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TDC 2023: Hear from the Women Leading Design

At Mavens, we're proud to support events or organisations that prioritise representation of women leaders. It’s why we're so excited for The Design Conference (TDC), which is back in 2023 with three days of life-changing talks, panels, meet-ups and workshops. TDC will take place from June 07-09 at the iconic Brisbane Powerhouse.

With a stellar line-up of domestic and international speakers, The Design Conference promises to deliver a world-class program designed to stimulate creativity, spark innovation, and foster collaboration within the design and advertising industries. If you’re a commercial designer, you cannot miss this conference.

We’ve handpicked some of our favourite women speakers to give you an indication of what to expect at TDC 2023. Check them out, and don’t miss the exclusive Mavens reader discount at the end of this article.

Karabo Poppy Moletsane

Artist, Karabo Poppy (Johannesburg)

Karabo Poppy Moletsane (30) is a Multi award winning Illustrator, Graphic Designer and Street Artist from Vereeniging South Africa. Her awards range from Illustration, Design, Advertising and Fashion.

“I am inspired by the visual aesthetic of Africa, both contemporary and traditional. Our aesthetic has a long rich heritage rooted in constant innovation and hybridity. I believe that every African carries this with them daily and I believe that it is in the everyday seemingly mundane events where this aesthetic is at its most beautiful to me. So I set out to preserve and celebrate it in my work and represent the unrepresented.”

With a degree in Visual Communication from The Open Window Institute, Karabo is passionate about the preservation of the African aesthetic. She is drawn to all that makes Africa so full of zest, culture and innovation. Karabo explores South Africa’s aesthetic and creative identity through contemporary illustration, street art and graphic design.

In the 8+ years of Karabo’s career, she's worked with the Wall Street Journal, Apple, Nike, Google, Black Coffee, The University of California, project (RED), Pharrell Williams, Greenpeace Africa, G-Star Raw, Woolworths, Calvin Klein, Nedbank, Sony Music France, Cotton:On International, Russell Hobbs, Sneaker Lab and Marie Claire to name a few. Most recently Karabo has been involved with the development of on of the Soweto Towers as well as creating a colossal mural in Salt Lake City, Utah, for the NBA team The Utah Jazz. Karabo has also created illustrations for a music video that was awarded ‘Music Video of the Year’ at the French Music Awards and was nominated for ‘Best Music Video’ at the Grammys. Currently, Karabo continues to use her are to preserve the African aesthetic locally and globally too with projects in Cape Verde, Argentina, Zambia, Uruguay, USA and Ghana.

Clara Fernández

Art Director, Asís (Buenos Aries)

Clara is a Graphic Designer graduated from FADU-UBA (Facultad de Arquitectura Diseño y Urbanismo - Universidad de Buenos Aires). Along with her partner, Francisco, they have spent the last seven years running their own design practice: Asís, a creatively driven design studio in the quest for beauty and function. With a focus on branding, they create visual identities that are well-crafted, authentic and always stand out.

Clara is obsessed with good design: honest, pure, beautiful and consistent, and it is her vocation to provide a highly creative, conceptual and innovative content in each project she develops. She understands each design challenge as a deep search to elaborate a message that allows communicating everything that differentiates and represents each client, framing it in a visual universe of high creative potential.

Liza Enebeis

Creative Director, Studio Dumbar (Rotterdam)

Liza is Partner and Creative Director at Studio Dumbar/DEPT®. Studio Dumbar/DEPT® is an award-winning international agency with a Dutch heritage, specialising in visual branding and motion. Liza is directly involved with all main projects such as the visual identity for Amsterdam Sinfonietta, D&AD Creativity festival, the brand refresh of the van Gogh Museum and co-initiator of DEMO - Design in Motion Festival. She is an MA Design graduate from the Royal College of Art, London. Before joining Studio Dumbar she worked for Pentagram London for several years. In 2004 Liza co-founded and co-hosts the podcast station Typeradio has an archive of more than 500 interviews for download of established and upcoming designers from all around the world. As of 2018, she has been elected a member of the prestigious design association AGI, Alliance Graphique Internationale. And since 2021 is part of the D&AD Board of trustees - the Design and Advertising Association in the UK.

Yah-Leng Yu

Strategy Director, Foreign Policy (Singapore)

Yah-Leng was formally trained at the Art Institute of Boston before moving to New York City, where her creative career took off. In 2007, she returned to Singapore and co-founded Foreign Policy. She is currently the Pan-Asia Chair at Alliance Graphique Internationale. Her works have been recognised by international design associations like D&AD, Type Directors Club, Tokyo TDC, Art Directors Club and AIGA.

