October’s Nicer Tuesdays covered a national rebrand, a vital platform for combatting sexual harassment, witchcraft publishing and stop-motion, singing cakes. Detailed, poignant, inventive and hilarious, the evening’s talks at Oval Space showed the potential of creativity to both change the world and cause apparent “mass hysteria”. Here’s a few highlights, and things we learned at last night’s event.
Wales is so much more than its cliches
“Google Wales and this is what you get,” Dylan Griffith from Smörgåsbord began, showing a collection of cliched images of Welsh rarebit, sheep, dragons and “women in tall hats”. “That wasn’t my Wales. I know how good it is, and it wasn’t being represented the way I saw it.” Talking the audience through the studio’s vast identity commissioned by the Welsh government, Dylan showed how the designs drew from the country’s iconic flag, from redrawing the dragon icon to be more “realistic”, to using the horizon line subtly in photography and infographics, and creating a bespoke typeface in three tiers to represent the country’s personality. “The core objectives were to elevate our status, surprise and inspire, change perceptions, do good things and be unmistakably Wales.”
Anger can be fuel for empowerment
Eliza Hatch, creator of photojournalism project Cheer Up Luv started her talk with a painfully truthful statement: “The themes of my talk will be familiar to a lot of people in this room.” The project aims to share women’s stories of street sexual harassment, “using the public space as a stage to turn the story into strength, and vulnerability into empowerment.” Eliza told the audience a personal account of the incident that ignited the project, when a man told her cheer up. “It made me feel guilty, self-conscious, and then so angry. Why should I have to accept this?” Fuelled by this anger, Eliza’s project has now reached affected people around the world.
There is a market for a chic witch magazine
For our Halloween event, witchcraft magazine Sabat’s editor Elisabeth Krohn and designer Cleber Rafael de Campos enlightened us to its fascinating subject and readership. “When I found the witches of Instagram I saw the reach of this community,” Elisabeth said. The aim for its design, Cleber explained, was to create “a witchcraft magazine you wouldn’t be ashamed to read on the tube”. With very limited resources, the duo chose black and white to reduce costs and create visual coherence, and did most of the shoots themselves, finding inventive ways to make their ideas happen and “challenge the stigma against witches”. Once the first issue went out, however, the doors opened to a whole occult world.
Cakes can cause “mass hysteria”
Around the same time the Bake Off final was on air, Mikey Please – co-founder of animation studio Parabella – was taking us back to its first trailer on Channel 4, which the studio created entirely from baked goods. “We did this massive baking extravaganza, it was amazing, and making it was a challenge, but nothing could prepare me for what was to come,” he said dramatically. Transitioning the TV show from “the warm cosy bosom of the BBC to the edgy commercial talons of Channel 4” was tricky, he soon found out, when the trailer’s release sparked hilariously harsh critiques on Twitter, which he showed in between incredible films from behind the scenes of the shoot. His favourite was a Daily Starheadline that said the trailer had sparked “mass hysteria”.
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Supported by: Park Communications
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Drinks sponsor: Hop House 13
Thanks to Hop House 13 for providing the drinks!