Megan Qualley


Megan Qualley is a senior at Iowa State University pursuing a BFA in Graphic Design with a minor in Design Studies. With strong roots in fine arts, Megan enjoys using illustration as a medium to drive visual communication in her work. Her goal as a creator is to help create meaningful stories through design and help brands successfully share their messages to the world. She is currently a Creative Marketing intern at Workiva, a cloud-based software company for financial reporting, and does freelance projects on the side. When she’s not designing, Megan enjoys traveling, antiquing, skiing, and hiking.


What makes you feel inspired?

I am inspired by the diverse world of art and design that surrounds me daily. My favorite sources of inspiration come from concept art books, where you can see the ideation that goes into creating different movies, video games, and TV shows. Pieces of media that tell stories are packed with so much good design and passion.

What area or areas of design are you hoping to work in or specialize in?

I would love to work as a Graphic Illustrator in a creative studio doing a variety of things like packaging, editorial illustrations, book design, etc. Utilizing the expression of illustration with the problem-solving of graphic design is what I would love to specialize in. Experiential design is a lot of fun too; I love seeing graphic design manifest in physical spaces. I could also see myself in an Art Director position one day.

What is one thing that design school has taught you that you did not expect?

I have learned that process in design work is so valuable and integral to creating successful pieces. The idea of innovating in design means that sometimes you will have to work through many iterations before having a successful result. Putting time and research into process work can be the longest part of a project, but it truly pays off.

Who is someone you look up to in your field? Either today or historically?

One of my instructors at Iowa State, Miriam Martincic, has taught me many ways of how the world of illustration can be integrated into graphic design work. It’s inspiring to have a look into her career as an award-winning illustrator who has done work for publications like The New York Times and Scientific American.