WOMAN UP! A Creative Conference for Women

Join AIGA Iowa for the first annual WOMAN UP! Conference, championing female talent and professional development. Learn from both local and nationally renowned designers and business professionals, including Jessica Walsh of the internationally recognized design firm, Sagmeister & Walsh (NYC).

Choose from a variety of sessions throughout the day ranging from personal projects like hand-lettering and journey mapping, to discussions on using creativity for social justice and finding a balance between business and family.

Breakout Session Descriptions

Lettering I: Learn the basics of calligraphy with seasoned artist Tome Plaza-Hope of Ink & Oak Calligraphy. This introductory session will introduce you to the materials and how to achieve the best results from ink bottle to pen tip.

Lettering II: Create your own monogram with local letterer Anna Frederick. Anna will lead you through the alphabet to build your own distinctive piece complete with decorative flourishes. 

Lettering III: Define your style with Sara Perez of Pink Letter Day. Sara will introduce a variety of ways in which you can use calligraphy for logos, business cards, and more! 

The Nitty Gritty (Sponsored by Workiva): Hear from local professionals including Sarah McCoy of The Permanent Collection Letterpress + Design Studio, Abby Wolner of the Financial Capability Network, and Amy Getty of Grandview University. These three panelists will share their knowledge of balancing business and family, staying on top of your finances, and navigating salary negotiation. 

UX Workshop (Sponsored by Gravitate): Visualizing your ideas is a powerful way to promote your point of view and persuade others. At this workshop, you'll learn how to build your sketching skills to create an experience map. Discover new approaches for rethinking the everyday and build your creative confidence with Rachel McClung of experiencing UX.

Creativity for Social Justice (Sponsored by Workiva): Join the discussion on how to use your artistic skills for the betterment of society. Christine Her of Artforce Iowa, Andrea Love of c(3) Marketing, and Erin Moran of the Young Women's Resource Center will share their unique experiences of how they have made a difference in the community.

Summary of the Event

9:00 AM | Coffee and Conversation
Jump start your morning with a little caffeine and meet fellow attendees before the conference starts.

9:30 AM | Introduction
AIGA will present speakers, sponsors, and participating vendors.

9:50 AM | Opening Speaker
Cheryl Towler Weese of Studio Blue (sponsored by Meredith Corp.) presents Design, Discourse, and Democracy, a talk about contemporary inequity. From the leadership and wage gap between men and women, to cultural norms of playing nice, to issues raised in the recent presidential election, questions of equity pervade everyday life. But by the influence of female mentors, collaborators, and supporters, women can be at the forefront of positive change.

11:00 AM | Block 1

  • Lettering I Workshop
  • Lettering II Workshop
  • The Nitty Gritty Panel (Sponsored by Workiva)
  • UX Workshop (Sponsored by Gravitate)

12:00 | LUNCH

1:30 | Block 2 

  • Lettering III Workshop
  • Lettering I Workshop
  • The Nitty Gritty Panel (Sponsored by Workiva)
  • Creativity for Social Justice Panel (Sponsored by Workiva)

 2:40 | Block 3 

  • Lettering IIWorkshop
  • Lettering III Workshop
  • Creativity for Social Justice Panel (Sponsored by Workiva)
  • UX Workshop (Sponsored by Gravitate)

3:50 | Keynote Speaker
Jessica Walsh of Sagmeister & Walsh presents "Play By Your Own Rules," a talk about the value of play and how it is at the heart of every creative process. Every great game has a strict set of rules, and the same goes for design. Limitations helps creativity thrive. It’s difficult to do something great when the possibilities are endless. 

6:30 | VIP Happy Hour* (Sponsored by Trilix Group)
Enjoy music, drinks, and hor d'oeuvres while you meet and mingle with the speakers and create your own screen printed poster to commemorate the event.

*VIP Happy Hour is meant for Conference attendees ONLY. If you wish to attend the Happy Hour, please purchase a VIP Add On ticket in addition to your Conference ticket.

Ticket Prices

Member $100

Non-Member $150

Students $75

VIP Add On $35

Keynote Speaker | Jessica Walsh

Jessica may be best known as a partner of the internationally renowned design firm, Sagmeister & Walsh, but beyond that iconic &, she’s one of the most self-motivated designers you’ll likely ever meet. At the age of 11, after doing some logo work for her parents company and a bit of web design, she decided that was what she wanted to do for a career. Fast forward, and by the age of 25 she joined forces with Stefan Sagmeister, creating some of today’s most beautiful and cutting edge designs for clients such as Barneys, The Jewish Museum, and The New York Times. She also makes time for personal work, the most notable of which was her 40 Days of Dating website and subsequent book. It’s no wonder Jessica has been honored with numerous awards including Forbe’s “30 under 30 greatest makers" and Print Magazine’s “New Visual Artist”.

Check out her work on Instagram @jessicavwalsh

Opening Speaker | Cheryl Towler-Weese | Sponsored by Meredith Corp.

Recognized for her conceptual approach and interdisciplinary collaboration, Cheryl Towler Weese’s work explores design’s civic potential. Through projects that span publication, identity, interactive, and environmental design, she investigates design’s ability to participate in public dialogue and shape collective consciousness. With this approach, she endeavors to foster an engaged and thinking public by encouraging discourse, participation, and individual perspectives. Cheryl is the founding partner of Studio Blue, a Chicago-based firm that works with museums, universities, and other organizations that serve the public; and is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in Graphic Design at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Cheryl’s work has been widely published, honored and exhibited, including exhibitions at the Art Institute of Chicago, medals from the Stiftung Buchkunst and the Carl Hertzog awards, and recognition from AIGA, Eye, Graphis, ID, Novum, the Type Directors Club, and the Webbys, among others. Her work is included in the permanent collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Newberry Library, and the Denver Art Museum.

An AIGA Fellow and past AIGA national board member, Cheryl is currently engaged in projects for cultural and educational institutions in Chicago and across the US, including the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Public Events, the Nasher Sculpture Center, and the Houston Museum of Fine Arts. Cheryl holds a BA in studio art and art history from Wesleyan University, and an MFA in graphic design from Yale. She is married and has three children, ages 17, 13, and 13.

View her work at studioblue.us

When & Where
Sat, Sep 16, 2017 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM CDT
Olmsted Center
2875 University Avenue
Drake University
Des Moines, IA 50311