An Ohio native, Mikey Burton proudly describes his design aesthetic as “Midwesterny” and draws much of his inspiration from artifacts found throughout the hardworking, blue collar Rust Belt: old type-specimen sheets, arcane equipment manuals and ancient textbooks. Burton has received awards from Communication Arts,Graphis, HOW Design, Print Magazine and ADC Young Guns. He is now a freelancer in sunny Philadelphia where he designs and illustrates for such clients as The Atlantic, Bloomberg Businessweek, Converse, ESPN, Facebook, Fast Company, Monocle, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Wilco and Wired. @mikeyburton
Jessica Hische is a letterer, illustrator, and self-described “avid internetter”. After graduating with a degree in Graphic and Interactive Design from Tyler School of Art (Temple University) in 2006, she worked for Headcase Design in Philadelphia before taking a position as Senior Designer at Louise Fili Ltd. While working for Louise, she learned most of her skills as a letterer and spent upwards of 16 hours every day working (9 for Louise, 7+ for freelance clients). After two and a half years, Jessica left to further her freelance career and embark on several fun personal projects. Jessica began Daily Drop Cap, a project in which every day she created a new illustrative letter, working through the alphabet a total of twelve times. At its peak, the site had more than 100,000 visitors per month. It culminated with a thirteenth alphabet, each letter crafted by a guest contributor.
Jessica has become as well known for her side projects as she has for her client work. While she doesn’t consider herself a web designer, many of her personal projects are web-centric. She’s created several educational micro-sites including Mom This is How Twitter Works, Should I Work for Free? and Don’t Fear the Internet (with Russ Maschmeyer), each as entertaining as they are helpful. She coined the term “procrastiworking” to describe her tendency to procrastinate on client work by working on personal projects. @jessicahische
Christian Saylor specializes in bridging the gap between functionality and aesthetics, delivering beautiful, effective digital experiences to his work for clients. With 15 years of experience in the interactive design community, he sees the user experience as the touchstone of interaction—the connection point through which a message is heard, a purchase is made, or a thought inspired. His goal is to engage users on a personal level independent of medium, using design to meet them where they are and in ways they’re comfortable with, whether that’s via a mobile or embedded device, a car, a website, or even a well-designed t-shirt.
In order to disconnect with all digital aspects of life Christian loves opening up a good book, spending time with his family and on occasion giving back to the design community by teaching at Kendall College of Art and Design. @christiansaylor
Debbie Millman is President of the design division at Sterling Brands. She has been there for 18 years and in that time she has worked on the redesign of over 200 global brands, including projects with P&G, Colgate, Nestle, Kraft and Pepsi. Debbie is President Emeritus of AIGA, the largest professional association for design in the world. She is a contributing editor at Print Magazine and Co-Founder and Chair of the world’s first Masters in Branding Program at the School of Visual Arts in New York City. In 2005, she began hosting, “Design Matters,” the first podcast about design on the Internet. In 2011, the show was awarded a Cooper Hewitt National Design Award. She is the author of five books on design and branding, including the best-selling Brand Thinking and Other Noble Pursuits. Last year, an exhibition of her visual essays debuted at the Chicago Design Museum. @debbiemillman
Mark Pollard & Able Parris, Big Spaceship
Mark Pollard, VP of Brand Strategy at Brooklyn’s Big Spaceship, leads a group of ten brand and content specialists on clients including Chobani, Belvedere, and YouTube. He’s a brand planner who grewup digital and has been featured in AdNews’s Top 40 under 40, named one of Sydney’s Top 100 Creative Catalysts and listed by The Guardian as one of ten digital strategists to watch in 2013. In a parallel life he founded the first full color hip hop magazine in the southern hemisphere, co-created a man book, and spoke at TEDx.
Mark joined Big Spaceship from Saatchi & Saatchi New York where he was Director of Planning Innovation. He has worked in dot-coms, digital agencies, and network agencies such as Leo Burnett, McCann Erickson, and Tribal DDB. @markpollard
Able Parris is an internationally published, award-winning designer and artist residing in Brooklyn, NY with his wife of forever, Julia. He is a Designer Director at Big Spaceship in Dumbo, Brooklyn.Prior to the ‘ship, he worked at Mckinney in Durham, North Carolina. A renowned aficionado of nothing, Able appreciates a strong campfire, oceans, typography, and good dinner tables occupied by good friends. @ableparris