Monday, August 31, 2009

Past Graduates - Karen Hanratty, Pixel Design

Website Design: McMahon Architects

Website Design: Lighthouse Cinema, Dublin

Website Design, Dance Ireland

Website Design: Kilkenny Arts Festival

Karen set up her design company, Pixel Design, in 2006 and now specialises in designing websites for the arts, not-for-profit and advocacy sectors. She is the talent behind the sites of - among others - Dance Ireland, Kilkenny Arts Festival, DIT, Light House Cinema and Poetry Ireland. A number of her designs have been nominated for Irish Web Awards and in 2008 she won the Web Designer Excellence category in the Irish Internet Association and Enterprise Ireland’s net visionary awards. 

So, how did Karen go from humble AIT student to award-winning designer running her own design studio? Well, after graduating in Design Communications in 1997, she spent five years honing her design skills at Webfactory, Ireland’s largest web design company. Here she had the opportunity to work on a wide variety of projects which was great experience and was lucky enough to work with many talented designers.

In 2002, Karen became Creative Director at a smaller design company that focuses on design for both print and web. Along with heading up a design team this gave her an insight into running a small business as well as more direct contact with clients and gave her the confidence to strike out on her own.

Throughout her career, Karen has been an active member of the Institute of Designers in Ireland which is the professional body representing and supporting designers in Ireland. She is currently New Media representative on the IDI council and would encourage design students and graduates to join!


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