Design Day for GOOD

A Day of Graphic Design Volunteerism

Design Day for GOOD presented by Cyan Bold Design and Staples Studio in partnership with Graphic Designers of Canada BC Chapter
Logos of contributing designers, communicators, marketers and design thinkers: Liz Go, Graphically Hip, Vanessa the Hobbyist, Amy Gopal, Designs by Erica, Splash Design, Clever Girl, Work BC Kelowna and Clear Design.

Design Day for GOOD is a collaborative initiative composed of volunteers, designers, communicators, marketers, and design thinkers led by Cyan Bold Design and hosted by Staples Studio Kelowna in partnership with the Graphic Designers of Canada (GDC) BC Chapter. It is a day of graphic design volunteerism that draws from the GDC SKN Design Day concept and follows the same premise – design as many meaningful assets as possible for local nonprofit organizations to help further their causes and boost their visual voice in one day. The overall goal is to use design and design thinking to build up the communities we live in. My belief is that design can be used as a force for positive change and should be offered for free in certain circumstances. For more on my viewpoint on pro bono work check out my blog – The Importance of Using Design for GOOD.

The COVID-19 Hurdle

Bringing Design Day for GOOD to Kelowna was no easy feat during a pandemic, but it has been successfully arranged twice. However, when the COVID-19 pandemic first hit we were forced to postpone indefinitely. Thankfully, Staples Studio Kelowna was quick to respond with the most up-to-date workplace safety measures for us to follow. With a few adjustments to the original event format, we adapted to a distanced model with remote work options. Using a dedicated Slack channel, Zoom, smartboard, Spotlight (event space), workstations, and a reliable WiFi network we were able to work together seamlessly. Being provided nourishment, beverages, and surprises were the icing on the cake. We owe a huge amount of gratitude to the generosity of Staples Studio as a community partner on this event.

No co-working space would be complete without an engaging and encouraging Community Manager. Matt Stewart, Community Manager of Staples Studio Kelowna has been a rock of support during these uncertain times. For each event, he was the technician, sanitizer, waiter, community connector, public speaker, showrunner, troubleshooter, co-organizer, and problem-solver. He was on board with this initiative since day one and I couldn’t think of a better representative for Staples Studio Kelowna. Thank you, Matt and Staples Studio for being the hosts with the most!

Show me the Graphic Design!

So much great work has been done over the years for Design Day for GOOD. Below is a list of gracious volunteers that lent their skills and talents to local nonprofit organizations as well as their design solutions. Superstar teams became dedicated design agencies for a day. Their collective talents, experiences, and skills were pooled together to accomplish a shortlist of tasks for nonprofit organizations in need.

Matt Stewart

Christine White


Avril Paice – Etcetera Representative
Tory Braun (Clever Girl) – Team Lead
Phred Martin, CGD (Splash Design) – Design
Alex Hennig (Clear Design) – Design
Liz Govier (Liz Go) – Web Design & Social Media
Amy Gopal – Communications/Marketing

Team Etcetera was tasked with boosting community awareness of Etcetera 2SLGBTQIA+ Youth Group and generating financial support for the program through encouraging community donations. They were encouraged to think about ways they might be able to engage the participants (who endearingly call themselves the Glitter Critters) in the design process and give them something they could own as well.

As a result, the digital assets that were delivered far exceeded expectations. Team Etcetera developed a unique design system for social media posts and further asset development. They created designs for logo variations, rack cards, shirts, social media posts, and more.

Etcetera design assets featuring gradient colour schemes and shapes of the design system, rack card, buttons, shirt, and social media posts examples.


Denise Martell – PLAN Okanagan Representative
Chris Bingham (Me/Cyan Bold Design) – Team Lead
Laura Bonin (Work BC) – Communications/Marketing
Eryca Stirling (Eryca Stirling Designs) – Design
Sarah Tucker (Graphically Hip) – Design
Vanessa Devine (Vanessa the Hobbyist) – Research & Design

Team PLAN Okanagan was tasked with amplifying PLAN Okanagan’s visual voice within the community amongst their participants and supporters. PLAN Okanagan also required new approaches to soliciting donors in the community and encouraging community involvement. It was imperative to consider participants within PLAN Okanagan’s network and their needs when developing materials and assets.

