Nicer Tuesdays 2017: Bigger, Better, Nicer
After a hugely successful Nicer Tuesdays series last year, we are very excited to announce that for 2017 the event will be doubling in size and moving to Oval Space. Situated in an atmospheric converted industrial space in east London’s Bethnal Green, Oval Space has established itself as a hub for the arts in recent years, and will now host all Nicer Tuesdays 2017 events. Ticket-holders will be able to eat, drink and chat in the venue before and after the talks, in the summer enjoying the balcony space and its views of London. Plus, since every Nicer Tuesdays 2016 event sold out within a few hours, we’re really happy to be welcoming double the audience this year.
November’s Nicer Tuesdays will encompass noughties nostalgia, giant robots, historical graphic design and diversity in publishing. Buy tickets here for 28 November, to hear from Ewen Spencer, Dougal Wilson, Gal-dem and GraphicDesign&.Dougal Wilson has directed some of the best-known, most-watched ads in history. These include award-winning Channel 4 Paralympics ad We’re the Superhumans and four consecutive John Lewis Christmas ads (including The Journey, Always a Woman, Monty the Penguin and Buster the Boxer). His recent idents for Channel 4 unleashed a giant robot on the nation’s TV screens and Dougal will be telling us how it happened.
Our monthly talks event Nicer Tuesdays had humble beginnings but its motivation was simple: invite exciting creatives to share short, sharp insights to recent projects, aiming to inform and inspire. Each year it’s grown and evolved, but this spirit has always remained at its core.
At Nicer Tuesdays, photographer Eliza Hatch gave a candid account of the beginnings of Cheer Up Luv and its incredible impact. The online project features portraits by Eliza accompanied by interviews with victims of street harassment, aiming to create a platform for stories and promote discussion around the subject.
“Call me biased, but I think Wales is pretty epic,” says Dylan Griffith, whose design studio Smörgåsbord was behind the recent rebrand of the country. Commissioned by the Welsh government, the visual identity is all encompassing, with a bespoke Cymru Sans typeface, a logo, and treatment for all types of communication that subtly but unmistakably references Welsh heritage.
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.h3. Wales is so much more than its cliches
This month’s Nicer Tuesdays at Oval Space takes on important, topical subjects, and delves into the makings of some instantly recognisable recent creative works. Eliza Hatch will be telling the story of Cheer Up Luv, a photography and discussion platform focused on sexual harassment on the streets of the UK. Dylan Griffith from design studio Smörgåsbord will be sharing insights to its Wales rebrand, which recently was nominated for a Designs of the Year award. In honour of Halloween, Sabat editor Elisabeth Krohn will be taking us through the ideas and personalities involved in her magazine about contemporary witchcraft, feminism and the occult. And Mikey Please of Parabella will be showing us just how the entirely baked trailer for The Great British Bake Off was made.
From stop motion baked goods to contemporary witchcraft, October’s Nicer Tuesdays has it all. Buy tickets for 31 October, to hear from Parabella’s Mikey Please, Cheer Up Luv’s Eliza Hatch, Smörgåsbord’s Dylan Griffith, and Sabat magazine editor Elisabeth Krohn.
Josh McKenna’s illustrations are those you will undoubtedly recognise. Commissioned by both Google and Instagram this year, Josh’s celebratory illustrations of “what it’s like to be gay” for Pride have been one of the most shareable hits of 2017. Largely down to his illustration skill and due to his ability to represent “fun and sassy” characteristics, “but cover sensitive topics as well”.
David Bailey’s talk from September’s Nicer Tuesdays is a must-watch for any font fanatic. Creative director of GEL (global experience language) and UX&D at the BBC, David discusses the intricacies of launching a new typeface for the BBC, titled BBC Reith after its 1927 director general.
Choreographer and director Holly Blakey taught the Nicer Tuesdays audience the benefits of stepping outside your direct medium, and how this can help you to learn about your practice, as well as the wider repercussions of it.
Laura Callaghan took to the Nicer Tuesday’s stage in September, taking the audience on a journey through her illustration career. Coming from a small town in Ireland, — “their best known cultural output so far is The Corrs, that’s what I have to live up to” — moving to England in 2009 for a masters in illustration at Kingston University.
At September’s Nicer Tuesdays (this month on a Monday), four very different talks taught us about the different routes creatives apply to projects.
We are excited to announce that illustrator Josh McKenna is our final speaker at this month’s Nicer Tuesdays, which will take place on Monday 18 September rather than our usual Tuesday slot.
