& WRITING SERVICE
YOU: a creative professional - maybe you write, copy-edit, plan events, a travel extraordinaire, an artist, or even small business owner - needing an online visual representation of your work.
You need a portfolio, but don't know where to start?
Maybe you don't have the time and want the personal touch that a template or AI generator won't provide?
A PORTFOLIO of your work is more than just assembling geometric shapes into a pattern.
VAL: a designer and design professor turned DESIGN COACH with 20+ years experience working with people like YOU in developing a solid quality representation of their work in a visual way - now it's a must to have a digital portfolio.
I've been working with people in the bridge to the profession for so long but I still understand the nuances of today's visual environment. At the heart of what I do is mentorship combined with understanding design especially in presenting your work. I'm keen on legibility, visual hierarchy, color and typography relationships. I enjoy organizing and helping you evaluate your best work to showcase it in the best way.
Whether you are a writer, a creative assistant or involved in other activities that are challenging to document in a one-page resume then a digital portfolio that highlights all of your successes and strengths.
Elevate yourself above the blah.
Working with me, you will go through a brief evaluation and interview process to assess your personality and 3 top skills that set you apart from the pack. Remember that people are hiring whom they want to work with if in fact all the prospects are of relatively equal qualifications. Your brand visualized in a digital portfolio with a hint of your personality and skills that are communicated through typography, color, layout can set you apart.
That's the extra edge that a coach can provide that templates and generators cannot. Let's chat about your goals! Sign up for a free initial conversation to discuss your goals at calendly.com/coachvalsloan
Design Fee will be established after the initial consultation based off of the depth and breadth of your needs, the amount of pieces to be included and any additional branding that may be required. Additional costs for domain registration and hosting are not included.
What does Val do
as your DESIGN COACH
& portfolio designer?
TO KNOW YOU
& ASSESS YOUR
BUILD A RELATIONSHIP.
I HELP YOU
STRENGTHS AND SKILLS TO HIGHLIGHT
THEM IN A
YOU IN YOUR
I CAN HONE IN
REPRESENTATION OF YOUR WORK
with more than 20 years working with people like you.
I HAVE A KEEN
SENSE OF DESIGN AND PORTFOLIO ORGANIZATION
TO PUTTING YOUR
INTO A VISUAL
Are you interested in adding more skills to your resume for that job promotion or better than lateral move?
Check out my the program I've created for you!
Based on years of moving from professor to coach and creating a dynamic, fun, and innovative curriculum, I have developed a core sequence of 5 courses that are a condensed version of the required 10 classes at average of $3500-5000 at most Universities. So for the price of less than one class you can learn the ins and outs of graphic design and creative thinking that could boost your qualifications and skill set to nab that new job you have your eyes on. Keep scrolling for more info!
MEMBERSHIP PLANS & BUNDLES
Choose any TWO lessons and receive 20% off.
Choose any THREE lessons and receive 30% off.
PAY MONTHLY FOR 12 MONTHS AND RECEIVE 35% OFF ALL 7 LESSONS
PREPAY FOR ALL 7 LESSONS AND RECEIVE 40% OFF
Become a patron member for $30/month includes one scheduled 20 min call a month plus 10% off any lesson,
Become a patron member for $40/month includes two scheduled 20 min call (or one 45 minute session) plus 15% off any lesson.
Critique your portfolio - $35 includes 20-30 min skype consult
WANT MORE THAN JUST A LESSON?
MOST PEOPLE TEACH THE WAY THEY WERE TAUGHT. I'VE SPENT THE LAST 2 DECADES CHALLENGING THAT AND MOVED FROM PROFESSOR TO COACH EARLY ON.
MANY TRADITIONAL PROGRAMS AT THE COLLEGE/UNIVERSITY LEVEL ARE STILL GROUNDED IN A MODERNIST APPROACH IN A POSTMODERN WORLD.
CURRICULUM IN INSTITUTIONS TAKES A LONG TIME TO CHANGE DUE TO THE INTERNAL SYSTEMS, CHECKS AND BALANCES OFTEN TIMES THROUGH AN APPROVAL PROCESS THAT INCLUDES MAJORITY NON-DESIGNER FACULTY.
THIS PROGRAM CONDENSES THE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECTS OF A CURRICULUM INCLUDING 10 CLASSES (that on average costs 25k) INTO 5 COURSES, plus an in person experience. Take into consideration that 5 college classes average 2,500-3,500 per class or on avg 12.5k if taken one at a time. 5 classes is typical load for one semester so divide tuition which is a bulk rate by 2).
THE METHODOLOGY FOR THESE CLASSES INCLUDES SPEED PROBLEMS WHICH ARE TO FLEX THE CREATIVE MUSCLES IN A SHORT AMOUNT OF TIME, DEMONSTRATIONS OF TECHNOLOGY FOR EACH LEVEL, REFERENCES TO CONTEMPORARY AND HISTORICAL DESIGN EXAMPLES, AND MULTIPLE PROJECTS THAT TAKE YOU THROUGH A COMPLETE DESIGN PROCESS. You will be encouraged to explore in the design process and learn to recognize happy accidents as a creative philosophy for innovation.
