Lydia Hooper is a designer, writer, and communications consultant. She has partnered with more than 40 organizations to help them collaborate and communicate about complex information.

Lydia's work has been featured on numerous blogs, in Photographer’s Forum and USA Today, on Esri’s Story Maps online gallery, and in planetarium programs at science museums nationwide. She has presented on topics for Redline Gallery, Colorado Nonprofit Association, Colorado Science Conference, KGNU community radio, and more. She’s also produced custom visuals for events including TEDxMileHigh, Denver Art Museum's Untitled, Colorado Creative Industries Summit, and Tapestry Conference on data storytelling. 

Lydia is a recipient of Colorado Creative Industries’ 2016 Career Advancement Award. In 2013, she was recognized at the National Conference on Citizenship for leading a cross-disciplinary team on a project that received a bronze award in the national Civic Data Challenge. Lydia graduated summa cum laude with an interdisciplinary B.A. from the University of Colorado-Denver after receiving the Outstanding Undergraduate Creative Activity Award at the University's Research and Creative Activities Symposium. 

She lives in Denver, Colorado with her fourteen-year-old son.

 

For as long as I can remember, I've been making things. Drawings, lists, charts, stories... The only thing I've liked as much as making is learning. I’ve never shied away from diving into challenging (or, as some consider them, “boring”) concepts and equations. Yet as a child, I discovered that creating things challenges not just my thinking, but my way of thinking. It is a powerful key that continues to unlock doors for me.

As a young adult, I wanted to share this experience with others. I wanted to empower them with knowledge and transformational experiences. So I learned to make the "boring" less so and to become a trusted ally. For almost a decade, I taught kids of all ages in numerous environments, from an orphanage in Russia to a camp in the mountains of North Carolina to a Montessori classroom in Boulder, Colorado to galleries at Denver Museum of Nature and Science. I also studied human physiology and pathology, volunteered as a massage therapist for hospice patients, and wrote ethics questions for the national bodywork certification exam.

Eventually I wove my many interests and skills together into a multi-disciplinary degree. During my academic studies, I came to better understand myself how complex the important issues of our time truly are. I also came to believe that creative approaches are absolutely vital to address them.

The organizations that I have partnered with since, those working tirelessly to address these issues, have shown me time and time again that success boils down to sharing knowledge thoughtfully and intentionally. In my service to them, I have rediscovered that visuals are hands down the most effective (and fun!) tool for both navigating and generating the relationships, ideas, and actions necessary for transformation. 

If you are struggling with complexity of some kind - whether it be in data and research or in multi-stakeholder conversations - don't let it stand in the way of your vision. Let’s explore together how we might unlock the door!

 

To learn more about me:

Interactive visual about biodiversity that I created when I studied at a field station in a Costa Rican rainforest. (Click here to view larger interactive version.)