Ni Sisi! Kenya—Nairobi, Kenya
These are a few things I did as Creative Producer for Ni Sisi!, a grassroots political organization based in Kenya:
- Gathered business requirements and wrote scoping document; created production schedule; sketched initial interface; supervised graphic designer and developer, who created the dynamically generated HTML pages for a Django-CMS backend.
- Communicated authoritatively yet diplomatically with the client and ensured that the creative team was delivering components to each other in a timely manner.
- Incrementally tested site and communicated results to development and design personnel.
- Wrote CMS user guides for various permission levels such as power user, administrator, and blog coordinator.
- Delivered the project in accordance with content strategy—which included a mobile site, social media platform, and Kiswahili version—on schedule and within budget.
Human/Nature sent eight of the world’s most thoughtful and innovative artists to eight UNESCO-designated World Heritage sites around the globe for two mini-residencies.
I coordinated the logistics of Xu Bing’s Mount Kenya Forest Project; he established a system to facilitate the automatic and uninterrupted flow of funds from developed countries to Kenya, earmarked for the planting of new trees.
Xu Bing connected the written word, calligraphy and art into one process and taught students from local primary schools to create drawings of trees using forms of writing from a variety of cultures and historical periods—from spanning ancient Chinese pictographs and Egyptian hieroglyphs to Kiswahili, English and more.
“Through harnessing the power of art, we hope to build global support for the protection of environmental biodiversity, and to create a new model promoting conservation worldwide. The project will address many themes, including: the relationship between the natural environment and human culture; assumptions about the value of preserving biological and cultural diversity; and global exploration and exchange.”
Australian Business Theatre (ABT)—Sydney, Australia
As Multimedia Producer for one of Australia’s leading creative communication agencies, I supervised multi-modal teams to create digital projects that inspire audiences to change the way they think, feel and most importantly behave in relation to a brand or business message.
- Conceptualized creative solutions for corporate clients.
- Created site map diagrams, timelines, work plans and requirements documentation to guide the development of digital projects.
- Hired and supervised programmers, graphic artists, voice-over talent, animators, sound engineers, video camera operators and editors to create digital projects.
- Conducted, analyzed, and channeled usability research into the creation of an intranet-base solution for Vodafone Australia’s customer care center.
Vodafone “Information Assistant”
Working with Oracle Systems Australia, my brief was to design and develop an intranet- based solution for Vodafone Customer Care representatives that would enable access a centrally maintained database of information about mobile handsets supported by the Vodafone Australia network. The resulting product, the Information Assistant (IA) was deployed in the Sydney Customer Care Centre late in 1996.
I worked with user interface consultants (Hiser Consulting) to conduct initial research with the Customer Care Representatives who would be using the software day in and day out at the call centre. We found that the most frequently asked questions from callers related directly to the handset. Therefore the first stage of the IA program was to develop an information module detailing the features and operations of digital handsets supported by the network.
From the initial interviews, I wrote analyzed the findings and wrote an initial user requirements document for Vodafone’s approval. Then, working closely with an informant within the call center I sketched an initial interface design. At this point, the Oracle team was called in to start database development. The ABT in-house graphic designer and I worked closely to develop the graphical user interface.
Vodafone Australia approached ABT to create training modules that would link to their existing informational CD-ROM. Retail shop managers would be able to track their employees’ progress through the training program.
My role as producer ranged from writing the initial project proposal and budget to creating the attached electronic proof of concept in Macromedia Director. I brainstormed with animators and graphic artists to create an engaging and entertaining interface for Vodafone’s retail salespeople to learn about their products and services.
The elements on the navigation menu were created using tonal gradations that allow for playful choices among the learning topics. Sound and gracefully rendered animations create an enjoyable user experience. In the final product, a scrolling field that appeared on the chalkboard would present information and quizzes using text and graphics. The quizzes included multiple choice, short answer and true/false questions. Each retail store manager was required to log in to view their employees’ answers.
I designed interactions for both the navigation (deploying sound to engage and entertain the learners) and the display of content. For example, I sketched out a crossword puzzle with key vocabulary and communicated the interaction flow to the software development team. I created the metaphor of the pencil bag and the numbers for the login screen, including the “oops!” button/eraser.
View a clip of the Vodafone Academy EPOC (electronic proof of concept).
In 1995 I cut my project management teeth at Magian Multimedia, which had the daunting task of creating 60 interactive programs for the National Science Centre of Malaysia in the course of seven months. When I began working with the team there were two computers and three employees in the office and five months left in the production schedule. Within days I went from manipulating images with Photoshop to acting as the ad hoc Project Manager, which involved liaising among the company’s directors, a growing freelance staff, and an independent science writer. Most recently (March 2012) I became certified in Washington D.C. as a ScrumMaster within the Agile software development framework in order to refresh my project management skills.