A five day celebration of creative people and design companies, Cincinnati Design Week brought together the Queen City's top minds and businesses with fun, educational social events. With activities going on every evening from lectures to walking tours, Design Week made for a great opportunity to network with those of digital interests.

Thursday evening, I attended the Digital Takeover Panel, in which five experts in social media discussed the dos and don'ts of presenting your image online. The town hall-style discussion led to some vibrant banter about the biggest successes and failures with brand representation.

Social Media Experts: Mark Bianchi, Natalie Nichols, Krista Neher, Laura Gardner, and Jason Langdon.

Friday evening, creatives embarked on the adventure of a walking tour of six local design agencies in Downtown and Over The Rhine.

Design Week leader Ryan Cayabyab wrangles people to begin the tour.

Our first stop was at FRCH, which specializes in having graphic designers and interior designers under one roof. They created the interior of my favorite sushi restaurant, FUSIAN.

I was impressed with the layout of the studio, from the office spaces to the giant wall of fabric swatches with just about every color in the crayon box.

Next, we visited Hyperquake; an edgy, high-tech firm with a lot of personality.

Creative Director Dan Barczak welcomes our group.

CMKY napkins and plates
A street cart full of craft beers.

Tons of these little creatures lined the office.

Our third stop was down the street at Possible Worldwide; a powerhouse agency encompassing several floors of their office tower, with plenty of creativity to boot.

Whoa. Check out that view!

Cardboard city.
A more elaborate cardboard city.
Knitted sushi rolls. I like this guy's desk.
Knock 'em, sock 'em carnival clowns are given out as awards.
A food launching device. Yep. Food goes airborne.

Folgers coffee tin with a PC fan attached to the lid.

Right in the heart of Downtown, located inside the old Shillitos is Landor, an international agency that creates anything from corporate work to graphics for Marvel comics.

Our group piled in to watch a video.

We went from the vast walls of Landor to the petite storefront of We Have Become Vikings. Having worked in just about every agency in town, this dynamic duo decided to open up shop and lead the way on projects they are passionate about. As for the name, owners Jason and Mike wanted a call sign that was both triumphant, strong, and described the adventure of their start-up. What better describes this than Vikings?

Mike chats with our group.

Our final stop was a perfect location to end the evening: Traction

Tony Neary, the Creative Director, oozed passion with every breath and everyone in the room could see his excitement about his work. Armed with a small team, Traction works with both Fortune 500 companies and small family businesses.

With porch swings, AstroTurf, bicycles, and Yogi the Puppy greeting you in the main lobby, Traction is a picture-perfect environment to work in as a designer. 


Team Traction graffiti wall.

Check out more comments and pictures on Twitter: #CincyDesignWeek