MARYSVILLE — At the age of 24, Marysville native Jordan Lee is already the winner of an Emmy award for his graphic and Web design work.
Lee was part of an Everett-based studio that was contracted by ESPN and won an award in the “Outstanding New Approaches — Short Format” category at the 30th annual Sports Emmy Awards, held in New York City April 27.
Lee has been studying and practicing graphic and Web design for the past eight to nine years, well before going to college at Lee University in Cleveland, Tenn., but he’s only been working at it on a professional level for the past two years. Indeed, he originally did freelance design work mainly as a means of raising extra money, while his primary goal was to work in public relations. In college, he double-majored in PR and design, simply to give himself something to fall back on at first, but after a while he saw how much the two career fields have in common.
“It’s the communication aspect of it,” Lee said. “I like communicating efficiently and effectively. I was drawn to the idea of helping organizations let people know who they are and what they do, and I saw that I could utilize the same skills as in PR, such as those that go into writing news releases, to create better print and Web designs.”
Lee and roughly a dozen others worked with ESPN to present videos of a century’s worth of Chicago Cubs baseball “in a new and innovative way,” with each video spotlighting one person from each decade, over the course of the past 100 years, sharing their own stories about the heartache of the Cubs losing. Billy Corgan, lead singer of the Smashing Pumpkins, is one of the featured fans.
While Lee did not work on the videos themselves, he designed the Web site that presented the videos, incorporating visual elements such as the Wrigley Field scoreboard into the site.
“I wanted to highlight the timeless elements, like the scoreboard and the ivy,” Lee said. “In any job, the biggest things for me are doing my research and developing a relationship with the client. I make sure I get to know all about the people I’m working for, so that I can balance between the perceptions and the realities about them.”
Lee is an eclectic student of design, seeking out ideas and influences in both creative and commercial artwork and photography, as well as a host of other sources.
“Inspiration doesn’t come from a computer, but from everything around you in your life, both in books and outdoors,” Lee said. “I read everything I can, I study other designers and I consume information. I like earth tones, because they feel natural and organic, as opposed to the cold and static feel of a lot of Web sites. I’m not a painter or a sculptor, but I strive to be an artist with the Web as my canvas.”
Lee works through a very interactive process with his clients and hopes to do business with organizations in Marysville, not only to give such technological applications a stronger push in the local area, but also to give back to the community where he grew up.
The Emmy award-winning project to which Lee contributed, “No Love Lost,” can be found online at http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/eticket/story?page=cubs100. For more information on Lee, you can call him at 425-870-0092, e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or log onto his Web site at www.jordanwlee.com.