work/less workshop

AIGA Members click here to access your discounted price.

This is a two-part virtual workshop:
Part 1: Sat, Oct. 2, 2021 from 10:00 AM–11:30 AM PDT
Part 2: Sat, Oct. 9, 2021 from 10:00 AM–11:30 AM PDT

How do we work? Why do we work? Current practices of labour have been compressed, flattened, spread out, and scrambled into a goal-oriented, deliverable-fixated work week. As our relationships to work have changed, new demands are made and boundaries crossed. We invite you to explore how we might reclaim our creative practices and use self-publishing as a tool for community-building, self-expression, healing, meditation, and exploration. Is it possible to “work less” and shift this blurring of work through acts of radical self-publishing?

MJ Balvanera and Paul Soulellis invite you to join them in a remote workshop that unfolds over the course of a week, where we’ll reframe work as joy, and examine our relationships to labor through acts of interruption and joy in time and space. While working remotely has modified the way we work, it has also allowed us to connect virtually with different communities and perspectives. In this workshop we will explore work and self-publishing as it relates to personal practice.

Join us for a week of simple on-your-own provocations that generate creative “non-work,” leading up to a group session where we’ll gather, discuss, and make a unique collaborative publication that shares our ideas. Post workshop, each participant will receive a printed copy which will physically travel between 4 time zones, 3 cities, and 2 countries. Let’s explore the format of publishing as an opportunity to connect, disconnect, and explore, together.

About the workshop structure:

  • When you sign up via Eventbrite, you will receive an invitation to a group chat with everyone in our workshop cohort.
  • On October 2nd, we gather as a group and a series of simple making prompts will be sent to the workshop chat thread over the days leading up to our next session.
  • On October 9th we gather and collaboratively make a unique publication.
  • Your workshop fee includes the production of the final publication, everyone gets a copy!


Our Toolkit Series is a new program of courses and workshops for creative professionals.


MJ Balvanera (she/her) is a Graphic Designer from Mexico City. With the perspective of a cis and light-skinned Mexican national of European descent, MJ likes to think that graphic design can be more than just a series of the arbitrary Eurocentric visual standards. Rather, it can be a fun means of individual and cultural expression. She founded Co—Conspirator Press in 2018 and has since worked as a creative in diverse fields such as: editorial design and publishing, digital marketing, and web, along with workshops and lectures sprinkled throughout.

Paul Soulellis is an artist and educator based in Providence, RI. His practice includes teaching, writing, and experimental publishing, with a focus on queer methodologies and network culture. He writes and speaks about these topics internationally. He is the founder/director of Queer.Archive.Work — a non-profit reading room, publishing studio, and community space. As an educator, Paul is an Associate Professor of Graphic Design at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). He has spoken at events such as the Walker Art Center as a Design Insights speaker in 2018 and was a featured speaker at the Eyeo Festival in 2019. Paul is also the founder of Library of the Printed Web; a physical archive devoted to web-to-print artists’ books, zines, and printout matter. They are now housed at MoMA Library in NYC.


Members: $50
Students: $25
Non-Members: $75

AIGA LA is dedicated to making design an equitable and accessible practice for everyone. To support this, we offer a limited number of free community tickets to folx who are interested in participating in our events, but are unable to cover the registration fees. If that’s you, please click here for more information.

Proceeds for this event make all of our programming possible so we may in turn fairly compensate our speakers, fund our programs & outreach, and operational costs. AIGA Los Angeles is a nearly entirely volunteer-run 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and are thankful for your continued support.

This is a virtual event using Zoom. Once you are registered, an email will be sent at 9:00 AM on Saturday, October 2, with a link to join the online event.

Accommodations for captioning and/or sign language interpreter can be provided. Please let us know at time of registration by emailing us at: administration[at] Zoom also offers accessibility features which can be found on their website.


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When & Where
Sat, Oct 2, 2021 - Sat, Oct 9, 2021 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM PDT