Meet Graphic Designer Karissa Tolliver

Meet Graphic Designer Karissa Tolliver

Tolliver is a force to be reckoned with

Karissa Tolliver is a 22-year old Integrated Marketing Communication major and visual design studies minor attending Winthrop.

A native of Lugoff, SC she has been doing this for six years. She tells me it is her hobby passion and career all in one.

Check out her Q/A below:

Shakora Bamberg: Tell me a little about yourself and about your role at Winthrop including any leadership roles you have held thus far as a student at WU.

Karissa Tolliver: I've always had a passion for creativity. I've learned design skills and software since 10th grade in high school. I realized that I might actually have a gift when I placed 3rd in a national student design competition my 11th-grade year and was awarded $1,000. My work was displayed at a graph expo in Chicago.

I spent 2 years as DSU's graphic designer. I was the layout editor for the RMR. I've displayed my art at a few events on campus like A. Bevy's black history event and Winthrop Black Girls Rock event.

Currently, I am Visible's graphic designer.

SB: Of, all the roles what has shaped you into a better young artist?

KT: DSU shaped me into a better professional, I learned how to work under strict deadlines and collaborate with other people's ideas. I also made lifelong friendships with people that I've met through DSU.

SB: When did you realize you wanted to go into this field of study where did this passion come from?

KT: Being an IMC major, I've learned a lot about advertising and using different strategies to get your product/service out there. I've used skills I've learned in my IMC classes to promote my products on social media, updating my website and also I made a commercial promotional video.

I always knew I had artistic ability since I was little. I always loved to draw since being a little kid and when I was around 7 or 8 my dad taught me how to use Microsoft Paint and it took off from there. I was constantly making digital art from elementary school and on. My parents even kept a book of all of my early Paint drawings but I have no idea where it is now lol. But yeah that's where it all started.

SB: Tell me about the inspiration that comes with creating your graphics what have customers said about your work?

KT: The inspiration for my work comes from the things that I love and are passionate about. I might either feel the need to express my love for a certain public figure or feel the need to make a statement. My customers have said that they love it and they're always ready to see what I'm going to create next.

SB: Social media accounts for potential customers to purchase or view your work?

KT: Website:

Instagram: @ktolliverdesign

I now sell my work on Redbubble.

The direct link to it is on the website under "shop."

SB: Basic prices for your graphics and art?


Logos are $60-$70 depending on what it is

Flyers are $30

Minimalist portraits are $20

Invitations are $30

The prices of the products vary and can be found on my site

SB: Favoritequote?

KT: I have a lot of favorite quotes but I think the one I like the most right now is

"Your value does not decrease based on someone's inability to see your worth." _Unknown

I made a poster with that quote because I loved it so much.

SB: Who has been your biggest influence?

KT: My graphic design teacher in high school has influenced me. He was the one that taught me all of this and he was the one who made me realized that I had a gift. She showed tough love and wasn't afraid to tell you that your work sucked. That meant a lot to me because if he did like something I created, that means he genuinely liked it. He's also the one that entered me in the design competition. influence?

SB: Has this business venture paid off thus far?

KT: This business venture has definitely paid off. I never thought my life would be this way. I've been doing graphic design for years and I've always known I had talent. But just recently I made the decision to capitalize and take full advantage of it. I'm so glad I did.

SB: What is one piece of advice you can give to college students who are interested in starting a business or company:

KT: Keep your studies at the top of your priorities. It’s easy to get lost into working on your business especially when the money starts coming in but remember that school still comes first. Find a good balance.

SB: What advice do you have for women who are entering the same work profession as you?

KT: Some people won’t take you seriously. They'll give you that “oh that’s cute you have a little website” kind of tone. Just be confident in yourself and your abilities. Know yourself and prove them wrong.

SB: What are your long-term career goals?

KT: My long term goal is to own a design firm but to also continue creating products on a larger scale. I definitely want a team of people to be a part of this.

As well as an online apparel and print store paired with it. I want the products in the store to be created by the designers working at my firm.

I would honestly like to develop a team to expand the business. Like another designer, a marketing person, a financial person, something like that. I can only do so much as one person and I think the opportunities would be endless if I could bring other people into it. My goal is to bridge a gap between graphic design and culture.

SB: When do you do your best work as it relates to your business? How do you get better at your craft?

KT: My creative juices always seem to flow better late at night. That’s when I’m most into my work. My best designs are always completed around 3 or 4 a.m. I can’t sleep until it’s perfect. I just look for new techniques and new ways to broaden my talents. If I see a cool design or artwork I try to mimic it or remix it in my own way.

SB: Who is your favorite artist?

KT: I don't really have one, however, my friend Devon Ford who also attends Winthrop is really talented and I am a fan of his work.

Check out his Instagram: builtfordtuff94

SB: What is an interesting thing that you have been able to do?

KT: I've recently founded an organization dedicated to the young people at my church, I started a committee that focuses on community service and spiritual growth for youth. It is just getting started but I'm excited to see how I will be able to impact the lives of young Christians.

SB: What is one thing that you love about Winthrop and why did you choose Winthrop?

KT: I’ve always loved Winthrop’s campus. It’s cozy and beautiful and it just feels like home.

Who runs the world? GIRLS.

Tolliver is a young rising graphic designer who is just getting started. Stay tuned there's more coming from this budding entrepreneur.

Cover Image Credit: Karissa Tolliver

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The First Time I Learned About The Holocaust

When I asked my dad, "Besides Satan, who is the most evil person in the world?", he replied, "Adolf Hitler."

