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Grill the Arsonist: Meet Dre
March 7, 2016 | Emily Bettridge

Andrea Manor Bio

For this edition of “Grill the Arsonist” we’re venturing into the creative realm and talking to the one and only Dre Manor!

Dre was born in Charlotte, North Carolina, but has spent the majority of her life here in good ol’ Iowa. Growing up, she participated in many activities that helped mold her into the imaginative and fiery person she is today. She found her creative side through performance arts (dance, show/jazz choir, piano to name a few), and writing books and stories. She’s an Iowa State grad with a Bachelors of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design. She married a fellow Cyclone and has a one-year-old daughter (a mini-Cyclone!).

Reflecting on your career so far, what do you consider your biggest accomplishment?

I’ve had the opportunity to be with MindFire for 6 years now. It’s pretty cool to say that I’ve watched MindFire grow into what we are today!

So much has happened in those six years! What’s been your biggest takeaway?

As a graphic designer, there is always something new to learn! From the time I started at MindFire, it’s been my goal to grow as a designer. Each experience, each project, each client has helped me to do so. Not only have I learned about design, but I’ve developed a greater understanding of the important role graphic design plays in marketing.

When I started at MindFire, the words ”marketing” and “branding” were generic terms I had heard of, but I never knew the true meaning or the POWER behind those words. It’s truly fascinating the impact this industry has on our everyday lives. MindFire has shown me that good, smart design goes much farther than a nice font and good composition. Design gives brands a visual identity that can’t be found anywhere else. Understanding the power of marketing and branding has made me a better designer.

Are you a print or digital gal?

I definitely prefer print design. There is something about the freedom and opportunity for creativity. I like how there is variety of mediums within print design – brochures, posters, direct mailings, ads, packaging, folders – the list goes on and on. They all require a different kind of thinking in terms of how to execute the design and how to effectively communicate the message. But don’t get me wrong! Digital design is very important too! The more I learn about the digital world, the more I appreciate it.

Other than spending your day with the talented, beautiful, magnificent and HOT Arsonists at work… What’s your favorite part of your day?

The favorite part of my day is probably my daughter’s bedtime. Wait – that sounds way worse than I intended! It’s not because bedtime means she goes to bed and this mom gets to put her feet up, but because I treasure that time before bed with her. We read books and she turns every page. We sing her favorite songs and she puts her head on my shoulder as we sing. I need that time; it’s everything.

Confession time! What are you binge watching on Netflix right now?

Don’t laugh – but I honestly don’t know how to use Netflix! I’m old school, I guess. Give me a remote (one where I only have to hit ONE button to turn the TV on) and let me watch whatever’s on at the time. None of that “record to watch later” stuff; I either watch it during the original broadcast time, or I miss it!

Your designs are second to none! Where do you find inspiration?

I can find inspiration almost anywhere. I was doing some online shopping once and saw a pattern on a pillow that inspired an idea for a work project. Maybe it’s the creative part of me, but I have a tendency to look at things differently. It allows me to get ideas from simple everyday things and apply it to my designs. On a more traditional sense, I find inspiration in books, online and in print materials.

You can be any color crayon you want – what color are you?? GO!

I can be any color, but I want to be the sharp crayon.

Touché! Well played, Dre! At what age did you feel like you could be called an “adult”?

Some days, I wonder if I’ll ever feel like a real “adult." I’d have to say I felt like an adult when I realized I was the person people were turning to for info/expertise, instead of the “more adultier adult”. I WAS that “adultier adult!” But at the end of the day, isn’t being an adult just Googling things? Ha!

Let’s play a little game of “This or That?”

Breakfast or dinner? “Breakfast FOR dinner!”

Sweet or salty snacks? “Salty, 100%.”

Coffee or tea? “I’m a tea gal.”

iPhone or Android? “iPhone. I have to stick with my Apple products.”

Beer, liquor or wine? “My signature drink is a good ol’ rum and diet.”

Cat or dog? “Dog. I can’t take the sassy attitude of cats. I have enough sass!”

Tacos or burgers? “That’s tough! I’d have to say tacos.”

Toilet paper: over or under? "OVER. Because then I don’t have to feel around the entire roll to find the end – who has time for that?”

Coke or Pepsi? “Diet Pepsi is my go-to pop.”

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