Members of the production team visited the National Design Conference in Pakistan, a first-of-its-kind convention of local creatives with a staggering speaker lineup of creative giants. Komal, Assistant Manager – Production, recaps her experience at the ND2C.

The 2-day event comprised mainly of guest lectures and workshops. Speakers spoke about beauty, branding with meaning, user interface, and how to make all of the above widely accessible to end users.

Notable design speakers included

Lara Hanlon, an Irish UI designer currently working at IBM
Debbie Millman, host of Design Matters
Stefan Stagmeister, one half of the internationally renowned design firm, Stagmeister and Walsh.
Upon speaking to them, all three of the above expressed interest in SABAQ and offered to assist with its overall design. Stefan Stagmeister even offered to connect us to people in Japan, China and Mexico working on similar education apps.

Local design speakers included the fantastic Shehzil Malik and Samya Arif, two Pakistani artists who have changed the game with the authentic local color and flavor that bursts out of their work. They spread it through art and music. Shehzil indicated that we should all try to extract something from the environment around us to give our final product something unique. Samya also spoke about the importance of collaborating with people who have purpose.

A lot of the talks were centered on advertising, branding and marketing, reminding us of the increasingly urgent need to bring knowledge of SABAQ to the masses. It re-iterated of how necessary it is to build a brand image, to attract the right kind of clientele and the right kind of talent and collaborators to then make a name in the industry. We were also lucky enough to meet some very interesting illustrators who were eager to collaborate with.

At the end of the day, for me personally, a lot of the takeaway was related to how SABAQ can thrive as an organization. The key to success, is well, passion. We already have so many things the speakers talked about- our work has beauty, meaning, function, and is of social significance. The last magic ingredient is passion.

It is important that every single one of us at SABAQ think beyond merely doing our jobs. We need to think of what we are creating, and how we can make it matter. We already know that through us, hundreds and thousands of children will grow up starry-eyed, laughing and learning over the lessons we have crafted for them, full of our art and music and teaching. But we need to take our thinking even further. Each of us has to wonder what he can do better, what ideas he can put forth, and how the end product can be made stronger.

At the end of the day, we have the opportunity to leave behind an astonishing legacy for Pakistan. If our vision and passion is directed correctly, we can go above and beyond anything currently happening in local education.

However, if we do not show the necessary commitment, we will be merely more digital noise. I implore all my colleagues to go beyond doing their jobs, and I hope our heads make our vision widely known within the organization and across Pakistan.