By Matt Bowgren, Resident Assistant, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
The most successful door decoration I’ve ever “created” was one where I actually didn’t do the majority of the art. Throughout first semester, I discovered one of my residents really excelled at graffiti art. Not vandalism, but art. He made trucker hats with his own artwork and some of the guys on our floor had him make hats with their names in graffiti style. To publicly acknowledge his talent and create something with a personal touch for our floor, I commissioned him (you can offer a free meal or something of that nature) to make two different name signs for me and to leave space where I could write in the names. I took the two designs, scanned them into the computer, typed in all of the names of my residents, and voila, I had 50 custom door signs. I made the creator’s door sign with a special comment, noting that he made them. Everyone really liked the signs and thought it was a great idea to have someone from the floor design them. While you may find that sometimes signs get ripped down simply because they’re put up by the RA, these signs stayed up for the whole semester! By paying attention to the specific dynamics of your floor, you too can find some personal aspect of the community to work in to your door decorations later in the year.