Tenth Journal: Holiday Season Design

The holiday season is approaching and we are starting our holiday promotions. I was told by my supervisor to create funny/cool holiday season graphics for designs on t-shirts and ugly sweaters. He wanted the designs to be funny, clever, and provocative so that it could catch peoples attention. This would be a challenge for me since I see myself as a clean and serious designer, but it was a challenge that I faced head on because I know I may get a job like this in the future, and even if I do not like it, I will still have to  complete the task. I thought about ideas for a while and looked on the internet for ideas. On Pinterest I found funny Christmas ideas that I thought would be good for what my supervisor asked for. At the end, though it was not much of my style I think all my graphic ideas hit all the requirements I had to fulfill. Attached are some of the graphics I made to be placed on an ugly Christmas sweaters and T-shirts.

 

    

Ninth Journal: New Marketing Plan

As of late the owner Ben has been very persistent on improving the followers on social media and trying to increase over all production orders on all print methods. He also wants to really expand the demographics of our audience. We recently sat down for a meeting where we basically just got a dry erase board and marker to write down new ideas and steps that would help towards the goal. One of the ideas that I pitched to everyone was the idea of offering a production deal to an instagram influencer. We could contact an instagram influencer and offer to make them t-shirts for free or at a discounted price. In return for our production services, the instagram influencer would promote Core2Print on their instagram so that their audience will know and learn about our company. Of course we will have to strategically choose the influencer according to the people or demographics that follow them and according to the amount of followers they have. Once I pitched that idea I was pleased with everyones reaction and feedback. Everyone agreed that it was a good idea and something that we should do for the near future.

Eighth Journal: Botani Trimming

My supervisor Dan and Core2Print owner Ben have been talking to me about this new heat transfer they discovered at a store in Manhattan. The heat transfers are puff letter shapes that look 3D and could be ironed on to clothing. They were looking to buy the transfer and wanted to make a trip over to the store called Botani Trimming on 36th street. I was very interested in visiting the store and seeing the heat transfers for my own personal uses. We made our commute over to 34th street and walked to Botani. The place was filled with many different types of zippers, buttons, and every kind of fashion hardware you can think of. Ben informed me that many designers go to¬† places like these to buy cheap little things to put on their clothing and then sell the clothing for a lot of money. I got a lot of ideas just by going into the store so it was a good experience. We found the puff lettering we were looking for and then we head out. As we walked, we saw a few other trimming locations around the area and visited them. It was cool seeing all the things these stores had to offer and I’m glad I know now where to go to find things like patches or letters that iron on to clothing. Attached are some examples of ironed on lettering.

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Seventh Journal: Role Model/Mentor

While working at Core2Print I had the pleasure of meeting one of the major investors of Core2Print. His name is Joeson Ko. The first time I saw Joeson Ko walk into the Core2Print office, my supervisor pulled me aside and told me that he was a big player in the Core2Print business and that he is the investor and owner of a few other businesses including a clothing brand called MACHINE NY. That to me was impressive because my goal is to be someone like him, to own businesses and especially be an owner of a well known profitable clothing brand. My supervisor introduced me to him as a designer for graphics and clothing, which I assume sparked some interest in him because he started to show me and my supervisor some sample of his future releases for his brand MACHINE. He asked for our opinion on several designs and listened carefully to what we had to say. He eventually asked for my portfolio which I very embarrassingly had to reply “it is not done yet.” However, he did let me show him my work on social media. He seemed to like it and asked me some questions about some of my work. It was great to have a conversation with someone who already is doing the things I want to eventually achieve. After we finished talking he said bye to us, opened the door to an exotic blue Maserati, and drove off. You can not get more inspiring than that. I frequently thinking about that moment now and see him as a model of where I need to be.

Sixth Journal: Self Evaluation

Looking at the completed projects I have done this far, I would say that I have done a good job meeting expectations, and completing projects in a way that has been satisfactory to my supervisor. Depending on the objective of each project, some take more time to complete than others. However, I think my turnaround time for each project has been reasonable. Most of my projects have to do with creating ads for social media and google. While others maybe be a little easier, like sending out emails to clients or adjusting artwork graphics. In making the small ads I found myself having a harder time getting creative. It is difficult creating ads for a print company and not being cliche or repetitive when creating the ads, there is only so much you can say or do to get your point across. Something that has been frustrating me a little is that I create ads so that they capture attention. I also like creating ads that look aesthetically pleasing. So far in my internship every ad I create works for my supervisor and the owner, however the owner usually takes away things from my original  ad and says not to make it too fancy, just simple. In my opinion my ads are already simple but attractive. When he shaves off more of the creative part of my ads it results in being a very simple bland, boring, and regular looking ad. This fine with me, if that is what he wants that is what he will get, but I like being challenged and I like getting creative. So now I gave myself the current task of trying to make my projects creative in a way that still balances the simplicity and taste of the owner. I want to add some flavor to the work I create, but I need to know how much is enough for the likes of the owner. That will be my next accomplishment, discovering that balance.

