College of Design Student Blogs

October 19, 2014

"But, I'm Sick..."

Let's start this post by giving U of M Twin Cities students a round of applause for finishing, or nearing the end of, midterms. We made it! Some easier than others, of course, but nonetheless they're over (for me at least!).

My midterms week didn't go as planned. I've been pretty sick all week and have made numerous trips back and forth to Boyton Health Services in hopes of feeling better. So far, no luck. I'm now back in my hometown, snuggled up on my parents' couch with Netflix and a hot cup of tea. I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to share some tips about what college students should do if you wind up sick.

First, always email your professor stating that you'll be missing class. Nearly all professors will require you to show verification of your illness with a doctor's note. Boyton is a great place to go if you're feeling under the weather. It's right on campus and the staff is very friendly! Get examined, ask for a note for your classes, and further follow your doctor's instructions. Also, always keep your doctor's notes tucked away in a safe spot until the end of the semester just in case you need it in the future for additional verification of your absence. If you're sick during a week such as midterms, try your best to make it to your midterm. I promise you, it's much easier than going through the hassle of rescheduling your exam date and your professor will greatly appreciate it!

A few more obvious tips:
-- Take preventative measures (eat clean and exercise)
-- Drink a lot of water, hydration is key!
-- Sleep whenever you can
-- Call your parents or a close friend--sometimes hearing a comforting voice is all you really need :)

With all of this being said, stay healthy everyone!!

Stay tuned to my blog post within the coming weeks to see what this is all about:


Style On,
Retail Merchandising

Posted by Bethanie at 7:27 PM | | Comments (0)

Happy Homecoming!

Hi everyone!

This past week was Homecoming. I know you're probably all familiar with Homecoming week, football, and dressing with spirit, but Homecoming at the U of M is another story! There are many different events to mark the celebration, including a lip sync competition, step competition, flag football tournament, and the Homecoming concert.

On Friday night, TCF Bank Stadium was packed for the Homecoming concert and it was really fun. Iggy Azalea performed with opener Walk the Moon. Iggy performed all her hits including Fancy, Black Widow, and more.

Saturday followed with the football game against Purdue University. It was an intense game with a final score of 39-38, with the Gophers winning of course! This win puts the Gophers at 3-0 in the Big 10 play for the first time since 1990. The win also makes us bowl-eligible. Go Gophers!

It was a big week for students and fans, and we all can't wait to see what Homecoming will bring next year!

Interior Design

Posted by mill6185 at 10:08 AM | | Comments (0)

October 17, 2014

"Is there a Comic Sans Japanese Typeface?"

Hello Everyone!
Tokyo TDC
This last Wednesday night, I attended an incredible event put on by the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) and the Concordia University-St. Paul Leaders of Design Series: The Tokyo Type Director's Club Exhibition. This is just one more reason I'm so glad I picked the University of Minnesota Twin Cities to complete my design education. There are constantly events like this all over Minneapolis and St. Paul!

The event began with Ryan Hageman lecturing about the History of Japanese Graphic Design and typography, which provided great groundwork for the second presenter, Jon Forss. Jon Forss was invited to be a juror at the 2014 Tokyo TDC Design Competition and he shared his experience and perspective on that in his presentation.

Additionally, as a designer himself, Mr. Forss' work tends to revolve around experimental typography, and he is always challenging legibility. This was great timing for me, as I was able to gain some inspiration from his work to include in an Advanced Typography project I am currently working on and have been hitting a bit of a roadblock with.

The Tokyo Type Directors Club Exhibition runs from October 13-31, 2014, in St. Paul so if you're around and have the time, I would highly recommend checking it out!

Until next time,

Graphic Design

Posted by Leah at 12:39 PM | | Comments (0)

October 13, 2014

Research! Bikes! Design!


In my architecture studio, we have been given our third project for the semester. This one will carry us through to the end of the semester, so it will be a big project with a lot of work. For this project, we are designing a small-scale museum space that will be located on the U of M campus. The museum space that I will be designing is to house bike collections. Not everyone has the same museum space topic, which makes it fun and interesting to hear about other research and design ideas. Some of the other collections include bees, bats, textiles, and wolves.

Last week during studio, my professor and I, along with two students who are also designing a space for bike collections, visited the Cycling Museum of Minnesota in Northeast Minneapolis. We learned about bicycles and their history in Minnesota. Most importantly, we received a lot of knowledge on museum design. A few of the people we met with have their education and background in museums. Talking with them about how to arrange collections and how to design a space to hold multiple exhibits was incredibly helpful.

