Pam Powers UW-Stout
When the time comes for the Menomonie Let’s Paint the Town festival in 2022, a colorful design by a University of Wisconsin-Stout student will shine.
A logo designed by Natalie Shofner, a graphic design and interactive media junior from Hastings, Minnesota, was chosen by a mural committee to represent the event scheduled for July 22 and 23. The logo will be featured on merchandise and advertising material.
Let’s Paint the Town celebrates downtown Menomonie and will feature commercial sales, a flea market, juryed art market, car show and live music.
A few new downtown murals are also slated to be painted for the event, according to Menomonie’s mural committee chairperson Sylvia Gegenbach, owner of Town and Country Antiques. The event is hosted by the committee, Downtown Menomonie, the Grand Menomonie Region Chamber of Commerce, the Town of Menomonie and the Dunn County Tourism Board.
Students from UW-Stout were asked to create the logo to bring the city closer to the university, said Cynthia Bland, professor of art and art history and committee member.
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âWe wanted to involve the students in Let’s Paint the Town and encourage faculty and staff to volunteer,â said Bland.
Shofner said her inspiration for the logo design came from the UW-Stout Clock Tower, as she enjoys hearing the bells when she’s on or near campus. âIt’s a reminder of how lucky I am to be in such a tough schedule,â Shofner said. “I am very proud of what I learned in the graphic design program at Stout.”
The logo shows the downtown area of ââthe city with the colors red, purple, green and blue around.
Shofner, who received $ 200, signed up for the contest challenge and also to add the logo to his portfolio.
The first finalist was Dan Nesja, a senior in graphic design from Mount Horeb, and the second finalist was Lauren Sassi, a senior specializing in studio art and comics from Appleton. The two received $ 25 in Menomonie room dollars. A total of 10 student logos were submitted for the competition.
Nesja said he liked the way his logo, which has the event’s words in red, blue, purple and green, turned out.
âI love the traditional way of painting signs. I wanted to express my interest in this, âhe said. I did some hand lettering for it. I really wanted to put my personal style that I appreciate in the world and express myself.
Sassi took inspiration from the region’s woodland animals to create his logo, which features a cartoon rabbit and a raccoon with a paintbrush. âI take a lot of inspiration from old comics like Pogo. I just love to show people my art and I love to share it.
Chancellor Katherine Frank, who attended the awards ceremony on Dec. 8 with Menomonie Mayor Randy Knaack, said she appreciated how the competition has helped connect the university and the community, creating important collaborations and ensuring the success of the city and the university.
âIt shows what our students are doing at UW-Stout,â Frank said. âWhenever I see the work of our students, I am so impressed with the professionalism. Itâs powerful. This is what they will do once they graduate. It’s a great moment to celebrate. Congratulations to our students.
Knaack agreed that collaboration is essential between the city and UW-Stout. “We look forward to adopting greater collaboration in the future,” he said.
Bland will be teaching a graffiti and street art class from Monday May 16 through Sunday June 5 and believes that students in the class will be creating murals in the city center. Wade Lambrigsten, owner of Vintage Sign Shop, N4526 Highway Y, Menomonie, and UW-Stout alumnus, will co-teach the class.
Bland said she was impressed with the student logos.
âAll of them were excellent,â she said. âThe students did a great job, and they did this job for the competition on their own time. “