08 Apr

Pepper Talk with Victoria Stone

In this month’s Pepper Talk, we’re getting to know Victoria Stone, one of our usability engineers who has been with us for 1.5 years.


1. Do you have any nicknames?
Vic
MaTwo (Privileged for my daughter Scarlett only)

2. What is the first thing you do when you wake up?
I head to the kitchen thinking of things I’m grateful for. Then feed the dog, feed the cat, feed the fish, and then I pour myself a coffee.

3. What is your favorite thing about working as a usability engineer?
As a usability engineer, I feel like that it gives me the best of both worlds, logic and creativity, system and functionality. It’s like bridging two different worlds together.

4. How did you get started in this industry?
After 12 years in retail – In 2007, I started as a contractor for the US Navy at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, MD as an Administrative Assistant level I. In 2011, I was able to relocate and take a job that elevated my clearance level here near Ft. Meade. I have had many years of ‘jobs’ that eventually lead me to my ‘career’ in UI/IX. I look at my work history and am still amazed that I have had such an opportunity.

5. What are your favorite methods or tools of the trade? What is the worst?
I’m still learning toolsets, but I do greatly enjoy Adobe XD. The worst are the complicated ones that I curse at (ie. Photoshop and Illustrator). They are just super complex for the average user, still working on becoming a proficient user.

6. Do you have a set process when beginning a new project?

  • Determine as many requirements as possible.
  • List out Must-haves, Like-to-haves and I’m Dreamin’, but…
  • Check out competitors or similar industries/projects.
  • Sketch by hand with pencil/paper or whiteboard.
  • Review early and often with the client.


7. What do you draw inspiration from?
Minimalism and functional white space, the industry/environment influence, and nature.

8. Rapid-Fire Round:

Caffeine or no:  Heck yes! Coffee AND Tea.
Sweet or Savory: Savory.
Favorite Movie:  A League of Their Own & GI Jane is tied.
Favorite place to travel: Big Energy Vortexes of Sedona, AZ. I like to hike National State Parks. I also need to see the world, it’s such a big place with beautiful places to explore.
Hobbies: CREW Rowing with Annapolis Rowing Club, Cycling Metric Centuries, REIKI and Mediation, Tarot Reading, International travel, creating metal sculpture, gardening, and painting/drawing/charcoals.

9: Okay, admission time…what is your biggest pet peeve when it comes to website user experience?
Making the user THINK (haha) about where am I, what am I supposed to do next, and how do I do that?  Just this weekend, I open Amazon on my (Android) phone, and I instinctively look for the header menu to check my orders. I felt lost and like I was doing something wrong.

 

 

 

Thanks for taking the time to meet Victoria. As always, stay tuned for next month’s Pepper Talk to meet another member of our team!

 

22 Mar

11p Zodiac Wallpapers Series

Whether you’re a true believer in astrology, or just enjoy reading about what your sign might mean for you – we’ve created fun tech wallpapers highlighting each of the 12 zodiac signs. First up in this series are Capricorn, Aquarius, Pisces, and Aries.

After clicking the button with the wallpaper you want, right click and select “Save Image As…” to save to your device.

Stay tuned each month for additional signs!

Capricorn

(December 22-January 19)

Reasons Capricorns are the best:

  1. They are hardworking.
  2. They are logical and always organized.
  3. They are supportive and loyal.

Famous Capricorn Creatives:

  • Thomas Kinkade
  • Janis Joplin
  • Alexander Wang

Aquarius

(January 20-February 18)

Reasons Aquarius are the best:

  1. They are great listeners.
  2. They are deeply intellectual.
  3. They are free-spirited and full of bright ideas.

Famous Aquarius Creatives:

  • Jackson Pollock
  • Norman Rockwell
  • Yoko Ono

Pisces

(February 19-March 20)

Reasons Pisces are the best:

  1. They are intuitive and highly perceptive.
  2. They are adventurous and enjoy trying new things.
  3. They are very creative and artistic.

