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I heart Birmingham

Categories: Events

I don’t know if you’ve heard of South By South West Interactive (oft. shortened to SXSWi)?

It’s an annual ‘emerging technologies’ conference held in Austin, Texas and is by all accounts a pretty mind-blowing event. A fair few locals have gone along to it this year, leaving some of us folk left behind feeling a bit left out of all the excitement.

So, Shona suggested via Twitter that maybe it’d be good if we had our own, local version? And we could even hook up with the folks in Texas via the power of the interwebs?!

The idea stuck and within a week, Shona and others had sorted the date for WXWM (West By West Midlands), I’d put together a little logo (‘cos that’s what I do!), a room at The Kitchen Garden Cafe was booked and the delegate list was filled. Wow!

The main thrust of the event was that anyone who wanted to do a 5 minute panel about anything to do with webby, social media type-things could present to the rest of us.

WXWM took place last Saturday and was fantastic. It was organised enough to run smoothly but not so much as to feel starchy or uptight. And the talks were all so different but, without exception, interesting and thought-provoking. I learned a huge amount, so thanks to everyone who took the time to put a panel together.

What turns out to be Birmingham’s first ever Barcamp was truly a great event and I really hope there’ll be a repeat next year, if not before. If you’re curious about what went on, the WXWM blog has video, photos and some additional background to the event.

I’m really pleased to live in a place where something like this can happen – and be such a success. Go Birmingham!

Jump, shimmy, boogie!

If you’d like to see more of the brochure we’ve just designed for People Dancing (the regional initiative to get more folks throwing shapes) you’re in luck because the lovely folks who run the West Midlands Dance blog have very kindly uploaded a screen version.

Go on, have a look and see if it makes you feel like dancin’ – y’know, really dancin’!

Handprints

Categories: Nice stuff

James and I went along to the launch of Fazeley Studios on Friday evening – a jam-packed event with some inspired catering (miniature burgers, fish ‘n’ chips and chocolate eclairs) and a smashing band, The Destroyers, who I think are completely ace.

Amongst the many fine folks we bumped into for a chat was artist/illustrator Karoline Rerrie, who was kind enough to give us a couple of her beautiful, limited-edition (I know, fancy!) hand-printed postcards. Part of the Calorific series, they’re gorgeous. Thanks Karoline!

A message from Tina

Categories: Superinterns

Even though I think the assignments I get in school are exciting and realistic, the real world is so much different – and not in a bad way. 

Getting told in school that I've done a good assignment is nice. But hearing from real graphic designers (Katie and James) that what I've done is good and they then even show it to the clients is SO nice and recognition on an entirely other level.

I have been so lucky that I have had an internship here at Supercool the last four months and it's been four exciting months. I have been given briefs that were both exciting and weird. Like making a brochure without knowing the copy, the brand identity, the pictures or the style. Or making a logo that should work animated. Or drawing a pub icon, a water vole and a canalboat. I have enjoyed all of them, because they have been challenging.

But other than learning a lot about graphic design, I've also got a new, broader vocabulary with both technical and weird words like "apostrophe" (it reminds me more of something that should be in outer space, instead of over a letter) and "water vole" (translated directly from Danish would have the name swamp pig).

Furthermore I've learned things like cardamom in England is sold as whole pods and used in e.g. Indian food (In Denmark I have only seen ground cardamom and my favourite use of it is in pancakes), that Danish pastry is better from a bakery in Denmark than from Tesco and that there is this very addictive page called twitter.com

With only a few days left in England my last mission is to find out what ginger beer is. So the only thing left to say is thank you Katie and James, it has been a great four months!

På gensyn! (See you!)"