When given a new project, it is essential to do as much research as possible. Being new to designing spaces, it is important for me to do research for this project not only on bikes, but also on museum design. What are the ways in which a bike can be displayed? What lighting is best in a museum setting? My research on both topics has been exciting and it sparks a number of ideas in my head.

Here are a couple of inspiration photos I've found from Method Bicycle.


Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for 3c2cee32ccb111e2af4522000a1f8f13_7.jpgThumbnail image for c055fd689e1011e2989522000a9f3c91_7.jpg

Posted by Margo at 5:26 PM | | Comments (0)

October 6, 2014

Hello London, it's me Lee

Hello everyone!! I hope everyone had a great summer and that you all are getting into the groove of the new semester. I have the fortunate opportunity to be studying abroad at Central Saint Martins in London this semester, so I'll be giving you the scoop of what life is like as a Londoner and as a student at the famous Central Saint Martins!

I've been in London for a little over three weeks now and I've been fortunate to have experienced unseasonably nice weather here. My first week was a whirlwind of glamour and fashion. I had the fortunate opportunity to intern for Marchesa during London Fashion Week, to help them debut their first show outside of New York. I was able to touch and work on some amazing dresses, dress models, give my input on designs, and also meet some amazing and talented people. Oh, and yeah, I may have been around some pretty famous people.... Anna Wintour... just for an example. That experience created a great start to my London semester.

Me working on a skirt for Marchesa
Marchesa Dress.jpg

Right after London Fashion Week, the semester began for me at Central Saint Martins. It was scary and exciting all at the same time. What are the other students going to be like? Will I like them? How many of them will there be? Is this semester going to be hard? So many thoughts and questions were running through my head, but here's tip from me to you; don't let those thoughts hold you back. Dive feet first, take an adventure, and go passed your safety zone. I guarantee that you'll get an experience of a lifetime as well as stories to last a lifetime. I've already made some amazing friends from around the world as well as have some amazing stories! All within the three weeks that I've been here.

Me at Oxford Street
Oxford St 1.jpg

Follow my blog to keep up today with my adventure studying abroad. I'm sure that I'll have lots to say while I'm here.

Apparel Design

Posted by tranx671 at 7:43 AM | | Comments (0)

October 5, 2014


Hello and happy October! I am headed into week six of the school year and it is going by incredibly fast.

While I was still in high school, I remember hearing about my sister's Welcome Week experience during her first week of college at the U of M. Welcome Week is this incredible weeklong event held for first-year students. I'm a transfer student and my previous college didn't have a similar program. When I transferred to the U of M, I made the great decision to become a Welcome Week Leader for a few reasons.

First, since I transferred, I never got to experience Welcome Week as a freshman and it sounded really cool from my sister's experience. Second, I wanted to make sure the new students at the U of M felt welcomed and like they belonged. Lastly, I love meeting new people and being a leader, so it sounded like a perfect fit. Being a Welcome Week Leader was more than what I was expecting. Although it takes quite a bit of time dedication at the end of the summer, it was a blast and I made so many friends. It was such a blast, in fact, that I decided to do it two years in a row!

This past year during Welcome Week's College Day, I was able to connect with more than just first-year students. I had lunch with two architects -- one a current U of M professor, the other a former U of M professor. Meeting and chatting with them was spectacular. It was interesting to talk to professors on a more personal level about topics we all shared and felt passionate about: architecture and education. It was fun to hear their stories, and it was so cool that they wanted to hear mine as well. I got both of their business cards and I plan on taking the current professor's course next fall.

The U of M has so many wonderful opportunities out there. Being at such a large university, you never know when you might make a meaningful connection. I went into being a Welcome Week Leader to help first-year students make strong connections with their peers, and surprisingly, I was able to make two very beneficial connections of my own!

Thank you Professor Donofrio!!


Posted by Margo at 10:38 PM | | Comments (0)

Exploring Minneapolis

As important as getting to know what campus life is like at a school, it's also really important to think about the surroundings off campus! I've been assigned a project in one of my classes (ARCH 3711) that includes going to two places in Minneapolis for research of social behaviors. My two assigned places are Cowles Dance Center and the Guthrie Theater.

Screen Shot 2014-10-05 at 11.32.36 AM.png

Cowles led me downtown, where there are so many events and different restaurants to explore during a night in the city -- especially concert venues (Target Center, First Avenue, etc.) that hold shows for many big names in the music industry. There is also the Holidazzle Village in the winter that is a fun excuse to get out into the city for a night.

