Amanda Schutz, CGD
Amanda graduated from MacEwan University’s Design and Illustration program before founding Curio Studio in 2002. Over a decade later, Curio has blossomed into a graphic design firm recognized for creative and memorable work. Amanda has created everything from print to branding to advertising campaigns, with a passion for illustration often weaving into her work. Amanda’s personal projects are diverse but most often inspired by the colours and patterns within nature. Her latest undertaking was creating over 30 original drawings, paintings and surface patterns depicting Edmonton's River Valley Lichen Species.
When I went through design school almost 20 years ago, our classroom was predominately women. I didn’t really pay much attention to this at the time, but when I came back to teach years later, I noticed alot of female design students. Working in-house design, starting a studio, working with a business partner, working solo, working with staff, teaching, having a studio in the home, having a studio in an office, and (most recently) having a newborn son… all of these decisions have shaped my design career in profound ways. Serving on the Graphic Designers of Canada Alberta North Chapter has kept design issues in the forefront of my mind. Through all of these experiences, I have built countless professional connections and friendships with designers across Canada.
I’ve now landed into professional positions where I am expected to lead, and it keeps me thinking about roles of women in graphic design. Where do all those female students go to work, and what journey does their career take?
I want to finally tell the stories of Women in Canadian Design. The women who have made work, built confidence, juggled, struggled and found their way in this industry. My goal is that this site will be an invaluable resource for designers, educators, students, both male and female.
This project would not have been possible without his encouragement and partnership with Peter Haughland. Peter has not only grown up with some amazing female siblings, but graciously acknowledges the value of what women bring to the profession of design.
Peter Haughland, CGD
Peter Haughland is the owner of Hello Public, a Spruce Grove design studio that services Spruce Grove, Edmonton, and St. Albert. Peter graduated from Medicine Hat College with a Bachelors of Applied Arts in Visual Communications. After graduating, Peter worked for several prominent design studios, and in-house design departments in both Alberta and Saskatchewan. When not designing identities, websites, and print material for local companies, municipalities, and national corporations, Peter spends his time being a part-time photographer and full-time father of two
In 2008, I moved to Edmonton to begin my career as a graphic designer. As I was looking for a way into the industry I started researching the “who’s who” of the Edmonton design community. I spent hours digging through directories, studio websites, and agency portfolios. In my search, I was introduced to Amanda’s unique body of work. It was bright, playful, and most importantly, effective. I looked up to her - she was someone whose work I wanted to emulate. While I’ve yet to figure out that fine balance of playful and precise, I still keep her work in mind when I start a new project.
Several years later, I had the pleasure to serve with Amanda on the executive board of the Alberta North chapter of the Graphic Designers of Canada. During one of our conversations, she mentioned her ideas regarding the Canadian Women in Design project, her motivations, why she felt it was needed, and what she needed to accomplish her goal. I offered to help out. It was an amazing opportunity to work with a designer whom I admired.
This project of ours is an invaluable and much needed resource, not just for women, but all designers. As I watch my own daughter’s interest in art and design grow, I want to create something that will inspire her journey, just as Amanda’s work has inspired mine