Member of the Month – June 2020

Member of the Month – June 2020 featured image
By Matt Adams | Published June 27, 2020

Name: Samantha Stone

Title: Senior Designer, Blackbaud
Creative Director and Owner, Sam Stone Designs

AIGA Member since 2012

How did you get started with AIGA Arizona?

My first experience was as an undergrad at the University of Maryland and being part of the DC Chapter.

I moved to Phoenix, AZ in the fall of 2015 from Charleston, South Carolina. My company, Blackbaud, still kept me on as a remote employee so I knew that I wasn’t going to meet any new people by going to an office everyday. We didn’t have much of an AIGA chapter in South Carolina. So I found this AIGA Arizona chapter and was so excited to see such an active and large local chapter and signed up. Before this, I haven’t been an active member of an AIGA chapter since my time living in Hampton Roads, Virginia. Moved a lot!

What made you decide to join AIGA Arizona?

I tend to be a bit introverted and can shy away from large events—especially networking. And being a remote employee can really keep you in hermit mode. But moving to a new city I knew AIGA would be a really great way to meet other people and get a feel for the creative community that I was joining. 

What do you like most about AIGA Arizona?

Getting to know the other creatives in Phoenix from all types of backgrounds and professional levels. And then finding a camaraderie in our mutual love and passion for design. 

There are also so many great events, volunteer opportunities, and resources for creatives including the job board.

Also, as a Mexican American it has been great to see so many other Latino designers and creatives. It was pretty rare to meet others before I moved to Arizona.

What design event do you look forward to every year?

Without a doubt PHXDW. It’s such an incredible event for inspiration, meeting new people, learning, etc. It’s amazing how large it is. There’s also such a high caliber of speakers and presenters—especially for being a local conference. I’ve been to some of the large national conferences and PHXDW is right up there—if not surpassing, in quality and superstar power.

What is the superpower you wish you had?

I know it’s said that the journey is more important than the destination, but let me tell you, I wouldn’t mind being able to teleport. Cut down on the waiting…get there instantly! Travel anywhere in a second. That would really be something.

Take a moment to showcase some designers or creatives who you think people should be following and why.

Saskia Bueno –
She is a designer and lettering artist out of Colombia. I really admire type and calligraphy artists because it’s a skill that I’m working on myself, and Saskia’s illustrations are so beautiful, ornate, and full of color and life. 

Lalo Cato –
I am absolutely positive everyone is already familiar with his murals and artwork here in Phoenix. But new to the city, and seeing his work I was totally captivated, by his message and his art. And he’s just as wonderful when you talk with him in person.

Molly Jacques –
Another talented lettering artist, but also has a lot to offer about how to go out on your own and run a successful freelance business. 

Ian Bernard –
Ok, I apparently can’t get over lettering artists, but he has great creative resources like Procreate brushes and grids to help you create your own awesome artwork.

Tell us about your favorite event or moment with AIGA Arizona.

I was part of the 2018 CreateAthon Arizona at Co+Hoots and that was a lot of fun and quite the endurance event. I’ve never worked at full 24 hours at one time on a design project! It was amazing to use our talents to help our nonprofit create marketing materials they simply didn’t have yet. I also was part of a great team. It was incredible to see a group of designers and creatives work together who have no experience working with each other before. 


Connect with Samantha Stone






Have a story to tell about your own AIGA journey or want to nominate someone? You don’t need to be an award winner, a prodigy, or even a graphic designer to be chosen. Send a note to Membership Director Julian Martinez and tell us what being a member of the AIGA Arizona community means to you. See you next month!