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Amanda Blair Roberson

Producer of Launchpad CCC, Amanda Blair-Roberson on recreating in-person experiences virtually

Amanda has a slight obsession with bubble tea and K-dramas but has dedicated her life to creating expressive experiences that celebrate art, culture, and social justice instead.

She’s spent 13 years in the fashion and beauty industry, as a self-taught makeup artist, working for renowned publications and fashion houses —such as Vogue Italia, Nylon, Vanity Teen, The Bay to name a few notables. 

After graduating with honours from Humbers Advertising and Communication program, she joined the Artscape Daniels Launchpad team in early 2019. And currently works at Artscape Daniels Launchpad as the Partnership Coordinator. She has carved out her path at Launchpad to further develop community culture through cultural programming, partnerships, and community activations. Cultivating and pulling in relationships such as Refinery29, Universal Music, AGO, R3VE, and many more. 

Anybody that knows Amanda well, also knows her newest venture to spearhead the Launchpad Member Wellness programming is perfectly aligned. This addition to her extensive portfolio provides access to free programming that centers around mental health, resilience, and mental & physical wellness. 

This brings us to the upcoming Launchpad Creative Career Conference (LCCC), and its return for four-days of virtual content with industry professionals that will lead guided conversations, panel discussions, and insights on how to build a creative career. 

We caught up with Amanda, the producer of SUMMIT and Launchpad Creative Career Conference to share her insights on what’s to come.

1. What has had the most impact on your perspective as a Partnership Coordinator?

I think understanding that partnerships are not singularly defined. You need to treat each relationship uniquely to be able to understand the ways you can create together. There isn’t one avenue that partnerships should take—being able to adapt is key.

2. What’s the hardest part about building out programming?

I think managing multiple timelines—it always seems like you have infinite time, but with all the moving pieces, deadlines can often creep up on you. Each program has unique components to it that you’re unable to predict a lot of the time. And even though it may be one of the hardest parts…it’s also one of the great learnings that teach you how to think on your toes.

3. Tell us about a program/initiative you’re most proud of working on in your career—and why is it Launchpad Creative Career Conference?

This sounds like a traditional answer but being able to pull off an engaging program during COVID-19. This pandemic has pulled us in various ways. Therefore, creating anything that could be done in person, and for it to have a similar effect online is always a win as I am more used to large-scale, in-person events. I LIVE for the in-person connecting, conversations, and relationship building but recreating that same experience virtually and witnessing similar effects is a proud achievement of mine. 

4. What do you want attendees of Launchpad Creative Career Conference to experience?

First and foremost, have fun! I want attendees to learn from the diverse portfolio of organizations we brought to the virtual table. This is real-time experiences and knowledge being shared—so take notes, and extract as much as you can for your own creative growth.

5. What’s your must-read, watch, listen, or advice for all creative entrepreneurs?

Must watch is Pretend It’s a City. There is something about Fran Lebowitz and her narrative that sparks a very dynamic way of thinking. It’s slightly crude and obviously opinionated but anything that gets you thinking should be adapted to the creative individual.

6. What brand or creative entrepreneur is under your radar and why?

A brand under my radar would be Telfar. Now, they have been around for a bit, but I am enjoying the development of how they’re rapidly growing. The absolutely true-to-brand storytelling that they do, is so well done. I also love the community evolution that is going on around Telfar, and I can only imagine it will grow. 

 

This year, Launchpad Creative Career Conference offers four sessions that focus on economic growth for creative entrepreneurs—from personal branding as a BIPOC professional to strategic partnerships and business sustainability. Attendees will have the chance to absorb first-hand lessons, tangible triumphs, and insider knowledge from various experts: 

  • Geoff of Jam3, a Sr. Strategist that has developed experiences and strategy for a range of clients such as Facebook, Google, PostMates, Oculus, Adidas, and more.
  • Yazmin Butcher of Refinery 29, an art Director that has been seen in the New York Times and worked with brands like Reebok but prefers to be known as a graphic designer, illustrator and budding comedian living in Toronto.
  • Summer Ruddock Ellis of 4YE, a brand director, curator, and stylist that has worked with Canada Goose, Director X, and Vogue.
  • Jamal Bruger of TierZero, a highly sought-after photographer that also moonlights as a philanthropist helping kids with big dreams gain access to them.

Passes for the 4-day conference are pay-what-you-can (PWYC): To see the full schedule and to register now, please visit LaunchpadCCC.com.

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