In the vast world of graphic design, some artists go beyond the conventional, creating captivating visuals that adorn the exteriors of recreational vehicles. Today, we have the privilege of getting to know one such artist who crafts abstract exterior paint and vinyl graphics for RVs. Let’s delve into the mind of Erin Young to discover the inspiration, challenges, and triumphs that shape her creative journey.

Current Job Role: Designing Dreams on Wheels

Erin’s current role involves the intricate task of designing abstract exterior paint and vinyl graphics for recreational vehicles. It’s a position that requires not only artistic flair but also a deep understanding of the merging realms of art and manufacturing.

The Path to Graphic Design: A Journey Through Colors and Perspectives

The journey into graphic design began with a childhood fascination for drawing. “I always ended up leaning more towards the arts. In fact, so much so that I’ve been in trouble a few times for doodling on my assignments during class in high school. I guess I’ve always found it to be a wonderful way to express yourself when you couldn’t exactly put your thoughts into words. The fact that you can evoke emotion just from the use of color, or bend someone’s mind just by giving a new or odd perspective of something mundane is fascinating to me, and I want to explore that. Art is a world of rules, but I’ve always been a bit eccentric, so I’m happy that you have the freedom to break them as well. It ends up becoming a playground of experimentation for me.

The Joy of Oversight: Crafting Eye-Catching Designs

Erin finds immense joy in having oversight over her projects. The constant demand for something new and eye-catching allows her to push the boundaries of her designs. Whether being conservative or quirky, the freedom to experiment and create standout designs is what fuels her passion.

Navigating Challenges: Balancing Artistry with Manufacturing Realities

Amid the joy, there are challenges. The fast-paced and demanding nature of the role, coupled with the need for simplified designs in the manufacturing process, poses unique difficulties. Balancing the desire for groundbreaking art with the necessity for simplicity becomes a meticulous process of refinement.

Proud Moments and Accomplishments: The RV News Magazine Cover

One standout project for her was the design of a magazine cover for RV News. Faced with the task of summarizing the city of Elkhart without overwhelming visuals, she merged the iconic elk symbol and the city’s title as the RV capital of the world into a visually striking image. “I researched iconic locations in the city, and looked at landmarks and the city flag. But I felt like including all of these would be a bit too on the nose for what the customer wanted. I ended up simplifying all my ideas into a couple of significant points – the elk is their city icon, and the city is known as the RV capital of the world. From there, I merged them into a single picture. At that point, things just started coming together and I moved onto color balancing and blending, ending in the final picture you see.”

Staying Ahead in the Game: Drawing Inspiration from Everywhere

Staying updated on industry trends is a dynamic process. She draws inspiration from diverse sources, referencing clothing and packaging designs to understand the latest trends. Exploring global artwork showcases and researching upcoming color themes ensures a continuous flow of fresh ideas.

Advice for Aspiring Designers: Flexibility and Innovation

For those aspiring to enter the world of RV graphic design, she emphasizes staying flexible and organized. The evolving nature of the industry requires adaptability, coupled with a willingness to experiment with unconventional techniques. Keeping abreast of technological advancements is crucial for bringing a fresh perspective to designs.

Memorable Experiences: RV Hall of Fame Show

“I had the chance to step inside some of the more high-end RVs and get a feel for what we’re designing for, how it all adds up to the big picture and impacts the buyers. I was still relatively new to the industry when we took this field trip, and it’s a bit of an eye-opener when you get to witness the sheer scale of your design spanning across a forty-foot unit. That sense of accomplishment won’t ever leave my memory.

Evolution of the Role: From CAD Files to Clothing Design

Since the beginning, Erin’s role has evolved significantly. Starting with reading CAD files to redraw RV units, she then gained experience in various departments, including quoting, inventory, and operating printing machines. The expansion of responsibilities now includes the transfer of designs onto articles of clothing for Graphix Unlimited’s new apparel department.

Recent Favorites: Unleashing Creativity on a Large RV Unit

A personal favorite project involved designing a paint scheme for a large RV unit. With few restrictions and open choices, she had the freedom to let her creativity run wild. The result was a design that not only excited the artist but also delighted the customers.