Nell Chitty is a Digital Media and Design Specialist at the City of Toronto, specializing in accessible digital document design and media. Nell is also a team organizer with #a11yTO, one of the largest digital accessibility Meetup groups in the world! #a11yTO holds regular Meetups, an annual camp, and a conference in Toronto. She has also volunteered as a guest teaching assistant for the AODA certification at Ryerson University where she shared her passion for accessibility with students.
Nell became interested in inclusive and accessible design while witnessing the accommodations and lifestyles changes her family members made to adjust to their aging eyesight. This prompted Nell to dedicate her fourth year thesis in Fashion Communications at Ryerson University to designing a typeface for people with vision loss.
After working in the Montreal fashion industry within sales and marketing, Nell returned to Toronto to pursue her Master of Design in Inclusive Design in the program’s first cohort at OCAD University. Nell researched areas relating to art, design, and disability while studying how we can create more inclusive digital environments for individuals’ unique needs.
As part of her Master’s at OCAD, Nell’s Major Research Project (MRP) looked at how designers can reduce user fatigue through changes in the visual user interface of eye controlled computers. Her MRP was completed in 2013. It is currently available online and in print at OCAD University.
Nell is active on social media and as a photographer documenting her interest in travel, nature, food, and culture. She looks forward to continuing her work in the field of accessibility by working within policy, technology, and design.