Speaking Engagements, Juries, Books, and Publications

The Dieline Awards 2017

Business Etiquette Lecture
November 14, 2017: 5:00 p.m.

Live Online Conversation: Sean Adams
October 26, 2017, 6:00 p.m. PST

AIGA Design Conference 2017
Command X

October 12-14, 2017 • Minneapolis, Minnesota

3x3: Plagiarism or Influence
June 14, 2017 • Pasadena, California

Live Online Conversation: Sean Adams
January 5, 2017, 6:00 p.m. PST

Y Conference Host
March 31–April 1, 2017 • San Diego, California

AIGA Phoenix Design Week
October 22, 2016 • Phoenix, Arizona

AIGA Design Conference 2016
Command X

October 17–19, 2016 • Las Vegas, Nevada

AIGA Recharge
June 8–10 • Raleigh, North Carolina

How Design Live
May 19–23, 2016 • Atlanta, Georgia

UCDA Summit
March 31–April 2, 2016 • Santa Fe, New Mexico

AIGA Unite Conference
February 25, 2016 • San Diego, California

Design Observer

Thames and Hudson
The Field Guide to Supergraphics
Realease date: 2018

The Designer's Dictionary of Colour

Color Design Workbook 2

Running a Design Business: Selling to Clients

Advanced Composition and Layout
in process


AIGA Conference, Command X 2016

If you’re a regular at the annual AIGA Design Conference, I’m going to assume that Command X is already a firm favorite, but for the uninitiated, allow me to offer a little background to what became, for me, one of the lasting highlights of this year’s Vegas event. read more

The Design Kids, Australia

Sean Adams is ‘sending the elevator back down’ – he quit his successful branding agency to run the graduate program at ArtCenter & Command X at AIGA, AND to teach online courses through Lynda.com/LinkedIn – and all to help young designers! Sean talks about how most of his designs as a kid looked like Nazi propaganda (it was the only graphic design book in the library!), and his number 1 piece of advice for new students – Get your s*!# together! read more

Graphic Design History:
The Bauhaus

This new course is in production and available soon. My preferred title, Nazis, Artists, Designers, and War was not used.

Y Conference, 2017

I'll be the host at the 2017 Y Conference in San Diego. March 31–April 1, 2017. FYI, I'm not Roman Mars or Michael Bierut so be kind.

The Designer's Dictionary of Color

This new book features design, art, film, and product design to illustrate the usage, cultural issues, and palette options of over 70 colors.

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The Color Design Workbook

Since its initial release in 2008, this book has been a best-seller in the graphic design category. In 2017, a revised and updated edition will be released. The new version includes new work from some of the original and new designers as examples.

Dieline Awards 2017

Jury: Debbie Millman, Sean Adams, Pum Lefebure, Tosh Hall, Sebastian Padilla, Yo Santosa, Leland Maschmeyer, Ken Lo, David Hartman, Ximena O'Reilly, Brian Collins, Dallas Franklin, Alex Center


Blake Little, Work

This is the fifth book I've designed on Blake Little's photography. It will be released in 2017. 

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The Value of Professional Graphic Design

The new course is currently online here

50 Books 50 Covers

Connective Tissue, the book documenting the creative process to rebrand the Arthritis Foundation was selected as one of the 50 Books of 2015. 50 Books/50 Covers is a competition and exhibition founded by AIGA in 1923.


How Design Conference, Atlanta

Last week I spoke at the How Design Conference in Atlanta. I talked about Scary Forks, or those forks in the road when you don't know if you should proceed, go left, or turn back. I wore pink rather than black.

ArtCenter MGx Multi-Tool Now Available

The ArtCenter Graduate Graphic Design program first cohort meets this September. Last month, we released the MGx Multi-Tool. This is ordered online at the MGx site. Rather than making a traditional viewbook, I wanted to design something useful. So you'll find rulers, tips on smart language, and advice from the stellar advisory board.

Running a Design Business: Self Promotion

Two weeks ago, I filmed the next Lynda.com/LinkedIn course, Running a Design Business: Self Promotion. After being called a media hog and relentless self promotor for twenty years, it was time to share my processes, systems, and ideas. 

How Magazine

Bryn Mooth interviewed me recently discussing change, risk and my collection obsession.


Guest on The Human Calculator,
The History Channel

Saturday, January 16th
on H2 (History 2)

ArtCenter Graphic Design Graduate Program

Today the site for the ArtCenter Graphic Design Graduate (MGx) program is live and we are building an amazing space with a national American furniture company. I'm excited to serve as the Director of the program, providing designers with the skills and tools to not just succeed, but be the next generation of leaders.

Dieline Awards 2016

Jury: Debbie Millman, Sean Adams, Mauro Porcini, David Hartman, Gail Anderson, Alex Center, Dora Drimalas, Leland Maschmeyer, Jonathan Ford, Masanori Eto

Command X 2015 at the AIGA National Conference

This year I took over the role of emcee from Michael Bierut. That's not easy and resulted in a week of anxiety attacks before the conference. Fortunately, the host, Roman Mars, contestants, judges, Maria Gudice, and Bonnie Siegler calmed my fears.

Lynda.com/LinkedIn, The Arts and Crafts Movement: Deep Dive

The new course is currently online here.

The Hollywood Reporter: Blunt Talk and UBS

Jonathan Ames’ Starz comedy is in many ways an ode to Network. I designed the UBS logo, history, and on-air graphics for the fictional program and network.

Devour and High Snobiety on Before the was Photoshop

To get an in-depth look at how such work was handled before the convenience of Photoshop, Sean Adams mocks up a layout with a variety of traditional design tools.

Slate.com on Preservation

Blake Little was photographing a “bear” when he decided to try out a few tongue-in-cheek ideas—so he introduced some honey. I

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Print Regional Design Issue

This year's cover was designed by Sean Adams, who’s been recognized by every major competition and publication and exhibited often including a solo exhibition at The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

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Soviet Dialogues Exhibition

Pleased to be asked to design a poster for the Soviet Dialogues Exhibition, Dialogues - Poster Art of the Soviet Union, in San Diego.

The Arthritis Foundation

The Arthritis Foundation book has been published. Designed with DesignMatters at ArtCenter, the book is a documentation of the process and results of a 14 week studio devoted to a new message and campaign for the foundation. 

Complaints! An Inalienable Right

This exhibition showcases more than seventy posters by sixty-plus designers, including Sean Adams, Paula Scher, and Milton Glaser. Beginning March 20, the posters will be on view at The Wolfsonian.