My start in freelance graphic design developed pretty organically as more and more classmates started asking for help preparing their job search materials. As a result, I'll always count resumes and cover letters as my "bread and butter."
I love creating engaging documents that tell a really special story (the story of YOU!). Even though job searches can be overwhelming, it can also become a pretty empowering experience. I love using my third-person perspective to help clients affirm their skills, and figure out how to communicate it to potential employers.
That's why working with Jeff DePaoli this week was so fun!
Jeff asked me to help him create a creative and graphic designer resume (one of my specialities), along with a matching cover letter to accompany job application. He already had a logo that he used on certain social media channels, and really liked more inventive layouts when looking over my past work (e.g. Timothy Orona's timeline resume).
After fiddling around a bit, I was totally inspired by the square logo. In the first version, I ended up creating rectangular calendar elements to replicate the timeline concept with a fresh, cohesive twist. I also zeroed in on a favorite rounded, minimalist serif font that had the same line quality as his logo.
As always, the first draft is never the fully realized, final document. I had fun finding a more distinct way to label projects as blogs or podcasts, but those buttons on the side threw off balance, and weren't extremely noticeable. Furthermore, the cute calendar graphic sort of upstaged the most important part - his work!
I made a second version which maintained that same simple, balanced feel, creating a more minimalist tone overall. This minimalism allowed for graphic elements to support our story, rather than distract from it. Losing the buttons and calendars, though, lost us some color. To make up for the "fun," I added minimalist iconography, and made the bold decision to divide his work my the nature of the project. This ultimately painted the story of Jeff, showing a rich experience of varied media projects - so it stuck!
Did you catch our little "power pitch" at the top? I think that's what I like the most. Since I was writing his cover letter, I asked Jeff several questions to get an idea of his goals - the companies he wanted to work for, the jobs he wanted to do, etc. Of all those destinations, I noticed a key theme of magical entertainment. Using his own resume, I drafted up this power statement that (A) allowed us to streamline the bulky "skills" section, (B) create a powerful impression summarizing his work, and (C) set the tone for Jeff's unique, individual story.
This pretty easily lent itself to a matching cover letter, drawing upon the same language we used!
Check out the final cover letter below! And if this inspires you to brush up your own resume, let's get in touch!