CreativeMornings with Andy Bonventre of Google

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I am excited to announce our upcoming CreativeMornings with Andy Bonventre of Google. On April 10, 2009 Andy will be discussing how he evangelizes the symbiotic relationship between design and engineering, and how he learned to trust his designer. Andy has been a loyal CreativeMornings attendee and I am excited that he is switching sides for this month’s event! Venue will be announced shortly! I am smiling all over my face: Google is hosting the event! YAY!

Interested in attending? Make sure to r.s.v.p via email. We are filling up quickly. Please tell us your name and what industry you’re in. (We will later on send you a confirmation email with all the necessary details for the event.) We’ve reached our limit, I apologize.

NEW: Follow CreativeMornings on twitter!

We are looking for a breakfast sponsor that will cover coffee and bagels. You would in exchange get mentioned on swissmiss and during the actual event. Please get in touch sponsor [at] swiss-miss.com if interested.

400seconds of Pecha-Kucha-Fame

Tonight’s Pecha Kucha event was a fantastic experience. Even though I must say, I was flabbergasted once I saw the venue – not what I expected. It was incredibly loud, dark and there were no seats for the audience. Ever since I started the CreativeMornings 10Minute lecture series I have become really interested in the ‘packaging’ of an event and how it affects the experience. I wonder how this evening would have been perceived in a more quiet environment with seating for everyone and a noise level that would actually allow for a conversation.

The unfortunate venue aside, I loved the event. The broad range of topics was intriguing and the quality of the 6min40second presentations was impressive. While it seems a bit forced at first, to have the slides timed on a 20second interval, it really does force the presenter to keep it short and to the point. Definitely a format I will keep in mind for upcoming presentations or events. Michael has a great summary of the event, read it here.

Thanks to Marc, the gracious organizer. I am definitely looking forward to attend future Pecha Kuchas. Thanks to G for filming the event with his photocamera. For those of you interested in my presentation, here are my 400seconds of Pecha-Kucha-Fame:


swissmiss presenting at Pecha Kucha NYC | March 2009 from swissmiss on Vimeo.

What’s Next for Design? Panel Discussion at MAD

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Our little Ella came down with a fever mid-afternoon and I rushed home thinking I wouldn’t be able to make it to tonight’s design panel discussion at the New York Museum of Arts & Design. But she rallied and thanks to the power of Motrin, and wonderful G, I was able to attend. The esteemed panel included Jonathan Adler (Furniture Designer), Paula Scher (Designer, Pentagram) and Ahmad Sardar-Afkhami (Architect) (I asked him and he doesn’t have a site up at this point, but should so shortly). The invitation to the event stated that the panel discussion would examine how industries will reinvent themselves in this new era; What’s Next for Design?

Adam Gopnik, a staff Writer for the New Yorker was the moderator for the panel, which by the way was sponsored by VW. For those of you who read my blog regularly, you might have come across a post or two where I express my frustration with panels. Well, the unthinkable has happened, I truly enjoyed this panel tonight, and it was very much thanks to Adam Gopnik. He did a *fantastic* job in steering the conversation, giving it an interesting flow. Hat tip to Adam.

I simply want to list a few notes I took of thougths that I thought were interesting:

Adam made a point that ‘design’ is the most present and most invisible element in our life.

– Jonathan Adler calls his own philosophy happy-chic. He believes his sensibility can be traced directly to the way he grew up, the design he was surrounded with. First design related memory of his childhood; their neighbor had a ceramic leopard that left a huge impression. He learned that things can be memorable. By the time he was four he believes it was all instilled in him thanks to his parents and Mrs. Goldsteen, his neighbor. (On a side note: I had never seen Jonathan Adler speak and I was impressed in how incredibly funny and eloquent he was. Definitely my panelist highlight!)

– Paula Scher stated that sylistically she has no personal ethic, no one thing is right.

– “The magic of applied art is that we have a problem to solve, opposed to the fine artist. We respond to and solve design challenges.” – Jonathan Adler

One of the funniest moments in the evening was when Jonathan Adler spoke about one of his latest projects, the redesign of Barbie’s 50th Anniversary House: “I loved designing for a 100% plastic client! I did this over the top, meta, glitter, frosting, cupcakes house. An amazing opportunity to step back from real life, with real people, to have a plastic client with no husband to weigh in. (Ken is in the picture but peripherally, Ken is not moving in.)”

