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Perk: Sunday Brunch with Debbie Millman

21 May

It is a rare opportunity to get meet well-known designers so I jumped at the chance when I found out that Debbie Millman on Mother’s Day. I have met her previously, at an another AIGA LA event last year, however, this time it was limited to only 12 lucky folks. Debbie Millman brought some great insight to the discussion. I found her very inspiring after being able to listen to the discussion and I have always enjoyed listening to her Design Matters.

Some Tips from Debbie Millman:

1. Always have a contract no matter who it is you are working for if consulting on design work

2. Have a deposit of payment before starting work and a payment at delivery

3. Get a good lawyer for contracts and copywriting

As much as Debbie gave us great advice, we got to learn more about her. She always talked about things that is important her meaning she lived through it at some point in her career and/or life.

For the first ten years, Debbie was actively designing, editing, and painting. In 1993, she took a job in branding and it has stayed in her career ever since. She currently one of the partners and President of the Design Group at Sterling. She also does Design Matters and is the former AIGA National and AIGA New York  President. She has wrote several books such as “How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designer”, “Brand Thinking and Other Noble Persuits”, “Brand Bible  The Complete Guide to Building, Designing, and Sustaining Brands”, and other books.

If you in the Chicago area, check out Debbie Millman’s Exhibit at Chicago Design Museum Opening June 11 and  Chicago Design Museum Presents Debbie Millman AIGA Chicago Co-sponsored lecture event on June 13.

Commentary on AIGA Los Angeles Events

25 Jan

Note: I have been extremely busy, which makes me officially a week behind on blogging. I am sure you are all wondering what is happening. My Grandma has been in the hospital for the last week and have been there on a regular basis. She finally got to go home last night, which was amazing and now I will play catch-up. Instead two events will be posted in one due to time constraints.

1/8/12- Onward! Upward! Increasing Your Chances for Success in Your Job Search
I would like to say a huge Thank Thank to AIGA UCLA Extension for putting on the event as well as the host Onward Upward. There was a lot of information provided from how to make your resume awesome to finding the right job through an agency. It has been a long overdue refresher course. You can email me at janette.designer(at)gmail(dot)com if you would like the information I gathered and I would be happy to get it to you. Overall, remember that your cover letter is what sells you and provides the company/agency to get to know you better and what you are capable of.  For your Portfolio, let your work speak for itself. This is just a sample of what I learned and I hope you can learn from it or it may be stuff you already know.

1/19/12- Behance/AIGA Los Angeles Meetup
Networking is awesome when you get bowl with a bunch of designers. It also leads to some competition and a great time to talk to fellow designers. These events would not happend if wasn’t for Michelle and Laurice and their dedication to finding great venues. I call it exploring Los Angeles, because I have little awareness to the entirety of Los Angeles, since I spent the last four years in Portland exploring the bar scene. So it is a ton of fun to go somewhere where you have never been and also a time for networking and fun.

Last Bit: AIGA Los Angeles Professional Series: The Business of Design is kicking off the first event tonight at 6:30pm and I even got to be the Assistant Producer for the event. I do know it will be awesome. I will be there at 5pm setting up with four other volunteers and will be there cleaning up. I look forward to seeing everyone there.

There will be a panel consisting of:

Juan Rosenfeldt, Creative Director/Director of Creative Services at nuvo TV – FreeRange <>
Chris Do, President and Executive Creative Director – BL:ND <>
Bryan Neff, Senior Creative Strategist – Innovation Protocol <>
Scott Meisse, Project & Operations Director – Ferroconcrete <>
Wendy Thai, Design Manager + Art Director – Ferroconcrete <>

Moderator: Eduardo A. Braniff, CEO of Imagination <>  The Americas.

Twitter Feed

Resumes are DEAD and your Bio is more IMPORTANT

4 Jan

A quick read about Resumes and how to indulge on your Bio. I think I might take the time to ReInvent my story.

AIGA | LA Town Hall Meeting

12 Dec

For the first time in two years, AIGA | LA held a Town Hall Meeting. I am not talking about anything government related, but a gathering of AIGA Members who are a part of the Los Angeles Chapter. It is a time where your voice is heard and can make a difference. There were a ton of ideas brought to the table. The Town Hall Meeting was at Continuum in Long Beach, which was a fantastic place since I believe it let our creative juices flow. The Membership Team and Programming Team worked together to get everything done. The membership Team worked registration and the Programming Team gathered all the ideas being brought to the table and mingled amongst all the guests.

I am a part of Programming and Communications, which at first seemed a little daunting. For Programming, I help out at most events mostly with registration and Communications I was asked to do some tweeting and reporting for the AIGA |LA events.

I was at a table with Allison Bloss (Board Member of AIGA | LA) and Stan Evensen. The event was filmed so there is documentation of what happened at the event. Every person there was on camera stating their name and what they want to see be changed with AIGA. We got to hear from various board members about all the committees. Tamera from the Membership asked that we all help to get our professional memberships up to 500 and I do believe that is possible if every member  tried to get at least one member we exceed the goal given by the membership chair. Just in the month of November, we have 77 new members part of the Los Angeles Chapter, which I find to be amazing.

