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Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

Wichita State's independent, student-run news source

The Sunflower

WSU graphic design alumni find love, collaboration after graduation

Monique Bever
Ellen Mosiman and Dustin Youngman pose for a photo at Fairmount Coffee Co. Mosiman and Youngman were graphic design majors at Wichita State and have continued working in the industry. The two got married in July of 2023.

With a graduation date two years apart, Ellen Mosiman and Dustin Youngman completed their bachelor’s in graphic design at Wichita State as virtual strangers, with a brief encounter in between. Mosiman volunteered to review other students’ portfolios and got randomly assigned to Youngman.

“I went home at the end of that day after reviewing, and I was living with my parents at the time,” Mosiman said. “I told them like, ‘Oh man, there was one guy who had a really great portfolio.’ And it was Dustin.”

The two didn’t see or hear from each other for over a year. After reuniting as coworkers at Gardner Design in 2021, comradery and romance blossomed out of their partnership. The pair got married in July, and the rest is history.

“When I talk to a lot of people, they were like, ‘Oh god, why would you work with your significant other? Don’t you get tired?’” Youngman said. “I never got tired of seeing Ellen. We sat very close to each other. It was nice always having her near.”

Youngman left Gardner Design to freelance a few months ago and is adapting to working without Mosiman, who still works at Gardner. Still, the pair still collaborate frequently, rolling ideas and constructive critiques off each other. They find they each have complementary design styles and influence the other’s work.

“It’s a lot of sitting on the couch and being like, ‘Look, what I made,’” Mosiman said. “I feel like we have different styles, but they also mesh together really well.”

Mosiman and Youngman collaborated on a show at Art House 310 in early February, where their artwork is featured and will be displayed through Feb. 18.

“You can definitely tell what I made versus Dustin,” Mosiman said. “But there were people like, ‘We can tell that you’re also moving and working off of each other.’”

Mosiman said she and Youngman were both “really excited” after leaving the first Friday of the art show and hope to do more art shows.

Despite their careers being enveloped in design, Mosiman and Youngman take time to embrace their interests outside of graphic design. The couple enjoys running, swimming and exploring the outdoors.

“It’s like you get in a group with designers, and all they talk about is design. And it’s not so fun,” Youngman said. “You will hit a point where you burn out on design, and if you don’t have other interests, you burn out your entire personality.”

The pair also finds that having a relationship with another designer pushes them further in their career. Both design for fun in their free time and feed off each other’s love for designing.

Mosiman said, “It’s been really nice to marry another designer because I feel like we do push each other to be better.”

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About the Contributor
Monique Bever
Monique Bever, Reporter
Monique Bever is a reporter and photographer for the Sunflower. Bever is a sophomore majoring in philosophy pursuing a career in law. She uses she/her pronouns.

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  • AnonymousFeb 16, 2024 at 9:38 pm

    So happy for Ellen! Amazing young woman and obviously successful in her career!!