Earth Day

This will be a rare post on my blog. But with it being Earth Day, I figured it was the perfect time to share about a little part of my life that I don't talk about very often.

Earth Day // Shaklee Get Clean // brianakapper.com

I found out about Shaklee a few years ago from some friends. I was on the journey to a healthier life mainly with eating habits. Throughout college I had so many stomach issues! The combination of stress, late night fast food runs, and an apparent food allergy, left me super uncomfortable in many different ways. After switching my diet around, I started taking vitamins and supplements from Shaklee. The supplements really helped to clear up my skin and helped me feel better overall. Especially vitamins D & B in winter. (Anyone else get a little down in the winter?)

So when I moved out last summer, I decided to purchase the Get Clean products! I've been so impressed with the quality of Shaklee and their commitment to their products. The cleaning line is amazing. I no longer get headaches when cleaning, I have saved so much money, and they work really well! I believe that health isn't just about what you put in your body, it's about everything around you. Shaklee has the most natural and nontoxic cleaning line in my humble opinion, and I even used to use vinegar! Even just the Basic H2 by itself is great. You can use it for windows, floors, stove tops, as a general cleaner, etc.

Earth Day // Shaklee Get Clean Basic H2 // brianakapper.com

The Get Clean Kit

  • No harmful fumes or hazardous chemicals.
  • Outperforms 20 national leading brands.
  • You would spend $3400 for ready to use cleaners to get the same amount of clean found in the Get Clean Starter Kit! (Based on comparing number of uses as set forth on product labels of conventional, ready-to-use cleaners.)
  • Features Basic H2® Organic Super Cleaning Concentrate - just 1/4 tsp. makes 16oz. of all-purpose cleaner for only 3 cents.
  • And when you purchase the Get Clean Starter Kit you also make a positive impact on the planet:
  • Keep 108 pounds of packaging waste from landfills.
  • Eliminate 248 pounds of greenhouse gas.

Thanks for reading through this and letting me share a story about my health journey! Go to my contact page if you have questions or want to find out more! The free membership with the purchase of this kit is a limited time offer. Buy here!

A Designer's Bookshelf

Over the years I’ve spent a lot of time and money on design books. A lot of them were ones I needed to buy for class, while others were recommend to me by friends. As a professional designer, I find it extremely beneficial to always be refreshing your basic skills. Books have always been helpful for me to further my education, understand history and purpose, and really just for inspiration in general. 

A Designer's Bookshelf // 9 books to read if you're a graphic designer

I’ve picked out nine books from my shelf to share that I hope other designers will find helpful. Check and see if your local library has them if you do not have the money, but I would recommend investing in building a design library. I've enjoyed referencing some of these books again and again, and am always looking to expand my shelf.

A Designer's Bookshelf // 9 books to read if you're a graphic designer

Thinking with Type, 2nd revised and expanded edition: A Critical Guide for Designers, Writers, Editors, & Students. This is hands down one of my favorite books. It’s a book not just for designers, but for anyone who has to deal with type. Read this book. Learn rules of typography.

Layout Workbook: A Real-World Guide to Building Pages in Graphic Design. I bought this in school, but thankfully I had instructors who taught everything in it. I would recommend this to someone who is a “self-taught” designer, or to anyone wanting to refresh their layout skills.

Type and Typography. I’m just going to go ahead and say this. If you didn’t take a typography class and you are a designer, buy and read this book. It explains basically everything you need to know about type and typography, as the title states. This book is on my “read again soon” list.

A Designer's Bookshelf // 9 books to read if you're a graphic designer

Meggs' History of Graphic Design. A little piece of full disclosure on my part. I somehow got out of taking the graphic design history class in college. One of my professors found out and said, “Briana, you have to read this book before you graduate if you want to be a designer.” So I bought it. I’m still reading it though…oops!

Marks of Excellence: The History and Taxonomy of Trademarks. This changed everything. From an editorial review listed on the Amazon page, “The indulgence of the coffee-table format is combined in this book with an intelligent and comprehensive text to create a reading experience properly saturated with looking.” Yep.

