Amanda Schutz was born in small-town Alberta to two loving, hard-working, sensible parents, and she STILL decided to pursue a career in illustration and Graphic Design.
Today, she is a successful business-owner and part-time fine artist whose irrepressible energy and inspiration have fuelled innumerable contributions to her profession and her beloved Albertan design community.
Having graduated in 1999 from the MacEwan University Design and Illustration program (where she returned to teach years later), Amanda cut her teeth as a junior graphic designer for two engineering firms, and, in 2002, went into business for herself as owner and Creative Director of Curio Studio, Inc (curiostudio.ca). Two decades and nearly 600 clients later, Curio is still providing agency-quality, illustration-led design services with the agility and dedication of a small team.
Throughout, Amanda has maintained a passion and a side-business in illustration and fine art (amandaschutz.com), finding constant inspiration in her garden, the lichens of Edmonton’s river valley, and her delightful offspring, Jacob Jasper. Her art has been featured in children’s books, magazines, and exhibitions across Canada and the United States (including New York’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum).
She has also been recognized (by Edmonton’s Avenue Magazine and by her alma mater) for her efforts in galvanizing and elevating the design community in Alberta. Besides teaching courses and workshops for artists of every level of acumen, Amanda was a two-term president of the Alberta North Chapter of Design Professionals of Canada, and, in 2016, she launched Canadian Women in Design (womenindesign.ca), an online advocacy community for female-identifying and gender-non-conforming design professionals.
“I have been blessed throughout my career with the fellowship and support of the Canadian design community,” she says. “As a species, I think designers see their profession less as a competition and more as a composition in which each element contributes to a whole greater than the sum of its parts.”As Curio marks its 20th year in business in December 2022, Amanda is grateful to the friends and pioneers who have helped her reach this milestone, and, in her own words, is “starting to get pretty good at this design thing.”
Awarded Fellowship 2022