Join a conversation with Tanner Woodford, executive director of the Chicago Design Museum, and learn how he built a community to help people experience the power of design.
- This is an audio course. No need to watch, just listen. Welcome to the latest edition to LinkedIn Learning, Podcasts. We've curated some of the best creative podcasts and made them even easier to listen to. Each episode is split into sections. Use the links in the contents area to skip to whichever section you like. We're always looking for new ways to help you learn and we'd appreciate your feedback. Thanks for listening. (gentle music) - [Interviewer] Let's go back in history and let's talk about young Tanner. - [Tanner] Baby Tanner? - [Interviewer] Baby Tanner. (man laughs) So baby Tanner, where did you grow up? - Macomb, Illinois. I was born and raised on a farm, spent time between the farm and the city, and the town. - Okay, Macomb, that's Western? - [Tanner] That's Western Illinois University, so it's 200 miles south of Chicago, southwest. And it's a great little town, about 20,000 people when Western is in session, 10,000 when it's not. So there's this fluctuation. (man laughs) It goes back and forth, and though I say that I grew up on a farm, I was not good at the farm stuff. I was in my room, playing around with toys and tools and once the computer came, I was playing around with the computer and the laptop. - [Interviewer] So, what sort of farm stuff could you have done, had you wanted to? - [Tanner] So I had my arm broken by a cow. I was stepped on by a cow, kicked my left knee. So, not much, is what I'm getting at. Yeah. (laughter) I can follow Dad, I can follow my brother. And they were supportive and wanted to teach me different things. But I couldn't go to a farm today and do anything. Aside from being a great second hand. - [Interviewer] Farmhand Tanner's career was short-lived and then- - [Tanner] Non-existent. (laughter) - [Interviewer] You went from there to, did you go to college? - [Tanner] Yep, so I ended up out at Arizona State. I was in Tempe, Arizona. I was out there for about seven or eight years. And, it was an interesting transition. I followed a girl out and it worked out for awhile and then didn't work out. And that's all good. And ended up going to school and doing a lot of side projects, learning about the world and- - [Interviewer] Why ASU? I mean, obviously you said you followed a girl, but- - [Tanner] It ended up being an incredible crazy design school. And I lucked into that, did not expect that to happen. So I went and ended up in school for five years. The first year, I showed up, told one of those academic advisors that I wanted to make websites. And they put me in the game design department. And it was miserable. It was just not what I expected. So I spent a year in art school, which was amazing. Color theory, did drawing, did photography, those sorts of things. And then transitioned to the design school, which was very, sort of like UIC here. It's very regimented. It's a four-year program. - [Interviewer] It's a great school, yeah. - [Tanner] It's amazing. And, because of the way that that school works, once you start, you have to go through all four years. You can't come and go and that kind of thing. So I lucked into the fact that it was a really good design school. And then just fully embraced it. And it completely shaped and changed who I was and who I am.
This course was created by Justin Ahrens. We are pleased to offer this training in our library.