Interview with Karen D’Silva, Volunteer of the Year 2015

October 20, 2016


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 In the second of our series of last year’s award winners, we focus on our Volunteer of the year, Karen D’Silva.  How was she chosen from all our great volunteers for DMLA?  Karen worked diligently in 2015 to help rebrand DMLA with a new logo and all the materials that we needed to describe the change to our association. She worked tirelessly in this effort and found designers who were willing to donate services to our effort.  She definitely went “above and beyond”.



What does winning the first volunteer of the year award mean to you?

It’s really an honor. My first real job was in stock photography. I enjoy being a part of DMLA because the organization and the industry it represents contributed to who I am today. It’s nice giving back to an industry that gave me so much.

Looking back at the conference’s success, which contribution of yours are you most proud of?

DMLA is a great organization made up of so many wonderful people. Their passion for this business make DMLA what it is. My job was to elevate its brand, create some consistency in their messaging, and help the rest of the world see DMLA the way I always did.

What have you been working on for this year’s conference and what are you most looking forward to?

Seeing as this is my third conference, what I’m doing for promotion doesn’t differ much from past years, giving me more time to think about the marketing fireside chat. We’re trying to be innovative in how we engage our audience. This year’s discussion will be an intimate and honest conversation about marketing in the digital world. The idea is to be transparent and challenge the audience to think about using the opportunities out there to improve their business.

Can you tell us about the years you spent working as an art director?

It’s funny to look back at your career. At the time, I was really in the thick of it, just trying to get to the end of the day. With some perspective, I can see that I was honing in on some important skills in the years I art directed. I was learning how to articulate what I wanted to create and how to capture moments that would connect with the viewer. Eventually, it became more about strategy behind images and creating a brand to reflect these ideas. Helping companies market is just as creative and rewarding as being on set, and I love the problem solving. There’s nothing better than bringing a brand to life through marketing.

How did you get into marketing, and how was this influenced by your photography career?

I was always an artsy kid, and I naturally went towards a fine art degree. I always liked the conception of the idea the best, so it’s really not a surprise that I ended up in marketing. Marketing is so much about strategy, seeing the big picture, and implementing your vision.