Look what I did.

This is what Mary Ellen Paul has been up to.

My Spoonflower Designs »

Time For A Change

Tiring of computer geek tech support, I seek to reinvent myself as a graphic designer.

Examples of My Work

I did some graphic design work as part of being an AmeriCorps VISTA at Habitat for Humanity. I've also created a web site for a local business. And of course there's my fabric designs on spoonflower.com, which I've been doing for a while now (see link button above).

Design for banner or table cloth for Habitat for Humanity ReStore.

ReStore promotional Banner

Habitat for Humanity attends many public events to attract volunteers and clients. At an outdoor event one particularly windy day, all of our table tents and other promotional materials kept blowing away. I finally gave up on continually retrieving and repairing the display, packed away the table tents and flyers, and sat there at an empty table for the rest of the day.
As I sat there trying to engage eventgoers and promote Habitat for Humanity w/o any visible promotional materials, it dawned on me that Habitat needed an eye-catching table cloth. So I created a design, had it printed on fabric at Spoonflower.com, and now you can recognize Habitat's table easily.
Home example illustration for Habitat for Humanity.

House Model Promo

Habitat needed materials for their participation in the USDA's "Self-Help Housing" program. To attract candidates to the program, they wanted something more relatable than the architectural "elevation" drawing. They had only a mediocre photograph of an existing house to work with.
I cleaned up the existing photo by removing detritus from the porch, cutting out an unsightly structure on the neighboring property, repairing lawn damage, and using shrubbery to hide other evidence of occupation.
animation of how a sewing machine makes a stitch

educational GIF

As coursework for the Graphic Design program at Madison College, I had an assignment to do a technical drawing. My pencil sketches of what goes on inside a sewing machine turned out well, and I decided to make a color animation of the process just for my own benefit, using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.
Does anybody besides me think that the process of making a GIF in Photoshop is obscure and clunky? I almost broke down and went back to GIMP . . .
habitat T-shirt design for deconstruction crew.

Deconstruction T-shirt

Habitat for Humanity ReStore has a service where they send volunteers to tear down unwanted structures and salvage any useable materials. These materials are then sold in the ReStore to raise money for Habitat's mission of providing affordable housing.
The volunteers wanted a sort of "uniform". I used Habitat logos & and fonts, and created a graphic of a demolition tool, and put it all together in the format requested by the T-shirt printer. It's interesting creating graphics for single-color printing on T-shirts. I don't always know whether the design will be printed in white on a dark T-shirt, or printed black on a light shirt--that can have a huge effect on the patterns I use for shading.
T-Shirt design for Shanty Town event.

Design for Event T-Shirt

Shanty Town is a fundraiser/educational event for Habitat for Humanity. Often the T-shirts for these events feature a cutesy "hobo in a cardboard box" cartoon. But I was requested to come up with a more serious, thought-provoking design. The event coordinator saw an example of text made of houses and wondered if I could spell out "shanty town" in shanties. No problem!
Photography & PhotoShop assignment for a class.

Photographic Movie Poster

This was an assignment to test my Photoshop skills. I put it here just for fun. Any Rick & Morty fans?
Billboard created for Habitat for Humanity Restore.

Billboard for Habitat Rebranding.

When two Habitat for Humanity affiliates merged, there was much rebranding work to be done. Among other things, I designed this billboard which was used in Sauk and Iowa counties.  They also needed a new web site, which I set up for them in WordPress.
GIF created for a motel's web site.

Web site design & graphics for WilloWood Inn.

The old web site for WilloWood Inn did not reflect the mid-century modern decor and theme of the family-owned motel. The proprietor wanted to keep the low-tech feel of the web site (no online reservations or other automated forms), while updating the colors and graphics. Using the color scheme from the business's latest branding, I created a kitschy retro MCM-themed site.

So, that's some of what I can do.

Mary Ellen "Mell" Paul
mary.ellen.paul@sandcounty.blog
P: (414) 531-8050