Did you know I live in Kansas?

Last night I attended the Parsons Networked Design Talk organized by the Parsons AAS Graphic Design Program in which I am an adjunct professor.

So, picture this: The presentation is in full swing and the founders of BurdaStyle.com are talking about the latest redesign of their site and show a “Persona” that their design studio (Area17) put together. And guess what, the picture on this made up persona is ME! I almost fell off my chair laughing.

It’s quite funny to go to a talk of people you have never met, no know much about and then boom, you see yourself on the big screen. In their Presona Profile my name is Janice Hampton, I live in Kansas, am 42 and am considered a “Life Long Hobbyist”. Oh, and I am a bank teller.

Here’s a picture I snapped:

(One of the designers at Area17 is a friend of mine and grabbed the images of flickr. Exactly what I do when I need to come up with a Persona-Face. Thanks for the laugh, Kemp!)

Fixing Conferences

fixing conferences

“I’ve realized that I can’t stand conferences. To me, conferences are akin to watching television without Tivo, or going to AAA to get a triptik instead of mapping a journey on Google. Conferences are an old workhorse model–a mix of passive consumption and fluorescent lighting–that is at odds with the seeds of inspiration they are supposed to inspire.”

Fixing Conferences: Six Lessons From the Designers Accord Summit, by Valerie Casey

FOWD 16-17Nov 2009 in NYC

Picture 4

Team Carsonified will be returning to New York City in two weeks to bring back The Future of Web Design. They’ve gathered an interesting list of speakers for the two days of workshops and talks. (Happy to see my studio-mate Liz Danzico being one of them!)

If you enter SWISSMISS during online ticket purchase, it will entitle you to 15% off!

See you there?

Parsons Networked Design Talks 02 of 03


November 4th, 2009 at 6:30 pm
Parsons The New School for Design
Kellen Auditorium, 66 Fifth Avenue, NYC

BurdaStyle.com – The road to collaborative fashion design / a talk by Nora Abousteit and Benedikta Karaisl

Nora Abousteit and Benedikta Karaisl, founders of Burdastyle.com, will share their experiences building an active, creative community based on open source sewing over the past three years. The BurdaStyle community consists of over 260,000 registered members who have uploaded almost 25,000 designs.

BurdaStyle is a collaborative, DIY fashion platform inspired by the open source philosophy of sharing intellectual property and allowing the public to adapt it to their specific needs. BurdaStyle encourages its members to remove copyright restrictions from their designs. These open source sewing patterns are then free to be used as the basis for new designs that can later be sewed and even sold by other community members. In sharing their stories, Nora and Benedikta will discuss their successes and failures in building a platform for a creative community to share instructions and techniques, in creating a balance between open collaboration and authorship, and in enabling a true, networked design process.

About the Networked Design Talks: With the rise of the Internet over the past few decades we have witnessed the rise of networked culture. The effects of this transition extend far beyond the use of tools: they change the ways we communicate with each other and the ways we manage, construct and perceive our individual and group identities. This cultural shift requires the creative industry to reexamine its use of messages, symbols and aesthetics and to study their function within a constantly changing networked environment.

Upcoming AIGA/NY Events

AIGA/NY has been on fire recently. Their latest events have been amazing and I pretty much want to attend all of them. (Poor G is being asked a lot to watch little Ella these days.) Here are a few more upcoming events that are promising:

Knopf: Then and Now
Wendesday 21 October 2009 6:30-8:30pm

In the late 1980s, the Alfred A. Knopf design group redefined the art of American book packaging. Two decades later, the department continues to set the bar for the trade publishing industry. Knopf: Then and Now brings the legendary team of Carol Devine Carson, Barbara de Wilde, Archie Ferguson, and Chip Kidd together on stage for the first time. The quartet will give a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of their most daring cover designs, discuss the process of collaboration, and describe the challenges affecting book jacket design today.

Knopf art w shadow_lrg_for_web

Small Talk No.2: Hillman Curtis
Thursday 22 October 2009 6:30-8:00pm

Hillman Curtis will discuss how still images – mainly from contemporary photography – directly influence the narrative of his film work. Curtis is a designer, filmmaker, and author whose company Hillmancurtis, Inc. has designed sites for Yahoo, Adobe, The Metropolitan Opera, Aquent, the American Institute of Graphic Design, Paramount Fox Searchlight Pictures, and eMusic among others. His film work includes the popular documentary series “Artist Series”, as well as award winning short films. His commercial film work includes spots for Rolling Stone, Adobe, Sprint, Blackberry, and BMW.