– “A terrible collaboration is when there is no collaboration. When you work with someone who has no respect for what you do, what you’ve done and your skills. The client from hell is not that client, because you fire him, the client from hell is the one that is actually in the collaborative process and once you agreed on something they call you and they start making changes and slowly but surely more and more modifications kill the design.” Paula Scher

“Bad design is often design that is done by committee or focus groups, it is design that is overly considered, watered down, timid. The more the design comes from my gut, the more focus groups would hate it, but because I have my own stores, I don’t have to ask anyone for permission. I can get direclty to the end user.” Jonathan Adler

One of Jonathan Adler’s three muses is Alexander Girard (midcentury graphic designer), as he thinks that Alexander’s work really communicates the pleasure he got out of design.

– “I am always looking for the thing I don’t know, not the thing I’ve already seen. The beginner’s mind is what I am thriving for. I’ve always done the best design when I didn’t know what I was doing.” Paula Scher

Question from the audience: Design is getting more coverage than it used to. Is that true? “It’s definitely true”, says Paula. “Almost every major magazine now has a design column and a design writer. Why is that? Companies like Apple or Target have made design incredibly l apparent, people are starting to recognize that things are designed. They become savvy and they realize they’re being manipulated. The consumer is starting to have different expectations to environments.”

Overall an interesting evening. Thanks to Slate for organizing, MAD for hosting and VW for sponsoring.

Tonight: swissmiss speaking at Pecha Kucha

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I am thrilled to have been invited to speak at tonight’s NYC Pecha Kucha. The line up of speakers is really promising and somewhat humbling. Two of my personal highlights are Dickson Despommier and Jay Parkinson.

What’s the format of Pecha Kucha you ask? Everyone gets to speak for 6min and 40seconds (20 slides for 20 seconds each). So we all have to keep it short and sweet. Come and join us tonight, this will be a fantastic event!

PKNY 6 – MONDAY MARCH 23RD, 2009
At Le Poisson Rouge
Doors 6:30 – Speakers 8:30
$10 at the door

20 tips for better conference speaking

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1. The art of speaking is roughly 51% entertainment, 49% meaty content.
2. Ask yourself: When attendees return to work and speak about you and your presentation, what do you hope they will say?
3. To borrow a line from the An Event Apart Speaker’s Guide, always err on the side of being more advanced.
4. My personal rule of thumb when using slides: Roughly 1-2 slides per minute of speaking.
5. Test legibility by sitting six feet back from your laptop display.
6. Select a typeface appropriate for on-screen presentation.

Read full post: 20 tips for better conference speaking, by Cameron Moll

Thoughts on SXSW

I am back at my studio after 3 days of sensory overload and networking marathon at SXSW. Deadlines are looming so I will keep this post brief. A few thoughts:

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This was my first SXSW experience and I was surprised at the amount of panel discussions. I have voiced this many times before: Panel discussions don’t do it for me. It pains me to see brilliant speakers sitting up on a panel and none of them really being able to share their insights and knowledge. I always feel like that panel discussions only scratch the surface. On my second day I just simply stayed away from them and only attended single or two people presentations. And guess what, those were insightful, enlightening and inspiring.

I keep thinking that a conference like SXSW should be a little bit more playful. Put the panelists in the center of the room, hand them a microphone and have them stand and walk around. The dynamic of a panel would change and it would make it easier for the audience to participate. One thing I learned with organizing the CreativeMornings, which are always hosted at a different space, is that the ‘packaging’ of an event determines how the attendees and speakers interact. The oldschool ‘rows of chairs’ and panelists sitting on a podium far away at the end of the room is everything but facilitating exchange.

By putting speakers and the audience on the samel level you make them feel equal and it is easier to start a conversation.

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The one presentation that made the conference worth going alone was by Leah Buley of Adaptive Path. She spoke on the topic of “Being a UX Team of One” which she said will be available on Slideshare (but is currently not up yet, an older version of it is though). She gave a very insightful presentation on Brainstorming Tools they use, how she believes in Assembling and Ad Hoc Team is helpful and the Design Principles they believe in at Adaptive Path. It was refreshing to hear that at the beginning of a project, she always sits down and sketches (yes, by hand) first wireframe ideas and does not start off at the computer right away. This gets my two thumbs up! Hat tip to Leah Buley for her fantastic presentation!

