The doors of Inventionland are always open to eager groups of people who want to tour our invention factory. In today’s blog, we’re seeing Inventionland through the eyes of one of our own Creationeers and learning how Pokemon Go and baking have helped Mara feel at home.

When we talk about Inventionland tours, we likely talk about groups of young school students and community members who make their way around our 61,000-square foot design factory. But today, we’re focusing on one of our own Creationeer’s first impressions of our space.

Creationeer Mara works at Inventionland as a Graphic Artist, who joined the team at the end of May. From the moment that she stepped foot into Inventionland for her interview, Mara was amazed.

Creationeer Mara_Inventionland_ Pokemon Go

“Honestly, I was like there is no way I am going to get this job; this was way too cool for me,” said Mara. “It just really didn’t seem real… I’ve never been interviewed in a castle before; I just didn’t know where to look; there’s stuff everywhere!”

Like many, Mara was more attuned to the traditional office setting – cubes, offices, etc. Sometimes, that sort of environment can become stale and it certainly does little to inspire.

“It’s a big change of pace for me,” said Mara, who also said she particularly enjoys the helpful, friendly atmosphere she’s found at Inventionland. “Everyone here is really positive and happy and friendly. Everybody reaches out and tries to make plans and eat lunch, and just in general help you meet everybody here.”

Friendliness is a common theme that’s shared throughout Inventionland and Mara has definitely taken notice.

“I like the end of the month parties. I like that everyone gets together to do things on certain days, whether it’s lunch or happy hour or volleyball. There’s just always some way to connect with the [other Creationeers] here. Everybody has been very welcoming, even Mr. Davison. He comes around and says ‘Hi’ and asks how everyone is doing. It’s nice to have a boss that’s so involved, especially for a company this size,” said Mara.

Beyond the camaraderie that’s felt throughout our invention factory, Mara also values the opportunities that she has to pursue her professional dreams. In fact, her journey has already led her to meet celebrity chef Paula Deen, who even complimented Mara on her baking!

“I think that was probably my best day, if not the day before. It’s so cool I get to bake as part of my job. I get to bake and do food styling and graphic design. It’s broad and I did all of those things in just those two days. I like doing different things every day. I hardly like things even being the same all day for even just one day,” said Mara. “I’m doing the kind of work that I’ve been wanting to do. So, I get to focus on what I like doing instead of having to do art and design only in my free time. I still do it in my free time and it doesn’t wear me out; I don’t get tired of it!”

Art and design are part of her day-to-day tasks and Mara finds inspiration and motivation to do both whenever she can.

Pokemon Go_Greeting Card_Inventionland

“When it’s somebody’s birthday or a holiday, I like to make the cards instead of buy them. I can still help friends on the side if they need any design work. It’s motivating in itself, because it doesn’t make me just sick and tired and angry at design; I can still do it after I leave here [at the end of the day], which was the plan,” said Mara, who also said that she garners inspiration from other hobbies.

Music and video games are also a big part of Mara’s life.

“I like and appreciate the art of video games. It’s not something I foresee myself ever doing, but it’s something that I like to appreciate and maybe someday [will] challenge myself to do,” said Mara. “Before packaging design, I wanted to do design for video games.”

But, as is with many across the world, Pokemon Go has ignited a fire within Mara and some of her fellow Creationeers that have helped the team bond even more.

“I play it a lot. I try every day… It’s nice, because it gets me out walking. I try to run three times a week, but when I’m not, at least Pokemon Go gets me outside… otherwise, I just stay in all day,” said Mara, who said she enjoys playing the game and chatting about it with Creationeer Jason, though she admitted he’s about three times her level when it comes to advancing through the game.

When she’s not trying to Catch ’em All, Mara turns to Indie or pop-punk music to inspire her during the work day.

“I listen to almost the same bands I did 10 years ago. I used to play, so I appreciate that from an artistic standpoint. When I listen to music, I feel I’m able to hear parts of the music that most people don’t normally pay attention to. That helps me zone out. It helps me get work done well, instead of just get it done. It helps me focus and slow down. When I listen to music, I can do a better job of getting it done in a way that I am happy with,” said Mara.

Now that you’ve seen Inventionland through Creationeer Mara’s eyes, see it through your own.

Copyright Inventionland, 2016