My visit to the Guthrie led me across the Stone Arch Bridge which surprisingly, I had never actually been to before, despite living right outside the Twin Cities my whole life. It was a beautiful walk and there is so much to see, especially entering the Mill District on the western side of the river. The Guthrie Theater building is open to the public and has some great views of the city. I recommend exploring it even if you're not going for a show!

Above is a photo I took from the campus side of the river, looking out to the city during sunset after my day of exploring. I recommend getting to know the areas outside of campus, because for some reason, I hadn't much yet. So get out there and explore!

Interior Design

Posted by mill6185 at 11:14 AM | | Comments (0)

October 4, 2014

Work Hard, Play Hard

Happy October, everyone!

The semester is back in full swing and I'm definitely feeling it! Though a lot of my time is consumed with going to class, doing homework, and studying, I do find plenty of time to do things that I love. Minneapolis has so much to offer for busy college students and I'm so glad that I have the opportunity to live here and take advantage of them. Here are a few of my favorite things to do around the city:

---Walk around the lakes. After all, we are the Land of 10,000 Lakes! My favorite lake to walk and rollerblade around is Lake Nokomis. It's a short bus ride from campus and it's a great way to get your exercise in for the day.
---Catch a show at the Varsity. The Varsity Theatre is a great place to spend your Friday or Saturday night with friends. If you're interested in seeing what kind of events the Varsity offers, click here.
---Have a night on campus at Coffman Memorial Union. Gather up all of your friends and head onto campus to enjoy a night with other students! There are always plenty of events happening at Coffman. Again, check out the Student Unions and Activities page to view events!

Always remember to find a balance between schoolwork and your personal life. This was something that was very hard for me to learn when I first started college, but the older I get, the more I see how important it is to also focus on bettering yourself as a person and taking time out of your day to do something that you enjoy and that makes you happy!


Style On,
Retail Merchandising

Posted by Bethanie at 7:32 PM | | Comments (0)

October 3, 2014

Busy busy busy


Hello everyone!

It's been a while since my last post and even though we're only about five weeks into the school year, I've already been crazy busy.

This is most likely due to the fact that I am taking five design classes this semester: History of Graphic Design, Identity & Symbols, Packaging & Display, Advanced Typography, and Creativity, Idea Generation & Innovation. And, on top of classes, I've also joined two student groups here at the U of M this semester -- AIGA@UMN and NSAC (or the National Student Advertising Competition).

So basically, I live, eat, and breathe design. But I LOVE it.

Both of these are fantastic opportunities for enhancing your resume, design skills, and overall knowledge of design and how it plays out in the workplace. They're also both a lot of fun and a great way to meet new friends! The picture to the right is from the first AIGA meeting where people were playing Pantones Against Humanity (it's basically Cards Against Humanity, only design themed).

You can read more about the two student groups here and here.

Regardless, the U of M has 800+ student groups, so I promise if there's something you're interested in, there's a group for that. If not, you can create your own student group as well! Getting involved in activities and groups on campus is a fantastic way to meet people and really make the most out of your college experience.

Until next time!

Graphic Design

Posted by Leah at 1:09 PM | | Comments (0)

September 30, 2014

Designing Landscapes

The drawings pictured are of a front yard landscape design that I made for my landscape drawing class. I was given some specific guidelines of what I had to include, like a water feature, gradation changes, and I had to keep a rectilinear design. Even with those guidelines it was pretty much a free design exercise, with no budget and no certain region or program we had to design for.

My final design had many subtle grade changes, and included a large pond/pool that expanded into a patio area. Hopefully the drawings speak for themselves!

LA 1301_Final Plan Value(small).jpg
LA 1301_Section Cuts (small).jpg
LA 1301 Perspective View (small).jpg

This link shares a little bit about different landscape geometries:

Landscape Design and Planning

Posted by Allen at 11:58 AM | | Comments (0)

September 20, 2014

The First Review of 2014

Today was the first Review Day of LA3001 "Understanding and Creating Landscape Space." This class is all about creating models. After a couple semesters of drawing and creating two-dimensional art works, it is so rewarding to be able to create three-dimensional spaces that you could imagine occupying.

In this studio-based class, we are instructed to take inanimate objects and use them as inspiration for creating a space. I chose a leaf and a pine cone for my first project. We had just over a week to create a still life drawing, a contour line drawing, an abstract two-dimensional plan, and finally, a final model. The final model had to be inspired by the original objects, but in an abstract way. The drawings were stepping stones for reaching our final product.