Jimmy Moss, President of AIGA Los Angeles, posed a few questions to get all the members thinking. How can I inspire, engage, facilitate, organize, build, edit, produce, etc. for Aiga Los Angeles? Since every chapter is built upon volunteers, it is up to us to be a part of something. If you have an idea that you would like to be heard, talk to a board member or talk to any of the committees about your ideas. It might mean that you would have to help out in planning the event or at least help get it started.

In my group, a few of the ideas put out there were:

  • Looking for more in house workshops
  • Micro groups that host 2-3 bigger events
  • Maybe doing membership surveys
  • Price guides and ethics guides for designers
  • Network for outreach for community growth.
  • Panels of non profits who need help and then have designers sign up to help.
  • Collaborate with other designers to be able to design for good.
  • More Speaker series
  • Making benefits more user friendly on the websites
  • I need to be visible
  • We want benefits
  • More professional events!
  • Embraced the merging designers.
  • AIGA LA mobile app.
  • Be part of something bigger.

Some of the questions posed:

  • How do we as designers give back to the community?
  • Do you prefer morning or evening events?
  • When did you join AIGA LA?
  • What does belonging to the AIGA mean to you?
  • How many events do you attend a year?
  • How can we improve your AIGA experience?

There were many more questions involved, but do not have the full list to name them all.

All lists are a compilation of @aigalosangeles and @janettejackson

Jimmy Moss: “We are AIGA LA. There is not ‘them’, it is ‘us’. “
If you want to be heard, I can supply people who will listen with comments coming from this post.


7 Nov

(Re)Extravaganza took place on October 27, 2011 at the Natural History Museum in Los Angeles, CA. It was the Galla Event for the AIGA (Re) Design Awards that was hosted by AIGA Los Angeles. (Re)Extravaganza was a wonderful event, since it showed off the best of Sustainable design. Showcased at the museum were the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner for Students, Individuals/Agency, For Profit Corporations, and Non Profit Organizations. There were two categories, which were Social Responsibility and Environmental Sustainability. You can learn more about the (Re)Design Awards at: Below are some of the winners.


Natural History Museum Display


Azu Romá “Fresh Fest New Orleans Poster”- 1st Place Social Responsibility”- Student


Kim Baer “Inner-City Arts Website”- 3rd Place Social Responsibility- Non Profit Organization


Softfirm Studios “Living City Design Competition”- 1st Place Social Responsibilty- For Profit Corporation


Method Products, Inc “Method Refills”- 1st Place Environmental Sustainability- For Profit Corporation


Erin Harp “Sustainability Guide”- 2nd Place Environmental Design- Student



Method Products, Inc “Method Laundry Detergent”- 3rd Place Environmental Sustainability- For Profit Corporation


fuseproject “PUMA Clever Little Bag”- 2nd Place Environmental Sustainability- Individual/Agency



fuseproject PACT Underwear- 1st Place Social Responsibility- Individual/Agency


Karen Villalba and Kelsey Anderson “Helping Hand Guides”- 2nd Place Social Responsibility- Student

Eike König Skype Chat

9 Sep

As technology has advanced, we are able to interact with people on a whole new level. I spent a 1.5 hour chat at The Art Institute of California- Hollywood chatting with Eike König from Hort about his career. He has a lot of knowledge and experience that I found to be astounding and real life experiences. Eike has Bauhaus roots and was interested in finding in his own way in design.

Some of his experience has come from Disney, Nike, Microsoft, and Xbox, One of his greatest challenges was a campaign from Disney that was going to be internationally seen. As he was working he found that there was a language barrier since some English words do not mean the same from a European background so sometimes there were moments where he misunderstood.

He also talked about the challenges of integrating many cultures for a single campaign.

1. It is quite challenging

2. Possibilities of it being anywhere

3. Melting Cultures

At HORT Eike has an After School program specially for young designers. He encourages them to “find ways to leave your comfort zone,” invites them to try something new, and reminds them that is okay to fail. I think as designers, we can often forget the importance that it is okay to fail since we can set the bar so high to succeed.

An idea is only the beginning and our opportunities are immense. Eike visualizes his idea first and inspired by anything, nothing, or others.

London Design Now is about aesthetics and less about content.

I have learned a lot about Eike König and was very impressed by his experience. I suggest you check out HORT and see what they have done. Presents AIGA

30 Jan

Rene Quintanilla posted a wonderful video from about the history of AIGA. I did engage myself to watch it as I have been a member since 2007. I am so amazed at how many things I learned from the video. It is actually inspiring to listen to the designers behind AIGA National and what they hope to do currently and in the future to better serve AIGA members.

I suggest all designers or anyone to check it out.

AIGA LA | Behance Meetup

19 Jan


I am networking my way into AIGA | LA and so far have met some pretty nice designers.

The meetup was at Intelligentsia Café, which was pretty neat spot to have a bunch of designer meet to network and have discussions about design. Met some designers in all aspects of design including Animation, Graphic Design, and Industrial Design as well as a printer.

I had some great conservations with Rene Quintanilla, Mauricio A. Urquilla, Heather Parlato, David Mayes, Lucy Cook, and Art Meier.

Portfolio Sites:

Mauricio A. Urquilla:

Heather Parlato:

David Mayes:

Art Meier:

Be sure to check out some fellow designers portfolio!