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Reflections on Devsigner 2016

This past weekend was the annual Devsigner Conference in Portland, OR. If you aren’t familiar with Devsigner, it is a technical and creative conference that brings together designers, developers, technical geniuses, and creative professionals in order to build community, learn from each other, and have a great time.

Spanning two days, the first day of the conference started with a two hour workshop by Bryan Ohno called Think Like An Artist. What intrigued me about this workshop was that it was about fostering creativity and curiosity. A topic that I love to study and talk about. It was also the one of two workshops that brought all attendees together in one room. Every other session was competing for attention against another. I enjoy conferences more if there is one track and I don’t have to choose where to go next.

Day one definitely seemed to move quicker as more people bounced between sessions and had a variety of subjects to learn about. I listened to Darren Petersen talk about becoming an accidental project manager, Eliza Greenwood speak about accessibility for social media, and Letta Raven passionately present on mentorship and what diversity really means. I also presented a talk called DIY Documentary.

For me, the second day was spent filming footage for a short documentary on the conference. I got to see small bits of every presentations and hear from a handful of people about their experience. One standout moment was Kyle Hinze sharing in his talk about prototyping that he had never given a presentation before. He ended being an engaging and eloquent speaker, something he credited to being a podcaster.

All in all, the conference was great. It was run by a top notch group of nice people that wanted to bring all types of creative people together. It is my hope that they continue to build this conference into something special.