A Designer’s Guide to YEG

Posted by Susie Sykes

Exploring Edmonton’s design scene is one of my favourite things to do when I need a little inspiration; our city is chalk-full of creatives showcasing their talents. Here are some of the places I love to go to get awesome design goods, stay up-to-date on what’s happening in the city, and learn from other designers!

The Royal Bison Art & Craft Fair

Photo: @theroyalbison

The Royal Bison is AWESOME for finding unique, locally made goods! It’s an Edmonton-based festival that only comes around twice a year (which is probably a good thing for my wallet!) and is filled with high-quality work from all kinds of creatives.

Their winter festival is coming up during the first two weekends of December! I know where my Christmas shopping is going to begin…

GDC Alberta North Chapter Events

Photo: The Society of Graphic Designers of Canada

Alright, so this is a broad title, but that’s because the GDC (Society of Graphic Designers of Canada) hosts all kinds of events! These are great whether you’re a professional designer, a student in the design industry, or simply interested in learning more about it! Their events are affordable and open to anyone. Whether it’s inspiring workshops and lectures, movie screenings, or getting together for Shop Talk or Beers for Peers sessions, GDC events are a fun way to get out and start a discussion about design while learning from talented folks in the industry.

MADE Lectures & Events

Photo: MADE – Media Architecture Design Edmonton

MADE (Media Architecture Design Edmonton) helps create opportunities for anyone interested in these fields to explore new ideas and learn more about what’s happening in our city. Hearing about design principals through other lenses, such as architecture, can be a refreshing viewpoint for me. It’s also a great way for me to keep my gears moving and get more ideas flowing. Beyond that, I love trying to keep a pulse on the many initiatives happening around our city.

The Student Design Association’s Pop-Up Shop

Photo: @hellosda

The students from the University of Alberta’s Bachelor of Design program put on a pop-up shop once a year. The shop started three years ago as a way for students to promote design work in Edmonton and to help fund-raise for their graduation show. It’s another fantastic place to get your hands on some unique design pieces whether you’re interested in prints, illustration, apparel, or even furniture! There is no shortage of variety here. This year the shop is called Built, and it’s coming up at the beginning of December!

This pop-up shop is definitely worth checking out; the designers create their own products, branding, and even the design of the whole retail space! And you’ll be greeted by some friendly volunteers as well.

Visiting the AGA

Photo: @youraga

A classic outing for designers to find some inspiration! Surrounded by clean typography, satisfying colour palettes, and no shortage of visual styles, it’s hard to not be inspired by something at the gallery. Beyond inspiration, visiting the AGA is great to do with friends, whether it’s a quick walk through or a longer stay. It’s always fun to check out our rapidly changing downtown core!

This post was written by Sophie, one of our hardworking designers who is a creative ball of energy wrapped up in a quiet shell. She’s passionate about taking creative concepts and ideas and turning them into something tangible for others to interact with.