As a result, the digital assets, strategies, and mock-ups that were delivered surpassed the task goals. Team PLAN Okanagan was very inventive and productive in producing designs. There were so many options for PLAN Okanagan to choose from and not everything is posted here. We created designs for retractable banners, table covers, a presentation deck, a letter of asking, shirts, buttons, stickers, wheelchair bags, totes, reusable cups, pop-sockets, and more.

PLAN Okanagan design assets featuring mockups of buttons and stickers, shirt, table cloth, banner, tote, coffee cups, reusable cups with straws, and presentation deck

Congratulations to everyone involved in making Design Day for GOOD such a success!


Damask for the Masses: Part III

Flipping the bird, the single-digit salute, giving the finger or flipping someone off—no matter how you phrase it, the gesture is the same. Middle finger extended to the sky with the other digits in flexion or converted into some sort of gnarled claw. Often regarded as a symbolic act of defiance, disdain and rebellion, it has been ingrained into the psyche of punk rock and pop culture for a long time. Ignoring the fact that the ancient meaning of the gesture was slightly more nefarious and offensive, we now see celebrities jumping on the middle finger bandwagon. It seems as though no one is interested in subtlety or hiding their disdain anymore. Either that or there is some sort of street cred and perceived edginess behind the act. But, I digress. It is a way of defining yourself as someone that “doesn’t give a F✱CK!” and that’s not always a bad thing. While we often look up to the people that break from the pack and march the beat of their own drum. There is a certain degree of bravery in going against the norms to forge your own path. This is where the “pretty bird” damask patterning makes the most sense—at its core, it is a way of saying I forge my own path haters be damned!

pretty bird punk damask pattern

Damask has deep connections with decadence and the exotic. Before the industrial revolution people sought after the most unique damask patterns to help define their own aesthetic. A modern equivalent to finding these unique fabric patterns would be in discovering underground music, seeking out burgeoning fashion designers and creating your own individual aesthetic that refuses to conform to popularity. After all, “variety is the spice of life”. Flipping the bird, even a pretty one, on conformity and banality is living life with a punk rock edge. Be a flipping pretty bird and let that damask pattern fly.



Great opportunities to truly collaborate don’t come around too often. But when they do they are truly special.

When I met the You Are Collective for the first time we knew there was an important connection that needed to be made between the LGBTQ2IA+ community, its allies and mental health, but it took time to figure out what that would look like. We knew we wanted designed apparel we would all be proud to wear ourselves. We also knew we wanted to dedicate a portion of proceeds to a cause that meant something to the LGBTQ2IA+ community and had a close tie to the mental health initiatives of You Are Collective. The result was a thoughtfully designed collection of T-shirts, stickers, and hats of which a portion of the proceeds goes towards the local LGBTQ2IA+ and allies youth group. We felt it was important to support this group whose main focus is to create a safe space for individuals to be themselves and support each other.

LGBTQ2IA+ Design

I love breaking out all the colours of the crayon box for Pride-themed designs. However, this project was about more than trying to be colourful it was about making apparel that makes a statement. When we really break it down the cornerstone of Pride is equality and acknowledgement that LOVE = LOVE no matter who you are. So I decided to create a graphic that would say that with a combination of words, shapes, and colours in its most simplistic of forms. Many experiments were done before reaching a final design that incorporated a 3D multi-chromatic heart intertwined within the word LOVE housed within a box. The technique that was used to create the twisting 3D multi-chromatic heart design was something I had always wanted to learn how to do, but I needed a good reason to do it. Fortunately, this technique fits so nicely as an expression of Pride and the spectrum of identities that are part of the LGBT2QIA+ community I felt it could finally be explored.

ALLY stickers
LOVE & ALLY t-shirts
ALLY & LOVE hats
ALLY stickers
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LOVE & ALLY t-shirts
ALLY & LOVE hats
ALLY stickers
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The ALLY treatment needed to represent what an ally was in a separate way from the LOVE design. I wanted to create something that an ally to the LGBT2QIA+ community could wear with pride as a way of including them in the celebration. I often think of an ally as someone who is there standing with you in the rain on the bad days as well as celebrating with you in the sun on the good days. It is friendship and love in action; providing strength, support, and understanding when we need it most. This is why the word ALLY was set in a similar way as the LOVE graphic but within a rain of rainbows instead of a heart. It signifies the importance of the strength and support of an ally when the rain starts to fall.


The result is a collection of designs created out of love and respect for the LGBT2QIA+ community and the allies that help support it. A collaboration with an exceptional social enterprise donating a portion of proceeds to help support the well-being of LGBT2QIA+ youth, their friends and allies within the community.