• Postimage
Nicer Tuesdays

Write-up: exploring creative mistakes at our last Nicer Tuesdays

Posted by Maya Davies,

Given everyone’s capacity for making mistakes (royal screw-ups) we thought that it would make a great theme for a Nicer Tuesdays, so we invited along four speakers from different parts of the creative sphere to entertain us with their stories and share the lessons they’d learnt.

James Ward told us how he unintentionally founded The Boring Conference off the back of making a joke on twitter after Russell Davies’ Conference of Interestingness was cancelled. He gave a fascinating insight into the value of celebrating the boring, the mundane, and the everyday as a way to understand the world – pulling in a brilliant array of references from Georges Perec, to Charles and Ray Eames’ Powers of 10 film and this man who methodically documents his sneezes.

  • Jw1

    James Ward’s tweet

  • Jw2

    James Ward’s presentation

Anna Murray and Grace Winteringham took us on a whistle-stop tour of the lessons they’d learnt from setting up the creative organisation, Patternity: and taught us that making mistakes allows you to innovate; you don’t need to conform to other business models; it’s ok to punch above your weight but if you make mistakes it’s the way you deal with them that’s important.

  • P1

    Patternity presentation

  • P2

    Patternity presentation

Designer and film-maker Carl Burgess had some funny anedcotes; he showed how his hobby for collecting surreal archival photos nearly led to a lawsuit, and experimenting with hair-brained ideas, like filming a motorbike stunt, led to disastrously flooding a photographic studio with treacle. Yet, these hiccups later became inspiration for his work, like his Ratatat promo made using staged Getty stock footage and the video for Slayer that submerged dancers in treacle.

The legendary graphic artist Anthony Burrill, known for his signature style, revealed that he wasn’t always so confident in his ideas. Looking back at early projects that left his tutors at the RCA baffled and a poster design that received a public slamming, he showed that it took a while to find an approach that worked and build up an accomplished body of work.

  • Ab1

    Anthony Burrill’s RCA project

And, we had the enthusiastic Simon Cheadle give a 3 minute attendee talk showcasing a selection of drawing tools he’d developed to free people up when designing, forcing the user to make mistakes and embrace imperfections.

  • Sc1

    Simon Cheadle’s drawing tools

Check out our photos from the night on Facebook.

We’ll be releasing details about our next Nicer Tuesdays soon. It’s taking place on 28 May – save the date!

Posted by Maya Davies

Maya joined It’s Nice That in 2011 as our first ever events manager as well as writing for the site, in particular about architecture. She left in the summer of 2013.

Most Recent: Nicer Tuesdays View Archive

  1. List

    The final Nicer Tuesdays of the year took place last night and we were joined by six speakers who have all had particularly interesting and exciting years.

  2. List

    At our food-themed Nicer Tuesdays, we enjoyed some left of centre culinary insight from Ken Kirton of the wonderful Hato Press, the risograph printers behind books like Studio Cookbook and the recent Cooking with Scorsese, a wonderful little publication that turns the idea of the cookbook on its head. Instead of recipes, we get stills from food-focussed films that encourage readers to look at cooking through a different, more cinematic lens. “There’s no step-by-step ingredients list – it’s all screenshots and subtitles,” said Ken.

  3. List

    At last month’s food-themed Nicer Tuesdays our first speaker was Caroline Till from multi-disciplinary design studio FranklinTill, which curated the Sensory Suppers at London Design Festival 2011. The idea was born, Caroline said, from a reaction she was hearing among designers, journalists and visitors to LDF that they wanted “no more chairs.” She explained: “There’s a rise for intangible experiences – we wanted to redesign how you interact with food.”

  4. List

    At last month’s Nicer Tuesdays our final speakers were Lee Belcher and David McKendrick – formerly of Wallpaper* and Esquire respectively – whose new venture B.A.M. has just redesigned the magazine for art auction house Christie’s. The pair talked us through how they developed the new look and feel, mainly by immersing themselves in the Christie’s archives.

  5. Nicer_tuesdays_highlights_2014_list_image

    For the final Nicer Tuesdays of the year we’re returning with a very special evening of talks celebrating some of the creative highlights of 2014.

  6. List

    Food was on the proverbial table at last night’s Nicer Tuesdays, with four speakers who engaged in all-things-edible talking us though their work in experiential food design; print and publishing; illustration and, perhaps most obscurely, edible insects.

  7. List

    At last month’s Nicer Tuesdays we were joined by photographer Dan Tobin Smith who talked us through his extraordinary London Design Festival installation of colour-coded clutter called The First Law Of Kipple. “LDF is always about new things – a slightly different kind of chair – so it was interesting to extend it to things that are kind of useless,” Dan explained. He talked us through his inspirations rooted in an interest in the laws of thermodynamics, and the practical considerations such as drawing up a definitive definition of what actually constituted kipple. But at its heart the piece had very universal appeal – “We can all relate to this idea of stuff,” Dan said.

  8. Nicer_tuesdays_food_list_image

    Nicer Tuesdays is back, and this month we are joined by four creatives who are exploring the world of food in unique and inspiring ways.

  9. List

    At October’s art themed Nicer Tuesdays we heard from Jessica Vaughan, programme coordinator at Studio Voltaire. She looked at the difference between commissioning and curating and explained that at Studio Voltaire, “there is a huge emphasis on risk-taking, and putting the artist at the centre of everything we do.” Focusing on their latest show with Turner Prize nominee Marvin Gaye Chetwynd, Jessica explained how she helps bring this challenging and provocative work to life. “I work with artists not art objects to make things happen, she said, but conceded, “as a curator you do spend a lot of time thinking about funding.”

  10. List

    First up at our art-themed Nicer Tuesdays we heard from Neil Griffiths, founder of the Arts Emergency charity. Describing himself as “part uncle, part agitator, part administrator,” his organisation was born out of “ a lot of passion and lot of anger.” Its mission is to open up careers in the creative and media industries to people who don’t enjoy the privileges that often give certain people a head start. From this simple idea the charity has grown to working with thousands of young people offering one-to-one mentoring and practical help like UCAS advice and vocal coaching for auditions. “We have got a toxic situation,” Neil explained in terms of financial cuts for arts education,” so we are doing something very practical and very positive.”

  11. List

    Last night’s Nicer Tuesdays was themed around art and we welcomed four speakers who looked at the topic from the perspectives of education, research, curation and publication.

  12. List

    At our photography themed NIcer Tuesdays, Laura Pannack talked about learning by getting out and doing, and a bit about her mum. Laura traced her longstanding interest in vulnerability back to her university days and explained how this developed into an interest in young British naturists. But the breakthrough on this work came when her mum told her “to stop photographing nakedness and start photographing people.” Laura talked about gaining the trust of the young naturist community, the things she learned about naturists’ Facebook and nude-only sports, and how the project’s challenges developed her creative skills.

  13. List

    At last month’s photo-themed Nicer Tuesdays we were joined by Luke Evans, a photographer, designer and one of our 2014 Graduates. Luke gave us a funny and honest account of three of his projects, from swallowing photographic film and creating landscapes on his kitchen table to printing with 400,000 volts. Outlining the fun and the challenges of working on what he called “super low-budget stuff,” his talk confirmed the importance of following through with ideas, however daft they may initially seem. “There were tonnes and tonnes of failures,” he admitted.