ALXMLS vs designstuffCDF

Posted on May 12, 2014 in News


Recently I was invited to talk at the first ever designstuffCDF event. My first reaction was one of being exceedingly chuffed followed by a sense of absolute dread and realisation that I may actually have to stand up in front of people and talk about something. Not just about anything to anyone, but about something that I love, do day-in / day-out but also to a design-savvy audience to boot.


So what the hell is designstuffCDF? Well,  in a nutshell it is simply ‘Awesome talks about design’. Thats it, well … very nearly! I caught up with the event’s brainchild, Dan Spain to find out a bit more. It turns out that he is just a tiny bit frustrated with the lack-of industry solidarity and hub so to speak and he has made it his personal mission to create an evening of talk, chat, socialising and obviously talks by people he feels have interesting stories to tell to an audience who want to listen.

My challenge, if I chose to accept it was to talk about any subject on design.


That is a vast request, anyhow – this isn’t a post about my talk and I will probably put a summary on here at some point, but just to share a bit of love for this new, promisingly awesome, regular event.


[above – water on stage at the ready at 10feettall]


[above – Jessica Draws wrecking the mic!]

The first speaker of the evening was Jessica Morgan, creative director of Jessica Draws. She gave us a great insight into her career climb from mac-bunny to creative director at Jessica Draws. Passionate about the work she produces and the professionalism of the industry, she is a true champion for the ‘not working for free’. This was capped off by a lovely illustration/animation and narration of her story.

A quick 30 minute interval ensued before yours truly landed on stage.

paul calf on a scooter

In my mind, i wanted to come on stage on a scooter like Paul Calf in this video from 1994!

Anyhow, I couldn’t find a scooter, so, i stepped on the stage with severe dread and anticipation clutching my cue cards.

My talk was mostly on my unconventional story into design, followed by a peek into my record collection and inspiration locker and then on to a quick look at design, business and food … and the crowd were a kind bunch, which helped somewhat!

The time flew!


[above – myself explaining that I am a multi-headed monster]

In all honesty, I was really impressed with the professionalism of the event. It was a ‘proper’ event, with chairs, projector, PA, mic, stage, water, equipment list … I jest, but i have been to some ‘professional events’ where organisation has been so poor … plus, I was even emailed an equipment list 2 weeks prior to the event – which obviously I only checked about half an hour before the event! I even got stickers and haribo on entry! What else can you seriously  ask for?

Feedback after this first event seemed to be glowing despite my over-time ramble – which was refreshing on a personal level … i did feel the burden of responsibility slowly rise from my shoulders, and I can now actually sleep again.

Anyhow, big shouts to designstuffCDF / Dan Spain for the opportunity and for asking me come and talk about this very personal subject! If you are involved in the industry of design, then make sure you get this monthly date in your calendar. Even if you not, and you are interested in what happens behind studio-doors, then this could well be a night for you!

More information
designstuffCDF on twitter
designstuffCDF on facebook
Book tickets on eventbrite

Leave a Reply