Elana Koehler / Contributing Writer
Members of the audience at Step Sing 2020 will no doubt remember the Independent Ladies’ “Zero to Hero” show. Their storyline followed characters in a video game working together to finish a level, complete with costumes, sharp choreography and detailed video-game-inspired graphics. These memorable graphics were designed by senior Sammy Solberg.
Although initially an International Relations major, Solberg felt called to pursue her passion for graphic design. She started designing animations after taking an elective class covering the topic last year.
“I’ve always been interested in animation,” Solberg said.
Solberg has been passionate about visual art since she was young.
“I grew up painting for fun,” Solberg said.
Solberg’s passion and dedication to her designs is evident in the 97 hours she spent putting together the graphics for the Independent Ladies show.
“It was about 86 hours over Christmas break, so I had to wake up at 7, have a one-hour lunch break and go back to work and be up until 1 a.m. ” she said.
Despite the demanding schedule required to finish the project, Solberg said it was worth it in the end. Not only did Solberg design the graphics for the Independent Ladies show, but she also had the opportunity to be a director.
“This is my fourth year participating with Independent Ladies, but my first year directing,” Solberg said.
However, she has helped choreograph in previous shows.
“Step Sing is everything I love; dancing, singing and being creative. So I knew I wanted to be a part of it,” Solberg said.
When asked if she had a favorite part of the animation project for the Step Sing show, Solberg said the audience’s reaction to the show was the best part.
“Hearing the reaction of the audience on that dress rehearsal night when the participant names went up automatically made it my favorite part,” she said.
She had initially sought feedback from others regarding the ending.
“When I got back to school I actually took the video to my professor,” Solberg said. “It was his idea to model it after the ending credits of a video game, which inspired my idea to put the participant names in there.”
Solberg’s designs even gained the attention of a business owner looking for a graphic designer to help brand his business. She described the appeal of a future career in graphic design due to the the ability to travel and have the flexibility to make her own schedule and she believes this will be a great opportunity.
“I am hoping that this will open the door for other groups to reach out to other Graphic Design majors because it is such a cool opportunity,” Solberg said.
Solberg believes this will continue expanding the collaborative creativity that has allowed Step Sing to thrive at Samford for 70 years.
Samantha Solberg, your parents are so very impressed and proud of how you used your creativity and your up coming degree in the Step Sing Show!! What a joy and privilege it has been to watch you perform and direct! Love, Mom and Dad