Member Series: The Type Is Right
Monday 9 November 2009 6:30-8.30pm

Are you crazy for Courier? Gonzo for Garamond? Mad for Meta? Does your quick brown fox jump over your lazy dog? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then come on down to “The Type is Right,” AIGA/NY’s first-ever typographic game show at Galapagos Art Space in Dumbo, Brooklyn.


Networked Design Talks: Mushon Zer-Aviv


My friend and teaching colleague Mushon Zer-Aviv is kicking off a promising new speakers series at Parsons, The New School this coming wednesday:

“Design by committee,” “too many cooks in the kitchen,” and other epithets have been used to imply that the creative process breaks down when it involves too many people. At the same time, the software world has been completely revolutionized by open source, networked collaborative processes. It is only in graphic and interaction designs—two fields critical to software development—that the open source process has yet to overtake more conventional design methods. How does networked collaboration present challenges in the creative process? How can they be solved? Can they be solved at all? Or do designers just not work well together? Mushon will address these questions in light of his own creative work as well as research done in the Open Source Design class he teaches in Parsons’ AAS Program in Graphic Design.

Networked Design Talks: Mushon Zer-Aviv | October 14, 2009 6:30 p.m.
Can Design By Committee Work? The Case for Open Source Design

If you are not able to join us in person, please log on to: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/parsons-the-new-school-for-design for a live stream.

Learn more about the AAS Program at Parsons, The New School.

W+K Talk, Portland


I have been enjoying beautiful Portland OR weather since my arrival on the west coast thursday. My Brooklyn transplant friends Jen and Michael Cogliantry have been wonderful hosts, showing me around Portland, trying hard to convince me to switch coasts as well!

Highlight of my trip was yesterday’s presentation at prestigious Wieden+Kennedy. A big thank you to the W+K Studio for having me and to everyone that came out. Here are pictures of the talk and some shots I was able to take in W+K’s amazing space. I especially enjoyed hugging the W+K Beaver goodbye.

Did you attend my talk? Do you have any feedback? Anything you wished I’d talk about? Let me know! Always love to improve my presentations!

Thank you Portland, you’ve been very good to me!

swissmiss at W+K studio this friday | Oct.9th

Banner Design by Jen Cogliantry

Banner Design by Jen Cogliantry

I am excited to announce that I will be speaking at W+K Studio Portland this coming friday!

W+K Studio presents swissmiss
October 9th, 2009 | 11.30-1pm

Bring your lunch and listen to Tina talk about what brought her from the swiss alps to the big apple and how her blog turned her into a ‘networked designer’. Oh, and she’ll talk about her eccentric aunt Hugi. Really.

224 NW 13th Avenue
Portland, OR 97209

Please R.S.V.P to [email protected] | Subject: SWISSMISS. And leave a comment below if you’re planning on attending!

AIGA/NY: Dog and Pony Show


AIGA/NY is on fire! I just bought tickets to two events within 4 days of each other. First, Ji Lee’s presentation this thursday and then monday’s Dog and Pony Show at Galapagos in DUMBO. The line up of presenters is breath-taking:

Jonathan Alger of C&G Partners will present an instant replay of the Yankee Stadium, er, pitch.
Debbie Millman of Sterling Brands will present: Tropicana, or how a straw in an orange became such a beloved icon that people fought over it.
Michael Bierut of Pentagram will present: his maddening identity for the Museum of Arts and Design.
Liz Danzico of Bobulate and Jessi Arrington of WORKSHOP will sympathetically present: the Charter for Compassion.

See you there?

Broadcasting from Grand Rapids

For the next two days, you will see me broadcast from Grand Rapids where I have the opportunity to partake in VELOCITY, a two day workshop made possible through CEO for Cities.

VELOCITY is a movement which strives to cultivate vital, productive and creative cities – and ultimately, to redefine the good life in America.

For two days, an impressive group of “Urban Change Agents” (Experts) and Storytellers are getting together to come up with a vision for the Good City Life. (I am honored to be one of the Urban Change Agents.)

Goal of the two day Salon are to create and tell the predictive human story of ‘how people will want to live’, illustrate the context for that lifestyle in next generation cities and provide with human-centered guidelines for making that a reality.

Since the 1940’s Americans have pursued a vision of the good life that is spacious, expansive and utterly unsustainable. We know we can’t simply tell people that their ideal American Lifestyle isn’t good for them or society and expect them to change.

We must create a new, more compelling, more desirable vision of the good life. And cities are the place to do it. Cities offer positives like walk-ability, energy efficiencey, proximity to jobs and economic opportunity, creative inspiration and life long learning. Well designed cities help eople to value and aspire to city-living not because they have to, but because they truly want to. And that is good for all of us. Vital city cores anchor their surrounding metro-areas and the nation.