Kicking off our autumn season of Nicer Tuesdays is an inspiring line-up of speakers coming to share their diverse creative experience. Get tickets now to hear from BBC creative director David Bailey on its new typeface BBC Reith; Holly Blakey, director and choreographer to Florence Welch, Mabel and Coldplay; Laura Callaghan, an illustrator renowned for her compelling portraits of powerful women; and illustrator Josh Mckenna will be sharing insight to his recent commissions from Instagram and Google for Pride.
“There can’t be many people whose face could be replaced with a butt and you still know who they are,” is how renowned illustrator Andrew Rae began explaining the process of creating his recent cover for The New York Times Magazine at August’s Nicer Tuesdays.
Random International’s head of technology, Dev Joshi, took to the Nicer Tuesdays stage for a brilliant talk about the studio’s recent collaboration with Wayne McGregor’s +/- Human, which took place at The Roundhouse, London in August.
Director Raine Allen-Miller (one of It’s Nice That’s 2017 Ones to Watch), talked the audience through her career from advertising to directing, wanting her films to go beyond just a minute.
At the age of just 25, photographer Hollie Fernando took us through her career at Nicer Tuesdays and began with her teenage years.
At this month’s Nicer Tuesdays we dived into the processes that have built recent impressive creative projects. From photographic campaigns with renaissance influences by Hollie Fernando, a music video by Raine Allen Miller visualising anxiety, and Random International’s giant orbs that are meditative and daunting at the same time, to Andrew Rae’s mammoth illustration of “Fear and Loathing in the time of Trump”.
At Nicer Tuesdays August, a brilliantly eclectic and inspiring line-up of speakers will take to the stage at Oval Space. Photographer Hollie Fernando will be giving insight to her painting-inspiring portraits for Laura Marling and other musicians; illustrator Andrew Rae will tell us about the process of creating his recent Trumplandia cover for The New York Times Magazine; director Raine Allen-Miller will take us behind the scenes of her latest music video for Denai Moore; and Devraj Joshi from Random International will be sharing the fascinating creation process for the studio’s work for show +/- Human.
We are very excited to launch the line-up for August’s Nicer Tuesdays, featuring speakers across the disciplines of photography, illustration, film and experimental art installation. Get tickets now for 29 August at Oval Space, to hear from Random International, Hollie Fernando, Raine Allen Miller and Andrew Rae. The event is now sold out – sign up to the newsletter to be the first to know about future events.
Executive producer at highly respected design agency ManvsMachine, Ellie Bailey, took us through the vast and hugely diverse campaign it put together for the recent Air Max Day, done completely in-house.
Photographer Peter Anderson began his career capturing the indie club scene in the 70s, and has shot Mick Jagger, Ozzy Osborne and Madonna, among others. Speaking at Nicer Tuesdays, Peter shared a personal side project using a Widelux camera, showing many never before seen images.
Over the past 20 years, graphic design studio Spin has designed everything from the Ministry of Sound identity to publications such as Adventures in Typography. Here, Tony Brook and Claudia Klat take us behind the scenes at their London studio, and run us through a few recent projects including the identity for Parisian publisher Corps Reviver and the design of its book, L’Heure du Cocktail.
Illustrator Kelly Anna is quickly making big waves in the creative world with her bold and powerful figurative works. At Nicer Tuesdays, she told us more about her work live illustrating fashion shows, designing prints worn by Beyoncé, and her current collaboration with Nike Women.
Looking up and seeing the hidden details in places others might not is a talent shared by each of our speakers from Nicer Tuesdays July. Spin, Kelly Anna, Peter Anderson and ManvsMachine took to the Oval Space stage to share their approach to projects, the workings of their studios and how this manifests in diverse ways. Here are a few learnings from the sunny evening.h3. A Corps Reviver is like hair of the dog
At Nicer Tuesdays July our speaker line-up has a broad range of experience, anecdotes and advice to share. Taking to the Oval Space stage will be Spin studio’s Tony Brook and Claudia Klat, illustrator Kelly Anna, photographer Peter Anderson and ManvsMachine executive producer Ellie Bailey.
At July’s Nicer Tuesdays, an eclectic and inspiring group of creatives will be speaking at Oval Space about their latest work. Get tickets now for 25 July to hear from Spin’s Tony Brook and Claudia Klat, illustrator Kelly Anna, photographer Peter Anderson and ManvsMachine’s Ellie Bailey. The event is now sold out – sign up to the newsletter to be the first to know about future events.
Designer Weirdcore treats us to a rare insight to his visuals for Aphex Twin. Using live generated elements combined with trippy and intense pop culture imagery manipulated in real time, what Weirdcore puts on the screens is both mind and retina warping.
