Out in the World – Lanette Behiry, SBC Orlando
August 26, 2014
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Lanette Behiry has loved drawing since childhood, but tragedy would turn that love into her calling.
Her mother and brother perished in a small private plane crash during a storm in upper Michigan when Lanette was six years old. “It's been a long road but everything happens for a reason,” she said. “I first used art as an outlet to soothe the pain from losing my mother and brother,” she said. “But it ended up becoming much more through choosing it as my profession.”
Now a motion graphic designer for a central Fla. start-up division of Hearst Television, Inc., one of the largest television station groups in the United States, Lanette says she’s happy and gets paid to do what she loves. Hearst owns 13 ABC affiliated stations, 10 NBC affiliates, and two CBS affiliates. Lanette considers landing that job in the television industry as her biggest professional success since graduating Magna Cum Laude from the Orlando campus of Sanford-Brown College (SBC, formerly IADT) in 2013. “This was something I’ve wanted to do ever since I can remember.”
“I met Lanette at a portfolio gathering at the school and her design was simple and bold,” said Kevin Johnson, Director of Graphic Operations and Lanette’s manager. “She had a great personality and wasn’t afraid to speak up. I didn’t have a position open at the time of the event, but told her I would keep her in mind the next time I was hiring. She joined our company less than a year later.”
Lanette began her imaginative education by pursuing a degree in animation at Seminole State College (SSC) in 2010. But after taking an elective course in graphic design, she fell in love and decided that was her true path. She went on to graduate from SSC with her associate degree in graphic design. Later that year, she enrolled at SBC and pursued a bachelor’s to hone her craft and increase her marketability. She says she chose SBC because of its smaller class sizes and the opportunity for quality one-on-one instruction when she needed it.
As a creative triple-threat, Lanette does it all and has a great presence while doing it. She’s skilled in digital design, photography, and personalized paintings/digitized illustrations and has held various graphic design roles throughout college using her keen eye to make ideas come to life. “She is very positive and high-energy,” said Kevin. “She has a good sense of design and is driven to learn.” A month after graduating from SBC’s IADT School of Design, Lanette got her first major experiences in graphic design while working for The HomeMag. There, her primary job was to publish the magazine. She also developed concepts for and designed all collateral materials including direct mail, ads, postcards, newsletters, flyers, and invitations.
Now at Hearst, Lanette’s education is used full-throttle when she’s creating maps and other graphics used in production for 25 different news stations; developing animations; and working directly with news directors, managers and producers to manage on-air graphics packages. Constantly learning – about her field and about herself – Lanette is growing every day and now understands how to reel in what she says is her ego. “As an artist it’s hard when someone tells you to change your work,” she said. “I'm learning to be okay with that and having the openness to see other artistic views and learn and grow from them as an artist.” Lanette credits her family – especially her supportive dad – for helping her achieve her aspirations. “My dad was a huge help in the completion of my degree,” she said. “He let me live at home rent-free so I could focus 100 percent on my studies.” Her aunt also flew from Egypt to show love at her graduation. After graduating with her bachelor’s degree and getting a job in her dream field, Lanette says many aspects of her life have been completely transformed. No longer working at retail or part-time jobs, she was able to envision a goal for herself and make it happen despite awful snares in her life. “I’m able to own my own three-bedroom condo which I never could afford before,” she said. “Things are better with my family, they speak proudly of me. I feel respected more not just in my family, but by my friends and others I meet. I feel the most respect from within that I made the commitment to go back to school and get my degree.”
“Because of SBC, I'm a stronger designer who gained real world experience dealing with real clients and expanding my network for work. The professors were super friendly, very knowledgeable, had great experience, and taught me everything I needed to know to be successful.” 7/6/2014