My Name is Jackie Ruiz and even though I have been around a while, I am just starting to launch my freelance design work here in San Diego. I went to school at the University of Minnesota Duluth in Duluth, MN and I graduated with a BFA in Graphic Design and a Minor in Art and Photography.
13 Months ago, I became a mom which has been on of the most rewarding experiences of my life. There are moments in life that define us and if you can remember those moments, I believe they hold the key to what you are looking for in the future. I knew graphic design was a great choice for me but never expected to not know what to do with it after college.
So a little backstory about me. I grew up in Minnesota, went to college and graduated in the winter of 2006 and decided to take all of 2007 off and just work and apply for jobs. Well, I met my husband in the spring of 2007 through my sister and brother-in-law (who lived in San Diego) and the seed was planted. I quickly picked up the pace and got a second job in the hopes that I would make it out to San Diego at the beginning of 2008, and I did!
I got to San Diego on January 1, 2008 and hit the road running. I must have gone to 20 Job Interviews and nothing panned out……they all wanted experience. Well, how do you get experience if no one will hire you? I got discouraged but just as I was about to give up and start applying at retail shops, I found a job right down the road from where I was living. It was a blessing in more ways than one and although I only worked there for 10 months, it was one of those defining moments that gave me a glimpse at my future. From that job I started working at General Dynamics NASSCO and quickly discovered that even though I wasn’t doing graphic design full time, my skills were still required for the work I was doing. I made a lot of really great friends, stayed close with my old bosses and started doing more freelance work.
Now, my husband and I, along with 3 other families own Helm’s Brewing Co. in San Diego, CA and I have done all the design work since the beginning. So long story short, I am a freelance designer specializing in logo/web/print design, I am a brewery owner, a wife and mother. Needless to say, I love all my jobs and think that I do them very well. All my choices have led me where I am today and I couldn’t be more proud.
Hope to see you around here more often!