Renowned graphic designer Sonya Dyakova, formerly of Phaidon and Frieze, now runs her own London studio Atelier Dyakova. Sonya took to the Nicer Tuesdays podium to explain the typography and retro references behind her recent drool-worthy food photography book, Feast for the Eyes.
Director Noah Harris has previously turned his hand to ads and music videos but recently combined the two in a film for E.On starring Gorillaz. In his Nicer Tuesdays talk, he took us behind the scenes of his trip to the ‘desert’ to direct 1000 solar powered toys in an epic feat of in-camera filmmaking.
Gem Fletcher, director of photography for Riposte, is also an established art director in her own right. At Nicer Tuesdays, she shared some of her dynamic personal work and insights into the magazine’s much-lauded recent cover shoot by featuring a topless Ericka Hart.
This month’s Nicer Tuesdays talks went behind the scenes of some huge landmark events in the creative industry in enthralling detail. Taking to the stage at Oval Space, Riposte director of photography Gem Fletcher explained the thinking behind the magazine’s powerful cover shoot for issue eight; director Noah Harris showed us how he made the epic E.On ad with Gorillaz; Sonya Dyakova took us through the beautiful archival inspiration behind her design for book Feast for the Eyes; and Weirdcore treated us to a rare insight to his visual work for Aphex Twin, MIA and others. Here, we pick out some of the things we learned.h3. Passion can breed powerful and beautiful results
Ahead of next week’s Nicer Tuesdays event, we meet the speakers who will take to the Oval Space stage.
Taking to the podium at Oval Space this month we have a truly brilliant line-up of creatives enlightening us on the ideas and inspirations behind their most recent projects. Get tickets now for 27 June to hear from Riposte magazine editor Danielle Pender, director Noah Harris, graphic designer Sonya Dyakova, and Aphex Twin visual designer Weirdcore. The event is now sold out – sign up to the newsletter to be the first to know about future events.
French illustrator and animator Simon Landrein is a master of the cheeky comic, his pop-inspired work full to the brim with sauciness and innuendo. However, his approach had to change dramatically recently when Simon was commissioned to create a sequence of a children’s Cartoon Network show, The Amazing World of Gumball, and here he tells us more about this fascinating process.
Filmmaker Akinola Davies talks about about his collaboration with photographer Ruth Ossai and stylist Ibrahim Kamara on a film for Kenzo, named Gidi Gidi Bu Ugwu Ze, Unity is Strength. Capturing a beauty pageant starring Nigerian Igbo youth, the film celebrates the varied nuances within Nigerian traditions and African culture as a whole, from hairstyles to familiar icons of day-to-day life, in an authentic and beautiful way.
Animator Yukai Du creates vibrant and intricate illustrated animations for all kinds of stories. Her catalogue of wondrous work for Ted-Ed has seen her bring to life topics ranging from plant communication to self-driving cars.
Frances Corner OBE is a strong force in fashion activism. She’s been head of the London College of Fashion since 2005, done a TED talk, and for International Women’s Day she wrote an opinion piece for It’s Nice That about how fashion can be political.
This month at Nicer Tuesdays we heard a fascinating and emotive series of talks from Frances Corner OBE, Yukai Du, Akinola Davies and Simon Landrein. Covering political activism through fashion, the intricacies of animation production, filmmaking for Kenzo and how to direct a Cartoon Network sequence, the speakers offered in-depth insight to their work and passions. Here’s a few nuggets of wisdom we took away with us.h3. Fashion can be a tool for political activism
For Nicer Tuesdays May, we will be welcoming an inspiring line-up of speakers to the Oval Space stage. Head of the London College of Fashion Frances Corner OBE will talk about how the creative sector can use its platform to make a global impact; and illustrator and animator Yukai Du will take us through the fascinating process of making her short for Ted-Ed, How small we are in the scale of the universe. Filmmaker Akinola Davies will tell the story behind his film for Kenzo, Gidi Gidi Bu Ugwu Ze, Unity is Strength; and Simon Landrein will share insights to his recent animated sequence for a Cartoon Network show, which is a world away from his usually highly saucy animations and comics.
Joining us at Oval Space this month we have an exciting line-up of speakers from the worlds of animation, illustration, fashion and film. Get tickets now for 30 May to hear from Frances Corner, Akinola Davies, Yukai Du and Simon Landrein. The event is now sold out – sign up to the newsletter to be the first to know about future events.
