I’m going to list a few of my highlights from the Typo conference and I just have a couple photos, nothing super spectacular. I’m extremely grateful that I had the opportunity to attend the conference. My business essentially funded this trip, which is awesome and I can’t believe I’m at the point where I could afford to go to a conference. So, thanks to all my clients!
I learned a lot about myself and the design world. I probably wouldn’t choose to attend another conference like this without a friend to hang out with, as it got a bit lonely and it wasn’t a super easy environment to connect with folks. But anyways, here’s some of my favorite bits and pieces.
Tina Roth Eisenberg
The very first speaker at the conference was definitely my favorite. I knew of her SwissMiss blog but I didn’t know all the amazing things Tina was behind. She began as a designer working for clients and slowly started all these smaller side projects that have grown so much, they have become her whole career. She started a temporary tattoo company, a ToDo app, a project that hosts free design talks in cities all over the world and many other things. She’s nonstop making new things and trying ideas and she’s very successful at all of them. My very favorite quote from her talk was “The best way to complain is to make things.” I think this is such a valuable concept for my generation of Americans. We are cynical and critical and pride ourselves on being able to differentiate cool from not cool. We like to diss stuff but most of the time we don’t do our part to come up with solutions to make things better. I know it isn’t always as easy for everyone else as it is for Tina, but this concept seemed to be a general theme at the conference. Being proactive with your career and doing projects and things that you find inspiring and that you are passionate about. Not just for yourself, but to benefit people around you and the greater design purpose of making the world more beautiful.
DESIGNERS ARE REALLY NERDY
I realized that I’m not actually very involved in the design culture. I don’t hang out with designers a ton and the ones that I do hang out with aren’t super obsessed with design. This conference was definitely full of the all-out obsessed kind of designers. I’ll be honest…it was a little much for me. I could nerd out about music gear and bands and songs all day with people, but design is just kind of boring to talk about. I would much rather just be designing than talking about it. The image above is of one of the things in our goodie bag. It was a little pamphlet put together by the Type Directors Club, who was one of the sponsors. And yes, it’s a typography horoscope. Haha.
Jason Munn & Parra
This talk was my second favorite. I love Jason Munn’s work and Parra was super interesting. They are both less corporate than a lot of the speakers, which I think is why I related to them so well. They just do what they do and kind of don’t really fit in the more broad industry. Even with some of their bigger projects, they are still somewhat obscure. So, they seem to have a more realistic view of the world and how to operate in it as a designer and artist. One of the interesting observations I ended up with at the end of the conference is that uniqueness is really only celebrated if you have a certain level of famousness. Until you are famous, you have to kind of conform into certain styles or ways of doing things. But if you are famous, people let you be who you are. I’ve definitely felt this in Spokane but I had hoped for better in the greater design industry. It’s obvious that to get famous you have to have a unique story to tell or a unique process or something, you can’t make a dent in the world if you are trying to conform. DUH. So, why isn’t being different more welcome in the design world? Let me know if you have an answer. I’m still trying to figure it out.
The Bay area is still awesome, just in case you were wondering.
This was Jessica Hische with her cute sparkly OMG rainbow talking about her dream job working with Wes Anderson on titles for his newest movie. She was bright, funny and very honest about her growth process and learning curve. I appreciated her transparency and ability to not take herself too seriously.
All in all I had a great time. My cynicism surfaced a bit here and there, but I was greatly inspired about the track I’m on and encouraged to continue with even more intensity. I think I have a great opportunity to make an impact on the community I live in and I’m ready to continue climbing this mountain that is a design career. I have so much to learn and so many insecurities to conquer.
Let me know if you have any questions, I would be happy to share more!