I am going to go off the beaten path and talk about someone that most people in the design industry have all heard of, Bruce Mau.

brucey1  Bruce studied at the Ontario College of Art and Design and left before graduating, to begin his career at a design firm. Soon after, he was able to start his own firm, Bruce Mau Design, which is still thriving today! His firm does everything from architecture to branding. They have had some major clients such as ….


Frank Ghery, one of the most recognized architects in the world! But did you know Ghery commissioned Bruce Mau Designs to develop an original visual signature and environmental graphics for the Walt Disney Concert Hall?!


Carpet designed by Bruce Mau Design for Shaw industries.


Regent Part School of Music, Toronto

Mau is not only a designer, but an author and educator. People, such as myself, have found his words of wisdom very helpful in those times where your are feeling unoriginal or having “designer’s block” (hah… i may have made that up). A classic example of how Brucey-Bruce helped me out, is his “Incomplete Manifesto for Growth.” My thesis prep teacher in college urged me to read Mau’s manifesto, and create one of my own. This was something that really helped me take a step back, calm down, look at things in perspective, and begin executing my thesis project in all the right ways. mauey

In 2010 Mau came to Chicago!!! Woooot! He started Massive Change Network at Northwestern University.  He is currently doing a workshop called “Design for Non-Designers” where he talks about how all leaders are designers and how design methodology can apply to anyone. For the low low price of an-arm-and-a-leg, you can attend this 3-day seminar!

massive change

Mau is also the founder of Canada’s Institute Without Boundaries. They have an extensive post-graduate one-year program, which sets a designer up for a great career, or in some cases, counts toward a Masters Degree. They do phenomenal projects that address real world problems. As designers, we don’t always get to do something as meaningful as a teacher or a doctor, but sometimes – we do. My “career dream” is to change lives and address what is going on in the world, all the while using my creative mind and pricey education.

Although I kind of HATE Bruce for being one of those design prodigies, that didn’t even have to complete college to be awesome … I do find myself referring back to my own personal “Incomplete Manifesto” to stay grounded, not only in my career, but in my life!



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