Animation director and graphic artist Nicolas Ménard is known for his dynamic compositions and often darkly humoured narratives, brought together in vibrant colours. His animation Wednesday With Goddard, made with his wife Manshen Lo, is about one man’s search for God and brings all these elements together in brilliant harmony. At Nicer Tuesdays he told us incredible details about the film and its making.
Photography and filmmaking sister duo Emily and Alice Stein joined forces on the short film Hello, I Am Nora, about a retired architect in her mid 70s with a delightful zest for later life. At Nicer Tuesdays, they told the serendipitous story of how they came to meet Nora, and the challenges of working on a film of such personal importance to its strong-willed star.
Illustrator Daniel Frost has a way with character and atmosphere that transports us to wherever he depicts. As an aside from his successful commercial commissions, his personal work is often inspired by his latest trip, and it was his gouache painted travelogue of Greenland that he came to speak about at Nicer Tuesdays.
Sam T Smith and Nathan Smith exemplified the creative community’s reaction to Brexit with their project Me & EU, a series of postcards by UK-based designers such as Craig Oldham, NB Studio and Catalogue, and sent to Europe when Article 50 was triggered. At Nicer Tuesdays, Sam spoke about how the project aimed to instil positivity and unity into the industry after the shock of the referendum, and why this inspired a vast and diverse range of creatives to take part.
This month’s Nicer Tuesdays heralded creativity’s power to cross borders, bring people together and discover new worlds. Our audience at Oval Space heard inspiring talks from Sam T Smith, co-founder of the Me & EU postcard project; illustrator Daniel Frost on his Greenland series; photography and filmmaking sisters Emily and Alice Stein on their Hello, I Am Nora film; and animation director Nicolas Ménard on his award-winning short Wednesday With Goddard. Each showed personal projects fuelled by sheer dedication and passion, and the enthusiasm was contagious. Here’s just some of the top moments and takeaways from April’s event.h3. Postcards are potent communication tools
At this month’s Nicer Tuesdays, the Oval Space stage will play host to animation director Nicolas Ménard, telling us about the collaborative process that made his comedic short Wednesday With Goddard; Sam T Smith and Nathan Smith, the designers behind the Me & EU project; illustrator Daniel Frost talking about his Greenland series; and photography and filmmaking sister duo Emily and Alice Stein. Ahead of the event next week we have a very brief chat with the speakers about what we can expect from their talks.
For April’s edition of Nicer Tuesdays we welcome exciting talents across illustration, animation, film and photography to our podium at Oval Space. Get tickets now for 25 April to hear Nicolas Ménard, Emily and Alice Stein, Daniel Frost and Me & EU speak about the ideas and process behind their recent work.
Watching Nelly Ben Hayoun speak is like witnessing a force of nature. Fast-paced and outspoken, the designer whips through her creative approach, opinions and ideologies at breakneck speed. “We subscribe to the hammering technique,” she says smiling, “making sure a no always turns into a yes”. She came to Nicer Tuesdays to introduce her latest pioneering initiative, the University of the Underground – a free master’s course in design that she hopes will have big impact.
As one of the UK’s best known graphic designers, Anthony Burrill needs little introduction. His impactful typographic posters are instantly recognisable, and he recently compiled the best of them alongside stories, sketches anecdotes about the artworks in a mega new book Make It Now!
Illustrator Jon Burgerman may be renowned for his characterful hand-drawn doodles, but is followed by tens of thousands for his utterly brilliant Instagram account. Doodling on photos and using the medium of Stories for animation experiments, he brings character and silliness to day-to-day scenarios in remarkable ways.
Graphic design studio A Practice for Everyday Life (APFEL) has firmly established itself over the past 14 years as a go-to studio for galleries and publishers to create beautiful publications. Recently, co-founders Kirsty Carter and Emma Thomas were approached to work on a dream project – the book for the Tate Britain’s David Hockney show.
Oval Space was packed to the rafters for a stellar Nicer Tuesdays this month, featuring four creatives that hardly need an introduction. A Practice for Everyday Life co-founders Kirsty Carter and Emma Thomas took us through its serendipitous process behind the Tate Britain David Hockney exhibition book; Jon Burgerman caused mass giggling with his doodle stories; Anthony Burrill delivered some powerful statements for creative motivation; and Nelly Ben Hayoun blew the audience away with her energy and plans for reforming education. Here’s a few things we took away from this awesome evening.
h3. Yorkshire is a place of inspiration
At this month’s Nicer Tuesdays we’ll be hearing from Kirsty Carter and Emma Thomas, co-founders of design studio A Practice for Everyday Life, on their book for the Hockney show; designer Anthony Burrill on revealing more about his creative process; Jon Burgerman on visual experimentation via social media; and Nelly Ben Hayoun on her new university. Ahead of next week’s event, we asked each speaker to give us a teaser of their talk.
