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Meet the Youth Visions' IT Team: Nicola Sznajder

Aug 16, 2011

Graphic Designer with a passion for print and layout design, Nicola Sznajder hopes to create valuable experiences and improved communication for people and clients alike through the process of design.

Always having been a lover of the arts since childhood (Claude Monet being an early favorite) due to the influence of her mother's craving for viewing and reading about famous artists and their works, Nicola was exposed to historically contextual artists and works. This led to performing arts and enrollment in ballet classes at age five for a total attendance of 11 years along with taking some extra curricular drawing and painting courses for two years at the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts located at Deer Lake in Burnaby. Nicola's grade 11 year brought her from performing arts back to the visual arts in media. Her secondary school's Media Arts course introduced new disciplines and ideas such as 3D modeling, game design, and videography. Through further exploration during her first year at Simon Fraser University, Nicola was able to enthusiastically declare a major in interactive arts and technology.

As an active member of her faculty at Simon Fraser University, Nicola holds exceptional recognition for her contributions and achievements. In July 2011, she won 1st prize at the Fun for a Change Competition on a four-person team (Imago^2) for their 'Image Park' project. The competition and project information can be viewed at: www.funforachange.org. In leadership roles and positions, Nicola is a part of the SFU Surrey Student Ambassador Program and has earned Bronze and Silver levels of volunteer work, exhibiting a high degree of leadership skills, personal commitment, and contribution to the growth of the SFU surrey campus community. This program oversees different types of volunteer activities while aiming to recognize students for participation, initiative, and leadership. More information on Simon Fraser's Student Ambassador Program can be found at www.surrey.sfu.ca/sa. Most prominently, Nicola is involved in Simon Fraser University Surrey's Hiaspire Magazine in the positions of layout design, secretary, and web admin. Three issues comprised of 20+ pages are printed each year with each issue running up to 400 hard copies to be distributed on the Surrey Campus as well as the Simon Fraser Student Society General Office in Burnaby.

Nicola Sznajder had the pleasure to work for Canada Youth Visions. It is very important for her to note the diversity of the artwork itself ranging from technical sketches, murals, photography, painting, drawing, clay, ink, collages and digital art. By covering such a large array of art mediums and themes, the program truly sets itself apart with its highly enriching visual content and provides a unique view of the youth demographic from other online art communities. The combination of all these elements allow the website to present itself as a source of inspiration, a teaching tool, a promotional outlet for the youth and as an empowering force for the youth and their role as artists and visionaries.

Along with the rest of the five-person team, Nicola was to complete photo restoration required on both artworks photos and article clippings that marked the first steps in this three-month process. The editing of the article clippings proved to be challenging due to the fact that they were small old newspaper clippings that were scanned (many of them from the 90s).

In addition to Nicola's working position, she also had the opportunity to volunteer one weekend photographing the Surrey Fusion Festival along with Marc Pelech and Sullivan Heights student, Thomas Nelles. A DSLR Nikon camera and a media pass were provided which allowed access to the areas around the stage closed off from the public audience. Images from the Fusion Festival will appear on the website and some will be printed and framed for the interior of the Sullivan Heights Secondary School. Several of Nicola's photos were selected and edited by Marc Pelech. The second half of Nicola's role within this expansion project of the Canada Youth Visions website involves updating the content on the website (the last major update being in 2005). Nicola assisted in the construction of a manual clarifying and defining the procedure of filling the fields and general troubleshooting. This manual will be later re-edited for better practice and understanding to be used by the students and future employees.

Nicola's portfolio page and resume can be found here: www.sfu.ca/~nsa45

Written by Flory Huang

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