What was your first creative tool/instrument? I had multiple creative tools growing up including the bass guitar in Junior High and theater arts. I let go of my on-stage passions to pursue art and design. My first artistic tools were video editing and 3D sculpture. To this day, sculpture still holds a special place in my heart because that really encouraged me to pursue art. It allowed me to accept the fact that I could do something creative with my major and future jobs.
Why did you choose to study your particular major? I chose to study graphic design for a few reasons, but here are two of them. The first was because it made sense for me in the way my brain worked. I wanted to pursue something creative yet highly thoughtful and detail-oriented. I see graphic design as both right and left brain-focused. You need a good balance of rationality and artistic ability to do graphic design, so it seemed like the perfect fit for me. The second reason I chose graphic design was that I was interested in video editing in high school but then started messing around with Photoshop and pursued shirt and logo design, which piqued my interest in Adobe products and design as a whole.
What has been your favorite APU course so far? Why? My favorite APU course so far has been Graphic Design 3 because I loved taking such an experimental class with one of my favorite professors and mentors, Becky Roe. She inspires me every time I talk to her. Growing close to her and taking that class really helped me grow as a designer because I got to pursue my own project for the semester with encouraging guidance each week. There was no judgment against the styles or ideas I had in mind because Professor Roe aimed to push me more and more into thoughtfulness and asking "why" rather than saying "no."
What was the last kind thing you said to yourself? To another? What was the last kind thing someone said to you? The last kind thing I said to my professor, Becky Roe, was that I want to be just like her in the future. I really admire the way she approaches conversations with such acceptance of ideas and the intellectual desire to just know more. She always brings up her recent discoveries in conversations and is always honest about how much she knows.
What has been your favorite APU completed project so far? Why? Working on The West Wind (APU's literary journal) as the graphic designer has by far been my favorite project. Additionally, a poem, painting, and nonfiction story of mine were published in The West Wind this year during April 2022, and to be able to put out a work that contains so much of what I am passionate about (writing, art, design) feels so personal and rewarding. I feel honored to have been blessed by that position, and I also feel blessed to have my work published in the journal.
Where is your favorite spot on APU's campus? Why? I really love West Campus. I used to spend my mornings before class in the Prayer Garden where it was quiet and relaxing. If I want to be alone somewhere, I really like the STAMPS library. The central elevator that takes you to the internal case of books is enchanting to me. I absolutely could spend all day in that quaint chamber of books.
If you could give advice to an incoming freshman, or to your younger self, what would it be? Don’t be so hard on yourself and don’t let big, scary, real-world things intimidate you. The real world isn't all bad, and nobody should expect perfection. I believe God made everyone intentionally and thoughtfully, so don't try to be more perfect than humanly possible. It's alright to be human and flawed, and it's okay to fail. There is always hope, and darkness does not remain. I guess I just said the same thing differently a whole bunch of times, but I hope one of them hits home. I've always been big on words, and sometimes just the right variation of them can mean just the perfect thing.
Currently, Calli is volunteering for a small business to help them create designs that will be printed on tiles, tote bags, shirts, etc.