TAI Alum Jenny Lanier (’11) Featured in 2016 Communication Arts Advertising Annual

TAI Alum (’11) Jenny Lanier has had a very successful career since her graduation from SMU. In her three years as an Art Director at Moroch, Lanier accomplished a lot, working with clients like McDonald’s, Coca-Cola, and Mattress Giant. Recently, Lanier was featured in the 2016 Communications Arts Advertising Annual.

“I was featured in the Communications Arts Advertising Annual for a billboard for McDonald’s,” Lanier said. “The assignment was to push $1 beverages in markets during the summer. Our client wanted something more special. My team and I thought it would be interesting to have a temperature gauge on the billboard to say that each degree of heat is just another reason to grab a drink at McDonald’s.”

One shot of the McDonald's billboard featured in the Communication Arts Advertising Annual.
One shot of the McDonald’s billboard featured in the Communication Arts Advertising Annual. Photo credit: CA Advertising Annual

To be featured in the Communications Arts Advertising Annual is a very special honor for former advertising students. TAI Creative Advertising Professor Mark Allen, also Lanier’s former professor, refers to it as “the golden ring” for creatives.

“It’s special [to me] because it was a publication I frequently referred to as a student,” Lanier said. “CA Annuals were required books for all of our advertising classes. I remember we would go through and flag the campaigns that resonated with us – ones that we wish we had thought of. To think a student might do that with the project I worked on makes me smile.”

This year, Lanier and her team at Moroch won a gold ADDY in the OOH & Ambient category for their McDonald’s “Refresh” campaign. Lanier also won a silver ADDY in 2014 for an Interactive Web Banner for McDonald’s called “Up and At ‘Em.”

“Everyone loves to be told ‘good job,’ especially when you work really hard,” Lanier said. “These awards are just a little pat on the back that let you know you’re on the right track. I was always proud of my peers for getting published or winning awards. It feels good to experience those honors firsthand.”

Jenny Lanier ('11)
Jenny Lanier (’11)

Lanier attributes a lot of her career success to her time in the creative department at TAI, from the student and faculty connections she made to the practical skills she carried into her career.

“I felt incredibly lucky to be under the tutelage of two amazing professors in the creative department: Mark Allen and Glenn Griffin,” Lanier said. “To say they changed my life is an understatement. When I was in the program, they inspired all of us to want to be great while empowering us to get there ourselves. More practically speaking, the rigor of the program helped prepare me to meet deadlines and practice professionalism with my clients. I also met many talented students who have remained very close friends. Having a tight network of alums is invaluable.”

Currently, Lanier is pursuing her Masters of Fine Arts in Graphic Design at the Savannah College of Art and Design in Atlanta. She’s recently accepted an offer to be a Software Designer at IBM in Austin, which she will be starting next summer.

“It’s an exciting time to work in technology,” Lanier said. “I’m eager for all of the opportunities that await me at IBM. My goals for my career have always been to keep learning, work hard, and be proud of myself at the end of each day. I do see myself teaching somewhere down the line. I remember SMU and SCAD professors who made a huge impact on my life. Having a positive influence on other potential students would be extremely gratifying.”

Throughout her undergraduate, graduate, and career experiences, Lanier has learned valuable lessons that she hopes to impart on people who are in the same position she was once in.

“To the creative track students: take advantage of being in Professor Allen’s class,” Lanier said. “It is rare to find someone who not only cares about your academic development, but also cares about you as an individual. Professor Allen is brilliant and I felt like I became smarter just by breathing the same air as he did! So listen to him. To everyone [all students]: Make good connections with both your classmates and professors. Perform in ways that make people want to be on your team. I think you can get a lot of opportunities by being a kind, honest, and hardworking person. Employers will invest in your education and training if they want to work with you.”

For anyone, student or not, looking for a job or trying to establish a name for themselves, Lanier suggests using social media to help build your personal brand.

“On a more tangible level, use your social media presence as a way to show your personality,” Lanier said. “People will comb the depths of the Internet to look you up, so make sure what you say reflects you accurately. If you love photography, showcase your talents on Instagram. If you fancy yourself a comedian, fill your Twitter with shareable one-liners. There are a lot of ways you can convey your personality online, so take advantage of what’s most appropriate for you. An interviewer once brought up one of my Tweets in a meeting because he thought it was really funny. It sounds silly, but it isn’t. Take your personal brand seriously because you always have an audience.”

TAI Alum Sarah Erickson Returns as Guest Speaker in Professor Mendenhall’s Typography Course

Name lecturing in Professor Mendenhall's Typography course.
Sarah Erickson lecturing about brush lettering techniques in Professor Mendenhall’s Typography course.

Thursday, November 3, TAI Creative Advertising and Graphic Design Professor Cheryl Mendenhall had a guest speaker lecture in her Typography course. The speaker was TAI Alum Sarah Erickson (’15), who is a designer for Doodle Dog Creative and owner of and designer for Sarah Ann Design. Erickson specializes in Calligraphy and lectured the students about the ins and outs of Calligraphy in regards to Typography.

Professor Mendenhall’s students were fascinated by Erickson’s lecture, and it is always exciting for professors to have former students come back, especially to lecture on their career and area of expertise.