The VELOCITY salon is not just an isolated event. The outcomes of the salon work will extend to the broader community through crowd-sourcing and be broadcast across media platforms including Twitter, blogs and other traditional channels, engaging citizens in creating a new reality and desire for city-living. The salon work will also be published in the VELOCITY book, distributed globally to urban leaders, as well as presented at the CEOs for Cities National Urban Leaders Summit in Washington, D.C. on September 29-30 for mayors and other urban leaders to discuss how to urgently execute these ideas locally.

Here are a few of the 40 experts that I am truly excited about meeting tomorrow: Hunter Tura of 2×4, Marisa Belger (GreenDAY Blogger), Dana Cho (Designer and Architect IDEO), Zach Frechette (Editor-in-Chief GOOD Magazine), Mark Hamm (VP Innovation at FedEx), Polly Labarre (Author, Mavericks at Work, Fast Company Contributor) … and the list goes on.

Stay tuned for ‘Good Life Visions’ in the coming days. (I’ll probably be broadcasting a lot over on twitter.)

Pecha Kucha NYC on Monday

pecha Kucha

Monday September 14th, will be the next Pecha Kucha night here in the city at SOLAR 1! I will be out of town unfortunately, I wish I could make it. Check out the interesting line up of confirmed speakers.

I was invited to partake in the last NYC Pecha Kucha, here’s my 6min40second presentation.

The Feast Conference

The Feast

The Feast 2008 was one of my personal favorite conferences I’ve ever attended and I am truly looking forward to The Feast 2009 on Thursday, October 1st, 2009. (Here are some notes of last year’s event.)

The Feast gathers the world’s greatest innovators from across industries and society to empower, inspire and engage each other in creating world-shaking change. A creative look at the world’s toughest problems, The Feast Conference presents the most innovative solutions, insights, and best practices as a catalyst toward action.

More than a conference, The Feast represents a bottom-up movement, so they are curating an audience as cross-disciplinary and diverse as their talks. But they’re doing something a little different — they ask those who can afford to pay higher prices to micro-sponsor The Feast, which allows them to offer $99 invitations to awe-inspiring vanguards whose brains get them where their wallets can’t.

See you there? For more information go to Feastongood.com.

CreativeMornings Video: Allegra Burnette

On August 14th, 2009, Allegra Burnette, Creative Director of Digital Media at MoMA spoke on the subject of how she jumped the fence and went from consultant to becoming the client!

8/14 Allegra Burnette from CreativeMornings on Vimeo.

(A big huge thank you to Rob Blatt who donated his time and skills to tape and edit this video!)

Impressions of Today’s CreativeMornings with Daniel Freitag

Today’s first Switzerland based CreativeMornings was a huge success. When I first approached FREITAG for hosting, I flat-out told them that I had no idea if people would actually show up. I know by now that the NYC events fill up quickly, but would I be able to gather a crowd in Zurich? The answer is: YES! We had over a 160 r.s.v.p’s and I’d say a good 150 showed up despite nasty rain. (Oh, swiss summer, where are you?)

Daniel Freitag, one of the co-founders of Freitag was our speaker and he was simply fantastic. He was flexible enough to spontaneously hold the presentation in English as it turned out that we had about 8 english-speaking only guests. (To all of you that didn’t come because we thought the event would be in swiss-german, I am very sorry!)

Daniel is a great presenter and was an overall gracious, humble host. He even gave a small group of us a tour of the Container Store nearby, as well their graphic design and prototyping atelier. All day I kept saying to G how impressed I was by Daniel’s warmth and generosity.

Below are a few visual impressions of the event. My fab cousin Thilo Hoffmann was so kind to tape the presentation and I will try to get it up asap.

The set up at the Freitag Factory could not have been any better. These guys are thorough. A *big* thank you to the Freitag team and Sascha Koeglmeier in particular who was simply a delight to organize this with. Everything was meticulously thought out and prepared – oh, so, swiss!

In his presentation Daniel was talking about their take on recontextualization. Take their bags made out of truck tarp and seat belts, their store built out of Containers as well their Truck Tarp Presentation Room.

Daniel Freitag presenting under the Truck Tarp ‘Tent’. Fantastic!

Daniel Freitag answering Oliver Reichenstein’s questions. Oliver, of Information Architects was our virtual guest dialing in from Tokyo. Oliver, it was a pleasure to have you!