Designing Brand Identity: An Essential Guide for the Whole Branding Team, 4th Edition. I own the 3rd edition of this book, which seems to have better reviews than the 4th one, but none the less. I love process so I enjoy this book. Some people would rather check this one out from the library though. If you have anything to do with branding–ranging from building a brand or keeping people in line with a brand–I would say read it at least once. It was helpful.

A Designer's Bookshelf // 9 books to read if you're a graphic designer

Graphic Artist's Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines. BUY THIS EVERYONE. This has singlehandedly been the most useful book I’ve ever purchased, mainly for deciding on freelance pricing. Every time I get a chance to read a bit, I learn something new. Just buy it.

The Leap Year Project: Learning to Risk & Risking to Learn. This isn’t a design book, but it’s so inspirational. Victor’s story is encouraging, challenging, risky, and empowering. I can’t say enough good things about this book and Victor. Peppered throughout the book, is the story of so many people who took a leap in 2012. Click the title to buy the book and to sign up for a newsletter leading up to LYP 2016.

Just Design: Socially Conscious Design for Critical Causes. Not limited to graphic design, but design in general. I just enjoyed reading this book for fun. It ended up being inspiring though–seeing how others think and the solutions they came up with for various projects.

I hope this was a somewhat helpful list. Keep in mind, these are my own opinions about these books. Some of these books I hated the first time I looked through them, and later learned to deeply appreciate. Like I mentioned before, I think it's important as designers to keep refreshing your basic skills. What books would you recommend? 

Writing Prompt

"There’s no longer breathing room in our lives. We can’t wait in line, watch a sunset, or even use the bathroom without taking out our tiny devices to fill an imaginary void. When these small gaps are constantly filled, we close the room our creativity needs to flourish." 

Death to the Stock and Medium collaborated to bring images and writing prompts together. I've enjoyed the process, and wanted to pass it along.

Writing Prompt // Paul Jarvis // Death to the Stock // Briana Kapper

How do you give yourself the space necessary to create?

Earlier this week, I mentioned how I enjoy my spot on the blue couch in our living room. Although it is a spot of comfort, where many thoughts are spurred on, it isn't where I feel most creative. My job is to be creative and solve problems all day, so creativity in my free time has become tricky. Graphic design involves a lot of face time with a computer screen, so I find taking a step back is the best.

Writing Prompt // Paul Jarvis // Death to the Stock // Briana Kapper

Here are some ways I've found helpful for finding the space necessary to create–guess what? None of it involves technology. 

  • Aaron and I enjoy being outside. There is something so invigorating about fresh air, moody skies, and nature. Even though it takes me forever to build up the courage to face the cold, it's always worth it. Even dancing in the rain is thrilling.
  • We visited Nashville for our honeymoon and found ourselves talking so much about art, people, community, and faith on our drive home. Getting out of your daily routine is great for creativity.
  • Exercise. Exercise gives me the space necessary to create. It helps to remove stress, it focuses my mind on something else, and my body feels refreshed and motivated to work on a project.
  • Cleaning. Having a clean workspace when I'm overwhelmed kind of makes me forget everything and I can really focus on what I'm doing.
  • I love cooking. I like making somewhat complicated meals, learning to time things so everything is done at the same time. Cooking is creative. It makes wheels turn, I get to eat delicious food, and then I'm ready for whatever is next.
  • Sometimes I just doodle or sketch. Especially if I'm having a hard time with concepts. Even if I'm just processing things in life, I find it helpful to write out my thoughts and prayers. Paper. Always use paper.
  • If all else fails, coffee with a friend is always a real treat. I'm focused on someone else and enjoying coffee. For some reason that's a magical combination and I leave feeling inspired.
Writing Prompt // Paul Jarvis // Death to the Stock // Briana Kapper

How do you give yourself the space necessary to create?

All images, the quote, and the writing prompt were found here.