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Why is it so hard for conference organizers to design a useful badge? It was literally impossible to read someone’s company name, let a lone where they were from. A badge simply doesn’t work if you don’t have the important information LARGE and in bold type. It’s not rocket science, is it? I literally had to walk up to people, bend down and stare at their tummy, cause that’s where the badge ends up. (I actually had them change my badge and only say swissmiss, take out my company name alltogether and it helped a little.)

Every time I get back from a conference I feel compelled to design the ‘perfect’ conference badge (or maybe it’s not even a badge per se). And then I get sucked in into my usual studio business and forget. If you are a conference organizer and want help with the badge/name information design, please get in touch. I feel strongly about this and have plenty of ideas how we can improve this and make it easier for attendees to connect and make valuable connections. After all, a huge part of why we go to conferences is to network.

I had the pleasure to meet Mike Davidson and we were discussing just this. He later pointed me to a post he wrote called Building a better conference badge.

Gary Hustwit Objectified

I got to see the world premiere of Objectified, the latest documentary by Gary Hustwit. I was sitting at the screening like a kid that just entered a toy store. And I fully agree with Allan’s review over at Core77: “Perhaps the big winner in the film is Dieter Rams, already a god in design circles and sure to fortify that shrine after this film’s release. He has some of the best lines (“Good design is as little design as possible”), but comes out triumphant on the sustainability front. Bill McDonough, watch your back.”

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One of the most touching and memorable moments for me was when Desiree of Knowbility, who is blind, showed me how she surfs the web. She pulled up swissmiss and showed me her experience of surfing my site. I learned that I need to tag my images better, or tag them, period. Desiree also showed me how she posts to her blog called Universallydesigned.net. This is defintely something I want to look into more and potentially have a CreativeMornings talk about. Do you know of any similar services like Knowbility here in the NYC area?

Now, I will tune into the #sxsw twitter stream and see what’s going on from a far. Did you attend? What were your thoughts?

Off to SXSW

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I’ll be traveling to Austin, Texas tomorrow, to attend SXSW. Very excited. I am fully prepared and ready to play SXSW Bingo. I will make sure to twitter my encounters and experiences.

Texas, here I come…

99% | A Behance Conference April NYC

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The line up of speakers for the 99% Behance Conference is promising! Michael Bierut, Seth Godin, Ji Lee, just to name a few. 99% will be happening in NYC April 16, – April 17, 2009! See you there?

SXSW Interactive: Booked!

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I am thrilled to have just booked my airplane and conference ticket for SXSW Interactive, March 13-17, 2009 in Austin. Still working on the hotel part, not easy…

Are you going? Are you a swissmiss reader living in Austin?

Apple/AIGA Talk: Thank you for coming out.

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A big thank you to all my loyal swissmiss readers that came out to my AIGA/Apple talk last week. According to the organizers it was the biggest Design Remixed turnout they’ve ever had. Hooray! If you were there, let me know your thoughts: Was there anything you wanted to ask but didn’t? I’d love to hear your feedback in how I can improve the presentation for another time?

Also, if you took pictures of the event, would you mind to add them to our flickr pool? Thank you so much!

For all of those of you who emailed me about possibly seeing a video of this event, I am sorry to say that I wasn’t allowed to tape it. (Which still makes me scratch my head. If I was Apple or AIGA I would film these talks and put them on the web. What a lost opportunity, no?)

FOWD: Karl Swedberg on How to Take Advantage of JQuery and other JavaScript libraries for your design

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Karl Swedberg, of Fusionary Media, talked about the advantages of using JQuery and other JavaScript libraries in your Designs.

Karl recommends JavaScript as a prototyping tool, to get a start on a design and then passing it along to the developers. One of the big advantages of using JavaScript is that it keeps your HTML squeaky clean. It can add design enhancements without cluttering up the base HTML. JavaScript can interact with the Server without a page refresh and therefore allows valuable user feedback without slowing down the experience.

