Four years ago we introduced our first ever panel of industry professionals to help us judge the 99awards. We’ve been privileged to have senior creatives from Adobe and Squarespace, social media tastemakers and trailblazers, experimenters and educators—even design activists weighing in on the crème de la crème of platform work. Beyond sorting through the incredible designs they’re tasked with examining, introducing them to you is one of our favorite parts of this epic campaign.
We may be biased, but our 2022 jury is a truly spectacular bunch of folks, representative of the awesome talent spread across the global design industry today. In each of their videos, they’ll take you through their own creative journeys and share their best advice for designers. Without further ado, let’s meet the 2022 jury!
The 2022 jury
Eureka | Illustration
Say “Salam!” to Eureka! Eureka is an illustrator and educator based in Selangor, Malaysia. After obtaining her Bachelor’s and Masters in Architecture, she pivoted to follow her life’s true passion: digital illustration and art. Today she’s a full-time freelancer, sharing a home office with her architect husband and creating beautiful things each day. Inspired by all things mother nature and astronomy, she happily conjures up unique designs across various mediums—always with a dash of pixie dust and magic.
Ruben Cespedes | Digital Design
If you’ve ever dipped your toes into UX/UI, chances are you’ve come across Ruben Cespedes’ Youtube channel, where he shares everything from quick tips to product reviews and gold nuggets of career advice. Ruben is a digital product designer who’s spent the last 16 years creating innovative and exceptional digital experiences for big brands (hey, Crayola!) and small businesses alike. But Ruben actually got his start in agency land back in 2004, where he soaked up tons of expertise around marketing and advertising.
In 2007, he taught himself how to code and merged his love for design and technology and discovered his next passion: sharing everything he knows with designers looking to break into the industry. He currently works for Dell Technologies as a Principal Interactive & Visual Designer, for Adobe creating stellar educational design content, and for himself as a content creator. We know you’ll love his tips, so keep up with him on Instagram @uiuxcreative and YouTube!
Alyssa Nguyen | Branding
Alyssa Nguyen’s studio bears her name for good reason: her personal mission is to create striking and memorable brand identities for businesses owned by women and people of color. We fell in love with the entrepreneurial spirit that she proudly showcases across each of her community channels, and how unafraid she is to be herself in the design industry. She’s self-taught and proud of it, and it’s the red thread that she weaves through all of her content.
On her podcast, The Design Diaries, she spills the tea and hosts honest conversations filled with tips, career advice, and the struggles and experiences of being a creator. Alyssa is the ally you didn’t know you needed, but we’re happy to share her with you as the juror for the Best Brand Design category of the 99awards.
Gia Graham | Typography
Gia Graham is a Barbados-born lettering artist and illustrator, now based in Atlanta. She graduated with a BFA in Graphic Design in 1999 and immediately hit the ground running. In her 20+ year career she’s worked for agencies of all sizes, on everything from corporate design and branding to art direction, photo styling and stationery. As an island girl living in an urban world, her work has evolved over the years and is recognizable by the way she uniquely merges opposing cultural aesthetics. Her signature designs are alive with lush florals, foliage and tons of color. Gia’s current focus is on bringing brands and products to life with lettering and illustration.
When not working with clients, she teaches classes as a Top Teacher on Skillshare and shares a sneak peek behind her process on Instagram. Step into Gia’s world over at @iamgiagraham!
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Julie Wieland | Print
Julie Wieland is a multidisciplinary graphic designer from Luxembourg, living and working in Germany. Her work revolves around defining timeless and meaningful visual narratives for passion-driven individuals and businesses. Recently, Julie made the jump from being one of the go-to senior designers in the Berlin startup scene to freelancing full-time. She began sharing her best tips, resources, inspiration and tutorials on her social channels… And the rest is (viral) history.
What we love about Julie is that she’s not afraid to dip her toes into new design techniques. The woman welcomes a challenge, and she’ll happily send them your way so you can build your portfolio, too. See the world through Julie’s eyes over on Instagram and TikTok @juliewdesign.
@juliewdesign Good Boi Fonts™ — my favorite font-matchings to date 🙏🏼😌 #fonttok #graphicdesigners #typeface ♬ Supalonely (feat. Gus Dapperton) – BENEE
Beatrice Menis | Packaging
Beatrice is a brand & packaging designer and co-founder of Studio Kibi, an independent studio that counts small businesses and start-ups as part of their diverse client roster. Born in Italy and with many homes in-between, Bea is full of global experience, and that comes through in all of her work. Her goal has always been to start a women-run business to help entrepreneurs around the world. And Studio Kibi is just that: the sweet, accessible spot between agencies and freelancers. Her design philosophy is all about simplicity: if it can’t be summed up in a sentence, it’s probably not quite right.
When not crafting the backs of packs she can be found playing with her corgi, Mochi, and enjoying a throwback pop punk playlist on Spotify. Keep up with Bea @studiokibi and check out her stellar courses over on Skillshare!
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