Celebrate Austin design through a week of free workshops, talks, studio tours and events this November as the city celebrates its creative community in the third annual Austin Design Week.

Inspiration Friday! with AIGA Austin President Oen Hammonds

Happy Best Day of The Week!!!!!!!!!!! Hopefully you checked out our most recent, and very first ever, Inspiration Friday from just a few Fridays ago. If not, check it out so you know what we’re up to on some random Fridays.

This week we got an inside scoop on the one and only AIGA Austin President and IBM designer and mentor, Oen Michael Hammonds! Here’s what he shared about what inspires him.


1. 99% Invisible Podcast


I'm fascinated how host Roman Mars of 99% Invisible can make incredible in-depth stories of the things in our everyday world. As he describes it "...it's about all the thought that goes into the things we don’t think about." From designing safety stickers for coal miners to how 99% of data does not travel in the cloud but actually through transoceanic cables; every episode makes you rethink the things we take for granted and makes you question if the problems we deal with everyday are really that complex.

2. Design for People by Scott Stowell


If you are a designer who is tired of looking at design books filled with pretty pictures of end products than this is the book for you. Stowell has done a great job of revealing the real process of how design is done, and it is not pretty. It is intensely focused on the process rather than the outcome, which, to be candid, is the most interesting part of a creative act anyway. It’s in the process that you get to see all the flubs, tensions, happy accidents, and brilliant decisions that make a design into what we wind up seeing, using, or experiencing.

Get it here.

3. My Students


Since 2005 I have been an adjunct design professor teaching most of my classes at night after my day gig. It's inspiring to see how students solve problems and to hear the questions they ask just by simply rephrasing the assignment from "design a poster" to "design a better way people in a low-income neighborhood to know where local clinic resources are." It makes their heads pop, but they really start to understand that they need to focus on the concept rather than the end result. Yes! This is design class and as designers we tend to be one of the best problem solvers. A recent student built a prototype as a proof of concept for a neighborhood break room on the East side of Austin for kids to have a safe space to wait while waiting for their parents to get off work. I was really inspired how she and other students took the initiative and solved the problem.

Oen will be holding a workshop with AIGA Austin on Monday, Nov. 6th at 12pm!


Finding Place in My Career as a Designer

Where is my place on the team? Am I the leader? The contributor? The instigator? The answer should be “yes” to all. As the work place changes and the role of the designer transforms from crafter to having a seat at the leaders table; how do designers better understand their role in an ever-changing team environment. Keep on readin’ more about it here!


The Austin Design Week Blog is curated and produced in partnership with Left Right Media. Left Right Media is a creative agency in Austin, specializing in branding, web design, app design and digital strategy. Their success is a result of both an analytical (left) and creative (right) approach to design.