CED alumnus Seth McWhorter helps create UGA Capital Campaign graphics

sethmcwhorter

When the University of Georgia Capital Campaign kicks into full swing this month, some of the content used to promote the campaign can trace its roots to the College of Environment and Design.

Seth McWhorter, who graduated from the CED with a bachelor’s degree in landscape architecture in 2011, has been helping UGA create graphics to promote its fundraising initiatives. His work, which was discovered through the online commerce site Etsy, fit the style the university was looking for.

“I was actually contacted by someone in the UGA Development Office who had seen several art prints that I sell on Etsy,” said McWhorter. “So far, I’ve completed illustrations for the Arch, Uga, the Chapel Bell, Herty Fountain, and the Old College building.”

During his time at the CED, McWhorter discovered that while he enjoyed landscape architecture, his true passion was for graphic design.

“Upon starting the landscape architecture program at UGA, it became obvious that my favorite part of the curriculum was going to be anything that dealt with drawing and illustration,” said McWhorter. “It wasn’t until a portfolio class during my third or fourth year that I was ‘exposed’ to the graphic design world – I believe it was Professor Doug Pardue who showed us the typography documentary, Helvetica, which is nerdy and awesome. From that point forward, I kept a keen interest in graphic design while I finished the program.”

Even after taking a landscape architecture job in North Carolina after graduation, McWhorter found himself sketching, drawing, and “looking at various design, illustration and typography blogs.” After starting a blog to post his sketches and drawings, and getting positive feedback, the CED alumnus realized that he might be in the wrong career.

“Pretty soon I found myself staying up late to design, draw and paint,” said McWhorter. “It took a couple years at that job in North Carolina to realize that maybe I should pursue this little ‘side hobby’ full time.”

McWhorter switched gears completely and applied for the graphic design program at the Creative Circus, an advertising portfolio school in Atlanta. After being offered a job at Fitzgerald & Company, the Atlanta based advertising agency where he was interning, McWhorter’s transition from landscape architect to advertising creative was complete.

“Once they offered me a full-time position as a designer, I left the Creative Circus,” said McWhorter. “I am now an Art Director for Fitzco, working on Coca-Cola and a number of other clients.”

Despite his career shift, McWhorter acknowledges that the CED prepared him well for the professional world.

“At every turn I was amazed at how many skills I had picked up at the CED came in handy,” said McWhorter.