On Friday I had the pleasure of attending a one day conference, The Story, dedicated to story telling and stories.
This isn't the usual kind of conference that I'd attend, most conferences I've been to are either technical or design related, so this was a new experience for me. The prime reason I wanted to go, is because of the storyline project I'm undertaking for Mum, both to learn but also to be inspired to continue it and to provide challenges and alternative approaches. It didn't let me down.
I knew a few people who were attending, and planned to look out for them and catch up with them, but in the event, I actually spent most of the day catching up with former Brighton resident, now Sydney dweller, Mary. It was a great way to spend the day. I also managed to catch up with my good friend Neela at lunchtime as she works just over the road from Conway Hall. Double win!
I didn't want to write up my notes/this review immediately afterwards, as I felt I needed to let it "settle" a bit first to see what stuck with me. And I think my key thing is that almost everything discussed, with the noticeable exception of Tom Watson and Emily Bell, was new to me, or had a different perspective on something I thought I knew about. My notes are scribbles of words here and there but aren't full of action points or similar (which is good as I have quite enough stuff on my to do list already!).
Here are some of my highlights:
Liz Henry's talk on "Fake lesbians all the way down" was presented in an engaging, passionate and unfolding way - I was engrossed and hanging on every word. A real storyteller.
Antony Owen for no other reason than having the job title of "Head of Magic"
Phil Stuart and Tom Chatfield for showing us around The End, a game aimed at 13 - 19 year olds which explores thoughts around death and beliefs. This is a subject which I'm keen to see explored more as it is (still) one of life's great inevitablities and yet gets discussed so infrequently, and whilst I can only remark upon my own experiences of dealing with the loss of my Dad last year having some concept of what to expect can only be a good thing.
I think my favourite session was probably Scott Burnham talking about Urban Play, lots of beautiful and yet practical designs that graced Amsterdam in 2008. I loved his quote "What we create will always go away, but it's the story of what we do that will always last" (wording taken from TheCopyHouse's blog post as I only had part of it written down)
I barely tweeted or checked twitter during the day - I was so engrossed with what was happening around me - but looking back at the twitter hashtag #story2012 afterwards provided a good overview of what my fellow audience members thought about it.
All in all a great day, and definitely one to look out for again next year.