He recommended using JavaScript Libraries as they enable you to mock something up quickly and allow easy cross-browser solutions. Plus, you can leverage what you already know about HTML & CSS. And the interesting tid-bit I learned: With a JavaScript LIbrary you get better CSS support than with plain CSS. In short, JavaScript Libraries encourage Progressive Enhancements. Karl mentioned the 5 big players out there: Prototype, Dojo Toolkit, Mootools, YUI Yahoo! User Interface and jQuery.

This could have ben such a powerful presentation, would Karl just have used a few visual examples. When speaking at a design conference where 75% of attendees are designers, make sure to use visuals. Karl lost me mid-through his presentation. Such a lost opportunity.

Learning JQuery

Future of Webdesign tomorrow in NYC

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I am looking forward to tomorrow’s Future of Webdesign Conference here in NYC. The line up of speakers is promising. See you there?

Notes from The Feast Conference

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Today’s Feast Conference was truly inspiring and made me think! What impressed me the most were the attendes; every person I spoke to was a “Doer”. Jerri Chou and Michael Karnjanaprakorn of All Day Buffet did a fantastic job in organizing The Feast and I can hardly believe this was their first attempt at organizing an event of this magnitude. Can I just say that today’s lunch was the most delicious catered food I’ve ever had? I can’t wait to see what Jeri and Michael pull together next year, when The Feast continues.

I was prepared to live-blog like the other day at CLICK but unfortunately they didn’t have wireless. Here’s a quick summary of some of today’s presentations:

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Sustainable Urban Agriculture: The Vertical Farm Project by Dickson Despommier, Columbia University:

Dickson Despommier (how cool is this name?) spoke on trying to find new ways to integrate agriculture into city environments. Why? In 50 years from now it wont be possible to feed the people the same way we do today, as there’s just not enough resources. By the year 2050, nearly 80% of the earth’s population will reside in urban centers. Applying the most conservative estimates to current demographic trends, the human population will increase by about 3 billion people during the interim. An estimated 109 hectares of new land (about 20% more land than is represented by the country of Brazil) will be needed to grow enough food to feed them, if traditional farming practices continue as they are practiced today. The solution: Vertical Farming.

Interesting fact: NYC consumes food that needs the state of virigina to grow!

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Tom Szaky of Terracycle spoke on Eco-Capitalism 2.0: The Next Generation of Green Practices That Increase Profits.

I was hugely impressed by Tom Szaky‘s presentation, founder of Terracycle. He was speaking on the next Generation of green practices that increase profits. The TerraCycle Story is a tale of ultimate Eco-Capitalism. The company’s flagship product, TerraCycle Plant Food™, is an all-natural, all-organic, ‘goof-proof’ liquid plant food made from waste (worm poop) and packaged in waste (reused soda bottles)!

Tom is a firm believer in ‘upsycling’, which means creating a new desirable product out of ‘garbage’. Examples are: Juice pouches made into bags, Corkboards, Wastewrapperpaper Notebooks etc.

Big corporations took note of Tom’s cause and are building partnerships. As an example he mentioned how they teamed up with Target and created the first reusable shopping bag made entirely out of recycled plastic bags. Big companies today are craving solutions that are sustainable as long as they can prove it.

Tom’s credo: There’s no garbage that can not be upsycled into something else.

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Joshua Onysko of Pangea Organics talked about the The Fringe of the Fringe:

Joshua got into making soap out of a desperate ‘bonding attempt’ with his mom, little did he know that it would soon change his life. He is now the proud owner of the fastest growing organic skin care line in the world that brings you the fastest growing packaging in the world. What impressed me the most is Pangea’s innovative packaging. All product boxes are made with Zero Waste process with 100% post-consumer paper and organic seeds like sweet basil and amaranth. Simply slip off the label, soak the box in water for a minute and plant it in the earth. Also, all labels are screenprinted as the labels that you traditionally stick on produce too much waste. Pangeas is just starting a new initiative that will empower the consumer to plant their own trees with seeds that will be in the packaging of their product. Joshua believes in getting the consumer in touch with what we can do on our own. Impressive!

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Scott Belksy of Behance on Make Good Ideas Happen:

Scott Belsky believes that the greatest breakthroughs across all industries are a result of creative people and teams that are especially productive. As such, Scott has committed his professional life to help organize creative individuals, teams, and networks and is the founder of Behance, a company that develops products and services that boost productivity in the Creative Professional Community.

