By Simran Devidasani

Snapchat filters– people use them to add the perfect lighting, speed up or slow down videos or to locate where they are.

University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign freshman Madison Tompkins doesn’t just use these filters, but she creates them.

Tompkin’s filter for her hometown Lockport, Illinois was accepted by Snapchat in October and will go live during the holiday season. She wanted to create a Snapchat filter for her town because they currently had one filter, but people didn’t use it.

Her inspiration directly came from Lockport.

“I decided to create something simple so that people could use it for multiple different things,” Tompkins said. “I used red and gold because that is our town’s high school colors [and] the steamboat is because our school’s mascot is the Porters.”

Tompkins has been drawing and painting ever since she could hold a pencil and has taken art classes in high school, she had no prior InDesign or Photoshop experience.

“I learned everything from Morgan’s creative classes,” she said.

On The House, American Advertising Federation’s creative agency, holds creative labs led by Creative Director Morgan Behrens where students are taught programs such as Photoshop and InDesign.

Inspired by these labs and driven by her natural artistic challenge, Tompkins ultimately decided to make a Snapchat filter.

“When I opened the email [from Snapchat] saying my filter was accepted, I was in journalism class,” Tompkins said.  “We were supposed to read a 20 page article, but I couldn’t focus and started tearing up.”

As an advertising major, Tompkins aspires to be a creative in advertising and work for companies such as Leo Burnett.

“I don’t know too much about the future, but I am currently working on a squirrel Snapchat filter for the University of Illinois,” she said. “Let’s see.”



Written by Ad Buzz

The American Advertising Federation Illinois Chapter brings to you Ad Buzz, a blog dedicated to all things advertising related, from our favorite campaigns to trends going on in the industry.

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