5 badass Australian women in design right now.

Women make up 49.6% of the population and yet there are still so many professions where males predominantly occupy. Design is one of them. How many female designers can you name in Australia? Even one?

Unlike a lot of jobs where the author or creator’s name is splashed on the covers, introductions or credits, the nature of a designer’s work is invisible. We’re behind the brands, agencies and campaigns. This is why it’s so important to celebrate women in design, as too often our voices arent heard and our work isn’t seen with our name next to it.

It’s an interesting fact that 70% of graphic design students are women (that’s a big majority FYI) and yet only 11% of creative director positions are held by women. Not to mention the fact that only 0.1% of creative agencies are women-owned. Seems a bit unfair, huh?

So, for International Women’s Day, we thought we’d assemble some of Australia’s most influential women in design to inspire you to be the badass we know you are.

Gemma O’Brien

Instagram: MrsEaves101

Gemma is an incredible Australian artist specialising in the art of hand lettering, typography and illustration. Her most recognisable work is probably her large-scale typographic murals, which have been seen across the world. Her expressive calligraphy and illustration can also be seen in editorial publications and advertising campaigns.

Jasmine Dowling

Instagram: JasmineDowling

Brisbane based Jasmine is best known for her work with lettering and graphic design. She has worked with the likes of Too Faced Cosmetics, Sports girl and Hallmark. If you haven’t heard of those, what rock have you been living under? She also runs a successful online store where she sells her array of work, so check it out and buy one of her calenders, notepads or prints.

Frankie Ratford

Instagram: Frankieratford

Frankie is the founder and front woman of the global organisation The Design Kids, an online organisation created to bridge the gap between studying and working in design. This amazing program is a community for 259,610 people to help kickstart a career in design. There are even some free resources, so make the most of these incredible materials – you could even enter the TDK awards for free!

Ashley Ronning

Instagram: Ashleyronning

Ashley is a Melbourne-based illustrator and artist. She is well-known for her prints, posters and incredible array of ‘zine covers. Her down to earth design and use of colour make her work well worth checking out.

Eloise Jenkins

Instagram: Eloise_Jenkins

Founder of Apricate Studio, Eloise specialises in branding and print design. Her beautiful photography and minimal yet sophisticated designs definitely caught our eye. Her studio has created packaging for Apothotea, photography for Mecca and branding for Cloud Street.


We also recommend checking out invisibleinaustralia.com a platform that discusses diversity in design and gender equality in the workplace & womentor.com.au info a global mentorship program for women in graphic design.

If you personally need help within the graphic design industry, then there are plenty of initiatives to help. The incredible Mirella Marie has set up Womentor (womentor.com.au) and Jessica Walsh created Ladies, Wine & Design (ladieswinedesign.com) Both of these we’re founded to aim to address the invisibility and lack of support or recognition for women in the design industry.