Meet Travis Springer, a 2018 graduate of Villa’s graphic design program. After high school, talent took Travis to Villa. Now his talent — plus four years of really hard work, a few internships and some good advice from his design profs — has taken him to Crowley Webb, a top design agency in Buffalo, where he was recently hired as a designer. Even though he’s pretty busy these days, Travis took some time to share some of what he’s learned so far and offered some advice for students hoping to forge a similar path.
What year did you graduate and with what degree?
I graduated this past May (2018) with a BFA, majoring in graphic design.
What is your current job title and when did you start?
As of January this year (2019), I’m proud to announce I am a designer at Crowley Webb & Associates.
What does your day-to-day workload look like?
I’m given direction from an art director, together we conceptualize and produce designs for advertisements such as brochures, magazines, social media, and corporate annual reports.
What are some challenges you’ve faced so far?
One thing I’m constantly working on is becoming more decisive. I tend to take my time with the design process and exhaust my options, but that won’t work in most agencies. Generally clients expect a quick turnaround so I need learn how to trust my instincts and finalize projects once the concept is conveyed. Also, parking.
What do you like about Crowley Webb?
I was drawn towards them for their constant activity in the design community. Now that I’m here I get to see the more personal side of them, everyone has been welcoming and ready to help the new guy with a million questions.
How did Villa help you prepare for your career?
Well, without Villa I would’ve never been introduced to this line of work, let alone be prepared for it. The professors (Bob Grizanti & Julie Zack) helped me meet deadlines, expand my skill set, and understand the underlying goal when designing. They did a great job at implementing practical projects into the curriculum while giving students freedom to explore diverse design options.
Do you have any advice for current or prospective students?
Get involved! Between AAF Buffalo, internships, work studies, and freelancing, there are plenty of opportunities to truly immerse yourself into the design community. Professionals know what hard work looks like, so keep on pushing yourself and you will get recognized. Additionally, designers (or all students for that matter) can be too harsh on themselves. We’re only human; learn to forgive yourself, then learn from your mistakes.
Lastly, are there any special thanks you’d like to give?
I’d like to say thank you to all my professors who encouraged me to “just try it,” even if it meant starting from scratch a week before the deadline. I’d also like to thank my everyone that I met through my internships, both at Quinlan and at Mr.Smith; truly irreplaceable characters. Lastly, I’d like to thank the hardest working person I know, my mother.
Learn more about Villa’s graphic design program at villa.edu/academics/academic-programs/graphic-design.