Lis Charman's website is here.
Please tell us a little about your education?
How did you break into the field?
While in graduate school I put together packages of my work I mailed them to designers who inspired me. I answered ads in trade magazines and newspapers. I asked everyone I knew — Are you a designer? Do you know any designers? I made contacts through friends and family. I requested informational interviews—I asked for input on my portfolio and insight into our profession. Work for David Carson Design and Ray Gun magazine, a 9-month stint in northern California for Émigré and many exciting friendships were the product of the packages I mailed out.
In 1997, I moved to NYC and worked for Belk Mignogna Associates (later named Red Sky Interactive). Projects included design of corporate shareholder reports for American Express, The Neiman Marcus Group and RJR Nabisco. My interaction and collaboration with other professional designers, writers, illustrators and photographers offered me greater perspective on the skills needed for the art direction. Designing extensive collateral programs exposed me to projects that demand simultaneous concentration on big-picture concept issues and day-to-day project management challenges. These particular experiences were possible only in a large-scale firm capable of servicing Fortune 100 companies and serve as references in my teaching.
What classes are you teaching this year?
ART 320, 321, 354, and 470
What inspires you?
- people who are highly engaged and passionate about their work
- highly creative thinking — looking at situations from multiple points of view
- experiences and ideas that change the way we see our world and ourselves
- design that considers human beings, society and our environment (before and/or as well as the bottom line!)
- design thinking and cross-disciplinary teams that address community, society, environmental and global concerns
- studying systems and situations to understand where design can contribute, help or intervene