Tips & Best Practices: What especially productive creatives do

Generate Ideas in Moderation: Don’t get off track with a new idea. Too many ideas can be a problem as well. (The IdeaSyndrom)

Organizing with a Bias to Action: How to balance the two. Compromise! Always focusing on whats actionable.

Measure a meeting in action steps! If there are no action steps after a meeting, should we have had that meeting at all? Have a culture of capturing action steps: After a meeting you make the round and go through the action steps. Duplications can be avoided and missed actions can be pointed out.

Share ideas liberally. Leverage the community around you. Don’t be scared of sharing ideas. Sharing ideas early is a great way to hold yourself accountable and making them stick.

Share Ownership of Ideas. Distribute Credit.

Fight your way to breakthroughs. The most productive teams encourage fighting and discourage apathy. As a leader of any type of idea you have to make sure people keep on fighting.

Value the Team’s Immune System. Ideas are often the syndrom that ideas don’t happen.

Leaders Talk Last (Silence the Visionary) If you speak first you fail to listen to new ideas as your your team will just follow your lead. Listen first!

Hiring someone? Judge Based on Initiative (Not Experience) Focus on the Initiatives they showed in their past. People that show that they take initiative to things that are important to them are likely do to the same for you if you get theme excited about your idea.

Unique is Opportune. We all have to gain confidence. Nothing extraordinary has been achieved through ordinary means.

One new service Behance is offering is the Action Method, a radical approach to productivity and project management. Unfortunately he ran out of time and couldn’t tell us more about their new online service. View and Action Method Demo.

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Dale Jones of PlayPumps International: An engineer in south-africa came up with a concept that allows playing children to pump water up from the ground. Simple and efficient. Learn more.

24 hours until The Feast!

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I am thrilled to be attending tomorrow’s The Feast Conference. Some of the speakers include Dickson Despommier, of the vertical farming project, Scott Belsky, Founder of Behance, and Dale Jones, CEO of Play Pumps International. Jerri Chou the organizer told me that there are 13 tickets left. Join me?

Future of Webdesign Conference (FOWD)

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I’ll be attending the Future of Webdesign Conference on November 4th here in Manhattan. The line up of speakers is fantastic! Daniel Burka, Hillman Curtis, Nicholas Felton, lovely Liz Danzico, Khoi Vinh, Armin Vitt … just to name a few. Thinking of going? swissmiss readers receive 15% off by using the FOWD/SM promo code (for 50 conference only passes)

CLICK NY: Michael Lebowitz, Founder of Big Spaceship

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Michael Lebowitz, off Big Spaceship started of saying he’s not going to show any client work but talking more about things he’s learned running his company. (YAY!)

Michael stressed that Big Spaceship is not a ‘web design shop”, not a full service interactive agency, not an ad agency and not a production company. Michael defines Big Spaceship as a digital creative agency, that creates engaging experiences for brands.

Some of Michael’s philosophies in running his company:

everyone’s creative! He despise the term ‘the creatives’.

small is good. (but it’s hard not to grow) scale can be the enemy of quality. creative is about culture.

don’t hire assholes! No amount of talent can compensate for the negativity that a Ass* brings to a work environment.

stay flat.

hire to be the dumbest person in the room. surround yourself with people that are smarter than you. somebody who is of excellence and passion.

experiment constantly

focus on culture

give autonomy. manage by exception. They are in a team system and they exist as autonomous units within the company. This creates ownership of the work they’re doing. Their teams names such as : “cheapie’s playhaus’, flash ‘merica, cobra kai and the special bears.

What I absolutely loved is when Michael spoke about how he set up his office, physically. They have these huge tables where he places teams in aisles, so that when they need to discuss something, all they have to do is turn 180 degrees and they have an instant team meeting. This makes conference room meetings unecessary. Fantastic! (BS’s teams consist usually of 7 people: 2 producers, 2 designers, 3 developers.)

This presentation was my definite highlight so far. This is why I come to conferences: To hear people passionately speak about their personal experiences in our industry, to hear them talk about what they’ve learned. I am so incredibly tired of looking at slideshows of work that people have done. Thank you Michael, this was inspiring!

