Chicago Camps

Front-end Camp

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Columbia College Film Row – Chicago

Photo: Bhaskar Peddhapati


If you want to ramp up your HTML, CSS, Javascript, and throw in a bit of UX and Design for good measure, Front-end Camp is the event you won’t want to miss!

It takes a lot to stay current when you work in front-end design and development, and Front-end Camp will bring you presentations that help you level up. We’ll provide you with a full-day of presentations on the topics that are important to you, from speakers who bring the front-end knowledge and all for a great price that includes your lunch.

Interested in Sponsoring Front-End Camp?

We’re actively looking for sponsors for Front-End Camp. If you’re interested, or if you know someone we should talk to, please let us know!

Sign up now–these tickets go fast!

Meet Our Awesome Sponsors

These fantastic sponsors are helping us bring this great event to you.


Call for Speakers

Are you interested in speaking at Front-End Camp? We sure hope so! Submit your talk and let us know what’s on your mind to share.

First time speaker, or have limited experience? Let us know—we welcome new speakers and have been known to help folks round out their proposals.

Submit your talk—come hang out with us in Chicago and share what you’ve learned!

Arlo Bryan Guthrie

Arlo Bryan Guthrie
Lead Design Developer, Sprout Social

Arlo Bryan Guthrie is Sprout Social’s Lead Design Developer, focusing on the design system for our flagship web application and other online properties. He’s a devoted family man and an amateur whiskey snob. His parents were too young to name children.

For more, keep up with Arlo at or on Twitter as @arlodesign.

So They Agreed to a Design System. Now What?

You demonstrated the benefits, you gave several presentations, and they gave your design system proposal a +1. Where do you go from here? In this presentation, I’ll talk about the early steps Sprout Social took to ensure their design system got off to a strong start. Identify your stakeholders, set their expectations early, and demonstrate empathy for their needs. Learn from our mistakes and successes. We’ll even dive into a little code to demonstrate how our specific needs helped us determine when to use a third-party solution and when to build something ourselves.

Chris Courtney

Chris Courtney
Director of the Design Program,

Chris is the Director of the Design Program at, an online education startup based in San Francisco, California. At Bloc, he draws upon 20 years of design experience building brands and products to prepare the next wave of designers how to push beyond how something looks and focus on why it matters. When he’s not busy building design students, he can be found trying out new tech gadgets, consulting with media startups, and running marathons.

For more, keep up with Chris at or on Twitter as @designhawg.

Beyond the Show: The Making of Job-Ready Designers

Every year thousands of designers graduate from our educational institutions, yet many are not hired even though thousands of open positions go unfilled. Why is that? At Bloc, we’ve had conversations with hundreds of design program graduates and the design leaders who have hired them. This gives us a very good read on how graduates successfully land jobs as well as what design leaders see in these graduates that makes them want to bring them on. This talk will break apart what the ideal design graduate looks like to industry and investigate how we as educators can prepare the next wave of graduates to have a greater chance of success.

Jessica Bertling

Jessica Bertling
UX Deveveloper, NewBoCo, & Code Instructor, DeltaV Code School

Jessica Bertling is an avid gardener and loves to help things grow, especially ideas. After receiving her degree in Digital Media and Design she spent eight years in e-commerce, specializing in user experience design and front end web development. She now works for NewBoCo, parent organization of the Iowa Startup Accelerator, where she works with startups and local corporations to build innovative products. She’s also an instructor at DeltaV, Iowa’s premier code school, where she teaches front end web development.

For more, keep up with Jessica at or on Twitter as @jbertling.

Tale of Two Redesigns

As we move into a world of continuous deployment, divided work, fast moving ops teams and agile time boxes, how does something like a full responsive site overhaul or site redesign get accomplished without a mess of conflicts or new development freezes? What happens when you take two sister companies, both on the Internet Retailer Top 500 list, and try two completely different approaches? We’ll talk about what we learned, show you some pitfalls to avoid, and how we ultimately completed a successful full site responsive redesign in "bite sized" pieces, independent of other development, without disrupting the customer experience.

John Polacek

John Polacek
Lead Web Developer, Gesture

John Polacek leads front end at Gesture, the mobile fundraising platform for charity events, and is the author of many open source projects like Expressive CSS, Stacktable, Responsivator, BigVideo.js and Scrollorama.

For more, keep up with John at or on Twitter as @johnpolacek.

Rethinking CSS: Go Functional for Scaling, Performance and Simplicity

We can be our own worst enemies when it comes to creating CSS architectures. Functional CSS is a simple approach to creating and following consistent design patterns that lead to performant web applications at scale. If you do it right, the older a project gets, the less CSS you write. The only catch is that you may have to change the way you think.

We will look at real world applications of this technique, and show how you can apply it, from prototypes to large scale mature web applications.


Columbia College Film Row

We are big fans of our venue and sponsor: Columbia College in Chicago. Columbia is a great place to learn and upgrade your design skills and we’re excited to partner with them!

Columbia College

About Columbia College

Columbia College Chicago is an institution of higher education specializing in arts and media disciplines, with nearly 12,000 students pursuing degrees within 120 undergraduate and graduate programs.

Check out Columbia College.

Where to Park?

There are several easy-access parking garages available in the surrounding blocks.

Where to Stay?

Coming from out of town? We recommend staying at The Congress Plaza Hotel on Michigan Avenue in the heart of Chicago.

Chicago Sponsors Camps

  • Rosenfeld Media
  • Simplecast
  • Columbia College Chciago
  • MOMENT Design

Code of Conduct

All delegates, speakers, sponsors and volunteers at any Chicago Camps, LLC event are required to agree with the following code of conduct. Organizers will enforce this code throughout the event.

The Short Version
Full Version

Be respectful of other people; respectfully ask people to stop if you are bothered; and if you can’t resolve an issue contact the organizers. If you are being a problem, it will be apparent and you’ll be asked to leave.