Uncovering a Passion and Skill for Graphic Design – Posted 5/20/15

When Caera Hirsch, of Basking Ridge, moved from her birthplace of South Africa to Sydney, Australia she didn’t know how many more times she would move before she reached the age of 19. From Australia she moved to Paris, France then Tokyo, Japan and then to Morris County where she attended County College of Morris (CCM) as an international student. She next plans to move back to Australia and attend one of their universities.

During her year at CCM and with the guidance of Yvonne Bandy, professor of Visual Arts, Hirsch discovered an interest in graphic design and won a logo contest commissioned by the Morris County Bar Association/Morris County Bar Foundation (MCBA/MCBF). The contest was open to Graphic Design 1 classes consisting of second semester graphic design majors and the winner was chosen by the MCBA/MCBF Board of Trustees.

Hirsch, as the winner, received a check for $200, a framed certificate and a listing as a “featured artist” on the MCBA/MCBF website.

Nancy Bangiola, executive director of MCBA/MCBF, described how the logo contest was beneficial to both students and the organizations. “When you give them the opportunity to work in a real-world setting, with real people and with a real product, it’s a wonderful opportunity for them and it teaches them in a way they can’t learn just theoretically,” Bangiola said. “To be able to access talent like this and to work with young people with wonderful ideas, enables me to able to do something I could never have done myself.”

Hirsch explained that she decided to attend CCM because she was not entirely clear on what direction she wanted to take academically.

“I didn’t know what I wanted to do, so CCM was better than starting at a four-year school and then realizing it’s not what I wanted to do,” Hirsch said.

Her father is in the pharmaceutical industry which accounts for their various relocations but living around the world has provided her with valuable insight and skills.

“I’ve always been interested in the creative side of things but I never really immersed myself in it because I wasn’t really sure if that’s what I wanted,” Hirsch said.

At CCM, she also served as the catcher on the softball team and was named one of the Most Valuable Players this year.

Her initial interest was exercise science and she says that she still may pursue that field, as well as graphic design, when she goes back to Australia.

Photo: Nancy Bangiola, executive Director of the Morris County Bar Association/Morris County Bar Foundation, (left) holds the new logo designed by County College of Morris Graphic Design student Caera Hirsch (center) at the urging of Professor Yvonne Bandy ( right).

Credit: Sandra Riano