The Connecticut College art department and the adjacent Lyman Allyn Art Museum have teamed up for a provocative exhibit exploring how faculty members conceptualize and create their work – and how teaching influences them.
You may not know her name, but you've probably seen her work.
Graphic designer Jennifer Bilotti Chamberlain '96 is responsible for branding WebMD, a site visited each month by about 17.1 million people hoping to find a new doctor or diagnose their ailments.
Before starting her own company, Pixel Pop Designs, Chamberlain was the leader of WebMD's in-house design studio, where she also worked on online marketing campaigns for healthcare companies like Tylenol and Pfizer.
Inspired by everything from highway billboards to Target commercials, Chamberlain was always an artist, but she knew as a student that her chances of making a living as one were thin. Then Andrea Wollensak, a professor of art at Connecticut College, introduced her to the world of graphic design.
"I thought graphic design was the perfect way to leverage my skills as an artist and get paid to be creative," said Chamberlain.
Chamberlain's first job after graduating was designing for Condé Nast Traveler magazine, and she followed that up by working for Food & Wine and YM. When the internet started taking off though, she left the magazine business to design for Vault.
"I was fascinated by the Web's interactivity," she said. "I knew I had to be part of it."
Chamberlain took the leap and started her own company after her son was born in 2008.
Working at a small design studio can make it difficult for Chamberlain to network and stay connected to her clients. She combats this by meeting with a monthly peer group, using LinkedIn, tweeting and hosting lunches for clients.
Her talent, dogged work ethic and networking efforts have paid off, and she's currently working on projects for General Mills, 7-Eleven and Aflac, to name a few. She's enjoyed following her vision, setting her own schedule and working with people who really inspire her.
"I love working with my clients to make their ideas a reality," she said.
Though Chamberlain creates for the Web, she starts all projects out on paper. She recommends the book, Universal Principles of Design, for any budding designer.
"Great design comes from creativity, a solid understanding of design fundamentals and knowing how to appeal to your audience," she said.
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