Famous Pisces Creatives:

  • Johnny Cash
  • Michelangelo
  • Will Eisner

Aries

(March 21-April 19)

Reasons Aries are the best:

  1. They are fearless and spontaneous.
  2. They are extremely protective.
  3. They are optimistic and motivating.

Famous Aries Creatives:

  • Leonardo da Vinci
  • Lady Gaga
  • Vincent Van Gogh
18 Mar

Celebrating 5 Years: Deb Williams

Five whole years have passed since the fabulous Deb Williams joined our Pepper family – and boy has it been an amazing journey.

Since day one, Deb has been an integral part of the team, helping with everything under the sun from proposals, to strategy and process, to leading teams and projects, and we couldn’t be more grateful for all the hard work she has put in. She loves learning new things and tackles every challenge in front of her. Last year, Deb was promoted to Creative Director and in her new role, she has continued to lead teams and projects with excellence.

To celebrate all of her greatness, we interviewed Deb and created an infographic especially for her! Keep scrolling to learn more.


1. Best part of working at Eleven Peppers Studios?
Collaborating with so many talented, passionate people.

2. If you were a pepper, what type would you be and why?
Rainbow pepper because they are multi-colored and inspire creativity.

3. What is your favorite 11p event?
The casino-themed holiday party at the Hotel Revival in Baltimore.

4. What is your favorite present ever received from 11p?
A necklace with the names of my kids engraved on it (for Mother’s Day).

5. What is your favorite 11p memory?
The amazing Disney trip!

6. Name a Pepper you can always lean on for support or advice:
Theresa Santelli – she’s a great listener and provides invaluable advice.

7. Name a Pepper whose work ethic inspires you:
Kristen Price – she’s always positive, patient, thoughtful, and eager to lend a helping hand.

8. My spice meter :

  • Complete wimp
  • Will proceed with caution
  • A subtle flame 
  • A little sweat never hurt
  • The spicier, the better!

Get to know Deb a little bit better…

1. Where is the most beautiful place you’ve ever gone hiking?
A coastal town in Southern Italy called Sorrento.

2. What is your favorite part about being a mom?
Watching my kids grow into confident, successful adults.

3. If you could live in any beach town, where would you live?
Duck, NC (in the Outer Banks).

4. What is your favorite and least favorite part of planning a wedding?
My favorite part is seeing the bride say “yes” to the dress. My least favorite part is figuring out the guest list.

5. Do you have any favorite family traditions?
Every year on Christmas Day we stay in our pajamas all day. It’s our day to spend time together without any schedules or set plans.

6. Where is your preferred place to get a caffeinated beverage?
I love any and all coffee shops – my favorite is a place near our new house called Bada Bean Coffee House.

7. Have you made any cool crafts or done any cool house projects lately?
We recently bought a house on Kent Island had a lot of fun remodeling it with a coastal theme.

8. What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?
I’ve lived in six states: New York, Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland.

09 Mar

Pepper Talk with Maricel Savage

In this month’s Pepper Talk, we’re getting to know Maricel Savage, one of our talented designers who has been with us for 1.5 years.


1. Do you have any nicknames?
My close friends and family call me Mar. My husband calls me Marbee and another nickname we got from watching an old episode of “Lost.” I have a childhood Filipino nickname that I also will not disclose.

 

2. What is the first thing you do when you wake up?
Workout and then meditate…sometimes I have to take a 10-minute nap because I get sleepy from meditating. Lol!

 

3. What is your favorite thing about working as a designer?
I love the challenge of taking a complex message and coming up with the best strategic, efficient, and aesthetically pleasing way to communicate it, to visually tell the client’s story.

 

4. How did you get started in this industry?
I was always creative and loved to draw and paint when I was little. As I got older, I found I could incorporate my creativity into a career when I studied Visual Communication Design at Villa Julie College, which is now Stevenson University. After I graduated, I learned so much from my first design job at a communications firm. One day, I could be designing billboards and coding websites, while the next I could be storyboarding commercials, writing radio copy, or helping with animations and video production. It was a great learning experience and I loved just being a sponge, soaking it all in!

 

5. What are your favorite tools of the trade? What is the worst?
Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign are a must! I hate PowerPoint.

 

6. Do you have a set process when beginning a new project?
After getting all specs and information from a client, I like to immerse myself in research. I like to see who my clients’ competitors are, what the target audience is already exposed to in the market. I gather textures, colors, imagery, quotes, and brainstorm words that evoke specific feelings into mood boards. After all of that, I’ll start sketching and begin the design concept process.

