Thursday, 26 January 2017

#2 Discipline & the Underestimated Power of FOMO

The #LingeringThemes Series
This collection of short thought-pieces looks to explore the lingering themes that knock around the mind of today’s driven + ambitious young women. Offering a measured look at the challenges we try not to struggle with, #LingeringThemes breaks down those points of anxiety by driving a positive, balanced approached to terms like ‘Satisfaction’ and ‘Productivity’.

#2 Discipline & the Underestimated Power of FOMO

Women are amazing at making sacrifices: in life, for love, and across all of the wonderfully messy bits in between. From meal plans and gym schedules right through to social decisions, discipline is one of the most demanding and long-standing skills we can develop - and as a mechanism to build strength, its probably incomparable to any other frame of mind. But as we all know, it can come at a price, and honestly, that feeling of missing out in the face of your own pre-determined, disciplined choices can sometimes feel shit.

Although FOMO is one of those quite cringey terms that you’re likely to see knocking around a Gen Z marketing campaign, it does pose a pretty relatable point of view. Fear Of Missing Out (‘FOMO’) is a force that has - at some point - guided us all, and although creative women tend to grow out of its heavy-hitting influence, there’s no doubt that FOMO has shaped our choices at some point or another. Social media is a totally viable example of this. For sure, exploration and discovery are key reasons why we just keep on scrolling, but that initial decision to sign up for an account on day one of your handle can’t not have been informed by a feeling of curiosity, of asking that question “if I don’t, what will I miss?”. Back in the real world, FOMO also drives us to make decisions with this thinking in mind: to make that career move to a new city, or to head to that networking evening straight after work on a Thursday night when really all you want to do is wear grey sweatpants at home and be cosy.

With this in mind, the power of FOMO reveals itself as something not to be underestimated or trifled with. It draws a very fine line between what’s best and what’s better, and let’s be honest: that difference is is rarely clean-cut. But let's not forget how discipline can help.It's exactly that driver to just get on with 'it' that defines our own new mode of discipline: not letting anything - especially not yourself - get in the way of ambition. The ability to action something is also the choice to leave something be: to decide that in fact you really are happy enough in your own company than to spend an evening somewhere (online or offline) that you just don't need to be.

Fear Of Missing Out is a marketing technique that can manipulate our thoughts and desires. But one thing is for certain this year: that in 2017, the definition of discipline in the face of FOMO is in for a renewal.

Friday, 6 January 2017

#1 Pastel Pink, Sparkling and Massive: In Praise of Possibility

The #LingeringThemes Series
This collection of short thought-pieces looks to explore the lingering themes that knock around the mind of today’s driven + ambitious young women. Offering a measured look at the challenges we try not to struggle with, #LingeringThemes breaks down those points of anxiety by driving a positive, balanced approached to terms like ‘Satisfaction’ and ‘Productivity’.

#1 Pastel Pink, Sparkling and Massive: In Praise of Possibility

Annoyingly, the cliches that surround our lives as young women ring around and around again in my mind. Those present concerns that affect my choices probably affect yours too: from reacting to the daily news on the tube each morning right down to the styles we adopt as we dress, being a driven female comes with a certain set of themes and outtakes that most of us share. As a collective, the ways that we empower and guide ourselves shine through every decision we make - but in particular, overcoming a lack of direction can be insanely exhausting in a world of infinite possibility. Suddenly, those annoying cliches can offer a sense of structured security to our lives, rather than standing as a narrative to overcome.

Something like balancing relationships and careers is one such recurring challenge that many of us (try not to) struggle with - but beyond all that, it’s this idea of possibility that drives us. Amidst the pastel-pink hues of the creative industries around the world, there really is nothing we cannot do. Start your own company? In reality, that’s actually not too difficult. Have your voice heard by thousands of like-minded people? Post from one of your preferred online channels. Fly off to discover your dream location on a whim? I’ve got this theory that you can get to pretty much anywhere in the world for £600 if you look hard enough for flights. Never before have young women like us had this much possibility to play with - so who can blame us for occasionally struggling to know what to do with it all.

The bizarre sense of guilt I feel when inspiration escapes me in the face of this opportunity is awful - and really difficult to negotiate. We work hard to score achievements along the timeline of our careers: highlights shine in our memories and serve as building blocks for future milestones. But coming out of one project, one role, one journey or even one relationship can throw us back out into that massive, sparkling world of possibility without giving any direction on which route to take next. The things we thought we valued might not carry the same momentum in our lives anymore, and the things we thought we wanted might be overshadowed by other goals - potentially outside of our chosen careers. The volatility of our planet and the happenings within it right now are already starting to affect the decisions of women everywhere in 2017, but it’s revealing a stunning opportunity to embrace your passions, trust your gut and take whatever path calls your name the loudest - with no room for regrets.

