harmony and functionality.

Q: What would you say is your strongest skill and how have you honed that skill over the years?

-My strongest skill would definitely be my ability to develop a relationship with my clients. In a field such as graphic design, there is always going to be a designer “better” than you or someone whose style is preferred over yours. What keeps my clients happy and what helps me get referrals is the friendship I am able to develop with them throughout the design process; I love hearing their stories and I truly do care about the progression of their brand. Not only do I get referrals, but my customers return to me when they need more work done! It makes my day when someone calls me “their” graphic designer. Customer service is key to getting and maintaining clients!

Q: Do you think online design resources have influenced the graphic design being produced today? If so, how?

– I’d definitely say so. Because there are so many design resources at our fingertips, (Pinterest, DeviantArt, and even Instagram to name a few) I find that originality is few and far between. Imitation is not inspiration. A lot of times, clients and designers see a design that worked for someone else and just snag it without altering it. I’ve even seen people steal someone’s artwork or branding elements and just replace the original company’s name with theirs. It’s great that we have an abundance of inspiration at our fingertips, but individuality should still be prioritized.

Q: Aside from your work what are you passionate about?

– I’m very passionate about helping marginalized and under-privileged communities. My major is interior design, and upon graduation, I’d like to propose an improved public housing solution to help the homeless in Cleveland. I volunteer at my neighborhood’s retirement home often and I love being a mentor at my school. Otherwise, I am a lover of any and everything artsy; I write, draw, dance, and love bettering my graphics skills. I also love food! Sushi and stir fry are my favorites.

Q: Are there any superstitious beliefs or rules that you live by?

– I wouldn’t necessarily say I’m superstitious but I definitely take karma seriously. I try to put out as many good vibes into the world as I can. I try to distance myself away from negative energy and aim to quickly rectify my behavior if I find myself being short or rude with someone else.

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you have heard and would repeat to others?

– Whenever I reflect on my growth, I always think about Drake’s verse from Do Not Disturb: “They don’t know they’ve got to be faster than me to get to me. No one’s done it successfully”. I began prospering and thriving once I learned to stop comparing myself to those around me. If you are always waiting for someone’s next move, you will forever be behind them. Go at your own pace and find your own momentum. Focus on your own progression and don’t compare your journey to anyone else’s.

Q: Where can we find you on social media and some of your work you’ve done?

– All of my handles are The Everyday Boss. IG: @theeverydayboss & FB: They are slightly bare at the moment; I’ve been so busy helping other businesses, I’ve put my own on the back burner! But my personal IG handle is shvnn__ (two underscores).

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