07.04.15 / Design Your Life / Book & Event Review

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Vince Frost / Design Your Life, Tuesday 17 March 2015

Marie Arthur

When my husband Chad mentioned some weeks ago that he had purchased a book, I was hoping that it would be an improvement on the one I was currently reading. I won’t name names, but the book I was reading was written by a famous self-made businessman. Yes, I was gaining valuable insight into the world of business, but the content was repetitive; similar anecdotal stories continued to resurface chapter after chapter. My point being; I was ready for a more captivating read.

The newly purchased book was titled Design Your Life and was written by Vince Frost. I hadn’t heard of Vince Frost, but soon, after a quick Google search, I came to the conclusion that Vince is a successful graphic designer based in Sydney with more than 25 years of design experience under his belt. As both Chad and I are graphic design students I was quick to realise that we could gain something from this publication.

On the surface, Design Your Life’s red, pink, and white palette really popped, while the unturned pages rested on our coffee table. I was immediately drawn to the cover. Was it my association with these colours universally representing love (anyone who knows me can vouch my weakness for romance and unconditional love)? Ok, I sense I’m digressing, just a little.

After I had been seduced into parting the pages of Design Your Life, I was approached by more bold, playful typography assembled with a sense of confidence. Communicating via life experiences, inspiring interviews, and enlightening quotes, Vince shares his values and approaches to not only design, but to life. Design Your Life was the book I was hoping for; easy to read, well-paced, harmoniously designed, informative, and exceptionally motivational.

So, recently after Chad and I became AGDA members and learned that AGDA was partnering with Vince Frost to launch a national speaker tour, we leapt at the opportunity to put a face to the author’s name. On Tuesday night after our day jobs we wandered around to the Pirie & Co. Social Club — the venue for Vince’s talk. We perched ourselves on some stalls in the street-level bar and enjoyed some scrumptious mixed veggie quesadillas with tasty house cut fries before Vince’s presentation.

We weren’t sure what to expect, but a complimentary drink offered on arrival certainly warmed us to the occasion. The downstairs bar was cosy and abuzz with creatives — it felt social and upbeat. With only 10 minutes until Vince was scheduled to speak, Chad and I decided to take a seat. I was armed with a note pad and a pen I grabbed last minute from the office. I wanted to take my first note: ‘high female to male ratio’ when I realised my pen was empty. Then Chad pointed out that the men were at the back near the bar. “Of course” I said and put my pad and useless pen away.

Vince was only metres from us to our left, casually sitting at a high table on a stool chatting to a few people unknown to us. It felt intimate. The remaining minutes had passed and Vince was all of a sudden standing before us behind a MacBook Pro. Vince’s introduction powered by a projector along with his voice was pretty flashy, and led us to believe that we would be suitably entertained for the remainder of the presentation. We were correct in our belief.

Unexpectedly, Vince was an incredibly self-effacing, endearing, down-to-earth, genuine kind of guy. Vince’s talk itself, combined with reference imagery from Design Your Life, lasted around 30 minutes or so and touched on four principles covered in his book:

  • Shadow a star
  • Explore the unknown
  • Be fit-ish
  • Don’t be a whinger.

It wasn’t until the formal speech was over during question time, did Vince Frost really warm up. His approachability, willingness to share, and passion for design and life are to be commended.

Chad and I left Vince’s talk feeling refreshed and enthusiastic about design along with the very exciting prospect of designing our own lives.

For more details about the book Design Your Life check: http://designyourlife.com.au or we are more than happy to lend you our book.

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