I live in Coffs Harbour, approximately halfway between Brisbane and Sydney in NSW Australia. Coffs, to me, is beautiful. I have the ocean about 5 minutes away, and rainforest about 10. One of my favourite things to do is go down to the local Jetty, take a stroll along the board walk, keep an eye out for turtles, sting rays and dolphins, and soak up the sunshine. 

My education

I was always a bit of an over thinker and analyser, and was always fascinated by human behaviour (the "why do we what we do" question), and so I enrolled in psychology. I completed my bachelor of psychology with honours at SCU in Coffs Harbour. 

In order to work as a psychologist in Australia you have to either complete a masters degree over 2 years, or an internship over 2 years. . And so I applied for the Masters of Clinical Psychology at UNE, and was accepted in to the course, finishing in 2011. 

My work beginnings - psychology

I started working in private practice about 5 years ago. Initially I worked for an already established private practice, and then I also started working at headspace (a government organisation for young people aged 12-25 where they can access doctors, psychologists, youth workers etc for free). At the end of 2016 I opened up my own private practice. It is just me, in my own little office (although at the moment my mum works right next door!). I am a fully qualified clinical psychologist.

I really like psychology. I like talking to people and I enjoy being able to hear their story. I continually feel humbled by being allowed to know these very personal stories and very honest details about peoples lives. However I have always been quite a creative person, and I had known for a long time that I was really missing that hands on creativity. I knew psychology alone was just not enough.

 Graphic Design Coffs Harbour - Designed By Jess
 Graphic Design Coffs Harbour - Designed By Jess

My creativity

When I was a kid I used to make little signs just for fun- carefully and slowly handcrafting the lettering, and practicing different ways to get it looking just right. Even in my books in high school I wanted them all the look perfect and neat, and I wanted my handwriting to be just so (or I would rip the whole page out and start again!). I used to draw a lot, mostly doing patterns and flowers. And since getting older I have actually drawn and designed my own tattoos!

When looking for this creative thing that was missing from my working life, I wrote a list of all the things I like. It included photography, lettering, drawing and illustration, writing, design, imagery and stationary. It took me a while- but finally I realised this list was graphic design! 

My current trajectory

Having studied a Diploma in Graphic Design with CACT I have learned that Graphic Design, and photography, is really my thing. It fits me to a tee and I couldn't be happier. 

I have now also decided to study consumer psychology so I can really get a whole picture of design and how it is perceived. Some of my favourite readings so far are: Journal of Consumer Psychology, Nudge (by Cass Sunstein); Decoded (by Phil Barden), Predictably Irrational (by Dan Ariely), Thinking Fast and Slow (by Daniel Kahneman) and Brandwashed (by Martin Lindstrom). As well as a whole heap of design books too!

As well as crafting and designing websites, logos and assets, I have also decided to help share my knowledge. I know not everyone can get access to expensive psychology journals (like the Journal of Consumer Psychology or the Journal of Consumer Behaviour)  - so I decided to try and share the articles I find most interesting, in a way that makes it accessible to any reader. I also want to share my knowledge of design, how to's, lessons learned along the way, as well as articles on self care and productivity. A true blend of psychology and design!

Thank you for your interest in me :) I hope you find something here you like! Please feel free to get in touch - I answer every email personally and always enjoy hearing from you. Thanks :)


Where to next? Read my blog for tips and ideas :)