 

7. What do you draw inspiration from?
My family and friends, Pinterest, fashion, textures, patterns, nature, meditation.

 

8. Rapid-Fire Round:

Caffeine or no:  No, but I probably should!
Sweet or Savory: Both!
Favorite Movie:  Ahh! Too many!
Favorite place to travel: Mexico, San Francisco and Chicago.
Hobbies: Reading, crafting, yoga, and Netflix. 😀

9: Okay, admission time…if you could pick one design that you wish you had come up with first, what would it be?
There are so many I wish I would’ve come up with! Right now, I would have to say it’s the Care Icon.

 

 

 

Thanks for taking the time to meet Maricel. As always, stay tuned for next month’s Pepper Talk to meet another member of our team!

 

16 Feb

Pepper Talk with Jaymie Hebb

In this month’s Pepper Talk, we’re getting to know Jaymie Hebb, one of our talented UX engineers who has been with us for 1.5 years.


1. Do you have any nicknames?
Jay, James, Wheels – well, not anymore, but when I was fast.  Lol!

 

2. What is the first thing you do when you wake up?
Do a quick mental review of who needs to be where when for the day.

 

3. What is your favorite thing about working as a UX engineer?
I love that I am both presented with and have the ability to create challenges to solve on the daily.  It allows me to flex my creative side, yet use my analytical strengths as well.

 

4. How did you get started in this industry?
Well, my degree is in advertising, but the tale of what happened between graduation and where I am now is long, twisted, and best told over beer.

 

5. What are your favorite tools of the trade? What are the worst?
Axure is my go to for prototyping.  It’s not perfect, but given our environment, it gets the job done.  Confluence is not my friend, but a necessary evil.

 

6. Do you have a set process when beginning a new project?
I need to understand the why behind things.  So I ask a ton of questions and try to uncover as many scenarios as possible, even if they’re outlandish.

 

7. What do you draw inspiration from?
Everything. I’m a people watcher and take in everything about my surroundings.

 

8. Rapid-Fire Round:

Caffeine or no:  Yes but not coffee.
Sweet or Savory: Savory
Favorite Movie: Forrest Gump
Favorite place to travel: I can’t pick just one. I’ve been a lot of places and many hold special meaning for different reasons.
Hobbies: Coaching, crafting, softball, ministering to kids

9: Okay, admission time…if you could pick one design that you wish you had come up with first, what would it be?
Pinterest. The ease of organizing whims into categories for later reference satisfies my creative and organizational heart.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Thanks for taking the time to meet Jaymie. As always, stay tuned for next month’s Pepper Talk to meet another member of our team!

10 Feb

Spread Love and Give Thanks!

Valentine’s Day isn’t all romance…. What would we do without our coworkers, Zoommates, virtual besties, childcare providers, teachers, delivery workers or doctors?

To show some love for these wonderful people in your life, we’ve created some fun cards you can download and share.

After clicking the download button, right click and select “Save Image As…” to save to your device.

25 Jan

Celebrating 5 Years: Valencia Garden

Congratulations are in order for Valencia Garden – today is her 5 year Pepperversary! 

As a Creative Director, Valencia works with her team to churn out award-winning work. Clients love her! Her willingness to learn new things or solve any problem is admirable.

When we asked her coworkers how to describe her, the word amazing came up a lot – amazing mom, amazing work, amazing problem-solving skills, amazing communicator, amazing teammate.

So without further ado, let’s get into our special interview and infographic all about Valencia!


1. Best part of working at Eleven Peppers Studios?
It’s hard to feel like you’re actually a part of a family when it comes to your employer, but 11P has done an amazing job at making everyone feel like they’re an invaluable asset to the company. The gifts aren’t terrible, either.

2. If you were a pepper, what type would you be and why?
Islander Bell Pepper. It’s sweet but slightly more bitter than other bell peppers. Also, purple is my favorite color, so it just feels right.

3. What is your favorite 11p event?
Disney World.

4. What is your favorite present ever received from 11p?
Disney World—though my first Mother’s Day gift was a great surprise too! I use my “Momosa” glass religiously.

