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Stories

Highlighting the region’s most interesting people, places, and projects, and the inspiring stories that shape our unique design landscape.
Journal

Big Ideas in Urban Design

Jeff Schnabel

A look at our city’s glory days in urban design, and what it still stands to learn from those past successes (and failures), before it risks losing too much momentum. Or worse yet, originality and vision.

Journal

Designing Creative Consciousness

Sara Guest

How much further could we evolve in our quest for out-of-the-box thinking, if we were given access at a much earlier age to the same kinds of brainstorming sessions and facilitation techniques we practice inside our creative agencies?

Journal

A Record of Garden Making

Brandon Shimoda

How gardens — imagined, designed, and constructed — served as a form of resistance and as a coping mechanism for the Japanese Americans imprisoned in WWII American concentration camps.

Journal

Executive Realness

Tsilli Pines

From full-on “truck nuts” to the way of the Jedi, leadership has its flavors. Follow one senior creative who tapped the humble job shadow to observe them in the wild.

Journal

Toiling Toward Mastery

Erin Mickelson

Join one maker’s journey toward mastery in the high desert, where she learned to find greater focus in the isolation of its landscape.

Journal

Sex, Husbandry, and the Infinite Scroll

Mara Zepeda

How do we know when enough is enough? A brief examination of the origins of husbandry, and what its lessons in restraint and thrift have to offer us that consumption with unfettered abandon cannot.

Journal

Belongings

Kate Bingaman-Burt, Zachary Schomburg

To whom do things belong? In a true collaboration, the individual can't claim authorship. Like the symbiotic relationships we have with the objects we own, collaboration is a two-way street.

Journal

50 QUESTIONS FOR EVERY GRAPHIC DESIGNER

Jennifer Armbrust

In our current political reality, asking yourself how you can take action and make change — not “if” — might just make a world of difference. Now’s the time to start asking those hard, important questions.

Journal

Thrill Seekers

Veronica Martin

"Fit" has to do with so much more than technical accuracy and physical measurements. Personal style, emotion, and cultural context play a large role, too. What happens, then, when we model the "perfect fit" on a mathematical algorithm?

Journal

Just Easy Enough

Carl Alviani

Digital designers struggle with two competing arguments over the value of simplification; designing for optimization and ease-of-use, or designing with a learning curve in favor of a richer experience. Does one always make more sense than the other?

Journal

LoopPDX: Phase One

Adam Segal, Untitled Studio

An update from the team working to develop a design for the Green Loop.

Journal

THANK YOU (HAVE A NICE DAY)

Stacey Tran

A brief history of the ubiquitous plastic Thank You bag — household object, capitalistic debris, generic nicety, design icon — and what happens when we stop to take a closer look at our own beautiful, problematic garbage.