Freelance Design Researcher & Strategist
Aug 2013 - Present
Freelance consultant identifying unique and specific consumer and business insights of the present, while also exploring possibilities for the future through design thinking and co-creation. Specialties include Brand Identity, Use Experience, Ethnography, Online Community Moderation, Focus Groups, Analysis & Design.
Mar 2000 - Present (13 years)
The Unit 2 Collective is a Chicago and Michigan based non-profit organization that supports artists and designers from varied genres and regions in community building endeavors, projects and exhibitions prioritizing the goal of dialogue, innovation, environmental awareness, and social change. Programming includes several long term projects:
Design Makes Change:
A volunteer group of designers, artists, and educators living and working in Chicago. Our mission is to encourage designers from all disciplines to understand the challenges in their city and help build cleaner, safer, and better neighborhoods in Chicago and beyond. We partner with organizations, community leaders, businesses, and educational bodies to organize and support a series of annual design competitions that address environmental, social, and infrastructural issues for change.
The Live Station Project:
An off-the-grid living location in the woods of Southwest Michigan designed for an individual to disconnect from the grid, reconnect to their humanity, share the experience, and produce work to promote dialogue as well as the evolution of the site and living systems.
A resource and support network for independent filmmakers to utilize their skills and connections to give voice to the unheard.
Associate Director, Design Research
Jan 2012 - Aug 2013 (1 year 7 months)
At Kelton, insights are just the beginning. We believe that research is not just about finding the facts, it’s about telling a good story. Research is about people, and finding out what makes them tick. How do mindsets, emotions, and environments influence how people think, feel and interact with the world? What do they crave, believe, laugh at and worry about? Done right, research helps you connect with people in new and informative ways. Our unique research methodologies, intrepid interviewers and insightful analyses don’t just give you the data: They bring the data to life.
Associate Director of Design Research:
Spearhead design research and consumer insight integration within Qualitative Research, User Experience, and Online Communities by connecting with global consumers in new and informative ways, and sharing their story with key stakeholders to best facilitate impact. Clients range from retailers and website/use experience to product development, pharmaceutical and CPG; including Target, Coke, Logitech, Bloomingdales, Gilt, Marriott, Johnson & Johnson, Nickelodeon and NCR.
Webb deVlam & R5 Research
May 2010 - Jan 2012 (1 year 8 months)
Webb deVlam is a brand strategy and package design firm, with focus on building brands through Discovery, Innovation and Design. Discovery brings the consumer into every project and makes a brand's relationship with it's consumer central to creating or refreshing brand equities and creating winning brand building strategies. Innovation means fresh brand thinking whether for new product development and design, brand image and identity, or either structural or graphic package design.
Design research, discovery and strategy work, bridging consumer insights, synthesis and design to create development opportunity platforms for a range of corporate clients including Walmart, 3M, Unilever, Kraft. P&G and Concern Worldwide.
Wendy Uhlman, Consultant
Jan 1995 - May 2010 (15 years 4 months)
Small Business consultancy with work ranging from Graphic & Web Design, Photography, and Research for clients from Kroger and P&G to Chicago art galleries/organizations balancing various strategic responsibilities with the creative.
Industrial Designer, User Experience and Design Researcher
Dell & UIC Interdisciplinary Product Design Program
Sep 2009 - May 2010 (8 months)
Year long, collaborative group project working with engineers and MBA students for Dell to improve the computing experience for users through an innovative combination of products, system and Graphic User Interface.
International Housewares Association
Feb 2010 - Mar 2010 (1 month)
The International Home + Housewares Show offers you the opportunity to see first-hand consumer lifestyle and product trends for all areas of the home, both inside and out, under one roof.
Working with show organizers before the show and during on exhibits for Pantone Color Watch & Going Green.
Byron Roche Gallery
Aug 2008 - Feb 2010 (1 year 6 months)
Strategy, Identity and Website Development
PDT / Product Development Technologies
Sep 2009 - Dec 2009 (3 months)
Exploration of painpoints and opportunities around Alzheimers evolving in the integration of design research within the product development process.
May 2009 - Aug 2009 (3 months)
Work with an alternative energy start-up devising strategy, product and system solutions to products that convert kinetic human energy into electricity.
Jan 2009 - Jun 2009 (5 months)
Sustainability consultant at a material resource web site working on a new Eco-Label, Life Cycle Analysis integration, and writing/blogging.
May 2008 - Aug 2008 (3 months)
Focus on consumer trend research, insights and integration into office product development.
Supervisor & Organizer
Jan 2001 - Jan 2008 (7 years)
Within a corporate environment, responsibilities included team management, customer service, supervisory duties, ordering and event organization.