Designathon 2024 – A platform where creativity knows no bounds and design takes the spotlight!

Posted on  16 May, 2024


Designathon, Lollypop Design Studio’s flagship design event, never fails to amaze the audience and captivates them with its timely charm. From hosting 200+ designers, to cracking the conduction of a 24 hour design hackathon, we have always witnessed this amazing event featuring a new twist, a new addition every single year! This marked the fifth edition of Designathon, and we couldn’t be more proud, exhilarated and literally on cloud nine for carrying its legacy so far!

Designathon is all about celebrating designers and what they stand for. It’s a platform where creativity knows no bounds and design is inherent. It’s a platform for all those design-hungry minds who just want to live, breathe and create design. It’s a platform where design is not only celebrated, but also honored! It’s a platform where we have seen countless limitations being broken and countless memories being made!

Designathon’s inception.
Designathon’s inception

We decided to conduct Designathon, because we noticed a huge lack of opportunities for designers to meet, network and connect with each other over their shared interest and love for design. We realized that maybe with this event, designers will feel more valued, and will know for sure that there’s an entire community out there supporting them on their journey. And, finally, all these assumptions we made years ago are starting to come true year after year with every edition of  Designathon – the love that we’ve been receiving from everyone, be it a designer or a non-designer, feels surreal! 

We aimed to curate an event that is structured similar to any hackathon, but of course, focusing solely on design. And this is when the name, Designathon, originated.

We decided to allot 24 hours to each team to come up with their best design solutions to a challenge that we presented. However, we made sure that the problem statement/challenge we proposed reflected prevalent issues faced collectively by us on a daily basis. As we started pitching this idea to our audience, we organically got so many people interested in this one-of-its-kind design hackathon! It resonated with all the designers, who were on the lookout for a challenge to solve – and provided them with an opportunity to prove that their designs can serve a purpose that goes beyond just aesthetics, a common misconception amongst so many people that time, and that their solutions actually hold the power to make a real impact in the world! There onwards, this format became our staple, marking the birth of our flagship event, Designathon!

Designathon 2024: New edition, new addition!
Designathon 2024: New edition, new addition

This year, we not only conducted Designathon in Bengaluru, but also, for the very first time in the history of Designathons, in the city of dreams – Mumbai! The design crowd at Bengaluru has always welcomed Designathon with open arms , supported it every single year, and celebrated design with us in the best way possible. With Mumbai, I must say that we were a little nervous, because we never conducted such an event there before, and we questioned whether we would be able to attract the same scale of crowd as we do in Bangalore every year. However, Mumbai’s vibes were impeccable and the design scene there was super impressive!

It’s truly a city that never sleeps, and we saw that there was a fire burning in every designer present at the event, ready to just give it their all. We conducted Designathon in Mumbai in partnership with one of the leading design schools in our country, ISDI School of Design and Innovation, and they welcomed and hosted Designathon with us in the nicest, most enthusiastic way possible, ensuring that it meets the success we envisioned it to in Mumbai. The participants and literally everyone, so full of life, supported Designathon through and through, and were ready to take on any challenge that was thrown at them! Everyone cherished every moment, enjoying every little aspect the city had to offer, from the food, to the beautiful landscapes to the amazingly warm people present! We can’t wait to go back to Mumbai with another crazy design event!

The owls at Designathon – Our passionate participants and crew!The owls at Designathon - Our passionate participants and crew!

Designathon witnessed some extremely creative participants this year, across both the cities! The best part about Designathon? No sleep for 24 hours! This not only applies to the participants, but also to our crew. Were they bummed about having to stay up? NOPE! In fact, it’s quite the opposite. When you’re surrounded by such vibrant energy and are amongst participants  with so much zest and zeal for their craft, this contagious energy quickly spreads to everyone present, and then there’s nothing that can stop us from staying up and relishing every moment this experience has to offer! We have our crew travelling from every city to volunteer and support us at Designathon, and we utilize this opportunity to connect with everyone present, which many times, has led to impromptu activities such as horror story narrations, playing gully cricket at 3 AM at our studio, dance parties and pizza feastings to recall a few! All in all, there’s not a single dull moment at our 24 hour design event!

Tackling challenges head on with the best design solutions!
Tackling challenges head on with the best design solutions!

Designathon aims to bring together creative minds from all over India, each with their own unique stories, challenges and experiences to share. They collaboratively tackle a problem statement presented, and we get to watch, in the most magical way possible, some amazing solutions being formed! I mean, some solutions are so breathtaking that you wouldn’t believe your eyes when you see that they were crafted in just 24 hours. With 10 teams in each city, we receive an array of unique solutions to the challenges posed every year. We take so much pride in the fact that our designers have so much to contribute, and actually witness how design has shaped our future, and continues to do so.

Industry leaders gracing the red carpet at Designathon!
Industry leaders gracing the red carpet at Designathon

Designathon has consistently welcomed leaders making waves in the design industry, who are not only a part of our jury, but also offer invaluable insights to our participants, guiding them towards enhancing their solutions and evaluating its practicality. This year, in Mumbai, we had Anil Reddy, founder of Lollypop Design Studio along with Harsh Vijay, an accomplished engineer-turned-designer with a profound background in product design, who is also the founder and CEO of Brucira, a Design Agency. We also had Mr. Anando Dutta,a graduate from NID, Ahmedabad, and currently the dean of Academics at ISDI School of Design and Innovation, along with Jai Ranjit, Associate Director of Student Experience at ISDI. They were all simply adored by all our participants, since they not only advised them, but time and again, motivated them and lifted their spirits throughout the event. 

In Namma Bengaluru, we had Madhumita Gupta, VP of Design at Reliance Retail, with a career spanning 17+ years focused on digital experience and Suman Bhaskara, an enthusiastic leader in UX at JPMorgan Chase & Co. We also had our EVP of design and software services grace the red carpet as a mentor and teach our participants how the future is design, and how design and technology will conquer the world hand-in-hand. With such strong profiles, and such a wealth of expertise and experience, our industry-leaders, every year, offer invaluable feedback to our participants, which has definitely left a lasting impression!

And the legacy continues!
And the legacy continues

Designathon, a few years ago, was just our dream, our vision. Watching this event, year after year, being loved by so many people all across the globe, makes us realize that yes, we were able to make an impact with this beautiful initiative.  Our end goal is to establish a robust design network that is unshakable and a community that no one can uproot! We have already witnessed designers planting the seeds of success at Designathon; now, we are ready to see the results of all their toil come to fruition! By hosting such events, we ensure that design receives its due recognition, and takes the center-stage which it so rightfully deserves! 

Last year, we took Designathon to a Global platform by conducting it in Vietnam, and it was loved by everyone there as well! We believe that Designathon is destined to become a global event, a worldwide design festival, uniting designers from all over the world. This is a reminder to everyone out there that this event, as I would like to call it, a 100 percent made in India initiative, is only existing because our designers, here in India, supported us, believed in us and themselves, and trusted their passion for design, right from the start. It is a premonition that India is definitely going to be the next design destination!