Virtual Makeover

Interactive Entertainment, Marketing, Online Community

Clients: Proctor & Gamble, Excite @Home, Creative Wonders/Mattel

Objective: To create the first interactive online beauty makeover application for teens using the Max Factor cosmetic brand products, including an online community gallery.

Target Market: Excite @Home’s European Teen Community website “Swizzle”.  Future plans were to update and release a U.S. version.

Role: Art Manager (Tasks included: Activity/UI/UX design, asset production scheduling & dev management, creative direction of in-house & contract artists/animators, collaborating with client’s producer, project manager,  programming & marketing leads to meet goals)


  • “Virtual Makeover” (VM) User interface needed to include many functions and options in a limited space.
  • Max Factor product line’s exact product names & colors (lipstick, eye shadow, blush) needed to be incorporated into the choices.
  • Needed to develop transparent cursor brushes that applied the make-up in a realistic way, with the ability to apply light to heavy.
  • Included a Finished Look page with the names of products used, and the ability to save/send the image, & upload to an online gallery.
  • Community gallery to include advanced image upload functionality, advanced search options,voting capabilities with results pages.
  • Extremely tight schedule of 4 months for entire project, which meant less than 3 months for creative asset production.

Approach: Considering the extremely aggressive production timeline, along with unique functions to be included, a detailed scope of work and production schedule needed to be created. We agreed on a design direction, I competed pre-production research and created a very detailed MS Project schedule.  We had to stick to this in order to meet the milestones we had agreed to. By monitoring production very closely and making adjustments to talent and/or scope we were able to create 1200+ assets within a little over 2 months time.  Including a model search and photo-shoot. And not just ordinary assets- we needed to develop templates that fit all possible model and user heads, and all assets had to fit these parameters. Plus all choice assets needed to be removed form their background, and hairstyles duplicated into 8 different colors! All of this while designing, creating and testing the complex UI.

Results:  Thanks to an incredible team all around, we meshed into a free-flowing body of ability and kicked some development butt on this one!  Which means we delivered a robust product on time and within budget. The clients felt the finished product was richer and more interactive than they had envisioned, and were extremely happy with our ability to deliver by the scheduled release date.  And the audience?  The teens loved it!  Almost immediately upon release the application was in constant use and new user makeover images were being submitted to the Gallery continually. The Gallery also had a large viewing audience with makeovers being rated as hoped.

Surprises:  That all ages loved it!  Word of the app spread around our 300+ employee office and everyone was playing with it!  Someone even took our CEO’s image and gave him a beautiful makeover!  Luckily these makeovers were only seen on our testing server.  A few industrious teens in England did, however, find that they loved to give makeovers to their dogs and celebrities.



Steve Snyder, Director of Content Delivery, Human Code / Sapient
“I had the pleasure of working with Jana for several years. Her “can do” attitude, attention to detail and highly developed artistic skills made her an indispensable addition to the art team and a very successful project manager at Presage, Human Code and Sapient. If the opportunity arose, I would most definitely hire her again.”
 View more recommendations