Tash Menon

Founder, Mash (Sydney)

“There’s freelancing, and then there’s Mashing”.

Tash Menon is the Co-Founder of Global Creative Technology Company, Mash. Founded in 2018, Mash’s foundational belief is that there’s a more creative way to do creative services. Having flipped the traditional agency model on its head — by curating bespoke creative teams from referral-only freelancers — Mash has cultivated a community of over 200 creatives working across 28 countries, with global brands such as Netflix, Breitling, Accor Hotels and some of Asia Pacific’s fastest growing scale-up businesses. The Mash of today has evolved into something almost unrecognisable from when it was started on a kitchen dining table. With the focus of continually building a culture that empowers and encourages both brands and creatives to benefit from remote work structures, Tash’s direct and transparent approach has led her to now build a global business that has been recognised in almost every industry and business publication in Australia. Dubbed the ‘Mighty Mouse’ of the advertising industry by Forbes USA and proudly named one of Campaign Asia’s ‘Women to Watch’, it’s safe to say Tash’s impact on the industry has spread far and wide, changing the way brands and creatives view their work for the unforeseeable future — and for the better.

Dot Lung

Mother of Dragons, Dot (Hobart)

Dot stands for Dorothy, and Lung means “Dragon” in Mandarin. After growing up in Los Angeles, she traveled the world working on a variety of campaigns until she found a home in Barcelona. Since 2011, Barcelona has inspired her to be the magical and fierce being she is today. Dot started her social media career formally at OFFF Festival, where she was in charge of the online community and audience engagement. She developed their first steps of an authentic, organic messages which continues to this day. Before OFFF, she had been an active social media user since the days of MySpace where she had not only her personal profile, but was also selling real estate through the platform!

"Not a digital extremist like me? It’s not for everyone, but based on my total immersion, I can help you create the optimum digital experience for your brand, your personal identity, or your campaign."

"My goal is to empower creatives to achieve their dreams."

Plus, I have access to the top talent to incorporate your most magical aspiration and achieve your greatest goals."

Christine Sultana

Co-Founder, Nightjar (Sydney)

Nightjar are champions of UX and UI, but there’s one word many people are reluctant to use – ‘user’. Technology can have a weird effect on people. In the pursuit of faster, smarter, shinier, it’s easy to forget the most important adjective – closer. At its best, technology enables us to be more human. To engage. Feel. Share. It doesn’t just make things happen, it brings people closer. So while you’ll still catch us using the word ‘user’, rest-assured, Nightjar is 100% human-centred and full of heart.

Jasmin Bedir

CEO, Innocean (Sydney)

"I’ve been around long enough to remember when Media and Creative sat together in one office. Having grown up in Germany makes me apparently efficient and hard-working but also straight to the point."

"My upbringing as a Turkish migrant child in Germany has rounded me. Having spent half of my career in Australia and working across multiple APAC markets makes me appreciate cultural differences even more and understand the importance of local relevance."

"I’ve been able to lead big accounts in literally every form of creative agency there is: From highly creative independent hot shops, both in Germany and Australia, to global network agency, and also client JV agency. As of June 2020 I have taken over Innocean Australia as CEO and turned it into an integrated agency, helping brands navigate through the seas of modern marketing complexities. I am also a keynote and panel speaker on topics like brand experience, diversity, equality and inclusion. In March 2021, I founded FcktheCupcakes, which has since grown into a social enterprise advising brands on effective messaging on DE&I topics."


Director, Evi-o Studio (Sydney)

Evi O. is a multi-disciplinary designer and self-taught artist with 15 years of award-winning industry experience. In the design sphere, she leads Evi-O.Studio – a design office famed for its highly-crafted, impactful design, striking balance between beauty and function. Evi-O.Studio practices across publication design, identity design and creative collaborations. In the art world, Evi O. roams the abstract genre, fortifying the power of colours and utilising her practice as a way to understand the world and a channel for her constant curiosity. Her art and design studios are based in Marrickville, Sydney, servicing the world. Evi O. is addicted to creativity.

The Design Conference will take place at Brisbane Powerhouse from June 07 – 09, 2023. For 20% off your early release ticket or digital streaming pass, use our exclusive digital coupon here before April 14th 2023 (tickets purchased after this date will still enjoy 10% off via the Mavens coupon).

View the full speaker lineup here.


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