A Couple Notes from Marian Bantjes talk for the AIGANY

Marian Bantjes talking to AIGANY

For the majority of people in attendance last night, Marian gave the perfect talk. It was effortlessly paced, she balanced personal observations with real work and inspired a lot of people. While the 3G was almost non existent inside the theatre, all the tweets that shared quotes were glowing.

Most of my notes from her talk dealt with process. What I was drawn towards was her clairity of self reflection and the reaction of why she was doing what she was doing as she was doing it. I felt that even if she had not showed one slide for her talk she would have still left the audience inspired. I summed up the talk on Twitter by suggesting that she could teach blind people to design. She wasn’t emulating a “how to”, but a “why to” think talk.

A lot of the process and reflection had to do with her book I Wonder that I’m still taking my time to read. The best part of her talk concering the book was explaining which blog posts might be printed on paper and the rational of what made the cut. Trying to elevate her blog words into something that only print could display was a great attribut to define what she wanted to communicate. The story of The Sun, the Moon, the Stars was a great story of how it came to be.

I wouldn’t disagree with much of what she had to say about design in Canada, (after all I sold everything to move to NYC myself) I couldn’t help be a bit disappointed with her remarks as someone that never needed anyone to make it here. At least from the outside it has looked like the design community in Canada has given Marian a pedestal to share her perspective more so than anyone else there.

While I did record an audio version of her talk last night that I’ll be listening over again today to discover stuff that I missed the first time, there will be a video of the entire talk available online soon from the AIGA NY. Once that’s online I’ll pass along the link as I think any designer would be smart to hear what she has to say at least once.

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