I’ve always had an interest in art, admiring the greats like Picasso and Van Gogh, and at the same time, drawing historic buildings and self portraits for the occasional school project. I never once took a drawing class as I was too focused on playing tennis and soccer and keeping up with my general schoolwork. Wait, I take that back, I enrolled in a drawing class in college and had to drop it due to the overload of taking 20 units. And I thought sleep was important. Anyway, in the past ten years, I obtained knowledge and skills in various facets of art and technology, one way or another. Here’s how it all began:
Born to a family of Armenian immigrants from Istanbul, Turkey on…just kidding, I won’t go that far back.
I earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, with concentrations in Marketing and Entrepreneurship, from the University of Southern California. I also completed a minor in Fine Arts, focusing on Graphic Design. During the last two and a half years at the University, I also gained experience as a teacher’s assistant for the Information Technology Program (ITP), aiding students on projects involving Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access, SAP, Flash, Dreamweaver, and Adobe Photoshop.
Following graduation, I decided to take time off to travel and explore the web design field. But an opportunity to work for Gucci took me out of freelance web development and into the retail realm. With a family background in jewelry (EuroArt Jewelers), I took the next year, working as a Selling Supervisor for the only stand-alone Gucci jewelry store in the U.S. After gaining insight into the ins and outs of the retail public sector and spending a little too much time shopping on Rodeo Drive, I moved on, this time, to the world of law, Immigration law. Four and a half years and many, many Visa and Green Card approvals later, I decided to move on once more to finally pursue my creative passions – graphic art, marketing, and photography.
That brings us to now. Christine I Am. To further explain, my graphic and marketing knowledge and skills have come about from my education, internships, and intermittently during career changes. And although I had hopes to take a few photography classes at USC (a structured major and tuition prevented me to do so), my passion for photography was truly sparked during a trip to Italy following graduation. Yes, I know, many people are photographically inspired while traveling through the historic and scenic cities, landscapes, museums, and ruins of Italy, and many great pictures are taken, but I discovered a love for people, architecture, color, and composition. (And gelato!) I didn’t take it seriously until my best friend, JK, took an appreciation for my prints and pushed me to pursue it further and invest in a professional camera just before a trip to Napa that would forever change my perspective on photography. JK introduced me to her unbelievably kind, cool, and gracious cousins, John and Dona, who are genius professional photographers in Napa, Kopol Bonick Studio. So as I was trying to learn how to use a DSLR for the first time (thank you Auto and Program modes!), John and Dona happily showed me the ropes along with some fun tricks. And after a few days of unbelievable food, wine, people, and scenery, I took away a lot of great memories, friends, and an art of photography. Since that first trip to Napa, I have gone back to visit my friends, gaining mentorship with constructive and insightful critic and advice. In the past few years, I have also taken a few photography classes and workshops, including one in Spain. You can view those photos in my Portfolio section.
In addition to Adobe Photoshop and the programs mentioned above, I am also proficient in Lightroom, Illustrator, InDesign and Aperture.
Thanks to all my family and friends for your encouragement and support, this wouldn’t be possible without you.
Additional accolades, interests, and accomplishments: USC Varsity Tennis Team (only for a short while due to injuries…ugh), 5 chin-ups and counting (thank you Brik Fitness!), named “Salad Guru” by my incredibly talented foodie friends, and…there’s more, I just can’t remember them right now.