5. What is your favorite 11p memory?
Being stuck at the airport…on the way to Disney World.

6. Name a Pepper you can always lean on for support or advice:
Theresa has been super helpful in my Creative Director role, and Lisa has an opinion about everything, which is great for a second guesser like me!

7. Name a Pepper whose work ethic inspires you:
Kate Rodman! She knows why. 🙂

8. My spice meter :

  • Complete wimp
  • Will proceed with caution
  • A subtle flame
  • A little sweat never hurt
  • The spicier, the better!

Get to know Valencia a little bit better…

1. What’s the best concert you have ever been to?
In my early 20s, I left work early to drive to NY to see Stevie Wonder perform at Jones Beach Theater. A super heavy rainstorm came through about 15 minutes before showtime—I got soaked! I paid $50 from a vendor for a blanket…it was springtime, so chilly air and wet clothes didn’t mix. Most people left after the rain, so I spent the concert 3 rows away from Stevie and his keyboard. Drove all the way back home when it was over, only to wake up a few hours later to go back to work! #brokelife Unforgettable night. Jon Batiste at Howard Theatre is a close second – second lining is undefeated.

2. How many pairs of shoes do you own? Which pair is your favorite?
Probably 30-35 pairs. And I only wear maybe 6 in my normal rotation at a time.

3. Where is the coolest place you’ve ever traveled?
I spent 8 days sailing on a yacht in Croatia. Best trip ever.

4. What is your favorite local restaurant?
Gianni’s pizza in Severn. It was right across from my middle and high school, and I may or may not have frequented there on some school days.

5. What is your daughter’s favorite toy?
Any type of ball. She got a basketball hoop and a basketball for Christmas, and she spent the next 3 hours screaming, “A BALL!!!” from random parts of the house. Guess what she’s getting for her birthday in a few weeks?

6. Who is your favorite musician?
This is hard! Musician for me = someone who can actually play an instrument, so I’ll just rattle off a list: Prince, PJ Morton, EWF, Needtobreathe, Rufus & Chaka Khan, Jon Batiste.

7. What is your biggest pet peeve?
People who still don’t know the differences between they’re/there/their, where/wear/were, and lost/loss. It makes me sad.

8. What was your favorite thing about attending Virginia Tech?
The campus is stunning. It was a surprisingly serene experience being in college in the middle of the mountains. I’ve yet to see another campus that wowed me like Blacksburg did.

9. Tell us the best or funniest thing about your dogs – Hall and Oates!
We thought Hall was a sweetheart when we first got him, but he’s really a jerk. He sits on Oates, eats his food (and yours if you’re not looking), and steals your blankets for himself. He’s our personal Dennis the Menace. Oates is forging a really sweet relationship with my 2 year-old daughter. It’s great to see how much he’s grown from being afraid of her to just wanting to lick her face all day!

21 Jan

Pepper Talk with Kristen Price

In this month’s Pepper Talk, we’re getting to know more about Kristen Price!

Just a little background before we get started, Kristen works as an instructional designer for one of our government clients. She’s been with Eleven Peppers for 1.5 years.


1. Do you have any nicknames?
My family and friends have always called me Kris.

 

 

2. What is the first thing you do when you wake up?
I definitely hit the snooze button a few (too many) times, then probably look at social media a bit before starting the day.

 

3. What is your favorite thing about working as an instructional designer?
I like that instructional design is like a puzzle. You sort of put together pieces of content, graphics, UX, and psychology, and hopefully create something super cool!

 

4. How did you get started?
I started life as a preschool teacher. I liked teaching, but I enjoyed the curriculum design part more. A parent of a child in my class worked for an e-learning company, and got me an interview. The rest is history.

 

5. What are your favorite apps for design?
I enjoy using Articulate Storyline, but I love having access to our amazing graphic designers who make our courses look even better.

 

6. What do you draw inspiration from?
I read a lot, so I draw inspiration from books and articles – whether it’s what they’re saying, or how they’re presented.

