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Member spotlight: Jenna Lebler

By Holly Eamon, MSP-C

With a design portfolio including chic wedding invitations and charming painted house portraits, a geosynthetic periodical may not be the first place you’d look to find Jenna Lebler’s artistry on display—but she’s been meticulously formatting “Geosynthetics Magazine,” published by the Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI), for nearly three years.

After college, Lebler spent a year living overseas with her husband. Upon returning to the U.S., she worked as a freelancer before joining IFAI as a junior graphic designer, where she also works on specialty annual publications and marketing projects.

What is the most challenging part of your job?
Working on a publication for an audience that is completely my opposite—no frills and very technical.

What is your favorite part of your job?
I love looking at proofs, catching and cleaning up design mistakes I've made.

What MMPA events/aspects have been especially helpful?
The Summit. It's a great event for both networking and education.

What is the most useful career advice you’ve received?
When clients try to offer specific design suggestions, realize it’s because a broader issue they can't put their finger on exists, and your job is to figure that out. As the designer, you have to dig a little deeper to find the underlying problem. Then you can come up with a solution that is beautiful and functional, making both you and your client happy.

What is the most memorable project you’ve worked on?
The first spec guide cover I worked on myself. It was equally nerve-wracking and exciting.

What are your go-to sources for design inspiration?
Lynda.com has great tutorials, and if I'm stuck on design, I like to browse Pinterest.

What skills are most important for someone in your field?
Communication and flexibility/open-mindedness.

What skill would you most like to improve?
I'd like to be better at photo editing.

What are your hobbies outside of work?
I just became a mom, so I'm still working on figuring out how to make time for hobbies. Before my son was born, I ran. I also started a small side business last year, painting custom watercolor house portraits.

If you didn’t have to work, what would you be doing?
I would still be doing something creative—maybe something related to interior design or my other favorite things: food and animals.