Fifth Journal: Collaborative project

A collaborative effort It is crucial when working at Core2Print. If the employees in each department does not work and communicate correctly to one another a client may not get their order done correctly. The collaborative project I worked on has to do with creating a simple pricing sheet that is easy tp read on the Core2Print website. Currently the website does not give customers the pricing for any of the printing techniques or garments the company has to offer. The goal was to create something the customer can quickly look at to calculate the cost for their design. What makes this task difficult is the amount of options the customer has. The customer can make t-shirt’s, hoodies, hats, jerseys, uniforms and more using printing techniques like Heat transfer, DTG, screen print and more. Depending on the amount of pieces made, amount colors, materials, design placement (front, back or sides of t-shirt, sweater, jacket, or other), and other fees, the cost will vary. Therefore making a simple pricing list that anyone can read is not an easy task. I worked along side of Daniel my supervisor who followed up with Ben the owner who gave us feedback on how we should layout and organize the pricing. For the most part we communicated at the site in person. Occasionally we would also email. Since making the list is a little tedious most of our communication was in person though to make sure we were clear on price points and things of that matter. What was successful about this project is that we came up with a much simpler price list than the one they had been using before. What was not very successful was accurately translating the list to on online system where customers can add or take away options and automatically see what the pricing will be based on their choices. The whole point of making the simple pricing list was to make it even simpler for the online experience. We are still working on putting it up on the website in a way that the customer can easily build their custom apparel and get a quick quote or price.

Fourth Journal: What I have learned?

At Core2Print I have been working and learning about all types or marketing along with different methods of printing for clothing. One of the coolest things I have been learning about is something called “Google My Business.” This is a Google system / application that can better the way your business is found on Google, better the way your website is found, better the way you target your audience and creates reoccurring ads so when ever someone looks you up, your ads may appear on other sites or applications. Additionally, I have also been learning how to create promotional email ads. Promotion are sent as a mass email to all of our past and current customers through a program called mail chimp that helps business connect through email by creating custom newsletters and more for email. I also attended an event with my supervisor where we represented Core2Print as buyers for new revolutionary digital printing machines.¬†The¬†company Kornit¬†Digital¬†showcased high powered state of the art Direct To Garment printers that are capable of printing quality images on pretty much any article of clothing. The presenters at the event showed the buyers the new printers that are in stock and the new features they have, they also taught us about features that we’ve never used on the printer that we have at our place in Core2Print. I also worked on some new ads that will be posted on Instagram, Google, and FB. I love the things I’m learning and being involved in because I could use it myself as a designer and entrepreneur. Below you can can see some ads I have been working on for FB, Instagram and others, along with photos of machines from¬†the Kornit event.

 

 

 

 

      

Third Journal: Workplace Culture

Working at Core2Print is a little different then working at any other company. When the machines start rolling it is all hands on deck. Everyone that comes to work is ready to get down and dirty. The majority of people are working with ink/paint, screens for prints, or drying systems that dry the garments that have just been printed. The only other employees who are not working around paint as much are the people at the front desk, the designers and the shipping team. For the most part, just about everyone is surrounded by or interacting with machines, paint, tubs of paint, boxes or anything else that could most definitely get you dirty. Employees come a little dressed down to work because they know that they are coming into work to get their hands dirty.¬† The designers who I work with work in a little office and everyone has their own desks including myself. Designers also come dressed down, I on the other hand came a little bit more dressy my first day and felt a little out of place when I saw everyone. Now I come in a little more casual as well. Especially since I sometimes help in print production when needed. Employees at Core2Print are there from 9am to 5pm, however I come in usually a little bit before midday and leave a little bit after 6pm or later if need be. By the time I get there I either have my lunch with me and eat it once I get there or I have already have eaten my lunch and just go straight to work. There are no cubicles, it’s mostly free space and just about all employees work at a work station with a machine. I enjoy the culture and the feel of Core2Print because it a raw, real environment, and yet it is still a warm kind place. Nobody really holds back on what needs to be said because one mistake is costly for the business and the client. But respect and kindness is still maintained and everyone understands how important getting a job done right is.

Second Journal: My Role

Once I walked into Core 2 Print I was given a tour of the whole place and was briefly informed about each machine and what they do. I then sat in the show room with the assistant manager and my supervisor DanieI Rosa, who gave me a detailed description of what my role in Core 2 Print will be. I was assigned to work in two departments. The first one is creative marketing /strategic online marketing. This just means that I will be designing print ads and online ads (weekly) and will figure out ways to increase awareness of the company. I will also be in charge of posting interesting content on their social media to attract potential followers who may possibly become clients. The second job I will be doing is production artist. Working with DTG & screen printing artwork I will be making everything compatible to the machines. Also, I will be making sure the vector files and artworks sent to us by the client are correct and  do not need any changes. I became interested in working with this company because I love designing clothes and I have always been interested in how my designs get on the clothes. Prior to this internship I did t-shirts with this company, I got familiar with the people over time and developed a relationship. All I really had to do was ask if I could intern at the company. They know me as a good designer because of the work I sent them to print. They know I had design skills, they also know about my small business and have seen what I could do when it came to selling and marketing my brand. For this reason I did not really have to interview just show my resume.

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First Journal: What is Core 2 Print (The Core Garment Solution)?

I currently intern at Core 2 Print (Core Garment Solution) located in Fairview, NJ. Their factory is only a few minutes away from the George Washington Bridge which is convenient for me since I live near the bridge. The company was founded in 2006 as a print production company that specializes in custom apparel. They offer a variety of techniques to create custom garments such as foil and glitter embellishments, metallic and silicone ink, vinyl, heat transfer, embroidery, screen printing and more. They have a team of about 50 experts who have the right attitude and the perfect facility to fulfill printing needs. They have had major clients in the fashion industry in the past and are currently doing production for FILA and Champion. They also work with schools, sports teams, and other small business or companies. I will be¬†working with the creative marketing and production department. One thing I’m excited to learn is¬†how to make all types of artwork compatible with screen printing, embroidery, and DTG machines.¬†