HOW Conference Strikes a Chord with Design Professionals
How could I pass up an opportunity to attend the 1998 HOW Design Conference: Design Breakthroughs, held recently in San Diego? I couldn't, of course, and spent several productive days in Southern California.
Overall, the show was well attended, drawing about 2,000 representatives from the creative community worldwide. Conference sessions—such as "Radical Web Design," "Creative Inspirations," "Digital Trademark/ Copyright Issues" and "Creativity Tips: Where to Go When You're Stuck"—were filled and sparked heated debates between PC and Mac users. (We all know how loyal many designers are to their Macs.)
The keynote speaker, Gordon MacKenzie—a 30-year Hallmark veteran and author of Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool's Guide to Surviving with Grace—offered insight to help design professionals stay true to their creativity and the creative process while managing the red tape of corporate bureaucracy. Orbiting, which I recommend to anyone designing in a corporate environment, has also won several design awards. In regard to content, the chapter involving the nudist beach was … enlightening. Still, I can't help wonder what Hallmark must think!
The Resource Center (exhibit hall) was helpful, but required stamina. My fingers began to turn blue as I collected the latest paper samples and swatch books, comping disks from photo imaging companies, and other standard giveaway items. On an unexpected note, I also acquired a harmonica. I've found the harmonica to be a good stress reliever at work, although I'm not sure my coworkers would agree.
In addition, I picked up an evaluation disk of the new Canvas 5 from Deneba Software, Miami. The rep contended that Canvas can do it all: illustration, imaging, publication and Web—no more wasting time switching between applications. He also claimed that "all you need to do is have your printer contact us, and we'll set up everything." Hmmm, I replied with a smile, and proceeded on to the next booth.