in the year two thousand. in the year two thous-aaaand!

(Sorry, Conan fan here.) Anyway. In the year 2000, I graduated with a B.F.A. in graphic design. And this past weekend was spent at my alma mater for a ten year reunion. Yes ... ten. Years!
Our small class of graphic design graduates met up at Iowa State University and it was truly awesome to see those faces again.
I was lucky to have one of the shortest routes to get there, and spent much of my weekend driving from Des Moines to Ames and back again to see everyone. But most of my comrades had traveled great distances for our little reunion.
I walked around a bit to snap a couple of pics of our beautiful campus.
And my old dorm.Friley. (Honestly, I loved it there.)
And of course the place where we pulled our all-nighters, the Design Center.
I'm a nostalgic, sentimental person as it is, but a wave of excitement washed over me when I went back into that building after all this time.
I guess it's just an inspiring space to be in. And it just brought back so many memories.
We went on a little tour to see what had grown and changed since our days at ISU.
We hung out in the auditorium, had snacks and reminisced (or not) about design history classes and long, sleepy lectures from the past.
Feet on the seats, just like old times.We watched Helvetica. (Because we're graphic designers. This is what we do.)
And we hit some old favorite hangouts in campus town.
We also attempted to come up with a plan to sneak into Cold War Kids. A random guy in a metal cover band who was looking for a girl named Maddy asked me 'Are you Maddy!?'
There were grape apes at Lost and Found and photo ops at Copyworks.
And gyros on Welch. (These night photos were taken by Mark Powers Lobo, by the way.)
But best of all was just talking and catching up with my classmates, my friends.
(I'm guessing it was Jess who wrote this for our little group's reunion blog ... I love it.) 'It’s been ten years since we parted ways to discover the unknown territory of unleaded type, splash page introductions, design studios and corporate lingo. We ventured into the world with our first email account and very little more than a small understanding of how to use layers in Photoshop. A lot has changed over the past ten years, but a lot has stayed the same.' (And it's true.)We left ISU without a single web design class (right before the dot com craze) but in our heads was a firm belief in the process. Building a concept ... doing design that meant something and doing it for a reason. The world is such a different place today, but many of the lessons we learned back in the year 2000 will always be relevant and alive in everything we do. It was good to go back. (And to be reminded of that.)


  1. Sounds like it was fun! I had to stop by to say that I lived right in that little outjutting window in Friley -- the one on the first floor. We watched the VEISHA riots from there in 2004. Got teargassed.

    It was a good room.

  2. oh man! i think my heart almost burst reading this. i was isu graphic design class of 2002 and i also have sooo many fond memories. copyworks! late nights in the design building! gyros! and I'm totally with your last paragraph. I feel like there were a lot of technical things i didn't learn, but what I did learn about solid concepts and communication I wouldn't trade for the world.

  3. It is funny that you post all these pictures and talk about your past, when this is what I see every day/night. In fact, I am here right now! I can't imagine what it will all look like 10 years from now for me, or how it looks for you 10 years later. Wish I would have been here this weekend to hang out, but I was in DSM. I don't live at Copyworks, but I am probably in this building more than I am at my house here! You should have been in the KP(King Pavilion)during the first project of the semester. Cardboard jungle! Glad you had fun.

    This is Jordan by the way.

  4. You rock Jen - thanks for posting those!

  5. love the blog, nominated you for Beautiful Blogger Award... check out my blog for details!

  6. This is great, Jen! So good to see you, beautiful Lotus & the design class. It hit me again what a great (talented AND nice!) group of people I got to go to school with. (;



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