Nicola Hamilton started her career at The Grid, spent some time at Chatelaine as Deputy Art Director and is now the Art Director at Studio Wyse, where she works with clients on narrative-driven projects. Her work, which stretches across print, web and video, has been internationally recognized by the D&AD, the Society of Publication Designers, the Society of News Design and the Canadian National Magazine Awards. She's a Certified RGD and a total magazine nerd.
Q: How long have you been volunteering with RGD, and in what capacity?
I've been volunteering with the RGD since 2014. I started by donating my time to the Provisional Committee, organizing Designers + Drinks + Discussions and doing portfolio reviews at Creative Directions. I completed my Certification in 2016. I joined the Communications Committee and was elected to the Board of Directors shortly thereafter. I've worn a whole bunch of hats: Chair of the Communications Committee; a Mentor (and a Mentee!) in the Mentorship Program; moderating panels; introducing speakers at DesignThinkers.
Q: What made you want to get involved with RGD?
I'm a magazine designer, which is a teeny-tiny corner of our industry. After The Grid, the publication that launched my career, was shuttered I wanted to re-connect with my peers in other corners of the industry.
Q: Of the RGD initiatives you have contributed to, what are you most proud of?
Designers + Drinks + Discussions is an initiative I'm super proud of. When I started volunteering with RGD, it was just getting off the ground and together the Committee turned it into an event that is extremely valuable to young designers. And watching the current organizers continue to throw successful events is pretty amazing.
Designers + Drinks + Discussions event, 2018
Q: What is your most memorable experience as an RGD volunteer?
I was given the opportunity to introduce Michael Bierut at DesignThinkers Toronto this year. It was equal parts terrifying and exhilarating. And they're not lying, you can't see anything from up there.
Michael Bierut at DesignThinkers Toronto 2018, from backstage
Q: What have you gained from being an RGD volunteer, and why would you recommend it to other members who might be thinking of getting involved?
I've gained a stronger, broader connection to the design community and gained a pile of new friends, colleagues and champions. Plus, giving back to an industry that's given me so much feels pretty incredible. I think others should get involved for that sense of community and the valuable insight you gain from sharing information.
Interested in getting involved with RGD? Fill out our online form.