Nicole Borens – Award-Winning Graphic & Digital Designer
Written By Leon Mueller For Squelo
Nicole Borens is an award-winning graphic and digital designer from Chicago. She’s been in graphic design for more than 10 years and has worked with brands like UNICEF, PGA Tour and Toms Shoes. In her free time she runs her own Etsy store, Dungeons & Decals.
What does it take to get where you are today?
Tenacity, will, a love of design, and support from friends and family. It’s not easy to make it in such a competitive field as design. In times of enormous self-doubt, if it weren’t for the support of my mother, grandmother, and close friends, I might have scrapped it all and tried my hand at accounting.
You worked as a graphic designer for more than 10 years. When and how did you find your passion?
Growing up art was something that I enjoyed and had a knack for. I loved to draw and was a huge fan of indie comic books. Graphic design felt like the most natural option as a college major and career choice.
Where do you find your inspiration for your work?
Industry magazines like How and Communication Arts. I also find inspiration in other mediums – particularly music, film, and even just living life.
What 3 pieces of career advice would you tell your younger-self?
• Embrace rejection. It’s the catalyst for learning and improving.
• Break often. Chill out and not only will the quality of your work will improve, you’ll be a happier person as a result.
• Know that it’s okay to say no to projects occasionally.
What does good graphic design mean for you?
To me, good graphic design is communicative, strategic, and aesthetically pleasing with no unnecessary fluff.
What’s your personal goal for 2016?
Do more yoga. Book a vacation someplace far, maybe Australia or New Zealand. Keep 2 houseplants alive simultaneously.
Need help with a project? Email me to get started.