Birthdays for Sunday, July 27

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to nine wonderful visual journalists…


Marietta Nelson-Bittle is a former reporter for the Kitsap Sun in Bremerton, Wash. A graduate of Iowa State University, she turns 44 today.


Ashley Cappellazzi is a designer for Gannett’s Design Studio in Phoenix, Ariz. A 2012 graduate of Ohio University, Ashley served as a residence hall assistant and a designer for the school’s alumni association, the department of housing and the campus involvement center. Find her Twitter feed here.


Rudi Louw is a senior graphic artist for the Media24 chain of newspapers and based in Johannesburg, South Africa. A 1989 graduate of Selborne College in East London, South Africa, Rudi spent 19 years as a print and multimedia artist for the Daily Dispatch of East London. He started work with Graphics24 in 2010. Find his online portfolio here and his Twitter feed here. Rudi turns 43 today.


Monica Moses is editor in chief of American Craft magazine in Minneapolis. A graduate of St. Olaf College in Minnesota, Monica worked at the Anchorage (Alaska) Times, the Arkansas Gazette of Little Rock and Gannett Suburban Newspapers in Rochester, N.Y. before becoming assistant managing editor of the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle in 1992. She became design director of the Charlotte Observer in 1995 and joined the faculty of the Poynter Institute in 1998. In 2002, she became deputy managing editor of the Minneapolis Star Tribune and was eventually promoted to executive director for product development. In 2007, she opened her own leadership, change and communication coaching firm. She took over at American Craft in 2010. Find her Twitter feed here.


London Nelson is a features designer for the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, where she art directs the Taste, Variety and Home and Garden sections. A 1989 graduate of the University of Nebraska, London worked as a copy editor for the Argus Leader of Sioux Falls, S.D., before becoming a news designer for the News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C. in 1993. She moved to the Pioneer Press of St. Paul, Minn., in 2000 but then left newspapers to design catalogs for Target. She became assistant design director for the Star Tribune’s suburban weeklies in 2004 and moved to features in 2007. In her spare time, London designs and shoots photos for craft books and creates and sells her own hand-spun and hand-dyed yarns. Find her blog here, her Etsy store here and her Twitter feed here.


Chris Rukan is lead sports designer for the Washington Post. A 1998 graduate of Southern Connecticut State University, Chris spent nearly four years as a designer and copy editor for the Connecticut Post in Bridgeport before moving to the Orlando Sentinel in 1999. He became sports design director of the Palm Beach Post in 2004 and then moved to Washington in 2006. Chris turns 40 today.


Amy Savona is senior vice president of sales and marketing for the Blue Crab Bay Co. of Melfa, on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. A 1995 graduate of Mary Washington University in Fredericksburg, Va., Amy worked as a marketing director for Architecture, Inc., in Reston, Va. before becoming a copy editor and web editor for the Herald-Leader in Lexington, Ky. She moved to the Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk, Va., in 2004, where she ran the copy desk. She left newspapers in 2006, sold real estate for a while and then served as vice president for the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce. She joined Blue Crab Bay in 2010. Occasionally, her job puts her in contact with interesting people.


Find the Blue Crab Bay web site here and its Twitter feed here.


Stephanie Swearngin is lead designer for the Gazette of Colorado Springs, Colo. A 2000 graduate of Colorado State-Pueblo, Stephanie interned at Vladimir Jones and KTSC-TV before catching on as an advertising services rep at the Gazette. She moved into the newsroom and spent three years there before moving to the Tampa (Fla.) Tribune in 2004 as lead news designer. She moved to the St. Petersburg Times in 2006 and also began working as a personal trainer. She moved back to Colorado in 2012. In addition, Stephanie writes about fitness for various print and electronic outlets. Find her portfolio here.


Marco Vergotti is graphics editor of Globo in São Paulo, Brazil. A 2002 graduate of United Metropolitan Universities of São Paulo, Marco has worked for Revista Época, Triver Estúdio Gráfico, Editora Abril and Editora Sinapse for Grupo Domo. He joined Globo in 2005 as a graphic artist and was promoted to his current position a year later. Find his portfolio here. Marco turns 44 today.

Ashley, Stephanie, Chris, Amy, Rudi, Marietta, Marco, London and Monica share a birthday with actors Julian Dana William McMahan, Maria Grazia Cucinotta, Betty Thomas Nienhauser, Jerry Van Dyke, Maya Khabira Rudolph, Carol Leifer, Greg Pead (better known as Yahoo Serious) and Francis Xavier Aloysius James Jeremiah Keenan Wynn; musicians Maureen Therese McGovern and Roberta Lee Streeter (better known as Bobbie Gentry); TV producer Norman Milton Lear; sports greats Peggy Gail Fleming (figure skating), Leo Ernest Durocher and Alexander Emmanuel “Alex” Rodriguez; Hugh Donell Green and Jacoby Ford (both football); mathematician Johann Bernoulli and Dungeons and Dragons creator Ernest Gary Gygax.

