Karen Riva

Graphic Designer

Karen is a 15-year graphic design veteran with strengths in Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator. As a member of our nationally-recognized and award winning Design department, she specializes in corporate branding, brochures, logo design, newsletters, posters, banners, and signs.

Karen's contributions to our blog include her writings on various graphic design strategies, tools, and trends.

Choosing the right color palette for the design you are working on may seem like a fun and easy part of your project. If you think about it, picking out colors doesn’t even sound that difficult. Kids learn their colors in pre-school so how hard can it be? Ha! It can actually be a challenging part of the design process. What color do I use to make the headline standout? How do I choose complimentary colors?


So you need to design a poster for an upcoming event or promotion your business is ready to market. You are sitting down at the computer and thinking “now what?”, or “where do I start?” That’s where I come in! Creating a successful poster design is easy if you follow a few simple design principles.


Your business’ logo is the identity of your company. Your logo may be the first thing people notice about your brand and you will want to make a great first impression. A good logo design should communicate something about the nature of your business, product, or service.


Did you know that behind every successful design project is a pile of unused ideas, concepts and sketches that didn’t make the cut? To some, unused design concepts may seem like a complete waste of time and energy, not to mention the waste of a few good ideas. But, not me. As a designer, I feel that by developing these initial ideas helps to create a better final product.


Graphic designers play a key role in successful advertising. Not only does it require education, talent, creativity, inspiration, motivation and patience, it also requires the right tools to complete the project. After working in the industry for many years, I’ve put together my list of designer must-haves – those tools that I couldn’t design without.


Typography is an essential part of design. It aides in conveying your message and enhances reading pleasure. Behind every typeface you see, comes a reason the designer chose that font instead of the thousands of other fonts available. The following are guidelines to consider when choosing a font for your next design project.