About

01 Who I am

Gwen Saunders | Hội An, Vietnam

Hi! I’m Gwen.

I love to create. I am a designer by trade, an artist and musician by leisure and an avid runner and chocolate consumer by pastime.

I was born and raised on the Outer Banks of North Carolina (and no, my childhood was nothing like what is depicted on the TV show). After attending college at UNC-Chapel Hill, I settled in Charlotte, where I currently reside with my husband and energetic toddler.

Professionally, I have extensive experience straddling the digital and print worlds of design. I am always thinking about the user experience and the end product and am currently pursuing Google’s UX Design Professional Certificate (completion expected January 2023). I am well-versed in everything from UX design and web design to email marketing and social/digital ad campaigns. I am no stranger to the struggles of the ever-changing digital landscape and enjoy the challenge of responsive design.

In the print realm, I have created on every scale — from pocket cards and posters to billboards and bus wraps. With a background in journalism, I am passionate about distilling data-heavy content into successful infographics and following AP Style. (Death to the Oxford comma!) I also dabble in motion graphics, video editing and digital illustration.

02 Skills

InDesign0%
Illustrator0%
Photoshop0%
WordPress0%
Figma0%
After Effects0%
HTML/CSS0%
Email marketing

I am experienced in both custom-coded, responsive email design as well as utilizing email marketing software such as MailChimp, Salesforce and Constant Contact.

Digital illustration

I use Adobe Fresco on my iPad for all custom illustrations, fonts and various hand-drawn design elements.

Specialties

Layout • UX design • Web design • Prototyping • Animation • Infographics • Email marketing • Typography • Branding • Social media • Video editing • Illustration • Project management • Presentations/Pitches • AP Style

03 Experience

ABZ Creative Partners
Senior designer | ABZ Creative Partners

Charlotte, NC • January 2011 to present

  • Spearhead all website and digital projects by creating prototypes following best UX design standards; work in tandem with developers to build landing pages, microsites and websites for clients using WordPress or custom code.
  • Execute all email marketing design for the firm, creating responsive email journeys and e-newsletters through clients’ CRMs and email platforms or by using HTML/CSS.
  • Produce illustrative animations, motion graphics and animated digital ads, developing storyboards and wireframes.
  • Collaborate with marketing team to produce multi-piece campaigns across print and digital platforms, including ads, billboards, social media, emails and more.
  • Tackle design and layout challenges daily by creating complex brochures, flyers, direct mailers, billboards, bus wraps, infographics and print and digital ads.
  • Develop branding for clients using innovative logo designs, fonts and color palettes.
Gwendolyn Belle Design
Freelance designer | Gwendolyn Belle Design

January 2010 to present

  • Manage projects from concept to production, working directly with stakeholders to assess each company’s needs.
  • Create and curate clients’ social media accounts; fashion custom social content.
  • Establish new branding for clients by designing logos, websites, business cards, letterhead and other marketing collateral.
  • Conceptualize miscellaneous print pieces per client’s vision, including merchandise and T-shirt designs, posters, book covers and more.
BIESSE
Graphic designer | BIESSE America

Charlotte, nc • December 2010 to February 2011

  • Worked as a part-time designer for an international manufacturing company.
  • Collaborated with marketing director to design flyers and brochures.
  • Updated HTML email templates and coded and deployed internal eblasts.
USA TODAY
Design intern | USA TODAY

McLean, VA • June to august 2009

  • Worked as part of the design team for a national, multi-platform news and information media company.
  • Created illustrative “snapshot” charts and infographics for the print edition of the newspaper.
  • Archived and analyzed data and website traffic for the online edition USA TODAY.

04 Education

Google
Google Career Certificates

ONLINE • Expected January 2023

  • Google UX Design Professional Certificate

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel HIll, NC • 2006-2010

  • Bachelor of Arts in Journalism | Graphic design concentration
  • Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art | Painting and drawing concentration
  • GPA 3.9 | Graduated Magna Cum Laude

Study abroad programs

  • Journalism Storytelling Team – Graphic Design
    Pontificia Universidad Católica | Buenos Aires, Argentina
    June to July 2010
  • Studio Art
    Lorenzo de Medici | Florence, Italy
    January to May 2008

05 Art

Offline endeavors

Sometimes I need to create with my hands, away from the computer and alone with my paintbrushes and pencils. Below are some of my original paintings and drawings.