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NMSU graduate designs Jeff Dunham lottery scratchers

Holli Fillmore, a graduate of New Mexico State University, created scratcher lottery tickets, which benefit the Legislative Lottery Scholarship, a scholarship that once helped put her through college.

Portrait of graduate with four scratchers in office.
Holli Fillmore, NMSU graduate and graphic designer for the New Mexico State Lottery with the four scratchers she designed for Jeff Dunham's comedic stand-up, coming to the Pan American Center, March 2014. (NMSU photo by Jane Moorman)

Fillmore is a graphic designer with the New Mexico Lottery, where she recently designed the four scratchers based on Jeff Dunham's "Disorderly Conduct" stand-up comedy tour.

"Each ticket is a significant amount of work," Fillmore said. "It's a challenge to create an image on a tiny canvas and make it to where it can grab the attention of people in a crowded store."

Highlighting four of Dunham's biggest personalities, Fillmore said she had to hone in on which characters she felt best represented his stand-up.

With Walter as her favorite puppet, it was imperative she include him, along with his sweater vest and bow tie as key scratch off areas.

"The graphic designers get more work than they know what to do with," said Linda Hamlin, communication manager for NM Lottery. "There are a lot of requirements that go into creating the artwork for scratchers, among the other tasks they have."

Fillmore's process begins with her sketchbook, gathering visual assets and turning to the internet to fuel some creative ideas. The three remaining scratchers include Peanut, Achmed and Jose Jalapeņo.

"Everything starts as pictures in your mind and then you flush it out on the computer," Fillmore said.

This process is something that has resonated with Fillmore since her tenure at Doņa Ana Community College and New Mexico State University, where she gained hands-on experience on a broad range of projects in graphic design.

Her most memorable project included a portfolio book to exemplify logo, typeface, heading text and other details for a fictional company.

Feeding her creativity since she was a child, Fillmore grew up in an artistic home environment in Hobbs, N.M. Raised by a screen printer and an artist, it isn't coincidental she developed an interest in design.

"My parents enjoy getting to brag that their daughter has created something which is distributed across the entire state," Fillmore said.

While Fillmore's creations reach more than 1,100 stores throughout the state, her real accomplishment has been being able to provide students with the very scholarship that helped put her through school.

"The Legislative Lottery Scholarship is really the most important part of what we do here," Fillmore said. "It represents opportunity and a brighter future."

Each year 30 percent of gross revenues from the NM Lottery go toward the Lottery Tuition Fund. Since 1997, more than 18,800 NMSU students have benefited from the scholarship.

"It makes New Mexico a better place for all of us and encourages people to stay here," Fillmore said.

"This ticket is going to bring a lot of luck to someone but this ticket is also going to bring a lot of luck to a student," Hamlin said.