There are a few places on the platform where we support formatting text with Markdown—most importantly, in your listings’ main description.

Everyone learns in their own way, so we encourage you to explore other online resources that are most comfortable—but we also want to have a quick-reference available that distills some of the most useful information and options, when it comes to creating effective communications.

Everything below was composed with Markdown!

What is Markdown?

Markdown is a simple text formatting tool. It lets you write plain text with basic instructions for how to do things like italics, bold, paragraph and line breaks, and headings. Markdown outputs HTML, but you don't need to know or write any code to use it.

Any text is valid Markdown:

Design Portland connects designers across all disciplines to each other and the city.

This doesn't have any formatting applied, but we can add emphasis (in this case, bold text) with asterisks, like this:

**Design Portland** connects designers across all disciplines to each other and the city.

Similarly, you can place underscores around some text to make it italic:

**Design Portland** connects designers across _all_ disciplines to each other and the city.

Despite having a relatively rich feature set, Markdown is not a layout or design tool. At the moment, we don't support fully skinning or altering core features of the listing pages, nor inserting arbitrary HTML, CSS, or Javascript.

Editing Markdown

When editing your text, you won't see these changes reflected immediately, like you do in a word processor. Instead, we take the text you write, and generate the styled text when it's output on a listing, in an email, or wherever it's needed.

Don't be afraid to try things out—Markdown is really safe, and won't break your listing if something isn't formatted exactly right. Just be sure and save your listing details before visiting the preview.

Tip: Click Preview on your listing to open it in a new tab, then go back to the edit screen in the original tab. After saving an edit, just press Control + R (or Command + R on a Mac) in the preview to refresh the page.

Core Features

Paragraphs + Line Breaks

Any time you insert two line breaks (notice the blank line between the following blocks), Markdown will keep the blocks of text in separate paragraphs:

In 2012, a group of designers collectively launched a week-long, all-inclusive festival celebrating the projects and processes as told by a creative community across many disciplines. The festival was a reaction to a city being made better by design. By creativity in all forms. By collaboration.

That first year produced over 100 events throughout Portland. These gatherings, whether large or small, swung open doors to the city's studios, agencies, manufacturers, shops, museums, retailers and restaurants that shared a DNA bound by design.

If you just need a single line break, insert two spaces at the end of the first line (they're invisible here, but you can select them with your cursor, following “Access”):

Venue Access  
Please enter at the corner of NW Lovejoy and 21st.

Don’t worry, this is absolutely the most confusing Markdown will get, we promise. In most cases, it'll make more sense to just use a header…


You can add structured headings to your text by placing a hash sign at the beginning of a line:

# My Brilliant Heading

Adding more hashes will decrease the header's size—think of it as an outline for your listing! A first-level heading should be the largest, and each level "below" it will be progressively finer. We actually recommend starting with a second-level heading, as we use top-level headings elsewhere on the page for accessibility reasons:

## Design Portland is all of us, made better together.

We're the thread that weaves together the process, practice, and content of our city's diverse creative community. Because here, design is lasting. Evergreen. It is the thoughtful assembly of culture—a texture woven of people and perspectives pulled together by ambition. By action. Right here. And throughout the year. A whole made greater by the sum of its many parts.

The text you're reading now only uses second- and third-level headings. House style discourages use of all capitals for emphasis.


Listings will always have some dedicated fields for important links—but if you want to link something in the body of your listing, try this:

[Membership in Design Portland]( will sustain our shared community and enable tiered access to the most inspiring events, content, and people making great work right here. Design Portland is an entry point for connection. A space for participation. The pulse of the creative ecosystem.

Note the square brackets ([]) around “Memberhip in Design Portland”—this is what will appear as the linked text. The parentheses indicate what URL your link points to.


If you want a bit of text to really stick out (or have a quote from a host, speaker, panelist, etc), you can format it as a block quote by placing a "greater-than" symbol at the beginning of the line:

So the heart of the question that confronted a couple of friends many years ago remains as it always has; _how will we reflect the culture here?_

> The answer is within us. In design. _Together_.

If your quote spans multiple lines, make sure all of them (including the blank ones) have the greater-than symbol. You can actually nest other Markdown features inside of quotes, so if you need emphasis or a link, go for it!


Ordered an unordered lists are easy: just use a number (and dot) or a dash at the beginning of each line in a series, respectively:

## Board of Directors

1. Kate Bingaman-Burt
2. Pollyanne Birge
3. Tsilli Pines

## Design

- Sage McElroy
- Nagini Reddy
- Gaby Jenkins
- Precious Bugarin
- Tara Brooks

No need to use the double-space trick to get these on separate lines—just make sure there's a space between the number or dash and your list item, and one blank line before the start of the list (like between “Board of Directors” and “Kate”, in the first list.

If you have a really long list and managing the numbers sounds dreadful, don't sweat it—“1.” for every item is totally valid. We'll handle replacing them with the correct numbers, when it's output.


You can insert a horizontal line in your listing by placing three dashes with a blank line above and below:

Moderating the panel is DJ Wilson, the former President and General Manager of KGW. DJ has received a number of accolades for her work with KGW, culminating in her induction into the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Silver Circle in 2018. She has also served as a Trustee for the Portland Art Museum and as Chair of the Board for the Portland Business Alliance.


There is a mixer after the panel, where food and drinks will be served. All of the panelists will be there, so stick around and share your thoughts and questions with them.

Use this judiciously—it's mostly here to split a long listing into sections, not for use as a decorative element.


What about HTML?

According to Markdown's specification, HTML is allowed—but for security reasons, we strip it out before rendering any content.

If Markdown does not provide the flexibility you need to adequately advertise your listing, please let us know. We'll do our best to offer recommendations, but are inflexible with respect to the inclusion of arbitrary HTML.

Can I embed videos or other media?

No, we don't allow external content in listings. This helps keep the site fast and secure for everyone.

If you need an image in your listing's description, we recommend attaching it via the Supplemental Image field.

How do I link to another event?

You can use the link syntax (see above) to embed links to any URL you want, including other listings. Keep in mind that if your listing isn't Live, only you can see it!

To keep things simple, you can even omit the domain portion of the URL for on-site links—for example, you could link to the 2020 Opening Party like this: Check out the [Opening Party](/festival/2020/schedule/opening-party)!