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design chats: a jolly evening with frankie and Smith Journal

design chats: a jolly evening with frankie and Smith Journal


Missed out on our design chats panel? Luckily for you, we jotted down a few key takeaways. 

Creative types – like the sensitive, doubt-ridden souls we are – are always up for a little encouragement and inspiration. That’s true whether you’re a student hoping to kickstart a creative career, a hobby artist working a side hustle or an established graphic designer with an envy-inducing portfolio.

To boost those creative juices, we joined our mates at Smith Journal and MSI to host last week’s ‘design chats’, a night of nibbles, drinks and conversation at Firecracker HQ in Northcote. Hosted by former frankie editor Jo Walker, our awesome panel included frankie designer Caitlin Wynne, book designer Stuart Geddes and photographer Anu Kumar

The panel talked about everything from financing a freelance career to their design pet peeves. If you couldn’t make it down on the night, rad illustrator Sarah Firth was on hand to create a live graphic recording of the panel, which you can peep down below. (Click to enlarge.)

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We also jotted down a few key takeaways from the discussion, which may come in handy when you're balancing a creative venture:

– Don’t stop working for yourself when work is slow. There will always be times when no one is hiring you to create, but that doesn’t mean you should stop creating. Anu is always snapping photos, if only to keep herself from getting into an emotional slump. And you never know when personal projects will turn into a paid opportunity down the road.

– Balance is important, but try to take as many gigs as you can. Stuart always says yes to jobs. The more work you do, the more work you’ll get.

– For creatives just starting out, Anu, Caitlin and Stuart want you to go easier on yourself. Imposter syndrome never goes away, and you’re always learning, so you might as well have a good time. And don't forget to experiment!

Thank you to everyone who popped in on the night. We hope you enjoyed the tipple from the folks at Garage Project and the nosh from Firecracker Event (how about that hummus?). We also loved playing around with the new Prestige 15 laptops from MSI.

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Photos by Jay Wennington