Gail Zuniga

My name is Gail Zuniga and I graduated from Pratt Institute with a BFA in Communication Design. I then spent several years as a freelance illustrator. Some of my illustration clients included, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Time Magazine.

I began work as a Graphics Editor with The Wall Street Journal in 2003. As a Graphics Editor, I was able to combine my three favorite hobbies: illustration, problem-solving, and research. I conducted and analyzed research in order to solve problems visually. It does not get better than that.

After almost 7 years with The Wall Street Journal, a colleague, working with Siegel+Gale at the time, asked me to join her there. While at S+G, I was able to expand my skill set. Although my title at Siegel+Gale was that of Information Designer, I would often wear the Information Architect hat. After all, a good Information Designer can make content look great but they also must inform how that content is structured. The two positions contain a shared set of skills.

As S+G started taking on more digital projects, I jumped at the opportunity to take on more digitally-focused tasks. The digital medium, by nature, allows for a more easily controlled story-telling experience. This was exactly the direction in which I wanted to head. I started by working closely with Senior Information Architects on the crique of client sites (or portals) for the financial industry. While sitting in on client interviews for that project, I found myself immersed in a world where information design for digital services went hand-in-hand with user experience. Information Design for printed documents takes the user experience into consideration, but not to this extent. I created and presented wireframes for the chart-heavy sections of mobile-device apps. I created mock-ups of website pages in Photoshop to help clients better understand the more complex sections of a wireframe and I created designs for pages within an iPad app delivered for new business pitches.

I was having a blast, but something was missing. The part I liked most about my job was data visualization but I did not know how to make my charts interactive. This was something I could not accomplish in Photoshop. I wanted to marry my love for the digital medium with my love for data visualization. And so, here I am, coding my way to interactive everything. Click here to see what I am creating in d3.

In the mean time, I still love redesigning forms and creating annual reports and doing anything information design-y. So give me a call if you have a confusing form that you need rejiggered, or cleaned up. Call me up for help on any data visualization project. No Excel spreadsheet is too big or too small. I love them all.