I just got back from New York City after attending two inspiring conferences: SciViz and Ladies Get Paid. 2018 was my second year to attend, SciViz the New York Science Visualization Conference. An old friend from my Scientific American days Lucy Reading-Ikkanda gave an amazing talk on making infographics accessible. Another great talk in the same vein was given by Kennedy Elliott of National Geographic, to quote her “I believe that those who are most effective at communicating esoteric concepts are those who are able to ignore deep knowledge and view the topic from a more uninformed and curious perspective.” Sadly SciViz will not be held in 2019… hopefully this is just a brief hiatus.
The second conference was held by Ladies Get Paid. Free to join, LGP provides the resources for women to rise up in their career, and an online community of 30,000+ women worldwide. The conference was a whirl wind of successful women talking about valuing their work, negotiating fees, growing businesses, dealing with imposter syndrome etc. Science illustration is a rare field in which women out number men, however I’ve noticed the men are usually in paid positions instead of freelancing. And as women it can be harder to not be considered a hobbyist. The LGP conference did inspire me to find more clients in the year to come.