CLICK NY: Tom Ajello, Creative Director Founder of Poke

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Founder and creative director of Poke New York, Tom Ajello, started his presentation broadcasting us, the audience via qik. Watch us here. He runs a popular blog called madewithcomputers.com and twitters here. He talked passionately about how we have to be out there and experience all new media services, to fully understand what is happening and being able to sell new ideas that will succeed in the digital space to your clients. Boy, this man has some energy. I am out of breath just listening to him.

Tom pointed us to all the many websites he’s running, one of them being his son’s site: enzoajello.com. I gasped and crinched. I am guilty of posting pictures of our little Ella on the web, but I would *never* advertise her personal site (at a conference). I belive that we, the parents of children of this digital new age, have to be very careful on the digital footprint we create for our kids. Right now, Ella is still too small to tell me if she’s ok with what I put out there. But one day, she might voice her opinion and disapprove. But it might be too late, thanks to sites like Wayback Machine they’ll be publicly accessible forever.

CLICK NY: Introduction of SoDA (Society of Digital Agencies)

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from left to right: Michael Lebowitz (CEO/Founder Big Spaceship), Richart C.Lent (CEO/Founder, AgencyNet), Jay Wolff (President Odopod)

Michael, Jay and Richard introduced their newly founded industry non-profit organization called SoDA, Society of Digital Agencies. SoDA is the voice of digital marketing pofessionals with a mission to advance the industry through best practices, education, and advocacy.

Their motto: Share a little, gain a lot. Connect with your competition, put down the walls and discuss everyday challenges. SoDA Is all about sharing key insights of this new industry and was formally announced in March at SXSW to provide a voice for digital marketing professionals worldwide.

SoDA Objectives are
– Provide a clear, common, focused set of guidelines, methodologies, and working standards in the digital space.
– Facilitating knowledge-sharing among members, clients, staff, associated partners and agencies, and future professionals in the field.
– Clarify common unique issues and positions, and facilitating dialogue between members and all key players in the industry.

Their first instinct was to open up this up to everyone interested. But this would ask for a major infrastructure, which is what they are focusing on right now. Their first open enrollment will come in january 2009. I am excited to see what will come of SoDA, definitely something our industry needs. Hat tip to these passionate three man, for all the effort and time they are putting into getting this new organisation of the ground.

Here’s what they want to hear from you:

How can we advance the industry?
What are your biggest issues?
How can we enable success?

Feel free to answer their questions as a comment below. I’d be interested to hear your thougths. Or email them at [email protected].

CLICK NY: Paul Parton, The Brooklyn Brothers

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Paul Parton, Partner of The Brooklyn Brothers, talked about how it doesn’t matter what medium you’re using to bring your message across as long as approach it with an online state of mind. Consumers buy into a relationship as an interaction, which is entirely media independent.

They have created Fat Pig organic chocolate, which let’s you unleash your inner pig. Hold the packaging in front of your nose, take a picture and upload your piggie image to the fatpigchocolate.com site and join the community. You will then have the chance to become the über-pig. The guilty secret of fat pig chocolate, he says, is that they didn’t have the time to launch it properly, as they simply got too busy. But it was picked up by all the big design blogs and got a huge buzz. They haven’t really done anything with it yet but is already retailing in three stores. The community did the work for them. Inviting the consumer in can start with the most analog medium, which is packaging. Exactly what they’ve done with Fat Pig.
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Summing up Paul’s presentation:

– invite the consumer into the process
– the idea is the medium
– advertising is disposable

(On a side note: How odd is the resemblance of The Brooklyn Brother’s B Logo to the one of the Brooklyn Museum?)

CLICK NY: Keynote Speaker James Cooper, Another Anomaly

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Keynote speaker, James Cooper, Creative Director of Another Anomaly talked about some of their campaigns. (Keep A Child Alive, EOS and Converse and Eric Ripert) What stood out to me is his statement about how we’re in the age of “Good Works”. We shifted from “Greed Works”, to “Green Works” to now a time of “Good Works”. James feels strongly about educating students and giving them a good start. He taught and an ad school and instead of teaching them how to design/create an ad, he taught them how to start a business. Interesting!

