Nora Herting & Heather Willems – Co-Founders of ImageThink
By: Nora Herting & Heather Willems - Co-Founders of ImageThink

Last we spoke of Nora Herting and Heather Willems, co-founders of ImageThink, we were exposing the concept of graphic facilitation by introducing their new book. Now, we’re going back to their start. We recently sat down with the pair to learn how exactly they went from starving artists to empowering entrepreneurs.

They met as undergraduates in an art history class, and stayed together through graduate school. As mentioned before, Willems got Herting and herself a job doing graphic facilitation for meetings at an IT firm. They also both individually began doing freelance when the economy began to sour in 2009, and Herting thought it would be a good idea (and, obviously, it was) for them to partner up. However, Willems was hesitant because she didn’t want a business partnership to ruin their friendship (Herting now admits that Willems was right; the business did change – not ruin – their relationship).

Once they were able to establish their foundational business relationship, they were able to establish their actual business. When they were starting out, it was still during the “bottom of the great recession.” They turned the extra time they had to develop their online presence by starting their Line by Line blog. Every day, one of them would turn one of their favorite articles from the front page of New York Times’ website into a graphic recording. And it worked:

“Hillary Clinton started following us on Twitter.”

LISTEN to learn more about how they went from concept to partnership, how they doubled their revenue from 2012 to 2015, whose original doodle is hanging in Larry Page’s office, and so much more fun facts.