In addition, today is Aunties Day, National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day, Take Your Houseplants for a Walk Day, Barbie-in-a-Blender Day and Parents’ Day. Seriously.

Best wishes, all! Have a terrific birthday today!

Birthdays for Saturday, July 26

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to five excellent folks…


Christoph Fuhrmans is a web producer for the New York Times. A 1996 graduate of the University of Kansas, Christoph spent a year as a copy editor for the Island Packet of Hilton Head, S.C., before moving to a sports design spot at the Savannah Morning News. He became a sports designer at the Detroit Free Press in 2000 and then sports design leader at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in 2005. He moved to the web side in 2008 as a sports producer for the AJC. He moved to the Times in 2011. Find his Twitter feed here. Christoph turns 41 today.


Caity Pelliccia is a clinical associate at the Carilion Clinic in Roanoke, Virginia. A 2009 graduate of the University of North Carolina, Caity interned at the News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C., the Hartford Courant and the Dallas Morning News before joining the Roanoke (Va.) Times in 2009, where she designed and co-edited the Edge, a section aimed at high schoolers. She left the Times nearly four years ago in order to go to nursing school. Find her Twitter feed here. Caity turns 27 today.


Dale Peskin is founder, principal and curator at iFOCOS and We Media Group of Reston, Va. A 1972 graduate of Youngstown State University, Dale spent seven years as deputy managing editor of the Detroit News and then five more as vice president of Belo Interactive and the Dallas Morning News. In 2002, Dale was named managing director of the American Press Institute. He left API in 2006 to found his consulting groups. Find his Twitter feed here. Dale turns 65 today.


Chris Pirillo is a blogger and TV host. A native of Des Moines, Iowa, Chris attended the University of Northern Iowa. In 1996, he created LockerGnome, a technology mailing list, which has grown into a bit of an empire for him. He spent two years as the host of Call for Help on TechTV. He’s written a number of books, blogs prolifically and, for more than a decade, hosted an annual LockerGnome conference. Find his blog here, his Twitter feed here and his daily videos here. Find LockerGnome itself here. Chris turns 41 today.


Ananda Spadt is an assistant art director for Meredith Publications in Des Moines, Iowa. A 2006 graduate of the University of Nebraska, Ananda worked at the Kitsap Sun in Bremerton, Wash., and then the Hartford Courant before moving back home to Nebraska in 2008. She illustrated and designed features pages for the Omaha World-Herald before moving over to the magazine side. She served as creative director of Wedding Essentials and Inspired Home Omaha magazines, both published by the World-Herald. She moved to Iowa in 2013. Find her portfolio here and here. Find her web site here and her Twitter feed here. Ananda turns 30 today.

Caity, Ananda, Christoph, Chris and Dale share a birthday with actors Sandra Annette Bullock, Kevin Spacey Fowler, Helen Lydia Mironoff (better known as Helen Mirren), Jason Nelson Robards Jr., Vivian Roberta Jones (better known as Vivian Vance), Grace Ethel Cecile Rosalie “Gracie” Allen, Taylor Michel Momsen, Jeremy Samual Piven, Kathryn Bailey “Kate” Beckinsale, Elizabeth Egan Gillies and Nana Tucker (better known as Nana Visitor); musicians Michael Philip “Mick” Jagger, Darlene Wright (better known as Darlene Love), Lawrence Darrow Brown (better known as Dobie Gray) and Roger Meddows Taylor (of Queen); directors Stanley Kubrick, Peter Hyams and William Blake Crump (better known as Blake Edwards); sports greats Dorothy Stuart Hamill (figure skating), Kelly Clark (snowboarding), Robert Lewis “Bob” Lilly, Robert Stanton “Bob” Waterfield and Thomas Franklin “Tommy” McDonald (all three football); psychiatrist Carl Gustav Jung; novelist Aldous Leonard Huxley; playwright George Bernard Shaw; RFK campaign aide Mary Jo Kopechne and former New York Times features writer Rick Bragg.

In addition, today is National Dance Day, National Day of the Cowboy, One Voice Day and Paddle for Perthes Disease Awareness Day. Seriously.

Have a wonderful birthday today, all! Best wishes!

More fun with nameplates: U-T San Diego

The annual Comic-Con comics, scifi and entertainment convention is being held in San Diego this week.

UT-San Diego has been celebrating with these fun comics-themed nameplate treatments illustrated by the paper’s award-winning editorial cartoonist Steve Breen.

Wednesday’s nameplate featured a hyphen that’s turned into zombie food.


In Thursday’s nameplate, the Man of Steel is stealing the “T.”


And there is a little lightsaber accident in today’s nameplate.


UPDATE – Saturday, July 26


A 1994 graduate of UC Riverside, Steve spent nearly five years as cartoonist for the Asbury Park Press in New Jersey before moving back to the west coast in 2001.


