Hiya! My name’s TaLeah, the newest graphic design specialist here of Roundpeg. As a multidisciplinary graphic designer, I have about a decade of experience in branding, packaging design, print design, and illustration. Growing up in a family of makers, artists, and farmers, I developed a love for the handmade. I draw the greatest satisfaction from working with my hands, whether it’s sketching out a killer homepage, scheming up complex packaging, getting messy with clay, or hammering on some silver. I love the absurd, unpredictable, and adventurous, both in life and design. I’m a native Hoosier, but I have spent approximately the last half of my life seeking adventures out East.’ But now….Honey, I’m home!
A Hoosier Homecoming.
After graduating high school in rural Indiana, I crossed that stage and kept on walking. Well, not literally. The weekend after, I packed my hatchback with camping supplies and all the art supplies I could fit and headed to North Carolina, without much of a plan. As young luck would have it, I quickly found an apartment and work. While customer service and sub-prime auto finance was interesting, I eventually came to realize it wasn’t for me. The most exciting days in that corporate environment were office supply delivery days. Those are the days I would take the packaging from scissors or pens and create funny little sculptures for my co-workers’ desks. I needed to find a way to use my creative urges in a more full time capacity, and that’s when I discovered the possibilities with commercial art & graphic design. I quickly enrolled in college in Charlotte and began that education journey.
Although the warm weather and ancient tree-lined streets of Charlotte were divine, they weren’t enough to keep my wanderlust in check. So, I checked out of North Carolina and hit the road for my next place to call home: Philadelphia. Looking back, I think it was because my Southerner friends were so skeptical of Philly’s reputation that I needed to experience it for myself. Driving up in a snow storm, I stopped for the night and found my first apartment. I could never imagine how deeply I would fall for Philadelphia, from it’s extreme diversity, hilarious snark, and all the opportunities it would come to offer me.
I found a surrogate family with my first employer, a small family-run printing press. We designed and printed take-out food menus. Not only did it teach me invaluable lessons about offset printing and layout, it was really a spectacular introduction to the food culture of Philadelphia, and fascinating opportunity to explore the historical origins of hoagies. You haven’t lived until you’ve had a lively late-night debate about who has the best cheesesteaks (it’s never Pats or Genos). Inspired by the diverse friends I met, I knew I had to travel outside of the country. While Mexico City, Panama, and Romania may not be on the top of many people’s bucket lists, they were on mine. I managed to live through each trip without a single scary hostel story, but instead emerged with new friends, inspiration for art, and a greater appreciation for our world.
Once again, I decided to change course and enrolled in the amazing graphic design program at Tyler School of Art. Nurtured by extremely talented professors and classmates, I was honored to receive awards for several of my projects with more complex dimensionality and unique concepts. During that time and for a few years post, I was the lead designer at a small LED lighting manufacturer. As their first creative hire, I embraced the challenge of building their brand from the ground up and evolving their arsenal to include technical spec sheet design, packaging design, product photography, and animation.
Last summer I decided I was spending too much time in the beautiful, chaotic concrete jungles. For the first time, I was homesick for the heartland, so I allowed the crossroads to carry me back to my Hoosier home. My quest for becoming a Jacqueline of all trades has led me to turn towards motion and digital design. That’s about the long and short of how I came to join the stellar cast of characters here at the ‘Peg! Let me tell you, I’m very excited for the opportunity to grow with these dedicated, passionate people.
When I’m not at the little white house with blue shutters:
I’m a maker at heart, and my curiosity extends across themes that are as varied as the cities I’ve lived. When I’m not in the office, I can be found playing in nature, baking bread, sculpting with clay, dyeing fabrics with rusty metal, making goofy animations, or applying elbow grease around the century old farmhouse I call home.
Quickest ways to befriend me:
Share a savory recipe with me, teach me something about mechanical processes, tell me a corny joke, show me pictures of your puppies. Now that we’ve been introduced, be sure to check the Roundpeg portfolio where you will soon see examples of my work.