Chicago Tribune Blue Sky Innovation: Inside Job

Alison Vellas draws on a digital tablet at Ink Factory Studio

What’s it really like to work at Chicago startups and tech companies? Blue Sky’s Inside Job lets people on the ground tell us in their own words.

Alison Vellas, 25, Graphic Recorder and Illustrator at Ink Factory: The core of what we do is visualizing speeches and conversations. We like to say visual note-taking as an easier way for people to understand what it is. Drawing words is really different from writing words. It was a very strange thing to kind of come into, but I think I adapted to it really easily because of that comics background I had. We’re at the front of the room, listening to whatever conversation is happening, in a keynote presentation, in a brainstorming session, internal meetings, anything like that, anywhere ideas are being exchanged and information is being discussed. We’re listening for core ideas and key concepts, and we physically make those larger on the board so you see them first.

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