Alum of the Month: Clair Morgan | News | Vancouver Island University

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Clair Morgan graduated from Vancouver Island University with a Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design. After graduation, Morgan opened Cosmo Packaging in Chemainus, a brick-and-mortar business specializing in branding and package design. She later transitioned out of this into managing creative projects for start-ups and established companies.

“Cosmo grew quickly over four years, attracting clients from all corners of Vancouver Island as a destination for entrepreneurs looking for package design and branding.”

Morgan is the guest speaker during Omni, the VIU Graphic Design 2024 Grad Show on May 2, from 6 to 8 pm, in the Malaspina Theatre lobby (Building 310). This event will showcase the work of this year’s graduating students. Everyone is invited to attend to celebrate their accomplishments.

Here’s more about her time at VIU and since graduating.

Tell me more about your art and the inspiration that drives your creative process.

Being a highly dedicated artist has taken me on an unexpected journey. Crossing paths with like-minded artistic individuals and experiencing different cultures while focusing on my craft has given me a very rich life experience.

Why did you choose to attend VIU?

Transitioning from fine arts into graphic design was certainly the next logical decision. The four-year program offered at VIU superseded expectations. The dynamic and highly experienced professors were, and still are, the best part of the program. I have always been impressed by how they quickly adjust the curriculum to be relevant for today’s world.

Can you tell me about your experience after graduating from VIU?

In 2018, I opened the doors to my company Cosmo Packaging. It was a boutique studio in beautiful Preedy Harbour, Chemainus. Cosmo grew quickly over four years, attracting clients from all corners of Vancouver Island as a destination for entrepreneurs looking for package design and branding. 

I loved going to work. Each day consisted of supporting others who had ambitious and enterprising spirits. I took great pride in being a part of their process.

How did your program prepare you for your current role?

The most deeply influencing topic was design thinking. Design thinking methodologies have given me the confidence and tools needed to lead large groups and manage complex projects. Devising information-seeking strategies that are exciting for others, and putting them into action, is one of my favourite life experiences.

Inspiring teams within a positive and safe space to unearth and discover what their core visions truly are for the future of their company. Often, this is also an intrinsic stage for me to generate a successful connection with multiple stakeholders, which I would be working alongside for the duration of their venture.

What are you currently working on?

Illustration and cover art contracts. I have also been engaged in launching a new company, Botanical Aid Foundation. The foundation is being developed to harness and strengthen human connection, focusing on well-being topics and encouraging balanced living practices.

What advice would you give someone graduating from Graphic Design?

  1. Always complete a project on time, no matter what. 
  2. Be honest with your clients and connect quickly if you don’t understand something well enough to push forward. Even if it is humbling. 
  3. Always give yourself the gift of space and time, to breathe and create. 
  4. Achieve this by starting every project straight away and doing your best to keep healthy time management routines.
  5. You are not alone! Be sure to generate a community of industry professionals that you can text or email quickly for advice.
  6. Be loyal.

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