Pica 2014

May 7–10, 2014

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

About Pica

May 7–10, 2014

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Lead The Way

Four days of learning, networking and innovative thinking, Pica is a design conference that brings together visual communicators, educators, students and industry representatives from across Canada to meet and network.

Since 1999, the Pica Conference has offered creatives the opportunity to be inspired and share their experiences through workshops, seminars, roundtables and speakers. Participants leave ready to apply the things they’ve learned and eager to collaborate with the fabulous people they’ve met.

Presented by the Alberta North Chapter of the Graphic Designers of Canada, this is the first time that Edmonton has hosted the conference—we are excited to showcase our dynamic city to speakers and conference participants!

If you are a designer living and working in Edmonton, invite your friends and anybody with an interest in design. Don’t miss this fantastic opportunity!

Register Now!


Other Events

The Ground Floor

Student Event | May 7

As designers make the transition from school to the real world, they are often confronted with the fact that many real-world situations are not covered in the classroom. The Ground Floor is an all-day event aimed at recent, and not-so-recent, design graduates. Through presentations, workshops and panels, the event will fill in the gaps and give designers skills and inspiration to help further establish their careers.

More Details Here

Past, Present and Future

Design Education Stream | May 8

Past, Present and Future explores both our proud history of Canadian design and the new frontiers designers are pushing today. The day will consist of academic presentations, hands-on workshops and an energetic Pecha Kucha series that will not only question the historical practice of design in Canada as well as the state of design education today, but present innovations in teaching that are pushing design into the future.

For questions email education@picaconference.ca

Register Here

Lettering for the Masses

Alejandro Paul | May 8 (Edmonton)

One place where we see some good hand lettering is the supermarket. Over there, hand lettering works best because if it’s good enough, nobody notices it. During this one-day workshop, we will explore some lettering used typographically, dig deep and discuss how lettering and typography can help brands acquire a unique popular personality or even hurt their popularity. We will play with ligatures, swashes, ink and maybe with beziers.

Workshop limited to 20 participants

Alejandro will teach this workshop in Calgary on May 6

Symbols: Love Them, Use Them, Learn from Them

Maggie Macnab | May 10

For millennia, human beings used the universal principles of nature to support reliable, beautiful and effective design results by distilling universal themes into symbolic language. This session traces the links of cultural iconography, pop/corporate symbolism and other guises of design back to their origins of pattern and shape in the natural world. Attendees are taken on a visual journey through the ingenuity of nature and will learn how its versatility can help designers create beautiful and compelling design—from solving a client’s visual communication needs, to the architectural manifestation of power as structure, to designing their own personal symbol.

A great workshop for the designer looking to create a personal symbol or seeking a deeper understanding of logo design, the workshop explores the humble geometry of nature and how to expand those shapes into complex communication through design.

Best Practices for Proposals

Ilise Benun | May 10

How many design proposals have you seen, besides your own? Well that’s about to change. In this interactive workshop with Ilise Benun, founder of Marketing-Mentor.com and author of The Designer’s Proposal Bundle (Volumes 1 and 2), you’ll learn best practices for writing winning proposals and have a chance to review actual design proposals. We’ll cover:

Pre-Proposal: Learn to evaluate the quality of a project before deciding which to invest your precious time in. Then, learn techniques for gathering the necessary information to accurately estimate a project.

Proposal Document: We’ll look at real examples of winning proposals and discuss what to include (and in what order) and what to leave out.

Proposal Presentation: Finally, we’ll review best practices for presenting proposals so you have a chance to negotiate and don’t fall into the black hole (and never hear from them again).

Graphex Awards

The Graphic Designers of Canada’s Graphex Awards promote the value of communication design to the Canadian public while creating an archive of the best in Canadian design for future generations. For the 2013 awards, we have been fortunate to have the input and involvement of a great number of respected members of the international design community in reviewing all the entries and selecting the finalists. The winners will be unveiled during the gala reception and attendees will get a first look at the Graphex Awards travelling exhibition. For more information go to www.graphexawards.ca

Register Now!

Register Now!

Pica 2014 brings together designers, visual communicators and innovators to speak together, learn together and inspire each other with their knowledge and experiences. Get in on all the workshops, learning, seminars and networking you can handle over four days in Alberta’s capital city, Edmonton.

Register Now or download our Registration Package for more details.


Travel and Hotels

PICA 2014 is set in Alberta’s capital city of Edmonton. Known as Canada’s “Festival City” for its numerous art and music festivals, Edmonton also boasts a magnificent river valley, North America’s largest urban park. It is home to the world famous West Edmonton Mall in addition to popular shopping districts such as Old Strathcona and High Street. Edmonton boasts a diverse arts and cultural environment with the breathtaking Art Gallery of Alberta, a healthy and varied music scene, museums, restaurants and theatres.

All PICA events will be happening at The Robbins Health Learning Centre at MacEwan University in Downtown Edmonton. (map)

Flying to Pica

Air Canada is pleased to offer a discount (between five and twelve percent depending on seat category) off of the company’s best available regular fare at the time of booking (excluding web and promotional fares). To book a flight with your promotion code, access aircanada.com and enter your promotion code (PKGAG2Y1) in the search panel. Discounted travel rates are available up to 7 days prior and 7 days after the conference.


PICA 2014 has secured a block of guestrooms for delegates attending the conference at very special rates starting at $180 per night (taxes included) for Deluxe Rooms (single or double occupancy). In order to qualify for these rates reservations must be made by April 11, 2014. The conference rates are subject to availability after this date, therefore early reservations are recommended.

Guestrooms must be booked through the GDC. Please contact Vanlee Robblee at info@picaconference.ca or 780-907-0477.

Any Questions?

If you haven’t been able to find the answers to your questions, email us at info@picaconference.ca. For further updates on Pica, follow @gdcABNorth on Twitter!

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