“Sarah has amazing lettering skills!” Professor Mendenhall said. “It was great to have her back on campus and show us how she’s using these skills in her work and to teach us a few lettering techniques.”

Sample of work by Erickson for Sarah Ann Design. Photo Credit: Sarah Ann Design
Sample of work by Erickson for Sarah Ann Design. Photo Credit: Sarah Ann Design

TAI professors love to have guest speakers lecture in their classes to provide students with a different perspective from someone currently in the industry.

TAI Student Idara Akpan Shares Experience Interning With Razorfish Health

Akpan in the Razorfish Health Office.
Akpan in the Razorfish Health Office.

Many advertising students dream of working in Chicago or New York City, but competition is fierce and many never get the opportunity. This summer TAI Creative Advertising student Idara Akpan took the chance and applied to work in New York City as an intern for Razorfish Health, part of the Publicis Health network.

Akpan applied online, and was then asked to conduct a video interview. The company sent her questions, and she answered them in a short video. She then went through two rounds of phone interviews, including a final interview with the Senior Creative Director.

Working as a copywriting intern, Akpan had the opportunity to participate hands-on on several client projects.

“I created taglines, concepts, and ideas for the Purdue [Pharma] franchise,” Akpan said. “I created guidelines to help with consistency between brands in the Purdue franchise, created and concepted Razorfish Health in-house promotion, and participated in a Publicis Health internship-wide project to create a campaign, Apple Watch app, and phone app for a seasonal allergy OTC product.”

Akpan and a team of fellow interns.
Akpan (far right) and a team of fellow interns.

A typical day on the job included a status meeting regarding all the clients, in which people from the account, strategy, tech, and creative departments would all give updates. Then Akpan would check in with her manager to start working on taglines, brainstorm, or produce copy for the Purdue franchise websites.

“I mostly worked with the creative team, both art directors and other writers,” Akpan said. “I also worked with other interns around the Publicis Healthcare Group Communications network. My favorite memory was staying late for a brainstorming session. It was great to be swapping different ideas next to the Group Creative Director!”

Brainstorming became a big part of Akpan’s internship, and she attributes her brainstorming skills to her advertising classes.

Akpan in the streets of New York City.

“[The biggest skill that I had going into the internship was knowing how to] brainstorm, brainstorm, brainstorm!” Akpan said. “No idea is a bad idea. Put everything – and I mean everything – on the table.”

Her internship also provided a glimpse into what a career in creative advertising is like.

“The internship gave me a better insight on a different side of the industry,” Akpan said. “It was awesome to be in NYC and truly see how each of the departments work together to reach their goal. It also showed me how competitive it is to be a creative in NYC! There are so many creatives, you have to work extra hard to stand out.”

TAI Creative Advertising Students Graduate from Paper School

photoOn Wednesday, October 22, students in Willie Baronet’s Creative Advertising Portfolio class attended Clampitt Paper’s Clampitt University Paper School. The two hour session provided students with an overview of all aspects of the paper business: how it’s made, the various weights and grades and finishes, and how to specify paper for a print job. Industry veterans Don Clampitt and John Hampton both presented to the class, after which they had a chance to explore the Clampitt Sample Room and Creative Center where they could take printed samples back with them for reference. Each student received a diploma for having attended the Paper School.

Founded in Dallas in 1941, Clampitt Paper is a paper merchant that sells direct to large and small scale printers as well as creative designers and local merchants. Their Creative Center, located in their Dallas headquarters, offers a comfortable environment for researching modern paper and print solutions, networking with graphic arts professionals and meeting clients. The Creative Center hosts several events for Dallas-area professionals and students each month, including the Paper School.

The Temerlin Advertising Institute’s Creative Program prepares students for careers in art direction and copywriting. Many of our alumni have gone on to work as Creative Directors for advertising agencies, corporations and design firms. Understanding the paper business and how it relates to brand design and development is one of many skills students in the Temerlin Advertising Institute’s Creative Program acquire during their time in the program. Such skills prepare them to be leaders in the industry.

For more information on the Temerlin Advertising Institute’s Creative Program, visit: http://www.smu.edu/Meadows/AreasOfStudy/Advertising/UndergraduateStudies/AdvertisingCreative.

 

Five Temerlin Advertising Institute Creative Students’ Work Selected for Publication in Premier International Design/Visual Arts Publication

Art director Christy Parrott and copywriter Jordan Spencer, along with graduate student art director Alex Jarzemsky, undergraduate art director Jena Jessen, and copywriter Haley Gatewood, will have their work featured in CMYK Magazine’s Top 100 New Creatives issue,which is set to be released in Spring 2013.  The Top 100 New Creatives #56 is a worldwide portfolio contest sponsored by CMYK Magazine. Applicants compete in five categories including art direction, copywriting, illustration, graphic design and photography. A jury of industry professionals reviews the work. Congratulations to the Temerlin Advertising Institute students for their hard work and receiving this prestigious honor.

For more information visit www.cmykmag.com.

Alex Jarzemsky

Haley Gatewood

Jena Jessen

Christy Parrott

Jordan Spencer