about
  • Commended for Interpreting Others’ Creative Vision into Graphic Reality
  • Skilled at Finding Creative Solutions to Design Problems
  • Experienced Graphic Designer that Thrives in an Innovative Team Environment
  • Tech-Savvy and Able to Learn, Integrate and Share Skills and Applications
skills
  • Graphic + Information Design
  • Brand Planning + Implementation
  • Digital Photography + Photo Editing
  • Vector Illustration + Logo Design
  • Knowledge of the Printing Production Process
  • Basic Understanding of WordPress + Web Design
Software + Platforms
  • Adobe Creative Cloud
    Photoshop | Illustrator | InDesign | XD
  • Microsoft Office
    Word | Excel | PowerPoint | Outlook
  • Mac OSX + Microsoft Windows
education

Bachelor of Arts: Art + Visual Technology
Concentration in Graphic Design | Minor in Business
George Mason University

Languages
  • English (American) — Native Speaker
  • German — B1 Certification
Interests
  • Photography
  • Volunteer Work
  • Traveling
  • Cooking
Experience

American Women’s Club of Düsseldorf — Graphic Designer + Board Member
Düsseldorf, NRW (DE) | 4.17 to present

  • Conceptualized and Designed Quarterly Magazine, The Radschläger
  • Designed Print Materials for Internal and External Use
  • Networked with Local Expats to Expand Club Membership

Medulla, LLC — Creative Director + Co-Founder
Midlothian, VA (USA) | 1.11 to present

  • Led Creative Team to Conceptualize and Execute Branding and Marketing Campaigns for Non-Profit Organizations and Small Businesses
  • Coordinated Production of Print and Electronic Informational Materials
  • Created and Implemented Effective and Comprehensive Identity for Internal Brand

 Tropical Smoothie Cafe — Marketing Manager
Short Pump, VA (USA) | 6.10 to 5.16

  • Conceptualized and Executed Marketing Strategies and Events for Individual Franchise

  • Collaborated with Local Co-Op and National Corporation to Carry Out Regional and National Marketing Campaigns

Taradel, LLC — Graphic Designer
Glen Allen, VA (USA) | 6.08 to 2.12

  • Designed Marketing, Advertising and Informational Materials for Small and Large Businesses
  • Led Design Team in Production Meetings
  • Developed Online Application for Non-Designers to Allow for Information Insertion into Existing Layouts
  • Assisted with Internal Branding and Marketing Efforts
  • Initiated and Coordinated Community Giveback Affairs

George Mason University — Adobe Creative Suite Instructor + Student Mentor
Fairfax, VA (USA) | 8.06 to 12.07

  • Planned and Taught Abobe Photoshop and Illustrator Workshops to Non-Designers
  • Guided Students to Complete Projects Using Microsoft Office and Adobe Creative Suite
Adrift Designer

Not all those who wander are lost — it’s a favorite quote among those who, like me, live abroad. I won’t lie — I usually am lost, and I’m okay with that. I have a terrible sense of direction. Instead of fighting my natural state, I have learned to embrace this shortcoming and have found that it is, in some ways, a strength. Being directionally impaired has helped me to develop the skills I need to create successful designs. In my state of calm disorientation, I have made discoveries that I never would have dreamed of otherwise.

When I don’t know where I am, I absorb my surroundings and find the way home. I make wrong turns; I look around; I find my path. I take advantage of whatever tools I possess. I am eternally grateful to the inventors of cell phones and GPS. And as I meander down streets and alleys, I find new things — a favorite restaurant, a beautiful park, a new friend.

Being lost is like beginning a design — it’s puzzling and I don’t know what to do at first. I have all this information and I need to piece it together in order to reach my goal — a functional and visually appealing design. I get to work; I set goals; I make mistakes. I use my tools — software, instincts and inspiration. Eventually, I take a step back and look at the big picture. I realize that, to my surprise, I have found my way and that everything has fallen into place. I have discovered something pretty amazing.

Wandering aimlessly has led me to unexpected discoveries and designs that I am proud of. I have taken a few wrong turns, but with a little luck and help and perseverance, I always find my way.

Originally from Woodstock, New York (USA), Jessica Nicholson grew up in Richmond, Virginia (USA). She studied Art and Visual Technology at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA (USA). Since graduating, she has worked in the field of Graphic Design and founded Medulla, LLC, a graphic design firm, with her business partner, Jessica Fleenor. In May 2016, in the spirit of adventure, Nicholson and her husband chose to move abroad. The couple currently lives north of Düsseldorf, NRW (Germany). Since moving overseas, Nicholson has become the Graphic Designer for the American Women’s Club of Düsseldorf. She spends her free time cooking, taking photos and exploring Europe.