I had the pleasure of attending UnconferenceCBR last weekend. An unconference is a conference but without a program. This means you go with no idea of a theme or even what you will learn. But that is also the brilliance of it and there is so many ideas because the discussion just flows all day.
I did enjoy the icebreaker activity of the morning, something called a ’35’ exercise. Everyone wrote down an idea on a piece of paper then we all got up and walked around swapping papers. When the whistle blew we paired up and each pair gave the ideas they had in their hands a rating out of 7 (so the pair of people might have liked idea B better than idea A so B would get a 5 and A a 2). After a few rounds of this everyone added up the ratings on the card in hand and the ideas with the highest scores won chocolates. I liked how this way, all ideas could be heard.
My idea was Museums and Libraries opened late (11-12am) and it won me 2 chocolates!
After the ice-breakers I decided to go to a session about Photography. I listened to a guy from Max Photography talk about hyper-real imagery and the processes he uses to achieve it.
- Photograph models on a grey-screen background.
- The blending and quick selection tools in Photoshop are your best friends.
- Vanishing point tool is helpful in getting scale right.
- Seems really simple, but know your audience. If the people you are targeting have limited knowledge of platforms like kickstarters then you are not going to reach your funding target.
- Have a PR strategy in place. You may think you are set once you have your Kickstarter page set up but the platform doesn’t do your PR for you. If you want people to fund you, then you still need to go find them and promote your idea with them.
- Dedicate time to your idea.
- If you don’t reach your funding goals, don’t think you have a bad idea.
The next session I went to told me to create lists and prioritise them. Then turn my lists into awesome tactile expressions of productivity with, wait for it… sticky notes!
Stephen Dann took us on a tour of 3 different Lego worlds from a sociological view point. His main agenda was to look at how realistic the promised experience of Lego world was from its social media and advertising. He noticed during his experience that most scenarios shown to visiting kids were disasters and pirates (with their stealing being portrayed as a good thing). This presentation also made me question what sort of world vision this well loved kids toy could sneak into my boys room under the guise of teaching him to be the heroic ‘hero’.
The codecadets from Canberra Grammar told us about their trip to Silicon Valley. As a parent I am on the look out for schools that understand the importance of innovative programs for our kids, giving them practical skills as well as a chance to make their own networks before even finishing school. Canberra Grammar, yes you have just jumped to the top of my “best schools in Canberra” list.
I also learned a bit about lock picking and the parts to a lock. A thought that crossed my mind when I saw the insides of dismantled lock “I could make some really nice jewelry out of these!”
Some more websites and images I took through-out the day.
Till next time!
DFTBA (Don’t Forget to be Awesome)