Creatives gather at the inaugural DesignThinkers Vancouver Conference for an inspiring 2 days

With more than 620 participants over two days of activities, RGD's inaugural DesignThinkers Conference in Vancouver was the largest gathering of creative professionals the Association has ever hosted outside of Toronto.



On May 30 and 31 at the Vancouver Playhouse, DesignThinkers brought together visionary creatives and strategic thinkers from across North America and beyond to discuss their unique perspectives on how to create effective communications by exploring cutting-edge innovation, the latest technology, demographic and ethnographic trends, strategic management techniques, cognitive theory and much more.



The conference featured presentations from a lineup of 17 speakers as well as 2 'Fireside Chats' with design legends, Ralph Gilles and Tinker Hatfield.


The event also included an Opening Dinner and a Delegate Party, where delegates and speakers mingled and celebrated together.



Between presentations, discussions and parties, delegates also had the opportunity to explore booths from exhibitors in our Designer Marketplace offering unique opportunities and experiences for creative industry professionals.



For photos from the Conference, the Delegate Party, the Designer Marketplace and more, visit RGD's Flickr page.


Speaker insights tweeted by attendees include:

@ckyp_: Dana from @ideo brought a unique yet beautiful design approach to death. "Encouragement is an [underrated?] design tool"

@DesignDrop: Fireside chat with Tinker Hatfield. "If I just keep doing new things, I won't run out of inspiration."

@kschruder: Major props to @chipkidd for sharing a story of a client firing him. Even legends don't ace everything.

@dustinodesign: "Creativity is found in the questions we ask, not the answers we have" @lonistark

@JKuoo: “Design is about more than making things beautiful; it’s about making things work.”—@sdadich

@sabsilveira: "My secret to rebrand NYC: Pinterest", Emily Lessard <3

@dustinodesign: "The idea defines the work. The work defines the idea" - @alexoid

@alanna_flowers@dana_tanamachi Such an honor to hear your talk today! "Because you have power, who in turn is flourishing?" So thought provoking

@sabsilveira: "You gotta make a lot of stuff before you can make stuff like yourself" @timothyogoodman


Comments from the event using the hashtag include:

@anjowlie@RalphGilles bringing me back to my Industrial Design student days. So inspiring 😍😍😍 #productdesign #rgdDT

@kschruder: One of my fav things about #rgdDT is diving into unexpected topics. Right now getting an education in car design from @RalphGilles

@ShawnParkinson: So awesome. Two of my design heroes, @RalphGilles and @sdadich in conversation at #rgdDT

@GlendaOllero: Two more sessions left of Day 1. I hate to play faves but @emilylessard blew my mind talking about one of my pet topics: rebranding. #rgdDT

@craigmod: Wonderful audience here at #rgdDT — nobody fiddling with phones, no open laptops! Totally present and engaged. 😻

@kschruder: Loving what @cap and Buzzfeed are doing with their design career paths. Designers who love doing the work need a way forward #rgdDT

@jordan_ajackson@kellianderson makes some ridiculously cool shit with paper. #rgdDT

@GlendaOllero@sdadich tickling my art nerd bone connecting graphic design to fine art. 😍 #rgdDT

@s_abboud: So glad we made the trip for DesignThinkers 🚣 Shoutout to the @RGD, great mix of speakers so far 👍🏼 #rgdDT

@kschruder: Love hearing @craigmod supporting print & book design. Definitely something I believe in #rgdDT

@alexoid: Tnx everyone at @RGD for letting me talk about tools, altitudes (and video games) at DesignThinkers Vancouver #rgdDT great audience!

@mrslisawads: Day 1 of #rgdDT and after only 4 talks I'm so inspired to get back to work! Thanks to @RGD for an amazing event!

@functionpoint: A huge thank you to @RGD and all the wonderful speakers! Design Thinkers has been inspiring and incredibly insightful. Til next year #rgdDT


Audience Doodles:

Watercolour by @r.sek


Doodle by @unicyclecreative


Doodle by @rorzle


Doodle by @workinlimbo


Notes/Doodle by @ckyp


Some of the doodles from our Delegate party!


Check out the rest of the conversation by searching #rgdDT on Twitter and Instagram


RGD Members can access presentation recordings from past conferences by visiting the Members Only section. This year's conference videos will be posted in the next 2-3 weeks. Presentations by Emily Oberman and Ellen Wong & Mark Beechy are available to watch now on the RGD Facebook Page.