Sarah Kavanagh's Blog

Web Design- Professional Topics Lectures!

Motivating Guest speakers are from SapientNitro: Brad Huffman & Norma Penner


I really liked how Brad and Norma provided us with information about SapientNitro as a whole, as I was unaware of just how dominant this company is around the globe. Sapient Nitro is solely a digital agency and have over 35 offices around the world! This company offers great opportunities on a global scale and have won multiple awards.
Some of the projects under their belt are: Chrysler, Loblaws, Target, Coke, Dodge and many more! Movember is also a big deal at Sapient and I really enjoyed the humorous video they played with Movember spirit (big mustaches) passing through employee’s in the building. Their motto, “We take on the personalities of our clients instead of expecting our clients to be like us”.

When SapientNitro worked on Abercrombie and Fitch brand, it was tough because they needed to stay true to their long-time defined brand. Norma explained how them as a group would embed themselves in A&F culture, buying their clothing, products etc to better understand what exactly they were looking for. In the end they came up with the innovative idea to turn the brand digital yet personal at the same time, called “A&F BTS SMS Campaign”.

“Innovation is about combining technology with powerful ideas and insightful perspectives on human moments to create highly relevant ways to connect”.

Norma explained how the definition of ‘great’ is entirely defined by the client you’re working for and the problem you’re trying to solve fir them. Having a client feel successful in turn makes you feel successful.

Here’s a bit about Brad’s background.. he was a graduate of this program very recently and as hired by Sapient last year right at the graduation show. Seeing his talent and creations it’s understandable why! (his contemporary beautiful branding, carried out a neutral subject yet close to heart, his designs are very understandable and fluid/consistent)

Recently has worked on Heart, a charity based organization where artists would submit work and that design would be printed on t-shirts. This was a great exposure for the artists as well as the donation would go to a great cause. Personally I thought the layout of the site was beautiful and gave other options of giving such as volunteering. Also the donations would go straight to the cancer patients in need.

He gave our class insightful tips on our end of the year project, “Think of a project, idea of something that has yet to exist, something that shapes you more as a designer”.

Both individuals had many inspirational people they talked about such as professors in the program, Gillian and Sheila. They are always there to help and love to see every one of us succeed which is a great feeling.

Norma shared with us a bit about her journey (also a graduate of the web design program) “Creativity is is experiencing difference” she said keep creativity fresh – to challenge yourself – have career changes and travel!

In the end we were left with insightful words to guide/help us in our future:

  • Have compassion/drive
  • People who care will take you far
  • Be as involved as you can
  • Get to know eachother and bounce ideas off eachother
  • Be collaborative
  • Get yourself out there
  • Show your true personality
  • Career – Life balance is key!


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This entry was posted on October 21, 2013 by .
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