Reason To Be Creative 2014

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Last week we’ve participated in an exciting one day conference about creativity and design. Reason to be creative brought together the finest artists and designers on the scene in the fantastic background represented by L.S.O at St. Luke, a beautifully refurbished church in the heart of London.

The speakers:

  • Jake Archibald
  • Karsten Schmidt
  • Eva-Lotta Lamm
  • Mr Bingo
  • Brendan Dawes

Jake Archibald

The late start (12.00am) did not save John Davey the hard duty of waking up the notoriously night owl community of designers, programmers and artists.

After the introduction, a bare feet Jake Archibald took the audience through an informative, at times slightly too geeky, journey into web browser ecology. The talk titled Your Browser is Talking Behind You highlighted the discrepancies in behaviours and capabilities of our most familiar browser- namely Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari. He claims that “..the problem with the web is the presence of products good on their own but not as a group”.

Karsten Schmidt

Then, Karsten Schmidt conducted an exciting ego(de)centric talk. Ego(de)centric in the sense that he almost did show personal work but rather enlightened the crowd with a creative analysis of the current stage of design and society. He started with a 4min long rap poetry video about coded language defining what a creative person should do. He went on describing how we are all tighten together by the defects of technology, defects that often are the starting point of most of his works. He claims how “…the potentials of programming would amplify anyone’s work” and that the biggest lesson he’s learnt from coding is humbleness. He concluded introducing Devart, an exciting project in collaboration with Barbican and Google that will culminate with Digital Revolution, an exhibition claimed to be the most comprehensive presentation of digital creativity ever to be staged in the UK.

Eva-Lotta Lamm

After lunch break, the vibrant Eva-Lotta Lamm guided the audience through a sketching lesson on the basics of dynamic, perspective and proportions involved in sketching. This activity she believes, if practiced regularly can ensure a positive wealth of fun. She also created a sentence generator to help ignite her daily creativity and typographic craving.

Mr Bingo

The award for the funniest talk of the day definitely goes to Mr Bingo. An exhilarating talk merging illustration, banks, 70s porn, hate mail, cheap portrait, woman’s self-defence, graffiti, fat animals, his father as well as the much hated Martin Holley that once wrote a nasty comment about one of his illustration and since then keeps reappearing next to a big FUCK in Mr Bingo’s works.

The Hair Portrait series was originally inspired by the somehow ambiguous 70s porn hairstyle. A funny anecdote to this project saw Mr Bingo asking his massive followers to offend and trash the facebook page of a plagiarist stealing his art, in a matter of minutes the guys received thousands of shameful comments and had to take down his page.

Hate Mail is probably the most successful of his project with a portfolio of 700+ vintage letters artistically painted that display offensive content. You pay 40£ plus postage and he will happily offend you or your family with an illustration and send it back to you. Genius! Make sure you check his site for a juicy selection of finely crafted illustration full of fun.

And please, check his policy on work for free

Brendan Dawes

The grand finale saw my personal favorite of the day, Brendan Dawes. He is a master in creating work that are both technically exquisite and socially aware. He explained the crowd how every day he wakes up and try to learn as much as possible in a single day. This results in what he calls Demo Porn, a selection of, often, frivolous creature with no purpose. Through the use of kinect, leap motion or 3D printing he is always on the go creating new installations, objects or sculptures. Sometimes then, the frivolous evolves into the fabulous. The Happiness Machine is a great example of a technically excellent execution of a cool concept. Connections is another example of Dawes’ pioneering approach to design.

Special thanks for the pictures to fantastic photographer, Vita Vilcina.

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About the author

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This post is written by Mattia, Designer & Writer & Maker trying to make the web a bit more human. Founder of Who Said That, he is responsible for TAH live reportage from design conferences, festivals & exhibitions around the world.

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