 

7. Rapid-Fire Round:

Caffeine or no:  Yes but only in tea. Carbonation and coffee are gross.
Sweet or Savory: Most definitely sweet – bring on the chocolate.
Favorite Movie:  “Hamilton.” That counts right?!
Favortie place to travel: My most favorite place in the world is England. I love everything about it! Secretly I think I was born in the wrong country.
Hobbies: Pre-Covid, I loved to travel, find new fun restaurants and  see Broadway shows. Post-Covid there’s a lot of crafting and reading happening.
   
   

8: Okay, admission time… name your favorite designer.
There are not a lot of famous instructional designers – are there any really? So I’m going to say my favorite ISDs are my fellow Peppers, Deb Williams and Christina Cumberland.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Thanks for meeting Kristen. As always, stay tuned for next month’s Pepper Talk to meet another member of our team!

 

12 Jan

Celebrating 5 Years: Ashley Philip

We couldn’t be more excited to celebrate Ashley Philip’s 5 year Pepperversary!

From the very beginning, Ashley conveyed a keen understanding for design principles and creativity, but has since expanded her skill set on the 11p Commercial Team. She is an agile designer who can jump on any project whether it be social, branding, marketing, web or UX.

On the 11p Commercial Team, she’s gotten the opportunity to work on many award-winning projects. Her drive to expand her skill set does not stop at 11p. She recently received her Masters Degree in UX from the Maryland Institute College of Art. Her work ethic and ambition is an inspiration to all! Congratulations Ashley!


1. Best part of working at Eleven Peppers Studios?
The people. The amount of incredible talent, support and leadership in this company, in my opinion, is unmatched.  

2. If you were a pepper, what type would you be and why?
The Carolina Reaper– I like a LOT of heat! 🔥 

3. What is your favorite 11p event?
DISNEY WORLD! 

4. What is your favorite present ever received from 11p?
A 7-Night Royal Caribbean CRUISE to the Bahamas, Honduras and Mexico!  

5. What is your favorite 11p memory?
The 2016 HOW Conference in Atlanta. It was my first year as a Pepper and I got to (really) know quite a few Peppers early on and soak up all the knowledge from some of the industry’s best. 

6. Name a Pepper you can always lean on for support or advice:
Melissa London– she’s very knowledgeable in her career and knows exactly how to be assertive and fight for a design/vision when need be. She knows what it takes to be a leader and has no problem listening to your aspirations and helps you create a plan to heighten them.  

7. Name a Pepper whose work ethic inspires you:
Kate Rodman– the way she is able to take a client’s thought and provide three or four solid design directions in such a limited amount of time where the thought has now turned into a holistic vision of a brand, inspires me. She’s truly a force to be reckoned with 

8. My spice meter :

  • Complete wimp
  • Will proceed with caution
  • A subtle flame
  • A little sweat never hurt
  • The spicier, the better!

Get to know Ashley a little bit better…

1. Since coffee isn’t your thing, what is your go-to for a pick-me-up?
Currently, a 6:30 am workout 😉. Throughout the day if I need it, I’ll drink an iced matcha latte. 

2. Favorite reality show?
Project Runway  

3. What are you most looking forward to on your wedding day?
To have a wedding day. #CoronaBride

4. What is your favorite room in your new(ish) home? 
The Kitchen/Dining Area. The amount of natural light instantly puts me in a good mood. It’s also the central spot for hosting guests. 

5. What is your most memorable European experience? 
Venice, Italy! Where I got engaged! The entire visit was literally something out of a painting.

6. Would you rather ski or snowboard? 
Snowboard!

7. What is your favorite family tradition?
I don’t have any at the moment– but I think I want make snowboarding every winter a tradition. 

8. Do you have any secret hobbies or talents?
My organizational skills are pretty badassI can find a perfectly labeled container, folder, basket etc.. for any piece of item in my house. Boring, I know.  

9. If you could travel anywhere in 2021, where would you go?
Honeymoon plans include Bali + Paris– if it’s ever safe *fingers crossed*

10. What is your favorite film?
Nocturnal Animals 

21 Dec

Hello Winter Wallpapers

The temperatures are dropping and snow has fallen – winter’s officially here! Break out your fuzzy socks, cuddle up on the couch, and get cozy!

Below you can find our newest wallpaper downloads sized for desktop, Zoom or mobile.

After clicking the button with the size you want, right click and select “Save Image As…” to save to your device.


Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!