Diversity in Design | 332 | What Does This ‘Really’ Mean?

This is Convo By Design with a conversation about diversity in the design industry. In June of 2020, I published a conversation originally produced in October live at the WestEdge Design Fair. The concept was fairly straight forward, a panel featuring designers of color talking about their experiences in the industry. The purpose was straight forward as well, to provide a forum for the conversation to take place, to shed light on untold experience and extend the mic to those traditionally underserved. Originally, the term “of color” made me uncomfortable. It felt like attaching a label and I wondered if that was exactly what I was trying to avoid? I think the term ‘people of color’ has been debated quite a lot over the past year and it is more about nuance and in this situation, it isn’t a label but a descriptor. The ‘designers of color’ descriptor is intentional here and that is not to say that in some time, might no longer be appropriate. This is also not being used to compare, contrast or value any particular color or historical experience. I’m going to leave it here, but know this, I too continue to learn more about this subject. It’s not one I am at all comfortable with but to avoid it would be a disservice to the journey and the learning process. 

The response to that episode was incredible. It was good, bad, and surprising. If some people are uncomfortable by conversations like these, good, we should do them more often. If for no other reason than to normalize different voices, experiences and perspectives. 

With that, I give you the second installment of the Diversity in Design Series featuring designers Gail Davis, Sharon Lee, KD Reid and Edel Legaspi. Edel will be moderating this conversation, for which I am extremely grateful. 

This is Diversity in Design, a conversation about design, the design industry, and opportunity for all who seek it.

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Thank you, Sharon, Gail, Edel and KD. Your participation and willingness to share your experience is greatly appreciated. Thank you Walker Zanger for your partnership. And thank you for listening. Without you, there is no joy in doing this, you are appreciated. My hope is to bring you inspiration and sublime design through these conversations. To give you that extra push to be the most creative designer you can be. I think we did that here. Please make sure you are subscribing to the show so you don’t miss a single episode. You can also follow us on Instagram, @ConvoXDesign, with an “x” and convo by design dot com. Be well and remember to take today first.