Carving out a path for yourself in life is an attribute that some women are just born with and a skill that others - potentially without meaning to - craft over time. Some of us straight-up never feel the need to plan the journey at all - but for absolutely everyone, possibility is a privilege, and to explore it each day must take priority. Especially if it ends up leading you to places you never planned on going.

Tuesday, 3 January 2017

New Location: Back in London!

Right then - starting 2017 with another move: I'm back in London!

After a year of working freelance while traveling, I've taken an opportunity back in the UK's capital to settle down and get my head into the fashion + tech scene in London. I'll be producing a series of of major international Summits for Decoded Fashion (full time). Can't wait!

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

New Location: Noosa, Australia

In keeping with my plan for a productive year of traveling and working, I've moved to a new base location for the next few months - and I'm so happy here!

Noosa is a small town on the East Coast of Australia, about two hours North of Brisbane in Queensland. I'm here on a working holiday visa and continuing my freelance writing and production work from this stunning coastal town.

I'm currently working on projects in Singapore and London - so please do get in touch if you think I can help with any upcoming ideas.

Friday, 27 May 2016

Decoded Fashion London Summit 2016

I’m back in the UK, and am delighted to have supported an event that I’ve been following since its creation in 2012: Decoded Fashion.

On my first summer in London directly after graduation, I discovered a fantastic side to the city that doubtlessly fuelled my career along with the passion I have for it. First Thursdays: or as I saw it back then, an opportunity to drink free wine in nice locations whilst practicing my mingling skills. Needless to say, the events themselves – often informal, tech-city style MeetUps – taught me a great deal about what I was actually interested in, along with what makes a good event.

One particularly fantastic MeetUp I attended that summer (2013) was one run by Decoded Fashion. The brand, previously run by the kick-ass Liz Bacelar and now owned and directed by Stylus, produce major international Fashion Technology conferences, but a few years ago were much more low-key. We met in a venue on brick lane and talked about the technology that was changing the London fashion scene at the time (I distinctly remember a presentation from, and I thought it was the coolest group of female bosses ever in one room.

Last week however, I was delighted to support pre-event and on-site at Decoded Fashion London Summit 2016, held at the familiar location of Kings Place, Kings Cross. Over two days (May 16 – 17), the 400-delegate strong conference provided and developed a fascinating conversation between start-ups, major fashion brands and technologists, through a shared discourse of the future of fashion through technology.

A particular highlight for me was the Mentorship Hub space (which I was managing on-site), within which delegates could schedule meetings with high-profile tech execs from a variety of successful brands. The generosity of knowledge along with the guidance shared was very inspiring, and this paired with the (insanely good) content on the main stage was an incredible combo.

I was also very pleased (!) to be invited to the Decoded Fashion Awards evening at LSO St Luke’s, which followed the event. It was a stunning evening with a three-course dinner along with some fantastic socialising. Follow the link below for information on all the categories and winners:

Working with the Decoded team was an amazing experience. The girls are fantastic, and the content delivery and relevance of their work has absolutely blown me away. Many thanks to all involved, and I hope to work with you again very soon!

Highlights form Decoded London Summit 2016:

I'm currently taking commissions as a Freelance Producer for any kind of international conference event. Please do let me know if you think I could help pre-show or on-site at your event:

Thursday, 26 May 2016

Virtual Reality: engaging with a new medium

Regardless of how different the processes involved are, the impact that all kinds of emerging technologies are having on a number of sectors create similar kinds of disruption. 

I've recently been commissioned to carry out some extensive content research looking into the world of Virtual Reality - and have been fascinated by the parallels I've found between this industry and that of 3D printing. The supposed incoming revolution that Virtual Reality (VR) poses to an international array of individuals, companies and industries alike looks set to change the way the that people interact with one another - in what could be a very essential way. The immersive experience of being instantly taken to a virtual environment bridges geographical gaps the world over. For example - rather than traveling to another country for a meeting, conference or event, the introduction of VR allows users to very realistically 'feel' that experience - potentially from their own living room sofa or office desk.

The implications of this major shift in inter-human relations could be huge, and I'm excited to follow the development of this Digital Humanities issue. Like with all emerging tech, VR needs to become both relevant and affordable to a very large group of people before it becomes 'mainstream' - however, one crucial aspect of the tech is that the gaming industry stands as a perfect access point to it. Personal VR devices are already becoming popular for dedicated gaming enthusiasts, and as the price of the hardware drops over the coming months and years, who knows what applications Virtual Reality could introduce.

Check out 2017's inaugural London edition of The Virtual Reality Show: an event which I've been working on for the last few months in terms of content production, trend research and conference agenda curation.