Connecticut Creatives | Karla Pámanes
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Karla Pámanes

What do you do and where do you do it?
I’m a brand designer passionate about helping elevate brands through beautiful, strategic design. I’m also AIGA CT’s Communications Design Chair, where we seek to inspire and activate the Connecticut creative community.

I mostly work out of my home in Farmington. But I’m currently working in my hometown in Mexico while we get to spend the summer with family.

What inspired you to choose this profession, and what makes you stay in it?
Since I was a little girl I knew I wanted to pursue a career in art, I loved to make all sorts of arts and crafts but it was my love for pretty clothing tags that led me to pursue a career in graphic design.

Growing up in my hometown, Torreon, Mexico the only career in the arts was graphic design, so I knew that’s what I wanted to study. I moved to Texas to pursue my bachelor’s in art in graphic design and loved it. Luckily, I still do to this day!

What is your career highlight so far?
Believing in myself to go solo! I worked in the media industry for over a decade, then I went the agency route. Both from where I was laid-off, the first after a merger, the second after the pandemic. I’m one who believes that everything happens for you, not to you. So I took it as a sign to start my own design studio doing what I love to do most in graphic design – branding. Taking the leap was both exciting and scary. But it is for sure the best thing I’ve done in my career.

What do you want to accomplish before you retire?
I love what I do, so retiring is not in my plans! I do have a bucket list of things I want to accomplish: I want to mentor 1000 designers, grow my studio, write a children’s arts and crafts book, teach art to preschoolers, travel more, learn more & eat more.

Who/What are your biggest influences?
I get inspired by people who work hard to follow their dreams. From well-known personalities to the girl next door who’s following her passion to start her bakery business at home. But my dad, who recently passed away, is my greatest influence. Living everyday in his honor is what keeps me going to work hard to achieve those big dreams of mine. 🙂

Who are the best creatives you’ve worked with?
I believe we all are creative in one way or another. There is so much to learn from every person’s creative traits even if they don’t believe they are creative. The best creatives I’ve worked with? Those who are relentlessly kind.

My dad, who recently passed away, is my greatest influence. Living every day in his honor is what keeps me going to work hard to achieve those big dreams of mine.

What cause means the most to you?
Many! Human rights, abuse prevention, mental health, literacy, access to healthcare.

Why Connecticut?
Life brought me to Connecticut (as in my husband’s job at ESPN), and it has grown on us. The pizza is really good! Enough reason to make us stay. 😉

What are your loves/passions outside of this field?
Sharing my life with my favorite people, my husband and best friend of 20 years, Angel, our pizza-obsessed son, Lennon, and our cats Rita and Maxwell. Debating where to eat out next or what movie to watch and bribing them to play board games with me.

I love traveling but I’m also a homebody. I love listening to audiobooks and podcasts, mostly about personal development and spirituality. I’m a perpetual student, so I’m usually taking a course or learning something new.

What do you know now that you didn’t know then?
Believe you can and you’re halfway there.