Michelle Caers is the founder and CEO of DesignedUX, a Strategy & Design firm in Toronto that partners with start-ups and organizations to create exceptional products and experiences. She has over 20 years experience in education and technology, where she has lead teams in 5 successful start-up companies at various stages of growth. Michelle is also an Entreprenuer-in-Residence (EIR) at The Ryerson DMZ where she advises start-up CEO's on product strategy, product/ market fit and customer acquisition. 

Looking for creative inspiration? The 2017 FITC Toronto Conference is one that you won’t want to miss. FITC stands for ‘Future. Innovation. Technology. Creativity’ and this year’s speaker line-up will deliver on each promise in abundance. It’s one of my favourite conferences of the year.


Justin Cone is presenting on The Future of Motion Design. 'Motion Design,” perhaps more commonly known as “motion graphics,” merges graphic design, animation, and filmmaking to push the boundaries of storytelling and communication.

Did you see the Jungle Book? That’s what we’re talking about here. This year’s Academy Award winner for Best Visual Effects was one of the most cutting edge films in terms of technology with only one live actor. The rest of the cast including all of the animals (224 individual animals for the film across 54 species) and environments were created in CG. This is just the beginning of where technology can take us.

Justin promises to look into his crystal ball to tell us where the industry is going and what we can expect. He should know, since Justin’s resume includes the likes of Psyop, NBCUniversal, Apple, Adobe, and SCAD. And he’s the founder of Motionographer. Maybe he’ll even give us a hint about the upcoming winner of The Motion Awards.

With a roadmap to the future in hand, maybe you’ll be accepting an academy award one day too! Dare to dream.


Reinventing Normal - What’s Normal? What does it take to innovative?

Dominic Wilcox is one creative dude and he’s promised to teach us how to search for ideas to be more creative. Dominic works between the worlds of art, design, craft, and technology to create innovative and thought-provoking objects. He’s British and we all know that’s where all the good TV show storylines come from, so that’s gotta count for something.

His recent projects include the design of a pair of shoes with inbuilt GPS to guide the wearer home, a binaudios device to listen to the sounds of a city, a race against a 3D printer at the V&A and a stained glass driverless car  of the future. Actually, not just a driverless car but a stained glass driverless car, no less. Looks a bit like something out of Dr. Who.

Are you a dog lover? You’ll want to ask Dominic about his art exhibition for dogs. He’s also written a book.

Bottom line: If you want to innovate you need to be creative. To be creative you need ideas. Join this talk and find out how to blow past that creative block.


An AR person, a VR person, and a hologram walk into a bar. Where do they sit?

Does anyone really know what to do with AR other than chase Pokemon?

Dr. Helen Papagiannis does and she’s going to share insights on what we’ve seen so far and what’s coming in Augmented Reality Storytelling. We know the future is going to include augmented reality so why not get ahead of the crowd and help build that future.

Papagiannis is recognized as a world-leading expert in the field of Augmented Reality (AR). She has been working with AR for over a decade as a researcher, designer, and technology evangelist with a focus on storytelling and creating compelling experiences in AR. She’s also written a book.

But we couldn’t have AR or even computers if we didn’t have light. Enter Jared Ficklin.

As designers we are primarily designing for the interfaces of objects, but in the future we will be designing for the atmosphere. In this inspiring talk, Jared will examine using projected light as a computing interface. The implications of this freedom from constraints are huge!

We all enjoy a little magic from time to time and Jared promises to bring that and more with Interactive Light.


If you are looking for inspiration, look no further. Shantell Martin has a gift she’s willing to share. A world-renowned artist based in New York, Shantell tells it like it is. It’s refreshing and it’s inspirational and this talk will be one you remember for a long time.

Shantell draws lines. She describes her work as "a meditation of lines; a language of characters, creatures, and messages that invite her viewers to share a role in her creative process." She draws live, in real time. If you have the chance to see this, it is creativity in motion and you get to participate.

In her talk, One Day, Shantell explores the continuation of where her journey has led her today, and some of the questions and issues that have come her way. “We are in a place where we are seeing new models being created and some of the power being shifted, but how can we help this along and create a future where artists have more say, freedom and power.” Power to the people, I say.

Get your tickets and come be part of FITC Toronto, where the world’s greatest designers, inventors, and thinkers come together to talk Future, Innovation, Technology, and Creativity.