The Queer Design Club’s mission is to counter isolation and exclusion by creating spaces, both online and offline, where LGBTQIA+ designers can find each other and share their work. In an interview with “It’s Nice That,” Rebecca Brooker, co-founder of the club, spoke about her hopes to foster change in the creative industry. “When,” Brooker said, “I looked beyond my own bubble and looked at the creative industry, it felt and looked overwhelmingly white, cis and straight. Looking through my canonical design history books, I often saw only the names and faces of white men who were called giants of graphic design. I wondered if design had a place for me, for others like me, for others who were not like me, and if I had been fooling myself so far. I searched online for information, clubs, groups, or places to meet other LGBTQIA+ designers, but it felt like the conversations were in silos. It wasn’t until I came across the website Blacks Who Design that I was inspired to create a similar space.”
Brooker co-founded the Queer Design Club 2019 with John Hanawalt. Through an online directory and social media platforms, the club represents the work of contemporary LGBTQIA+ designers and connects the queer design community through a Slack channel and job board. Currently, Brooker said, the club has more than 4,000 members worldwide. Recognizing at its inception that there was little data or information about who was part of the community, more than 1,000 LGBTQIA+ people in the design industry were surveyed in 2019, he said. In 2021, however, the Queer Design Count was conducted again, with persistent workplace issues identified during the Covid 19 pandemic, among others: While a full 64% of respondents were employed full-time in 2019, only 47% were employed full-time in 2021. In 2021, 18% of respondents reported freelancing, compared to seven percent in 2019, and 41% of transgender respondents lost their jobs during the pandemic, compared to 29% of cisgender respondents. In addition, the data showed “LGBTQIA+ designers are often underpaid, overworked, and most likely to face microaggressions and homophobia in the workplace.”
A one-day, online summit on July 7 will celebrate the club’s third anniversary. Not only will the “Queer Design Count 2021” be presented and its results discussed in panels and workshops, but also experiences with queer design will be exchanged.
More on ndion
Discover more news on the topic of design.
Share this page on Social Media: