October 28, 2016

5 Years of Portland Creative Mornings

The year was 2011—it was a big year for me. 2011 was the year I graduated from college, the year I got my first apartment, the year Think Joule liked me so much they put a ring on it and took me on as a designer. 2011 was also the year I went to the very first Portland Creative Mornings. A few months after my graduation from PSU I was still feeling a bit homesick for college life. When I heard that Kate Bingaman-Burt, one of my favorite professors, was doing a talk in Portland, I leapt at the chance to attend—four college courses with her were simply not enough!


I remember walking into Ziba for the first time, looking around, and feeling that I had found my people. We all know that Portland has this amazing design community but it’s at events like Creative Mornings, where you walk into a room full of individuals just as ready to geek out over a beautiful ampersand or well-crafted infographic, that you really feel it. There was this great mix all along the spectrum of our industry, from recent grads, like me, to company owners, coming together to have fun and learn a little something.

Kate’s talk was only 90 minutes that day, but I walked out feeling so inspired that it was a no brainer to sign up for the following month’s talk, and the month after that, and then the one after that, until one morning turned into a 5-year tradition.




In that time, Creative Mornings has grown from 14 chapters to 157 around the globe. It’s branched out from their home base at Ziba Auditorium to host talks at the Armory, Portland Art Museum, Weiden & Kennedy and a number of other venues across Portland. It's featured speakers that I’ve followed more avidly than any Hollywood star, I'm looking at you Aaron Draplin ( It has changed and grown over the years but it’s also still the same where it counts—the same feeling of community, the same standard of excellence put forth by the intrepid Tsilli Pines and her amazing team, and the same ubiquitous coffee and donuts that keep us fed and caffeinated. (Thank you for those, by the way, very important fuel for creative work!).


So during this, the anniversary of Portland Creative Mornings birth, I want to say congratulations and thank you to everyone who has made Creative Mornings possible and kept it going for these 5 years. I have had so much fun during those 40+ mornings, bonding with my team, reconnecting with my classmates, and meeting the rest of the Portland design community. It’s been a gateway to a whole new world (insert song from Aladdin) of design events, people, and opportunities that have helped to keep me inspired since I flew the nest of my PSU design family and found a new one amongst the Portland designers and creative community.

Best wishes and many, many thanks!
Bre Tauscher & the Think Joule team