Umbeler in Action: Chelsea Carlson

Name, Title and Team:

Chelsea Carlson, Graphic Designer, Marketing Team

How did you hear about Umbel and why did you decide to apply?

I came across Umbel on The Muse while I was interning there. I was looking for a fun, small company that worked with data and cared about design in a cool city. Basically, the definition of Umbel.

Can you describe your typical day?

At work, I’m usually working on one or two big projects and a smattering of smaller ones, so it’s always a juggling act. I like to split my time between unplugged sketching for planning things out, headphones-on-intense-work-mode and impromptu meetings.

Since moving to Austin I’ve fallen in love with all the music here. After work, I’ve gone from being an occasional concert goer to checking my Songkick semi-religiously, looking for new shows. I’m also working on my grown-up life skills by working my way through a Stanley Tucci cookbook. I’m also working on a side illustration project called Songstresses Tresses, which is pretty much exactly what it sounds like.

What would your advice be to someone just starting out in your field?

For other people pursuing design with a non-traditional background, I’d recommend using your unique background as a selling point. You’re not going to get your first job by being pixel perfect, but by being able to use design to do something interesting with other people. Design is just a vehicle for a message, so if you don’t have anything to say, your work will always fall flat.

Describe your co-workers in three words.

Curious, brilliant, more-athletic-than-me.

What’s the best part about working at Umbel?

I love working at Umbel because when you throw out a crazy idea people say “yes, how?” instead of “no way,” and then we build it.

What’s your go-to motivation songs – when you’re feeling sluggish and need a pick me up?

Right now I’m listening to M83’s “Outro” on repeat. I became obsessed with it when watching “Versailles” and haven’t been able to stop listening. I also love Phoebe Ryan’s mashup/cover of “Ignition/Do You” and AURORA’s “Conqueror.”

What’s your favorite place in Austin?

Taquerias Arandinas. There’s an abundance of Tex-Mex in this town, but as it turns out, I’m more of a fan of Mex-Mex. This place is cheap and delicious and even though their margarita machine is usually broken, the telenovelas more than make up for it. Runners up: Vulcan Video (try renting “The Boy Friend” with Twiggy & Midnight Cowboy).

Travel is a big part of the culture at Umbel. What countries have you travelled to so far? And where do you want to go next?

So far I’ve traveled around a fair amount of Europe: France, England, Scotland, Norway, Sweden, Italy and The Netherlands. I also spent a semester studying art in Florence largely because I wanted to learn traditional fresco, loiter in cloisters and drown in gelato. I’m headed to Paris next week, but after that I’d really like to go to Mexico City. I love Gabriel Orozco and I have a giant crush on Olmec art so a Mexican art tour is on my short list.

First thing you do when you get to the office?

Move yesterday’s mess off my desk so I can make a new one today!

You can follow Chelsea on Twitter at @artgeeky. For more information on working at Umbel, please visit our Careers page.