This year I learned "holocaust" used to be a general term. Nowadays, when we hear this term, we automatically think of the Jewish Holocaust during World War II. People tend to disassociate themselves from the history of the Holocaust, especially the younger generations, because most of them don't have any personal ties to it. As a result, the history of the Holocaust turns into something you learn once at the appropriate age and then cast aside forever.

Although I am a person who has very little Jewish ancestry and no personal ties whatsoever to the Jewish Holocaust, I did not cast this dreadful moment in history aside. I actually listened to what my teachers told us about it and showed a willingness to understand why it should never, ever be repeated. Granted, I was going through weird phases in middle school when I learned about the Holocaust for the first time, so I didn't fully appreciate every detail. However, once I understood everything about it, historical curiosity took over. As I matured and explored my passions in World War II history, I became more empathetic and motivated to understand why the Holocaust happened. Here, in this article, I will share my initial behavior, actions, and feelings when the history of the Holocaust was introduced to me for the first time.

If I'm not mistaken, most American students learn about the Jewish Holocaust in middle school. First, you have a general history lesson; then you might read a novel about somebody's experience in the Holocaust, before watching a movie like "Schindler's List" and perhaps going to a nearby Holocaust museum. I had a very similar situation at my middle school. But, until eighth grade rolled around, the Holocaust was completely absent from my mind.

In eighth grade, my other classmates and I were fully exposed to the horrors of the Holocaust. Naturally, we received a general history lesson first. Then we read Ellie Wiesel's famous book, "Night", before watching a documentary about him returning to Poland with Oprah Winfrey and recalling the horrible memories at Auschwitz. Then we read a short story about Anne Frank's experience. Towards the end of our big Holocaust unit, half of my classmates went to the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Skokie, Illinois, while me and the rest of my classmates stayed behind for a shortened school day to watch a movie about the Holocaust.

While other students might have watched "Schindler's List", my class watched "The Boy in the Striped Pajamas". Although it was lighter than "Schindler's List", it was still equally effective. The ending stabbed me in the heart: I had learned about Zyklon B gas, but never knew how horrifying it was until I watched this movie. I remained mentally disturbed and unusually quiet for the rest of the day. When I finally got home, I broke down. My sister walked in the door and found me crying at the kitchen table. She asked me what was wrong. Before I shared my entire school day, I shouted angrily, "I HATE NAZIS!"

When my half of the class was going to the Holocaust Memorial Museum the next day, I was quite reluctant. I was still upset about the movie I was forced to watch. But, being a good student, I attempted to look as positive as possible. While the rest of my mature classmates only thought of going to the museum as a day off from a regular school day, curiosity was still buried deep inside my heart. When we finally toured through the museum, I was both shocked, horrified, and forever changed. My classmates had yawned throughout the tour and talked to their friends instead, but I eagerly listened to the stories from our tour guide and discovered I had a thirst for historical knowledge. Instead of complaining about wanting to go home, like my friends acted, I expressed a strong interest in learning more.

Since eighth grade, my passion for understanding the Second World War and the Jewish Holocaust remained strong and present. Learning about the Holocaust became a milestone in my historical explorations. It made more appreciative of what I have and more grateful for the fortunate lifestyle I was gifted with. And, of course, it also sparked a craving for historical knowledge. Learning from the horrors of Holocaust is an experience I can't trade for any other. I can only hope that there are others out there who will be able to appreciate history and learn vital lessons from it and perhaps pursue it professionally someday.

Cover Image Credit: Historyplex

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8 Types Of Frat Guys You're Bound To Interact With During A Friday Night Out

I've done all the research so that you don't have to.

College is like a zoo.

But instead of exotic animals, there are young adults, and everyone is wasted.

Deciding how to spend your free time in college requires a lot of research. There are hundreds of clubs, teams, and organizations to join! Some of these extracurriculars can excel your career, allowing you to network and build connections for the future. Others may introduce you to friends you'll have for life -- think weddings, the birthdays of your children, joint-family vacations.

Greek life is incredibly popular for various reasons, such as networking, philanthropy, scholarships, opportunities for leadership, and making friends that will last a lifetime. Other reasons include hella clout and much more access to booze and drugs.

As a girl who likes to do her research, I've done all of the investigating so you don't have to. Trust me, ladies, I saved you a LOT of time.

1. The "Un-Fratty" Guy

This guy is unlike all the rest in everything from music style to dress. He doesn't seem to eat and breathe Greek life and he actually seems normal.

2. The Tool

If he isn't talking about how much he can bench or staring in the mirror, he's probably asleep. Only wears Vineyard Vines.

3. The "Daddy Pays For My Tuition AND Alcohol Fund" Guy

What does this guy's dad do for a living? Who knows, but dude has never had a job, studies something in business, and always ends up on the beach for spring break.

4. The Brain

Actually values books over boobs and booze. Definitely here for the scholarships.

5. The Nice Guy

This fella actually has good intentions for his friends. He's a huge sweetheart!

6. The Creep

Probably spikes punch and for sure gropes while passing girls in the bar.

7. The "How Is Your Liver Still Operational" Guy

Passed out during the pregame, woke up at 2 a.m. to rally. Missed a final exam because he was still drunk. Can you please go make sure your friend is still alive?

8. The Guy With No Personality

This guy joined a frat because he's a total yes-man. And because he can't talk to girls.

In all seriousness: attending a big university introduces you to people from all walks of life. You'll meet people who are from opposite ends of the country, or the world, who you have more in common with than anyone you have ever met. You'll also meet people who you have nothing in common with except where you decided to attend school.

Don't judge a book by its cover, and never judge a boy by his fraternity..unless they have a history of spiking jungle juice. Then stay the f*ck away from them.

Cover Image Credit: @totalfratmove

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