Hello.

Here’s the pdf version, but it’s not as fun as scrolling down.

I am a designer building on over 10 years of diverse creative work in print and online media, marketing, institutional education, fashion, food, non-profit, start-up and small business industries. I excel in creating and producing concepts, artwork and various marketing collateral online and in print for major national and international campaigns. Deliverables include: advertising materials (print media, environmental and dynamic web ads) large-format signage, marketing material and annual reports.

 

The creative and results-driven success of projects with my involvement ascribes to my keen design sensibility as well as my conceptual ability to identify clients’ needs and pair design with it accordingly. This comes from my genuine enthusiasm in learning as much as I can about clients’ goals and my willingness to explain design rationale / solutions to them based on my findings.

 

In my career, I have consistently demonstrated that I am an efficient, cordial, resourceful, communicative, analytical and solutions-driven worker. I am also a motivated, quick-learning, self-starter who can happily lead or co-operate with a team or easily work independently and be attentive to managing expectations.

 

Adding to keeping current with design, I have growing interests in programming and understanding UI and UX.

 

It’s likely that I got in touch with you first, but if you’ve come this far, you may want a reminder on how to get in touch. Here’s how: info@mercedeslarosa.com

 

Thanks for stopping by! Scroll down to learn more about me.

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Collaborations and Features

BMWi
Elle Magazine Vietnam
Fault Magazine
Ford Motor Company
Hipstamatic
Nissan Motor Co.

Past Clients

NextCity (funded by The Ford Foundation + The Rockefeller Foundation)
Pop Montreal International Music Festival
Ziff Davis
NewsCorp.
Le Gourmet Burger
Puretea
Maisonneuve Magazine
Naked Eye Magazine
FH International
Arielle De Pinto Jewelry
WearElse
Kafein Cafe

Tech skills

Nielsen Norman Group UX Certificate
Adobe CS (InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign, Bridge, Acrobat)
Sketch
Wordpress (CMS and back-end customization – CSS, XHTML)
Microsoft Office (Powerpoint, Word, Excel)
FinalCut
Lightroom

Design
  • Capable of creating concepts, artwork and layouts based on project intakes. Able to write and explain design rationale behind proposed design solutions and contribute to critique discussions.

 

  • Extensive pre-press experience planning and laying out information in a current, professional and tasteful manner for large format signage, displays, print ads, magazine (print, online and iPad) and newspapers articles, brochures, linesheets, presentations and websites.

 

  • Designs with user-friendliness in mind; keen interest in UX / UI, mobile design, typography and colour application. 
Work Approach
  • Deals with change efficiently, detail and deadline-oriented, motivated self-starter, resourceful; receptive to learning new skills and learns quickly.

 

  • Establishes and fosters positive relationships with coworkers.

 

  • Efficient and communicative worker.

 

  • Solutions-driven. Attentive to managing expectations.
Certification and Education

Nielsen Norman Group. UX Certification (UXC#1010152). Vancouver, BC, Canada. Nov. 2015

Concordia University. BA, Western Society and Culture (Liberal Arts College) + Communication Studies (Specialization: Visual Design). Arts Editor + Graphic Editor at The Link.

 

Bishop’s University. Liberal Arts + Arts Administration. DJ at CJMQ (Campus and community radio station).

 

Dawson College. AEC, Commercial photography.

Detailed Work History
Present – August 2013
Graphic Designer, Concordia University and
Lead Designer, John Molson School of Business (JMSB)

Concordia University is a top-ranking Canadian comprehensive university with 46,378 students and over 500 academic programs. Its business school, JMSB is ranked the 20th best international program in Bloomberg Businessweek’s 2014 “Best Business Schools” and 4th best school in Canada by The Economist in 2015.

Appointed by the University Communications Executive Director to create and apply comprehensive design themes for all levels of its educational and administrative properties to support strategic marketing goals.

Oversees the conceptualization, development and delivery of the largest projects to date:

University re-branding. Conceptualized and developed leading direction of revamp, oversaw its soft-launch application on high-visibility displays such as buses and digital screens throughout campus.

Undergraduate recruitment material. Innovative design of critical material, specifically its Viewbook, contributed to increased applications for 2015.

Reputational ad campaign. Devised a major design element that saved the school’s highest visibility campaign from bearing similarity to a competitor soon before its production and release in national and international print, online and transit media. Saved the potential cost of printing new material and outsourcing talent.

Selected to lead design projects for JMSB to meet its extremely heavy volume of design work.

Ensures the visual design themes of various marketing, business and promotional assets for its 35 educational programs (undergraduate, graduate, post-graduate, professional and executive levels) translates to attractive designs that support Concordia University’s overall branding strategy.

Oversees and manages re-designs for EMBA program, Executive Centre professional programs, specialized graduate programs, certification programs and research centres.

Executes multifaceted design projects for print, online and environmental ad work as placed in: Business Insider, The Financial Post, The Guardian, The Globe and Mail, The National Post, Toronto Pearson International Airport, Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport, Toronto Transit Commission and Societé de Transport Montreal.

Continually initiates mobilization efforts for more efficient work flow from the conception, production and execution phase of major marketing projects.

Preferred designer for leading the ideation and strategizing phases of major marketing projects –input consistently results in more efficient production and completion of marketing collateral.

Top performer in productivity and consistent on-time completion of multiple projects on extremely tight schedules mitigate client and production stress while surpassing design quality expectations.   

