Fol­low­ing Glug’s summer blowout, Nick Carson chats to some of the par­ty­go­ers about the need for unity in di­vi­sive times

Computer Arts - - Culture -

Our events sec­tion took a break last is­sue so we could squeeze in as much top grad­u­ate tal­ent as pos­si­ble, but back at the end of June, team CA rounded off a packed cou­ple of days tour­ing the Lon­don de­gree shows with some much-needed beers at Glug’s Shored­itch Summer Party.

Tak­ing place dur­ing Cannt Fes­ti­val – the rest of the in­dus­try’s two-fin­gers-up to the ex­clu­sive sun-soaked yacht par­ties of Cannes – the party went for a vibe in keep­ing with Cannt’s slo­gan: ‘Cannt be divided.’

We chat­ted to some of the cre­atives in at­ten­dance about what this ac­tu­ally means in prac­tice, and how our in­dus­try can pull to­gether in in­creas­ingly di­vi­sive times.

“The very na­ture of cre­ativ­ity is about mak­ing con­nec­tions, and our busi­ness op­er­ates on the strength of the re­la­tion­ships we form with clients, staff, peers and con­sumers,” said NB’s Tom Moloney.

Par­tic­u­larly for smaller stu­dios, these con­nec­tions can have huge prac­ti­cal value: “With­out col­lab­o­ra­tion, you’re lim­ited to the skills you have in-house,” pointed out Ian Ham­ble­ton, Out­put Group’s chief ex­ec­u­tive. “It’s im­pos­si­ble to hire the best peo­ple in ev­ery area, so why not work with world-class peo­ple in dif­fer­ent fields?”

“Strength lies in num­bers,” agreed Kyle Wilkin­son, co-founder of Hack­saw. ”There is al­ways some­one who’s bet­ter than you at some­thing: col­lab­o­rat­ing with them is key to el­e­vat­ing a project.”

Of course, for de­sign­ers in the UK in par­tic­u­lar, the loom­ing un­cer­tainly of Brexit is a di­vi­sive force to be reck­oned with. “Bri­tish de­sign is at the top of the tree, but this is only pos­si­ble be­cause of the many tal­ented for­eign na­tion­als that we are lucky to at­tract to our shores,” said Wilkin­son.

“I worry that the amazing abun­dance of for­eign tal­ent will look else­where, which would be dev­as­tat­ing for Bri­tish de­sign. Con­tin­u­ing to col­lab­o­rate with tal­ent from across the globe is key to con­tin­u­ally rais­ing the bar.”

Glug or­gan­iser Malin Pers­son is en­cour­aged by the at­ti­tude of creative peo­ple: “Peo­ple are stand­ing up to, bang­ing the drums of, and pas­sion­ately fight­ing the causes of these is­sues,” she said. “I be­lieve we’ll soon see a whole lot of ac­tion be­ing taken as well.”

Ul­ti­mately, Pers­son con­tin­ued, em­pha­sis­ing col­lab­o­ra­tion over com­pe­ti­tion is how the in­dus­try can bridge the gap. “If we all try our hard­est to be more di­verse, more in­clu­sive, more aware of the highs and the lows, we’ll see a much quicker way out,” she in­sisted.

Events like Glug that bring the com­mu­nity to­gether play a part: “It’s great to meet new and old friends, chew the fat, un­wind, get in­spired – and hung-over,” said Moloney, and Wilkin­son con­curred: “Ev­ery­one has a com­mon in­ter­est, yet dif­fer­ent view­points lead to di­verse, fas­ci­nat­ing con­ver­sa­tions.”

This is ex­actly Glug’s pur­pose, and Pers­son has big plans: “I want ev­ery­one to know ev­ery­one, and to work in a job that is ful­fill­ing and in­spir­ing,” she beamed. “I hope peo­ple will use Glug as a plat­form to achieve this.”

Clock­wise from far left: Glug’s packed­out Summer Party took place at Cargo in Shored­itch, com­plete with beer gar­den and bar­beque; stick­ers were pro­vided to let oth­ers know if you’re hir­ing or job-seek­ing; the oblig­a­tory VR demo.

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