GRANVILLE – Growing up, she had all the characteristics of a graphic designer, but she just didn’t recognize it. In fact, she didn’t even know what a graphic designer was. Then came college. And that awakening moment. And Robin Whittington has never been the same.
“I never dreamed of becoming a designer,” she explained, “until I discovered the graphic design program at Kent State. I was writing a paper freshman year and my roommate in the dorm was drawing and cutting out type for a poster and I thought, ‘Wow, what class is that for? I can totally do that!’”
And a career was born.
Whittington, now in her early 40s, grew up in various parts of Ohio and Indiana. Her family moved around quite a bit, which she now feels helped her overcome her shyness.
“I was a shy kid, a very shy kid,” she said. “I had my good friends, but I would never go out of my way to call attention to myself. I think moving quite often as a child got me out of my shell. If I was going to meet anyone new, I was going to have to talk! And when I started talking and meeting new friends I never stopped!”
Along the way she “dreamed of being a model, or in fashion, something very glamorous and grand!” But truth be told, she knew she was an artist. “Not in a ‘paint on canvas’ kind of way,” she said, “but more in a way that appreciated color, texture, photography and typography and how it all worked together.”
Then came college. And she immediately knew graphic design was a game changer.
“It fit right in with my skill set I had been unknowingly developing as a child,” she reasoned.
Whittington majored in visual communication design (graphic design) and minored in art history at Kent State. She followed up with classes in design, branding, typography and packaging at the University of Santa Cruz, then California College of Arts and Crafts in San Francisco.
“I’ve worked at large and small design firms, big advertising agencies to tiny boutiques,” she recalled. “I worked at Thrasher Magazine in San Francisco to a three-person design boutique in Sydney, Australia. I’ve loved it all.”
In 2008 she and her husband moved back to Ohio. As soon as their kids grew, she decided to launch Little Birdie Branding in 2015.
“Branding is who you are, your look and feel, your company’s values, hopes, desires,” she explained. “Marketing is what comes next. It’s the message, it’s what activates the buyer. They are very different things. Your brand is what’s left after the marketing message has left the room!”
“She’s so creative,” assessed Jessica Dandurand, owner of Birds Eye View Photography in Granville. “She’s really good about not just creating a random brand, but branding in a way that makes it really personal. I really like her style.”
“I feel lucky to have found what I love,” Whittington responded. “And what I’m good at. And make a career of it!”
“I recently found,” she continued, “an old project from my first year of college where it asked for my future goals. I said, ‘I want to travel the world working for large design firms, then open my own design business where I will excel as a designer!’”
“It seems that prediction,” she concluded, “was pretty spot on.”
For more information about Little Birdie Branding LLC in Granville, call 740-641-3453 or log on www.littlebirdie-branding.com.
Aces of Trades is a weekly series focusing on people and their jobs – whether they’re unusual jobs, fun jobs or people who take ordinary jobs and make them extraordinary. If you have a suggestion for a future profile, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org or 740-328-8821.
Volunteering at the Licking County Humane Society…Monica Fiore
Monica Fiore has been volunteering at the Licking county Humane Society since January of 2017 and has logged over 148 volunteer hours in that time. Monica has dedicated most of her volunteer time to the Pet Therapy Visit program and to 6:00 pm dog Walking – sometimes performing up to 6 visits and 5 dog walking shifts a month! However, whenever there is an opportunity to help, Monica is one of the first volunteers to offer her time, replying to recruitment emails with lightning speed! She has assisted with community outreach events, front desk support, low -cost spay/neuter clinics, donation pick-ups, and more. Monica’s confidence and decisiveness are an asset to the LCHS volunteer program. Her drive and motivation make events, pet therapy visits, and dog walking shifts go smoothly. Thank you for bringing your passion, confidence and kindness to LCHS Monica!
Are you interested in becoming a volunteer at LCHS? They would love to have your help! Come to the shelter and complete an application! https://www.lchspets.org/support/volunteer-faqs/