Gisell Padilla is a junior Graphic Design: Interactive Advertising major at Kean University. She has always been interested in visuals and learned a lot on Photoshop when she was younger. She was inspired by the work designers would post on social media and wanted to learn how to do the graphics. With this degree, Gisell hopes to evoke emotion in people viewing her work. “I also would like to make an impact by inspiring others and using my work to send positive messages,” she said. “Overall, I wish to influence communities in a way that makes them strive for better whether that is personally or with others.”
She is involved with GO!, Kean’s graphic design club. Gisell also practices her drawing and painting skills in her spare time. Although she uses Paint digitally on her iPad, she recently did an actual painting on canvas — “following a Bob Ross tutorial, of course” — and she was surprised at how much she enjoyed it. Gisell also enjoys spending time with friends and going on adventures with them, trying new things.
Ophidiophobia, or fear of snakes, is one of the most common phobias — and Gisell has it. This is why she ranks holding a snake around her shoulders as the scariest thing she’s ever done. It wasn’t just any old snake, either — it was the same size as Gisell and it was yellow. “I have always had a fear of snakes, reptiles in general,” Gisell said, “so as soon as the snake was around my neck, I was frozen in place. I feared that if I moved it would try to bite me, despite the fact that the owner of the snake told me it was friendly.” However, she knew that this was a rare opportunity and she does not regret holding the snake. She said it was the highlight of her trip!
In her explanation of why she wanted to take part, Gisell captured a critical essence of Writing Wrongs as well as why she wants to share the message of the LGBT community:
“With the right group of people, we have the ability to send strong messages with all of our skills put together. Being able to work with others will allow me to appreciate and value a variety of skills that are unlike my own. … People in this community are willing to share their story, which is very valiant of them. I cannot imagine how much strength it takes to go through their situation, and then voluntarily speak about it. It would be my pleasure to help them in their journey and having their voices heard.”