Put on your thinking caps and prepare for the presence of extra-strength talent and creativity when Pixels of Fury lands in Pittsburgh this Friday, September 19. As usual, the event consists of 20-minute rounds between designers competing live, while the audience watches their thought process play out on large screens.

Check out AIGA Pittsburgh’s site for more information on the event and make sure to register to attend for an exciting night of drinks, food, music, and live-design battle.

The Contestants

Sydney Bennett

Sydney, also referred to as Squid, is an enthusiastic senior Graphic Design student from West Liberty University. She has worked for a national Popsicle company creating everything from packaging design and posters to social media and marketing. For future endeavors, she plans to follow her dreams of becoming a professional level graphic designer.

Doug Dean

Doug is always trying to contribute creativity to the world, whether as an art director at Wall-to-Wall Studios, a freelance designer, or the leader of The Wakening, a zombie-themed surf-punk band. Known for non-traditional tactics, he has been recognized by Graphis, Print Regional, AIGA, and AdFed. When not designing, Doug tries to keep his two kids alive.

John DeGore

John started out as an in-house graphic designer before transitioning to interface and user-experience design. He co-hosts the “Creative Briefs” podcast, and is a student of Carnegie Mellon’s Masters of Human-Computer Interaction program. Some of his favorite things include the art of Jack Kirby, mac and cheese, and the music of Stevie Wonder.

Julian Glander

Julian Glander is a person living and operating as a freelancer in Pittsburgh. He works primarily in the traditional creative media of illustration, animation, app development, talking hamburgers, magical buildings, games about clouds, missing-bike posters, and three-dimensional blobs.

Val Head

Val Head is a designer based in Pittsburgh. Her work ranges from projects on the web to interactive installations to print. She is the author of The Pocket Guide to CSS Animations, teaches CSS Animations on Lynda.com, and hosts the “All the Right Moves” tutorial screencast. She also founded the popular Web Design Day conference and leads workshops around the world on UI animation and creative coding.

Nick Meloy

Nick is a Designer/Developer working at Guru.com in Pittsburgh. He enjoys all things design and technology, and the constant challenge the quickly evolving industry presents daily. While away from the computer, you can find Nick fly fishing in the creeks of Pennsylvania, or just outside in the woods somewhere.

The Judges

Laura Vinchesi

Trained as a graphic designer and artist, Laura works for LUMA Institute, where she manages the evolution and expression of brand. Prior to joining LUMA, Laura worked in New York City for Ruder Finn Design, where she art directed a number of branding initiatives for global consumer health and research companies. Before and after her stint in NYC, Laura honed her teaching skills at the Carnegie Mellon Design School, her undergraduate alma mater. She also holds an MFA from Cranbrook Art Academy.

Dan Rugh

Dan is the owner, senior designer, and janitor of Commonwealth Press, a design and print space located in Pittsburgh’s historic south side. In addition to holding a master’s degree in multimedia design from Duquesne University, his education and experience covers a wide scope of multimedia, spanning illustration, web design and development, package design, video production, traditional offset printing, prepress procedure, screen printing, photography, animation, audio production, and software development.

The Hosts

Andrew Twigg

Andrew Twigg is an Assistant Teaching Professor at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Design, where he has focused on web design and cross-media design systems. He is also an independent designer practicing visual-verbal design strategy, branding, and web design. He served as the President of AIGA Pittsburgh, the Presidents Council Chair of AIGA, and currently serves on the Board of Directors for DesignInquiry.

Matthew Buchholz

Matthew is the owner and Chief Archivist of Anachronisms at Alternate Histories, where monsters, robots, zombies, and other pop sci-fi creatures rampage through history. He is extremely adept at Photoshop, and surprisingly bad at most other Adobe apps. His book, Alternate Histories of the World, was published in 2013. He lives in Pittsburgh with his dog Otis.