Jens of Jung von Beck was our delightful breakfast-man! He showed up with two Lavazza espresso makers and lots of yummee bakery stuff – wheee! A big thank you to MailChimp and ROD Communications for sponsoring breakfast! I was particularly happy about the mountains of Gipfeli! :)

I was standing behind this shirt wearing CreativeMorning guest and was tempted to dial the number a few times.

How fantastic are these Freitag Benches? (not available for sale yet, unfortunately) I would love a few of these in our studio!

Here are all the photos of today’s event. Did you take pictures? If so, please consider adding them to our creativemornings group.

Did you attend today’s CreativeMornings? Did you write a post about it? Or do you have some thoughts/feedback? Write it in a comment below. Did you take some pictures?

Follow @creativemorning on twitter and be the first to know when the next event with Allegra Burnette of MoMA NYC is accepting r.s.v.p’s.

Delve NYC

Delve UI

Here’s an event that made me look: DelveUI: A 2-Day Masterclass on Designing (Web) User Interfaces. Think of Delve as the antidote to the bloated conference experience. Basically small, affordable & frequent vs. overwhelming, occasional & costly. Each DELVE consists of a series of masterclasses conducted by expert practitioners, authors and thinkers of the biggest topics facing those of us who design and develop for digital, interactive spaces. Fantastic!

(thank you rob)

The Feast

The Feast

The Feast is a cross-disciplinary series of programs addressing social innovation and new ways to make the world a better place. Their secret sauce lies in a healthy combination of passion, creativity, and entrepreneurship to shift the way things are done – thereby changing individuals, industries, and ultimately the world.

On October 1, 2009 at The Times Center in New York City, “The Feast Conference” will gather the world’s leading creative entrepreneurs, revolutionaries, radicals, doers and thinkers to inspire more action, share best practices, and create valuable connections that will change the world.

During this summer The Feast is having a plethora of events in New York. Slow down and enjoy the simple things in life at the “Feast Dinners.” Hear short talks and insights from remarkable speakers at the “Feast Salons.” Or get hands on at the “Feast Workshops.”

AIGA/NY | Seymour Chwast Today!

Seymour Chwast of Pushpin

Here’s an event you shouldn’t miss: Seymour Chwast, the quintessential New York designer/illustrator/painter, is launching his newest book with AIGA/NY tonight, June 16th, 2009.

Chwast and Steven Heller will flip through the book chapter by chapter and allow us to listen in on their various and variegated commentary. Chwast has promised to expose his obsessions, as well as his fears, follies and successes.

For those of you who don’t know, Chwast has illustrated for most major magazines and has designed and illustrated over 30 children’s books. He is co-founder of Push Pin Studios and is a root source for the spread of comic expressionism across America. His posters are held in many museums including Pompidou Center Gallery (Paris), Stedelijk Museum (Amsterdam), the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Library of Congress (Washington D.C.) and the Israel Museum. He is in the Art Directors Hall of Fame and he is the recipient of the AIGA medal.

It’s killing me that I can’t attend. But maybe you can? Make sure to register! Please report back!

Oh, and here’s a link to the book. (thanks Ben)

A Job Grows in Brooklyn

Think you're good?

HUGE is hosting an interesting event at the DUMBO Arts Center for this year’s “Internet Week”. It’s totally free and guaranteed to be a fun time. Here’s the scoop:

Friday, June 5th, some of the biggest brains from Brooklyn-based interactive agency HUGE challenge you to steal their jobs in this 1pm-3pm seminar. Think you’re good? Then take it to the next level by pitching yourself (and your work) to HUGE’s celebrated senior team. Find out what they’re looking for in the next big talent.

Did you do some hot Django coding? Prove it. Execute a project plan that never once lead to scope creep? Show them! Do you have graphics that have been passed around Ffffound and wowed your clients? Bring it. Bring your resume and portfolio and prepare to present two of your best pieces of work. Drinks, snacks, good people and a better job are a borough away.

What: A Job Grows in Brooklyn: How to Advance Your Career in Digital
When: June 5th, 1-3pm
Where: DUMBO Arts Center
Who: The stellar executive team at HUGE

Event details.

PSFK | Good Ideas In Collaboration

PSFK Event

For New York’s Internet Week 2009, PSFK will hold an event to help our peers and friends. PSFK’s Good Ideas in Collaboration Salon aims to introduce entrepreneurs who need help with out-of-work creative professionals who are looking for fresh opportunities (paid, unpaid or other).

A fantastic idea! Sign up here!

NYC Networking Event this friday


Every creative person is looking for great work. Every creative organization is looking for great people. This friday’s Creative Employment Confab matches these two groups for an intense 3 hour networking and recruiting experience focused on making productive connections for advancing your career.

The afternoon event will feature a panel discussion on trends and strategies in creative hiring for the present, and over the next 2-5 years. Our all-star panelist line-up: Khoi Vinh, Design Director of NYTimes.com, Tom Nicholson, CEO of IconNicholson, Michael Lebowitz, CEO of Big Spaceship, and Judy Wert, CEO and Executive Recruiter at Wert & Co. The panel will be moderated by Carl Alviani, Editorial Director of Coroflot.com.

More info, here.

99% | Seth Godin


My personal highlight of today was Seth Godin. Here’s a few points he made during his entertaining and prop filled 20minute talk (he had a plastic chicken with him, really):

– You don’t need to be more creative, all of you are too creative.

– Be a person that always ends up ‘shipping’. If you are proud of what you ‘ship’ and are on time, you will be successful and you will get to do it over and over again. What you do for a living is ‘ship’ and not ‘being creative’.

– The resistance gets worse and worse the closer we get to ‘shipping’. Of course we come to the meeting before ship date as our ‘lizard brain’ says I need to speak up now. The genius part (in getting ideas realized) is to get the Lizard brain to shut up long enough to overcome resistance.

The last point he made was that if he is going to take the first two breaths (going to first steps in a project) he is going to finish it. So he has a lot of arguments and discussions with ‘lizard brain’ in the beginning. But once he decides to continue, he takes it all the way. He will ‘ship’.

You can tell that he really looks at presenting at a conference as an honor and not an obligation. Seth was a breath of fresh air and an already amazing conference. (Recent post on his site, somewhat related: Hierarchy of presentations)

I wish he would have had more time to talk. I could have listened to Seth all day.

99% | Ji Lee

Ji Lee, Creative Director or Google Creative Lab, talked on some of his personal projects:

After working at an ad agency for 4 years he grew tired of producing predictable ideas. He started the Bubble Project.

He printed hunders of speech bubble stickers which he then (illegaly) pasted on ad campaigns all around the city. People started filling them in with copy. And a lot of people started their own bubbles. Even advertising agencies took the bubble idea and created Guerilla campaigns. He made it public and available for everyone to download on his site. Once BoinbBoing picked it up, it crashed his server and the project exploded. The Bubble Project even got coverage on abc News. Thanks to the internet, Bubbling has spread around the globe.


One of his latest projects is the WTC Logo Preservation Project. World Trade Center buildings are present in thousands of classic New York skyline logos owned by local businesses in the city. They tend to belong to small businesses that are likely to disappear over the years to come. So are their logos and the Twin Towers. Ji started the project to preserve them, forever.

Ji at the end mentioned that he believes that personal and professional projects complement each other. A lot of his personal projects caught influential people’s attention and opened up new opportunities. He truly believes that creating platforms for other people to collaborate and engage is powerful. Sharing is rewarding! I couldn’t agree more. Ji’s talk was humble and surprising. Definitely a designer that earned my respect.

99% | Cheryl Dorsey


Cheryl Dorsey of Echoing Green spoke on the core qualities of a Social Change Agent.

1. Core identity formation and alignment: Social Agents have reached a level of authenticity. They have found their purpose and their passion. They get what they were put on this earth to do. They are in the ‘social change zone’: they are living it, they are breathing it.

2. Focused and Ability to Execute with Alacrity: As a Social Change Agents it’s not just about having the idea, you have to execute on it. You have to build on your mission driven business.

3. Solutions-Oriented: As a Social Change Agent you are in the business of solving problems and not in the business of generating ideas.

4. Asset based thinking: Every prolbem that the rest of us see, a Social Change Agent sees an opportunity. That idea of executing against all odds, is a very powerful force.

5. A resource magent: A social change agent is a resource magnet, able to get volunteers, media attention, funding etc.

6. A Social Change agent has a deep and unshakable obligation to his cause.

… there are more qualities but unfortunately Cheryl ran out of time.

Social change agents are putting most of their emphasis on execution as opposed to the idea generation.

While the qualities of a Social Agent was interesting, I honestly didn’t like the slightly arrogant tone of Cheryl’s presentation. Also, what really bugged me is that she kept skipping over slides. I have a feeling that she used a presenation she always uses but didn’t bother to take out the extra slides?

Reporting from the 99% Conference


I am thrilled to be blogging from the 99% conference here in NYC today. Scott Belsky of Behance is on stage right now talking about the idea behind the conference which focuses on everything after an idea happens. I am very curious to see how the fabulous line up of speakers is going to deal with the unusual request to speak on the topic of execution, on how they make ideas happen.

Sit tight, I’ll be live-blogging as much as I can. (There is no outlet in the conference space, so let’s hope my battery plays along…)