Good day friends!
The Disney Stores Design by Me t-shirt contest afforded me the chance to make some new Disney friends. Below is an interview with one of the five finalists, Jasmine. I’ve gotten to know her via Facebook, and have enjoyed her photo compositions with her new baby. She’s also a fantastic painter, a skill I’ve never been able to do. Like me, Jasmine is a huge fan and designer who took a chance on an idea for a shirt that Disney responded to. Here’s hoping we’ll see more of her ideas in the Parks someday!
Tell us a little about your self:
My name is Jasmine Contois and I’m 30, married and have one child, Aidan. I’m currently a freelance Graphic Designer.
I was born and raised in Port Washington New York located on Long Island just 30 minutes outside of New York City. I knew at a very young age that I wanted to be an artist.
Walt Disney is the reason I wanted to be an artist. I wanted to move people with my art. Disney provided me with the inspiration and motivation to be a great artist. When I was 11 my parents signed me up to take a class with the Disney Animators at MGM Studios in Walt Disney World. The animators told me that the best school to go to was Pratt Institute. I knew right then and there that that’s where I was going to go. When I applied to Pratt and was accepted on early admission I was over the moon. I received my undergraduate degree in Graphic Design.
After graduating from college I started working for a design company called Mada Design. It was a great working experience. I met many talented people and learned a lot about the business. It’s also the place where I met my very talented husband. I worked on designing many things such as, books, trading cards, style guides, packaging, and logos. I continue to work with many of my friends at Studio 2.0. and I work for Rocket Digital Arts.
Favorite Disney movie or attraction:
Well it’s hard to pick just one but I love Lady and the Tramp and Sleeping Beauty. I also love Aladdin because I always wanted to be a Disney Princess and felt having a Princess named Jasmine was little gift to me.
My favorite attractions are the Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, Tiki Birds, Sleeping Beauty’s Castle, Cinderella’s Castle, Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain, Splash Mountain, and the Matterhorn.
Disney has had a huge influence on many aspects of my life. Disney has taught me to be a good artist, an animal lover, and to believe in dreams. Disney to me means the very best. They have the best movies, animation, entertainment, and theme parks. I do believe if you dream it, you can build it and when you wish upon a star dreams do come true. For every princess there is a prince.
My parents first introduced me to Disney World at the age of 3 and I thought, “this place is great. I can’t believe one man made all of this for me.” I fell in love with the Wonderful World of Color and the Disneyland program on TV. I thought Walt Disney was such a great and talented man with great values. I wanted to grow up to be like him. I love Mickey and Minnie Mouse. Meeting them in the parks was like meeting the President to me, and still is. Having the tradition of going to Disney every year and now being able to introduce that to my son has meant the world to me. Most of my education has come from watching Disney programs such as Donald in MatheMagic Land, Davy Crockett, and the Great American Adventure in Epcot.
The Disney Parks have been my vacation destination for years. Where else can you go to be totally immersed in fantasy. I cry every time I see Cinderella’s castle and I cry every time I have say goodbye to it at the end of a vacation. I’m always moved my Jiminy Cricket’s “When You Wish Upon a Star” during the Wishes Fireworks. That song sums up what Disney had taught me. I have wished on many stars and most of them have come true. For years I dreamt of going to Disneyland. A chance to see it in person and not just on TV. Finally my dream came true in 2000 when my father decided to take me to Disneyland as a graduation present. It was more magical than I could have ever imagined. It was like being in Walt’s house. Being able to walk the same streets that Walt walked sent chills up my spine. Disneyland has a charm that can not be replicated anywhere else.
One day I met my Prince Charming and introduced him to Disney. He fell in love with the same things that I love about Disney. Now we are raising a Disney Family. It has been fun seeing Disney through my son’s eyes.
Have you ever entered a contest like this before:
I entered a logo contest for a non-profit company that helps raise awareness about the importance of taking care of your pets and bringing them to the vet. My design came in third.
Have you ever tried to design for Disney before:
Yes. I worked on several Disney properties through my work with The Topps Company. My biggest claim to fame is the Club Penguin Trading Cards. I designed the Club Penguin Trading Cards and packaging that is currently being sold in the parks. I also have designed High School Musical, Toy Story 3 and Hannah Montana Trading Cards.
How did you come to your design:
My design came pretty quickly. I loved watching the Wonderful World of Color as a child. I always thought the kaleidoscope was a great graphic. I thought why not make a kaleidoscope made of Mickey iconography.
Tell us about your Design Process:
When I’m really passionate about something, the design comes quickly. I saw the contest on the Disney Store website and I knew what I was going to do. I immediately sat down and started to draw out elements of Mickey Mouse in Illustrator. I combined the elements and started to make my kaleidoscope pattern.
Would You do this Again:
Of course I would. I felt this contest was a very positive experience. I never thought I would have gotten as far as I did. As a huge Disney fan it was a great honor to be recognized by Disney for my design. I have made new friends, gotten some new followers on my facebook fanpage and had my name put out there. I feel accepted by the Disney Company. I also appreciate the other designs in the contest. I was in good company.
Many, many thanks to Jasmine for sharing with us. I look forward to seeing more of her work in the future.