His final slide, summing up his points niceley:

– test theories (don’t chase awards)

– be on the consumers’ side

– good is different / different is good

– help out the industry

– have partners not clients – you’re less likely to dick them over.

swissmiss at click-ny today

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I am excited to be attending CLICK NY here at the Art Director’s Club today. Lovely Liz Danzico, today’s moderator, just kicked off the day! There are quite a few presenters I am excited to hear speak. (Check out the line up in this pdf.) Hopefully more about the conference throughout the day! Happy wednesday everyone!

17 days until the “The Feast Conference” here in NYC

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Jerri Chou, organizer of The Feast Conference (and new studio member here in our office) just informed me that their agenda has been finalized with a series of inspiring, mind-expanding, and innovative talks. “The Feast” will try to showcase a look at social innovation from all angles. Speakers include Dickson Despommier, the mind behind the “vertical farming” concept and Scott Belsky, Founder of Behance who will discuss how to make good ideas happen.

They only have 70 tickets for sale so buy yours today as space will sell out fast! And as a special bonus, use discount code “FIFTY” to receive $50 off your ticket price. To register for The Feast and get more information, please visit thefeastconference.com.

See you there!?

interesting new york

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Interesting NYC looks like a fantastic one day conference. A gathering of diverse and interesting speakers. This saturday, september 13, 2008!

ICFF 2008 First Highlights

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I just got back home after having spent a 6 hours walking around ICFF. I have complete sensory overload and would love to just sit in a room with white walls and stare. But no, here’s s quick overview of my personal ICFF 2008 Highlights;

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I nearly fainted and kissed the booth guy at Pablo upon seeing one of their latest lamps called LIM. Not on their site yet, not for sale yet, but oh boy do I want one. The images unfortunately don’t do it justice but just imagine that you can take off that long slim bar with the lights on it and reattach it via magnets any way you want to the base. Completely minimalistic modular lighting. Lim was definitely my personal lighting highlight of the show.

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Inflate’s mobile/inflatable Office in a Bag concept made my heart jump. Mini conference room anyone?

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One of Offi’s latest inventions is this collapsable table with chairs. Perfect for a small office or apartment. Fold down to a beautiful sculptural table and opens up into a workstation/dining table or whatever you need it to be. A versatile beauty! Yay for furniture that folds down! (it’s apparently not on their site yet)

UPDATE: Srdjan Simic, the designer of this wonderful piece emailed me with some more information: It’s called PAKET and will be available mid august through Offi’s large distributor chain in US, Europe and Japan. It will be available in white, dark grey and orange.

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I just spent the past 20minutes searching for the flyer/business card that goes with these pictures. No luck. Can anyone fill me in what the name of this designer was? Her wallpaper had me gasp for air. How awesome/crazy is this? LOVE! What’s her name? How unbelievably fantastic and different is this wallpaper by Tracy Kendall? (Somebody please design a better site for Tracy)

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A visit at the Ameico booth triggered a lovely short walk down memory lane: These Branex Design / Tam Tam Stools made me chuckle. We had one growing up, in bright orange, and I vividly remember playing with it, rolling around on it, putting stuff in it’s secret compartment. And sure enough, there were yumme chocolate covered raisins hidden in one of the ones in the booth. Apparently their design is celebrating its 40th anniversary. I definitely will have to get my hands on a few of these. Maybe for our new office, ladies? ;)

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The Rodenhook Modular Shelving System gets my swissmiss thumbs up. While I am not crazy about those angled shelve modules, I could definitely see this system in use with only the ‘regular’ ones in someone’s ‘soon to be the moved into’ new office space. Ladies? The gentleman in the picture is Martin O’Flynn, the mastermind behind this beauty of a shelfing system.

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One more highlight, before I have to run off and put on my ‘mommy hat’ for the night: I was so excited to meet the designers behind 25togo at the DesignBoom both. I bought myself one of the Photo Camera bags and am happy to report that the Leica D-Lux 3 fits in it perfectly. (I wasn’t able to find a pouch for it so far, they are always too small for the Leica lens and I was simply not willing to pay $80 for the custom photo bag). Couldn’t find the Photo Bag on the site, but there’s the very cool “My Document” Laptop Bag. It’s such a wonderful experience to buy directly from the designer.

More to come tomorrow. Little Ella Joy wants to play now…