‘Art with a message’ at the Vintage Festival 2011

WWF @ Vintage Festival

The panda made me do it‘… was a vivid message I took away from this year’s Vintage Festival on the SouthBank. Have you thought about what pledge you might make to help preserve the natural world we live in?

I was really pleased to be able to help WWF at the Vintage Festival 2011 with their artwork collaboration.
Wayne Hemingway
, fashion designer, found of ‘Red or Dead‘ and co-founder of the Vintage Festival curated the WWF event to create a collaborative artwork to celebrate their 50th anniversary.

WWF @ Vintage Festival

It was a fantastic way to encourage the public to express their love, hopes or fears for the natural world (or how it’s inspired them) and be creative in how they presented it. The tables were full of material donated by the likes of Cath Kidson and paints, stencils and pens to create a fabulous art installation that can be shown around the country. The pieces of art were attached to a fishing net so that over the three days a wealth of love, happiness and stories could be collected.

WWF @ Vintage Festival
WWF @ Vintage Festival

Not only were people able to share their thoughts and messages on the natural world and living in a sustainable environment but they all appeared to have a great deal of fun! I was, as ever, amazed by the creativity that came out.

To show just how collaborative the event was, a video was produced made up of still photos taken over the weekend.

I hope that the messages left behind will really make people stop and think about the world we live in. Conserving the amount of water we use, being conscious of the decisions we make in everyday life, helping preserve our environment and being considerate with our actions are often talked about but not often embedded in our lives.

The WWF are running a number of events for their 50th Anniversary – ‘Lots of people are doing fantastic things to help us protect the natural world – buying sustainable seafood or forest-friendly wood, adopting an animal or saving energy at home or at work… ‘- If you weren’t able to join them at Vintage, take a look at their website to see how you could can take part.

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InterSections11 at The Eden Project

I’ve been at the InterSections11 conference run by the DottCornwall team. What an incredibly inspiring, fun, informative and unexpected couple of days.

Reflecting on the event while sitting on the train, all I could think about was how beautiful the Eden Project is – the sun was shining, there was a sense of creativity floating round and the air was clean! I had forgotten how lovely Cornwall is.

Eden Project

The Eden Project made the perfect location for the two day event; social enterprise, innovation and collaboration were three of the main topics discussed. Once I’ve had more time to let everything sink in, I wil blog my favourite take aways from the conference but here is a taster with a few links to get your taste buds going:

– Nick Jankel from WeCreate on ‘innovation and crowd sourcing’ discussing how ‘together everything is possible. We need to adopt new behaviours not new tools.
– Tom Hulme from IDEO on ‘Open IDEO’ on using existing platforms for innovation and how being visual, collaborative, evaluative and fun we can create better together.
David McCandles on Infographics and how we should use ‘data as the new soil’ and use colour techniques to get messages across.
– David Rowan from Wired UK on co-creating with bits and atoms and how if we create the right structure, collaboration can work.
-David Kester from the Design Council on how design can nudge behaviour and boost the economy.
– Charles Armstrong from Trampoline Systems on mapping networks and how you need to measure something to manage it.
– Josephine Green on social innovation and how we are moving from a hierarchical, industrial market to a flat (pancake) socio-ecological era.

It’s worth doing a Twitter search on #intersect for Tweets from the event.

I also discovered how small the world is and met a whole network of fantastic people!

Design Ambassadors profiled on the Design Council website

I have become a design ambassador for the Design Council’s Water Design Challenge.

The challenge is being run by the Design Council in connection with Southern Water and schools in the south east. The aim is to engage key stage 3 students to understand the environmental effects of water usage and use their creativity to find ways to reduce the amount they use. The ambassadors will be working with the teachers but will be there to engage with the students, help empower them, get them to be creative and promote design.

Last year Common Ground won the challenge with ‘The World’s Smallest Water Exhibition’ – a fantastic water exhibition housed inside a porta-loo!!
Common Ground

This year’s design ambassadors have a profile page on the Design Council website which explains why they believe in and why they are taking up the challenge. Have a look at the diverse range of designers getting involved: Design Ambassador Profiles