Steve has won two Pulitzer prizes: In 1998 and 2009. Find galleries of his work here and here. Find his Twitter feed here.

More U-T San Diego Comic-Con coverage…

  • 2011: the paper went all out with fun comics-themed illustrations and special sections.
  • 2012: Steve created a sketchbook every day of Comic-Con.
  • 2013: The paper explained the business of small press comics by having small press comics creator (and former Union-Tribune staffer) Paul Horn tell all via — what else? — an extended comic strip.

Follow U-T San Diego‘s coverage of Comic-Con 2014 here.

Deep in the Heart of Texsa…

Did you see the University of Texas’ 2014 football media guide?

Check out the school’s web address in the footer of this sample page.


Here’s a closer look:


And it was like that for all 99+ pages. Until the laughing began. Then, the folks at UT fixed their downloadable PDF files pretty quickly.

Matt Lombardi of College Spun writes:

A huge deal? Nope, but it sure is amusing.

But Brendan Maloy of Sports Illustrated summed it up even better:

This will likely prove to be fodder for thousands of internet memes, message board posts and, most importantly, clever “College Gameday” signs.

Thanks to Dyrinda Tyson of Oklahoma Today for the tip.

Birthdays for Friday, July 25

Here’s wishing the happiest of birthdays to five wonderful folks…


Ariel Cheung is crime enterprise reporter for the Post-Crescent of Appleton, Wis. A 2012 graduate of The University of Cincinnati, Ariel started out as a reporter for the independent student paper there, the News Record. She eventually served as the paper’s editor-in-chief. She worked internships at the Dayton (Ohio) Daily News and the Chicago Sun-Times. She spent a year as the cops and courts reporter at the Register-Mail of Galesburg, Ill., where she was named a GateHouse news writer of the year.  She joined the Post-Crescent last year. Find her web site here and her Twitter feed here. Ariel turns 24 today.


Richard Curtis retired in December 2008 after 27 years as managing editor for graphics and photo of USA Today. A 1972 graduate of N.C. State University in Raleigh, Richard was previously an assistant managing editor at the Baltimore News American. He was one of the founders of the Society for News Design, receiving SND’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2003. Richard turns 68 today.


Sam Posh Debray is an expert in marketing, born in France and now based in Hout Bay, South Africa. These days, however, she’s better known as the mom of the fabulous SoapGirls, whose first album — Xperience — was released in that country in late 2011. I’m told their second album is being produced right now. I’ve written about the girls extensively. I took the picture above, in fact, when I was invited to their home in February 2011 for a preview of their CD. Find the SoapGirls’ web site here, their SoundCloud page here, their Facebook page here and their Twitter feed here. Find Posh’s Twitter feed here.


Amy Huschka is assistant editor for social media at the Detroit Free Press. A 1994 graduate of Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond, Ky., Amy spent time as a features editor for the Anderson, S.C., Independent-Mail and then a news designer for the Dayton (Ohio) Daily News before moving to Detroit in 2000 as a features designer. She moved to the digital side in 2012 and then was promoted to her current position in 2013. Her husband, Robert Huschka, is the Freep’s editor for news and presentation. Find her Twitter feed here.


Chloe Park is a user experience designer for OpenTable, a restaurant reservation software company based in San Francisco, Calif. A 2010 graduate of the University of North Carolina, Chloe served internships at the Arizona Republic, Condé Nast Publications, the Morehead Planetarium, Pathos Ethos and at USA Today — the latter as a high schooler, in fact. She returned to USA Today full-time in 2010 to work in the paper’s “glossy publications” division. She moved to the west coast in 2012 to work for Curio, a design consultancy. Find her portfolio here and her Twitter feed here. Chloe turns 26 today.

Ariel, Chloe, Amy, Posh and Richard share a birthday with actors Matthew Steven LeBlanc, James Martin Lafferty, Linda Ann Hopkins (better known as Tera Patrick), Michael Alan Welch, Walter Andrew Brennan and Estelle Scher-Gettleman (better known as Estelle Getty); musicians Thurston Joseph Moore (of Sonic Youth) and Anthony Peter Strascina (better known as Tony Vincent); sports greats Douglas Dean Drabek, William Edward “Billy” Wagner (both baseball), Nathaniel “Nate” Thurmond (basketball), Evgeni Viktorovich Nabokov (hockey), Walter Payton (football) and John Alexander Robinson (football coach); biophysicist Rosalind Elsie Franklin, Louise Joy Brown (the world’s first test-tube baby) and illustrator Maxfield Parrish.

In addition, today is Thread the Needle Day, Lumberjack Day, National Talk in an Elevator Day, System Administrator Appreciation Day, Video Games Day and Merry-Go-Round Day. Seriously.

Have a terrific birthday today, y’all! Best wishes!