June 2013 – July 2011
PHOTO EDITOR + GRAPHIC DESIGNER + PRODUCER. ASKMEN (NEWS CORPORATION, FOX ENTERTAINMENT GROUP asset acquired by ZIFF DAVIS)

AskMen is the largest men’s website in the world

Innovated custom visual solutions and UI/UX design processes to execute business, marketing and editorial goals concurrent to website re-design.

Developed a network of photographers, artists, image providers as well as marketing and publicity agencies preferential to AskMen.

Negotiated cost-effective licensing fees for high-quality, editorial imagery and managed outsourced contracts for artwork.

Fostered relationships that led to the approved use of exclusive imagery.

Resourceful asset acquisition on 2 major online features (Top 49 Most Influential Men and Top 99 Most Desirable Women–each generating over 3MM visitors and 20MM page views within the first week of launch) led to securing an imagery budget for subsequent editions and projects.

Consistently used visual tactics and used site analytics (audience research) to guide design. Contributed to increased daily page views, conversion rates and social media engagement.

Introduced the innovative and extensive use of customized Photoshop filters to differentiate the AskMen brand. Expertise in Photoshop proved essential in creating the customized filters necessary to achieve a desired distinguished look.

Role evolved to include producing e-commerce and video projects to establish strategic partnerships and reach a company-wide goal of communicating “aspiration” (a term intrinsic to AskMen branding strategy at the time) to its readership, advertisers and potential clients.

Conceptualized, produced and shot successful market editorial gallery on sunglasses.

Surpassed its targeted metric (10,000 visitors within the first week), significantly increased pageviews, generated meaningful social media engagement and established relationships with brands such as Ssense.com (luxury e-commerce store), Tom Ford, Dior, Sunglass Hut (Oliver Peoples, Ray-Ban) Karmaloop (popular streetwear e-commerce store), Vans and Converse.

Initiated, planned, shot and produced 8 editorial videos to leverage on major international brands as advertising anchors intended to tap into a more lucrative advertising client base.

Organizations and notable people involved include BMW (Benoit Jacob, Adrian van Hooydonk), Ford (Alan Mulally, Mark Fields), Nissan, the North American International Auto Show, Behance (Scott Belsky), Ogilvy, Erwan Bourellec and Hipstamatic.

Recruited a team of interns to keep up with the growing workload and complexity of the position.

Organized projects and milestones for interns to accomplish, mentored them with insight and feedback on creative deliveries, identified their strengths and matched them to suitable tasks, motivated them to innovate ways to translate the new, “aspirational” AskMen look to various photo-based social media platforms.

Productivity and success from of the initiative was precedent setting. Peers in other departments replicated the closely mentored, focused and objective-driven interning process.

July 2011 – May 2009
Design Freelancer

Assessed, developed and designed websites, visual identity, print and online ads for clients in the food, restaurant, retail, construction and non-profit industry looking for better value alternatives to design firms.

Developed projects within client’s budgets. Self-initiated consistency in communication led to exceeding clients’ expectations of quality projects delivered on schedule.

May 2009 – August 2007
Graphic + Web Designer, SAV Technology

Designed website templates and marketing material for clients in retail, real estate, entertainment and small to mid-size business industries.

Photographed, styled and retouched product images.

Consistently produced deliverables on time and on budget.

Assessed, developed and designed websites, visual identity, print and online ads for clients in the food, restaurant, retail, construction and non-profit industry looking for better value alternatives to design firms.

Developed projects within client’s budgets. Self-initiated consistency in communication led to exceeding clients’ expectations of quality projects delivered on schedule.

August 2007 – May 2006
Visual Designer, Maisonneuve Magazine

Maisonneuve Magazine is Montreal’s literary magazine self-described as “the New Yorker-meets-Vice”.

Conceptualized and delivered magazine’s spec work for 2 major project pitches:

M Magazine, a monthly positioning itself as the city magazine for Montreal (like New York Magazine).

A publication in collaboration with IdeaCity, a Toronto broadcast media company, for its ideas festival.

Assigned to act as holdover manager on the abrupt departure of incumbent Art Director at a critical production phase.

Prioritized and managed workflow over unexpected events, filled-in functional gaps and essentials including the sourcing and selecting of cover image options under extremely short deadlines.

Assessed, developed and designed websites, visual identity, print and online ads for clients in the food, restaurant, retail, construction and non-profit industry looking for better value alternatives to design firms.

Developed projects within client’s budgets. Self-initiated consistency in communication led to exceeding clients’ expectations of quality projects delivered on schedule.

August 2006 – January 2004
Arts Editor + Graphics Editor

The Link is one of Montreal’s university news publications with a weekly circulation of 10,000 copies.

Mastered skills and abilities to develop an efficient workflow for producing multiple design and editorial projects on tight deadlines

Concurrently recruited and managed a roster of 20 freelance contributors.

Created relationships with key cultural organizations and people to help foster arts community at a grassroots level.

Assessed, developed and designed websites, visual identity, print and online ads for clients in the food, restaurant, retail, construction and non-profit industry looking for better value alternatives to design firms.

Developed projects within client’s budgets. Self-initiated consistency in communication led to exceeding clients’ expectations of quality projects delivered on schedule.

AREAS OF EXPERTISE

art direction
creative consultation, production, planning
asset management, negotiation and acquisition
contract negotiation and management
project management
staff, freelancer and resources management
diverse client / stakeholders relations experience
creativity and workflow solutions
print and online media trouble shooting
Adobe Creative Cloud Suite
commercial photography
offset printing and online production