PechaKucha Vol 29: Event Review

20 slides, 20 seconds per slide, 10 speakers = a great night.

I love PechaKucha nights, they are very inspiring, great for networking and there’s always good beers (held at Fairfield Social Club). Volume 29’s theme was ‘How Do I…’ a title I couldn’t read without thinking about Leanne Rhymes. Once I got that song out of my head, I was all in, ready for a night of creative talks and good chat.

Here’s a run through of my favourite speakers. Sorry I can’t feature everyone – as you all had great talks!

The night started with Clare Freeman, The Podcast Coach, she presented ‘How do I start a Podcast’. Clare used some great sayings and sentences in her talk including ‘you can’t polish a turd.’ A classic! Her theory was, make sure whatever you record for your podcast is good at the beginning, as you can’t change a crappy podcast come editing. She also explained that a podcast is more than a voice recording, it’s ‘a creative space to build a community for like-minded people.’ Nice.

As you know, we have been following artists and curators Short Supply’s story for a while now so it was great to see them speak at PechaKucha and telling how they set up their own art-prize. They also gave a lovely shout out to us here at Cotton On MCR – I shamelessly ‘wooh’d’ as our name appeared in their presentation. Thanks for that guys!

Dr. Aravind Vijayaraghavan from The University of Manchester, was so charismatic and enthusiastic. I have no idea what he was talking about with ‘How do I make graphene’. I’m sorry to say that none of that sunk in. But, that man was just so lovely and more passionate about graphene than anyone I have ever seen (easy win there I think). But that’s all that matters, he loves it and he was showing us how much he loved it. Great work!

Dr. Me, the Art and Design studio, started their talk by asking us to draw a picture of Bart Simpson from memory, which was quite amusing. I found this quite easy I think , but other drawings were just so off the mark. It was pretty funny and a great way to get people talking, however, I think it back-fired a little as we were all chatting about Bart for the first couple of slides in their presentation, which meant we missed the introduction. They are going to use our drawings for a future project!

One duo that was very funny was the guys from Flow, Karl Doran and Jordan Painter. They taught us how to create a good design CV. The slide that featured a sausage dog photo and that famous 90s image of The Rock – the black jumper and silver chain look – that was genius. I liked their comment about how the projects and the syllabus you have to do at Uni is shit – and once you leave Uni, you should create your own work, be yourself and do your own thing.

Another speaker who had similar values about being yourself was Craig Oldam, a designer, writer and publisher. He made me laugh by calling himself a ‘big fat whale head.’ Hahah! His talk, ‘How do i keep being myself’ focused on the fact that the art and design world is still very elitist, it alienates people, it’s very middle-class. He made sure he kept being himself, the outcast of this world, and continued to do the work he wanted to do. It’s very inspiring and a very important message – don’t conform to what you think you should be, otherwise everyone will be the same, and what a boring shitty art world we’d be in if that was the case!

So we’ll end there. Again, sorry for not mentioning everyone! We truly did have a fun night, we chatted with people we’ve met before, we chatted with new people too. We’ve got new ideas for the future, and now can’t wait for 2020! We’d would definitely recommend attending a PechaKucha MCR event in the future so follow them and sign up for their newsletter – tickets sell fast!


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