Aliyah Marr Bio

Creative Coach | Creative Projects Advisor

I am a Creative Coach / Creative Projects Advisor for individuals with a lot to say — artists, musicians, composers, and social entrepreneurs. I help these individuals with their personal or company brand.

I started out as a fine artist, went into illustration, then into User Interface design, became an art director and creative director for Fortune 500 companies and startup firms. I returned full-circle back to print design when I started designing books. There is something very satisfying about practicing “pure” graphic design again. There is no need to consider how the page will look on different screens and devices (“responsive” user interface design), and no concern about the typefaces or changing layouts.

And while what-you-see-is-NOT-what-you-get, the freedom to practice pure design again is quite heady: the images against the white paper, the “color” of the body copy, using negative “empty” space in the design. Ahh. So satisfying. Fun, beautiful. Like Happy Cat Sushi.

Creative Director | Visual Designer

I have spent most of my professional life as a visual designer and educator. Once you learn the principles of good design, you can apply them to everything you do. As a freelance art director/creative director, I have helped launch several successful startup companies, aided entrepreneurs, and over the years, have collected a client list that includes Fortune 500 clients, such as Morgan Stanley, IBM, American Express, and Chivas, but I’ve also enjoyed the dynamic of working with smaller businesses.

My career as a visual designer has had a lot of variety, to say the least: I have created/programmed websites and interactive games, edited/created videos, created opening title sequences and motion graphics, edited sound, created props for feature films, and designed print pieces. As an art director/creative director/creative lead, I have led teams of designers to produce major pieces, such as the Hummer project for the US Army, an interactive e-learning program with video, text, graphics, and voice-over instructions on how to fix the Hummer in two languages: English and Farsi.


My accounts include Fortune 100-500 clients such as IBM, Chivas, Motorola, American Express, Morgan Stanley, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, but I also have designed for smaller clients. My client list includes Knowledge City, Create Magazine, Media Bistro, NYC Economic Development Corporation, and the U.S. Army.

Content Creator | Corporate Trainer | Design Teacher

I taught user interface design and game programming at the top three design schools in NYC: Pratt, The School of Visual Arts, and Parsons School of Design.

A corporate trainer/workshop leader and public speaker with over 20 years of experience, my clients have included the Department of Defense, the IRS, The NYC Economic Development Corporation, and trade shows.

I have created online videos and interactive teaching interfaces for most of my career as a designer. In addition, I have taught software (technical training) for various clients. As a design teacher for Pratt Institute, The School of Visual Arts, and Parson’s School of Design, I taught courses in Flash, Premiere, After Effects, Dreamweaver, Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator and visual design.

One of my first jobs as an eLearning author involved making instructional videos teaching design software for a digital magazine. I had to create a project, write the script, do the voice-over, and create the videos. Each course involved six videos of three minutes each. I got really good at creating projects that demonstrated how to use the subject program in a real-world situation. I did the same kind of work for Media Bistro years later and again, more recently for Knowledge City.

One of the biggest e-learning projects I worked on was the Hummer multimedia repair manual for the Army. I designed and programmed the user interface, and then I served as the design lead for a team of designers to create the interactive movies. The project involved text, video, voice-overs, and graphics rendered in two languages inside an interactive interface. The final project included hundreds of files and movies. We achieved this herculean feat in less than 6 months.

Aliyah Marr is wonderful to work with. Her original, idiosyncratic work consistently gets a positive response from our users. She has become a favorite of our subscribers! Aliyah’s enthusiasm and cooperative nature make her a joy to work with. ~ Benjamin Kessler,Web Editor, INSEAD Knowledge at INSEAD (current position)

Ben Kessler, Media Bistro (eLearning Division)

Author | Copywriter

I love to write, especially when I use it to teach. If I can throw a little humor into the mix, all the better. In the course of my professional career as a freelance art director/creative director, I have had to create content for my clients for websites, brochures, e-learning courses, etc. I have worked as a copywriter, content creator, scriptwriter for tutorial movies, and author of articles for various magazines.

In parallel to my career as an artist/designer, I have been a prolific writer, first authoring scripts for e-books, writing copy for ads, articles for magazines, and blogging since 2006. In 2008 I published my first book, Parallel Mind, The Art of Creativity—since then I have published 14 more books on creativity, personal development, and social change.


As an interactive artist, my artwork has been featured in the Siggraph conference and national shows, such as Digital Concentrate.

Brief History

I studied fine art at École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts in Paris, France. When I returned to the USA, I put in a few years as an illustrator before I gravitated to visual design. Then I was asked to teach illustration at a local college, and I started creating online courses (e-Learning) while I designed for local clients.

A move to NYC put me in a bigger pond, and I found myself working at Digitas and other design firms/ad agencies with Fortune 100 clients. I landed plum jobs at the top design schools in New York City, teaching interactive media, design, video editing, motion graphics, and interactive programming at Parsons School of Design, Pratt Institute, and The School of Visual Arts. In addition, I gave seminars and workshops on multimedia and created many online instructional movies for designers through Media Bistro. Teaching is one of the best jobs I have ever had because I love to inspire my students to achieve their best. I carry this forward in my work as a corporate trainer and creative coach.

Aliyah Marr Bullet-Point CV

  • Creative Projects Advisor
  • Creative Advisor/Creative Coach
  • Senior Art Director for Digitas
  • Senior Designer/Analyst for Aaron Marcus Associates
  • Art Director for the Hummer eLearning project for the US Army
  • Content Creator
  • Instructional Designer
  • Course author (Photoshop, Illustrator, how to design for the web) for Knowledge City, MediaBistro
  • Visual Designer
  • UI/UX Designer
  • Game Designer Programming / Design
  • Design Teacher (School of Visual Arts, Pratt Institute, Parsons School of Design)
  • Corporate Trainer (Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, PremierePro, AfterEffects / WordPress / Apple)
  • Published Author—15 books on creativity, personal development: self-help, how-to genres
  • Gymnastics teacher: ages 2-adult
  • Creative content writer/editor
  • Graduate École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts in Paris, France