Courtney Barr was born in Roanoke, Virginia and currently resides in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Lynchburg College in 2001 and a Master of Fine Arts degree from East Carolina University in 2008. She is now an Associate Professor of Graphic Design at Louisiana State University, where she teaches undergraduate and graduate level courses. She has worked in the professional graphic design studio environment and she strives to let that experience enrich her teaching. She is Faculty Advisor to the LSU Graphic Design Student Office, a student design studio that has produced award-winning work recognized at the national and international level. She has also acted as faculty advisor to the LSU AIGA Student Group, and is an Ambassador for the Innovation Center for Design Excellence.

Courtney Barr's area of research within the field of graphic design is information design, which allows for the layering and comparison of complex data. She is also a letterpress printmaker; the craft of letterpress printing provides a rich, tactile, one-of-a-kind surface that she often blends with computer-based digital printing. In her work she creates visual explanations that reveal new understandings and perspectives about complex themes. It is her goal to move beyond the scientific diagram in order to develop creative visualizations that cross the bridge between science and art.

Her work has received recognition from AIGA | the professional association for design and the American Advertising Federation, and has been published in the Print Regional Design Annual, Graphic Design USA magazine, the Big Book of Green Design, and Ladies of Letterpress: Dedicated to the proposition that a woman’s place is in the printshop. She has collaborated with researchers on grants from the Louisiana Board of Regents, the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, the National Science Foundation and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. She has presented her research at Penland School of Crafts, the LSU Museum of Art, the Ladies of Letterpress Conference, and the Southeastern College Art Conference.