Meet Masonry Lead Designer: Lauren!

Lauren Wide Small

Lauren Zawodni

Lauren is a recent graduate of Texas State University where she received a BFA in Communication Design ensuing an associates degree in Digital Communication. Her work has been recognized on a national level by Graphis Inc and she has a passion for all things crafted, capped, and corked. A career in the service industry delivered her into the design world with a passion for creation and an expectation of quality. Lauren was born and raised in Ohio, but found herself drawn to all things Austin where “keeping it weird” is a way of life. 

Where are you from and how did you end up in Austin?

I was born and raised in Toledo, Ohio. I moved to Texas at the age of 18 to work and pay my way through college. I lived in Houston for about 8 years before moving to San Marcos to attend Texas State. I have been working in Austin for the last three years and will be moving up from SM in the next few months, hopefully!

What is your favorite thing to do in Austin?

I haven’t had much free time in a long time with work and school consuming my life, but I do enjoy all the great live music and outdoor activities that Austin has to offer. Swimming in the greenbelt is definitely a favorite as well as this awesome jazz club downtown. Love trying new restaurants or floating the river in San Marcos.  

What generally makes you feel accomplished at the end of the day?

I have always had a very strong work ethic and I often feel most accomplished when a job is done well and the client/customer is pleased with the results. If I get to be creative in this endeavor, that is a definite plus.

What would your dream project be?

I have a passion for design having to do with beer, wines, and spirits. Taking on branding and packaging design for a local brewery or distillery would be an incredible opportunity.

What is your favorite Austin hangout / best place to get a drink?

I really like Peche, especially on Sundays when they do all day happy hour. All the bars and venues near there are fantastic as well.

If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

I would be very happy eating greek food for the rest of my life. I love dolmas, lamb, and spinach pie or anything lemon/feta. I also love variety, though, so I don’t know how long I’d last!

Craziest celebrity encounter you’ve ever experienced?

Nothing too special. I once waited on a table that Mathew McConaughey was sitting at and I sometimes bartend for Ron White and his wife. He doesn’t make many jokes! I am terrible with pop culture and have probably met celebrities and not even known it. I’ll never be able to tell you the name of that one actor in that one movie, my brain just doesn’t retain that information.

What’s the best vacation you ever went on?

I don’t know that my best vacation has happened yet. I once did a road trip through California that was great and I had a lot of fun visiting Seattle with my best friend a couple summers ago. The best is yet to come, though. I would love to visit Greece or the Netherlands some day.

Would you rather never have coffee again or live without TV forever?

I could live without TV forever as long as I had my books

What’s the best advice you have ever received?

I can’t think of a specific piece of advice, but there are a couple of general life lessons that my parents instilled in me from a young age. My father taught me to work hard and my mother taught me to not care about what other people think of me. They both taught me empathy and reason, which I was surprised to find some other people lack as I became an adult.

What’s on your Top 5 movie list?

This is a hard question, but in no specific order it might be:

    · Fight Club

    · Idiocracy

    · What Dreams May Come

    · Wall-E

    · Suicide Squad

    · Deadpool

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