Written by Teresa Akersten
Exposure. Prizes. Bragging rights. Winning a design competition has many perks.
For Jennifer Lange, winner of the 2014 Montclair Film Festival poster contest, making her parents proud tops the list.
Lange fell in love with movies as a child growing up in Maryland where she and her father spent countless hours together at animated film festivals.
“My fondest childhood memories are of the time spent with my dad sitting suspenseful on the edge of my seat, hysterically laughing one moment and weeping uncontrollably the next,” recalls the 40-year-old graphic artist from her Bloomfield home.
Those special outings instilled in Lange a love of animation and design, leading her to study Digital Imaging at the University of Maryland. After college, movies went to the wayside as she built a successful career as an art director. Her portfolio includes everything from print and digital work for corporate clients to birthday party invitations.
“This film contest allowed me to pursue my old love, and I had such a great time creating for the contest,” says Lange. Her goal, she says, was to reflect “the joy and good feeling living here gives me.”
The winning poster features the iconic Montclair venues where films will be shown during the weeklong festival, running from April 28 through May 4.
Those who live, work and play in town will immediately recognize the Montclair Art Museum, the Bellevue and Clairidge movie theaters and the Alexander Kasser theater at Montclair State University.
The design will be unveiled Saturday, March 1, during the annual Oscars’ Eve Party and will be popping up everywhere from buses to banners during the weeks leading up to the festival.
As the winner, Lange will be a special guest of the pre-Oscar party and Opening Night. She will also receive a free membership to the festival, giving her discounts and first dibs at tickets.
“I’m really excited,” Lange says, adding the win came as a surprise.
And as for her parents, who plan to travel to Montclair for the festival, they are “beyond proud.”
Lange is a busy lady. A sampling of her work can be viewed on www.cooldame.com. She is also the art director for www.networkedpolitics.com, and owns the empowering t-shirt company, Sum Smarty, www.sumsmarty.com. She teaches robotics, graphic design and construction classes in Montclair. She also enjoys hiking, camping and traveling around the country taking photographs of vintage neon signs with her husband and their two children.