This course emphasizes the creative process of wonder, experimentation, observation, and excitement that is integral to the design process and key traits of successful graphic designers. It is exploratory in nature and will provide solid foundation of design principles and elements through investigation of various assignments that require you to be curious, inquisitive, and a risk-taker. You will be encouraged in the coaching process to understand how to recognize happy accidents, implementing trial and error in learning, observation turned into practice, and a bit of fun thrown into the mix.
• Learning and utilizing graphic design principles and elements and creating compositions.
• Learning various tools including handcraft, ie. sketching and collage that leads to basics of Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign.
• Discovering concepts such as figure/ground and gestalt that provide fundamentals for design problem solving.
• Exploration of the design process which includes brainstorming, research, ideation, conceptualization, exploration, and actualization.
Projects will include smaller speed problems that are not necessarily completed; an image-based assignment in place emphasizing Photoshop and InDesign; and creating shapes, marks, characters from hand and digital for a final fun project.
Branding is storytelling. In this section of the program you will use skills developed in the previous classes to hone in on brand identity. The primary client is yourself for personal branding, resume development, portfolio production. You'll be asked to go through a skills and goals assessment process to begin the foundation for concept development. Because it's tricky to design for yourself, you will try out this methodology for two other brands first which will provide a broad array of portfolio quality work. In addition, you will work on creating your personal website and brand space on various social networks such as indeed, linkedin and behance.
• transforming the design process into a self-evaluation in creating one's own brand.
• Learn about skill assessment and goal setting to use also as concept development for your brand.
• Reinforce the use of gestalt, figure/ground, and innovative typography in your visual solutions.
• Exhibit understanding of brand identity and brand story through creation of identity manual and collateral material.
• Create a comprehensive portfolio, resume, and website that reinforces your personal brand.
We'll start with your own goal assessment and brainstorming process, but to allow the brain to mull all that over you will move into two smaller brand projects along with exercises to stretch your creative muscles with symbols.
Step to is to become a wanderer in the mind and in physical action. This course is a combination of thinking and making. You will be introduced to the basics of typography including anatomy, history, and classification. You'll be encouraged to explore hand lettering versus digital solutions and within the digital become adept at hand-eye coordination of composition. The design process is emphasized and the projects become more complex building on what you learned in WONDER100. An emphasis will be placed on the meaning of words (connotation vs denotation) and the personality of typographic expression.
• Learning and utilizing typographic forms from hand lettering and hand craft to digital solutions.
• Understanding the historical context of typography and the classification and anatomy to be able to make good conceptual and aesthetic decisions.
• Exploration of the design process and a more complex problem-solving challenges including grids.
• Become a wanderer by allowing for experiments in the design process.
• Understand how meaning is communicated with word & image.
Projects will include smaller speed problems that are not necessarily completed; a a research based exploration of the typographic form, and at least one actualized project with expressive typography. This will include digital solutions but have less digital instruction than WONDER 100.
This is an advanced level graphic design course. What is the role of the designer in society? What does it mean to be a citizen designer? What are the more advanced creative innovation tools one can use to become a design thinker? You'll explore forms of visual rhetoric and examine symbols and communication with a semiotic matrix as part of the design process for the assignments in this module.
You'll become an explorer physically and mentally as you develop the skills for advanced critical thinking.
• Understanding of creative innovation tools including visual rhetoric and semiotics.
• Become an explorer as you examine objects, time and place in developing a creative artifact.
• Integrate all of the skills you have learned so far, but with coaching continue to stretch yourself.
The assignments will have creative prompts but open ended as far as solution to allow the process to determine outcome using the ideation tools you'll discover and practice more than once.
This is a journey into the history of graphic design. We'll start in the 1980s with the introduction of the Macintosh and jump back in time to discover threads between cultures, social, economic and historical contexts. Having a contextual foundation for the discipline of design and how cultures communicate can inspire and inform your decision-making in the design process. Perhaps you are an appropriator or attempt to be a pure modernist. This course will include reading, links to contextual videos in content that exists in the interwebs along with short lecture style overviews of course material, and critical thinking exercises to make connections over time. You will be encouraged to produce a short writing assignment that will be integrated into a design project that emphasizes the book format producing your own document using InDesign primarily and other digital or hand craft tools to complete the visualization process. Throw out the test anxiety syndrome and take this course for the love of learning and discovery as if you were a time traveler.
• Understanding of the historical context and significance of graphic design and visual communication throughout recorded time.
• Flex muscles in a creative way in a research investigation as a time traveler.
• Utilize your evolving design aesthetics for actualizing design artifacts that integrate copy.
• Overview of the grid and visual hierarchy, how to structure a book format, and creating a unifying visual statement.
One large project combining word and image in a multi-page document with a smaller assignment sprinkled through the production of the other work to give your brain the breaks it needs for a-ha moments.
Taste. Trek. Globetripping.
Three unique in person workshops including travel opportunities.
Once you complete the sequence of five modules, it is highly recommended that you participate in at least one in person workshop with several others (maximum 12 participants). Taste is all about food and design, from farm to table experience gardening, cooking, and even making pottery not only as creative inspiration but as potential subject matter for creative project.
Globetripping is a travel experience emphasizing designer as author as you explore an immersion in place. Some destinations include Dublin, Japan, Italy, and Spain.
$750 + up