By Elaine Cashy
Snapchatters and selfie takers across campus rejoiced on Tuesday, Sept. 8 as Denison University made its mark on the Snapchat map.
Mitchell Tijerina ‘18 took the initiative in creating the university’s new geofilter, working for over a month on Adobe Illustrator and tracing the iconic locations and animals of Denison. The new geofilter features several Denison trademarks, including deer, buzzards, Swasey Chapel and the campus’ iconic nickname “The Hill.”
Mckenna Sokol ‘16 admires the filter as the ultimate representation of Denison: “I think it totally encompasses Denison,” she said. “I feel like Swasey is Denison’s beacon and so many of us lovingly call our home ‘The Hill,’ so I think it’s perfect.”
Even though Tijerina had some experience with graphic arts because of his high school computer graphics class, he said that creating the geofilter “was a learning process, but it was well worth it.”
He added that some other students had submitted geofilters but were, unfortunately, not chosen. “There are a lot of qualifications that potential filters need,” he said. Some of the qualifications include making it small enough that the filter won’t cover the entire picture, no hashtags, no pictures and making sure that it is local.
“I’m just really glad that I was chosen for it,” he said with a smile on his face.
The process of creating the filter took about two months over the summer. “It was a lot of trial and error,” he said. “One time, it took me, like, hours to figure something out when it actually only took a few seconds.”
Despite his artistic labors for the geofilter, the Columbus native humbly said, “I don’t want people to think of it as my geofilter. It’s everyone’s.”
Although he could not ignore the true accomplishment of his hours of design: “I was ecstatic. I was so happy and proud.”
Tijerina found out that his filter was accepted by a text message that he received from his friend Allison from home. Because Tijerina does not own a smartphone of his own and his iPod was dead, he did not immediately see his labor in use.
The university shared in this pride, and images of the geofilter filled snap stories and selfies, students obviously appreciating Tijerina’s Snapchat art.
Despite his new graphic designing skills, Tijerina does not plan to create another Snapchat filter for Denison. “It’d be really cool if someone else did it,” he said.
Other than the satisfaction of knowing he created the first Snapchat filter for Denison’s campus, Tijerina also got something out of a little more tangible: “I’m definitely putting my new Illustrator skills on my resume,” he said.