For March, we are proud to announce a stellar line-up for Nicer Tuesdays with leading figures from a swathe of creative disciplines. Join us on 28 March to hear A Practice for Everyday Life, Jon Burgerman, Anthony Burrill and Nelly Ben Hayoun offer insight into their work and creative processes at Oval Space. The event is now sold out – sign up to the newsletter to be the first to know about future events.
Oscar Hudson recently directed the video for Bonobo’s track No Reason, a mind-bending trip through the house of a Japanese recluse. For the film to be shot in-camera without CGI, Oscar and his team built an intricate, 18-layer set, with every item in the room – plus the room itself – created 18 times at decreasing size.
As curator at London gallery the House of Illustration, founded by Quentin Blake, Olivia Ahmad stages exhibitions about illustration and its impact. Its recent show focused on Jo Brocklehurst, a “prolific but relatively unknown” artist that Olivia dubbed the “chronicler of club culture”.
Photographer Mirka Laura Severa has a flair for humour and surrealism in her images, exemplified by a recent shoot for SZ Magazin where she chose to replace human models with snow ones.
As co-founder of moving image studio More and More, Carl Burgess – together with business partner Tom Darracott – has become one of the major innovators in 3D animation and motion design for the fashion industry. The studio has worked with the likes of Nike, Moncler, Prada, Chanel and Stella McCartney, but a busy last few years meant that Carl and Tom felt they had “got into a rhythm” and wanted to shake things up.
Hundreds braved the horrendous British weather last night to fill up Oval Space for our second Nicer Tuesdays of the year, and were rewarded with four inspiring, hilarious and insightful talks. From More and More’s jaw-dropping 3D experiments and Mirka Laura Severa’s photoshoot atop a glacier, to Olivia Ahmad’s stories of against-the-grain illustrator Jo Brocklehurst and the immense detail in Oscar Hudson’s video for Bonobo, we saw how creatives often go way beyond the call of duty for a project. Here’s a few things we learned from our brilliant and very hard-working speakers.h3. Finding new ideas is about “breaking the cycle”
At this month’s Nicer Tuesdays we’ll be hearing from More and More’s Carl Burgess on idea generation; director Oscar Hudson on his mind-bending Bonobo video; Mirka Laura Severa on her brilliant snowman photo shoot; and Olivia Ahmad on the lasting impact of illustrator Jo Brocklehurst. Ahead of next week’s event, we speak to each creative about what we can expect from their talks.
In a very short time Jack Sachs has become renowned for his bizarre, plasticine-like CG illustration and animation work. From animated MTV idents of grinding hot dogs to bopping sweeties for Maynards Bassetts, his crazy-eyed characters have become instantly recognisable and increasingly hilarious.
Seetal Solanki is founder of material research consultancy Ma-tt-er, where she works on design projects of all kinds, bringing expertise in materials – from their aesthetics and versatility to their provenance and sustainability – aiming to “bridge the gap between all industries”. She’s also one of our Ones to Watch 2017.
With a flair for beautifully natural and atmospheric portraiture and landscapes, it’s no wonder Irish photographer Linda Brownlee’s list of clientele includes The Guardian, Vogue, Another Magazine, Nowness and It’s Nice That, no less.
As co-founder of renowned British design studio OK-RM, Rory McGrath has worked with world-leading institutions, brands and publications alike to develop memorable and cutting edge graphic identities. These include exhibitions for The Met’s Manus x Machina, the identity for Moscow’s Strelka Institute, Jack Self’s Real Review, and the Design Museum’s headline opening exhibition, Fear and Love.
Nicer Tuesdays 2017 kicked off in epic style last night as we hosted our first in the new venue of Oval Space. To a packed audience, our fantastic speakers Seetal Solanki, OK-RM, Linda Brownlee and Jack Sachs took to the stage to take us through their recent projects. Covering a huge creative range, from innovative textiles and exhibition design to photographic portraits and animation, they all had one thing in common: an inspiring approach to their practice. Of the many things we learned, here’s the top five.h3. Check your email, and Ai Weiwei might wear your hat
After a hugely successful Nicer Tuesdays series last year, we are very excited to announce that for 2017 the event will be doubling in size and moving to Oval Space. We have a top-class line-up of speakers to kick off the year too, with OK-RM, Jack Sachs, Linda Brownlee and Seetal Solanki joining us on 31 January. The event is now sold out – sign up to the newsletter to be the first to know about future events.