Why redsapphire?

headshotIt’s simple, in a complicated kind of way. My favorite color is blue, and while I was dating the man who is now my husband, he started calling me “Blue.” It was a fun, quirky kind of nick-name, and I loved it.  When we married, he gave me a wedding ring with sapphires and rubies in the design.  Why rubies?  Because his favorite color is red, of course.  He is my main support in my business, the man-behind-the-scenes, so to speak.  So I named my business in a way that honors both of us.

Why graphic design?

As a military spouse, having a portable career was very important to me. Being able to set my own hours while often solo parenting gave me the best of both worlds.  I started out by designing t-shirts and contact cards.  Now and then I would help a friend out with some artwork or design problem. I have enjoyed working with people to discover the essence of their professional image and then translate that into something that can be put on letterheads and business cards.

While continuing my own education and staying up-to-date with current trends in graphics and marketing, I enjoy working collaboratively with my clients.  I most often find new clients through the good recommendations of friends and former clients.  Freelancing offers me the opportunity to choose my clients and learn to do new things while helping the cottage industry of America flourish. I find a great deal of satisfaction in empowering entrepreneurs take that next step in helping their businesses grow.

What other things have you done?

As a high-school student, I spent my free time volunteering as the manager for the school auditorium.  I designed lighting, helped work on sets, operated the small sound reinforcement system, and interacted with so many of the community groups that used the school’s stage.

Because of this developed passion, I went on to participate in community theaters and touring companies, both on and off stage.  My musical background opened doors for me in a variety of venues giving me a breadth of experience that I can bring to the table in understanding my clients.

ALS1996Taking a break from touring, I attended Cedarville University where, while obtaining a degree in Multimedia Technology, I worked in theatre with makeup and costuming, lighting and sound design. I studied graphic design, videography, broadcast and studio audio mixing.  When I was not mixing audio for one of the college music ministry groups, you could find me at work at one of the radio stations on campus.

For over a decade, I owned my own business as a cosmetic consultant learning the fine art of listening to my clients, working with them to achieve the desired results, and focusing on client care (customer service) so that my business could continue to grow. In working with a variety of people in the personal image business, I have learned invaluable information in marketing, presentation, and maintaining a consistent professional image. Learning to be successful as a small business owner, and learning how to balance the paperwork with the fun has been an incredible journey, and I welcome the opportunity to encourage other entrepreneurs in their own journeys.

One of my passions has been to help churches and ministries put their best face forward in communicating the Gospel to their communities. I have worked with a large international ministry as a member of their Gospel Production touring group and I have worked with a variety of churches as a media director, technical director or front of house audio technician. These projects have been satisfying experiences for me as I support so many diverse groups of people working towards a common goal. I have enjoyed being able to use all of my talents and skills leading volunteers, working with speakers and musicians, and support the goals of the Church through technical direction, media and web support.

Another of my passions has been advocacy for inclusion of special needs and other minority populations. I have volunteered as a special needs advocate for over a decade, helping individuals integrate into home, religious, and school.  For example, I have taught methods of discipline to parents of special needs children honoring the dignity of the individual. I have educated parents, volunteers and other individuals working towards integrating persons with disabilities (in furtherance of the ADA) and other minority status into community for their own benefit and the benefit of those who are then able to learn from them.

What do you enjoy about freelancing?

Freelancing gives me an opportunity to meet new and diverse clients and develop long term relationships with them. I’m always eager to take on a new project!