At the virtual IABC World Conference 2021, Vip Sitaraman participated in the Quick Hit Showcase, where he discussed trends and insights for interactive digital experiences. Revisit the presentation by purchasing World Conference recordings or the All-Access Pass on the IABC website, and read on as Sitaraman reflects on how he got his start as a business communicator.
"I can't believe I make a living doing this."
This thought has crossed my mind countless times since I unwittingly ventured into the world of business communication years ago.
For as long as I can remember, I always believed I was going to be a doctor — from my first-grade yearbook all the way to my freshman year of college, pre-med always seemed like the way for me. Design and visual communication were just hobbies of mine at the time. As a school kid, I loved creating custom icons for my desktop and intricate visuals for my presentations. I never could have imagined that my everyday job would involve similar work.
My journey into business communication began with one conversation with Winston Vuong, a judge at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF). He introduced me to the (then-nascent) field of science communication as we stood next to my infographic-style poster board. At the time, the idea of being a communicator seemed entirely foreign as we stood among endless rows of scientific esoterica — but Winston was on to something.
This conversation inspired me to start Draw Science, a blog with the goal of sharing cutting-edge academic research through visual communication. The blog started gaining attention from notable publications in the space like American Society of Clinical Oncology and Cell Press. When the first commissioned works and conference invitations followed a few months later, I found myself in the world of business communication.
WORLD CONFERENCE 2021
Get to Know the Quick Hit Showcase Speakers
Get to know more about Sitaraman and the other speakers at the World Conference 2021 Quick Hit Showcase.
Over the next couple years, Draw Science transformed into a creative communication consulting firm with a global clientele. Later, it became a crowdfunded open-access journal of its own. Our graphics were featured alongside PR coverage on sites like VICE and Newsweek. Draw Science collaborated with leading academic publishers, research institutions and universities, including the likes of prestigious names such as the Lindau-Nobel Conferences, Wiley, AMNH, PeerJ, Elsevier and more.
In the years following Draw Science, my career branched out to focus more on business communication, moving into the broader space of digital media and marketing. I never could have predicted I would specialize in this — I just happened into the world of science communication as a young professional, and things have snowballed since!
Draw Science was founded to connect the world with cutting-edge research in an accessible and entertaining medium. That said, it was a life-changing project on a personal level, and the science communication field will always hold a special place in my heart. I always will be grateful to Draw Science for introducing me to the vibrant, exciting world of business communication and forever indebted to the community of supporters and partners that made it possible.
As seen in Forbes, Inc., Entrepreneur, Business Insider, and more, creative and communications consultant Vip Sitaraman works with over 100 organizations ever year, ranging from high-growth startups (i.e., YC, Thiel, 30u30) and private investment firms to Fortune/Inc. 500 name brands.