Pictured is a view of our studio space and the class during the review, and some photos of my work. I was intrigued by the way the pine cone fanned out, and by the topography the leaf created. I morphed the two together to make the pine cone into the wave motion of the leaf. Review Days in studio classes are like tests. You get your chance to share your work, explain your thought processes, and receive critiquing.

The following link has some TED talks about using nature as inspiration for design, also known as biomimicry:

Landscape Design and Planning

Posted by Allen at 6:29 PM | | Comments (0)

September 19, 2014


Hello everyone!

My name is Margo and I am a third year student in the Architecture program here in the College of Design at the wonderful University of Minnesota Twin Cities! I am beyond excited to share my experiences with you this year. This is my first year in the Bachelor of Science program, so everything is just as new to me as it will be to you. Before we dive into everything that this University has to offer, let me tell you a bit about my background:

-- I have wanted to be an architect since I was nine years old. I love being immersed in the design culture that the University of Minnesota and Minneapolis have.

-- I LOVE to travel! So much so that I decided to have the world on my arm permanently :) I will also be studying abroad in Copenhagen in the spring!

-- I am a mother of a 2.5 year old cat named Nathaniel P. Archibald.

-- I have a lot of interest in Sustainability, so I'm a bit of a green freak.

-- I enjoy going to concerts, and Minneapolis is great for doing just that!

I love living, working, and being educated in a city as phenomenal as the Twin Cities. The possibilities are endless. Keep on board with my blogs through this year!



Posted by Margo at 6:20 PM | | Comments (0)

September 18, 2014

I'm Famous!

FullSizeRender.jpgOkay so I'm not REALLY famous... but through my Instagramming and blogging for the College of Design, one of my photos has been published on a magazine cover! Emerging is a magazine by the University of Minnesota Twin Cities College of Design that tells stories of students, alumni and faculty. It's a free magazine and and you can check it out here (that swirly pink picture, yeah, that's mine! And there I am holding it up!). For those of you considering the life of a design student at the U of M, it's a great source to see what's been going on in the College of Design and the kind of things students, alum, and faculty at the U of M are up to!

Who knew that this photo I posted early in the year was being looked at! I guess that just means that you really want to put your best foot forward, and present work that you are proud of and is the best it can be, because you never know who will be seeing it!

Interior Design

Posted by mill6185 at 6:27 PM | | Comments (0)

September 16, 2014

Ringing in the New (school) Year!

Hello, all!

I'm Bethanie and I look forward to allowing you to see into my world as I work through my junior year in the Retail Merchandising program in the College of Design at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities!

Before we dive into this exiting journey, I wanted to share a little information about myself!

-- I love fashion, photography, and makeup. One day I hope to combine these three interests of mine into a career where I can style photo shoots for magazine spreads.

-- Living in a big city is a must for me! I enjoy going to school at the U of M because I love being in the heart of Minneapolis. Minneapolis has a lot to offer, I never find myself bored!

-- I work at Primp Boutique as a Stylist. I get to express my creativity daily in addition to making women feel beautiful and confident in their clothes.

-- I love animals (especially cats) and I have a big heart for bettering my community. I enjoy volunteering both on and off of campus.

-- Traveling is my passion. Despite my fear of flying, I enjoy visiting new places and learning about different cultures. This past summer my Mom and I took a trip out to New York City. I would highly recommend visiting The Big Apple if you get the chance!


Style On,
Retail Merchandising

Posted by Bethanie at 10:02 PM | | Comments (0)

September 11, 2014

College: Round 4

Hello everyone!

Thumbnail image for 551628_10151071819872444_332492456_n.jpg

My name is Leah, and I'm a senior graphic design student in the College of Design.

I never thought I would end up at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities and I never could've imagined how much I would fall in love with this school, but let's back up a bit.

I lived in a suburb of Minneapolis my entire life and couldn't WAIT to get out of Minnesota after high school. I decided to start my college adventure all the way down at the University of Tampa. However, I quickly learned that not all programs are created equal (and how much I really loved Minnesota), so I decided to come back home and applied to the U of M as a new Transfer Student.

Fast-forward a few months and I was accepted to the College of Design as a Pre-Graphic Design major. I could not be any happier with where I ended up. I could go on forever about why I love the U of M and College of Design, but I'll save that for another post. In the mean time, keep checking back here to find out what I'm up to this year, and I hope that through my experiences you too can fall in love with the U of M!

Graphic Design

Posted by Leah at 10:56 PM | | Comments (0)