Emergent creative collaboration from a simple ground


A simple and unoriginal experiment.  

Prepare the ground with a set of children’s magnetic letters arranged evenly and without order on a surface that people will pass regularly.  Stand back and see what happens.

A few observations:

1.  The first couple of arrangements were made within minutes of the letters showing up.

2.  The first arrangement was a greeting to The Creator (for it is I)

3.  “hello” soon became “hope”

4.  Nobody told anyone what to do or what not to do.  Nobody asked for permission.

5.  Strong personalities shine through.  Among the C4CC inner circle few could doubt the authorship of either “meow” or “granularity”

6.  As well as words a figurative structure appeared (just below the word kiwi in the fourth picture)  To me this is clearly a representation of a unicorn charging towards the right (or perhaps just deeper into the building) with an apple skewered on its horn.  The symbolism is obvious.

Originally posted on Centre for Creative Collaboration – blog


Unconscious on the bathroom floor

We’re all familiar with being on auto-pilot.  Usually because we come to a sudden realisation that that’s where we’ve been.  Luckily most of the time it’s because something or someone interrupts us gently.  Occasionally it’s more serious, it’s the car horn that alerts us to the fact we’ve stepped into the road without thinking. 

I think we’re all also familiar with the paper tissue or towel on the public bathroom floor.  Who’s going to pick it up? Not me.  God knows what’s on it, what it was last used for, whose hands it has been in.  I may have just exposed some of my most intimate parts to a piece of porcelain that is less clean than that tissue, but I’m not going to pick it up.  It must be someone else’s job.  And anyway how the hell does it get there?  How can people be so messy, dirty, slovenly?

Here’s my theory on how it gets there.  Someone drops it accidentally and unconsciously while on auto-pilot.  They’re on their way to meeting someone, having lunch, getting back to a knotty problem at work and they’re oblivious to the single sheet of tissue falling to the floor.  Simple as that – it happens everywhere, it’s not a measure of the depravation of the people using it, it’s a measure of how unconscious they are, and I’d argue unconsciousness is, if anything, more prevalent in communities of clever people who are doing lots of thinking.

So what happens in a place where it isn’t anyone else’s job to pick it up?  At C4CC we do have cleaners who come in regularly, but not at the end of every day, nor does anyone do a regular cleanliness check during the day and scribble their signature on a chart on the back of the loo door.  What’s the solution? Employ cleaners in such a capacity? No money.  Put up signs to encourage mindfulness of your surroundings while you’re here? Signs are highly susceptible to being ignored by unconscious people.  Hold meditation sessions every day to generally raise the level of consciousness of people working here? Tempting… very tempting…

Or how about, whenever I find myself in a conscious state in the bathroom and I spot the residue of someone else’s unconsciousness, I just pick up that piece of paper, put it in the bin and wash my hands afterwards?

Originally posted on Centre for Creative Collaboration – blog

Expectations & Conversation Starters

We expect finished, polished product.  For a long time, only the polished was worth publishing – just from a cost point of view.  And so people think {if published, then polished}.

In truth the cost hasn’t necessarily been removed completely, but we as producers have externalised it, we’ve moved the cost of replication and distribution to the internet and we’ve shifted the cost of re-writing, re-thinking, re-working and polishing to our “readers”

And so now as a “reader” I can no longer rely on publication as a marker.

And as a producer, I have to put up with “readers” complaining that they don’t understand my work that it doesn’t seem thought through.  Because it isn’t.  And actually their complaints are part of the process.

If we’re telling a story, we’ve learned that it should have a beginning, a middle and and end.  Unless of course we twist that and say “this story has no beginning” or “this story has no end”. Then it’s not a story – it’s a conversation starter – isn’t it?

Originally posted on Lloyd’s posterous

Shh! don’t tell anyone, but the wankers have gone!

I stopped opening up my RSS reader a while ago.  I don't know how long ago, but I'm pretty sure it was last year sometime.  It was just too much on top of everything I saw in Twitter and Facebook.  Most blog posts I wanted to read were being lost in the noisy flood of people saying very little, badly.  I tried unsubscribing, cutting down my list but it was a bit like cutting down my twitter following – what if? what if? what if? What if, what? What if a miracle happened and one of these wankers actually said something interesting?  Well yes.  It could happen. Couldn't it?

I took the leap and just stopped opening it.  Removed it from the array of tabs that always greet me.  Focused on spotting the neat stuff in my streams, but really focused on just writing and making my own bits and pieces.

This morning over coffee I thought "I wonder what's in there…" and had a look.  I'm transported back 10 years.  The most recent twenty posts or so are from @charlesfrith, @russelldavies, @euan, @gapingvoid, @davewiner – Punk Planning, The Obvious, Gapingvoid, Scripting News, um… Russell's blog – real blogs written by real guys, each with something really interesting and different to say.

No "social media experts" in sight.  It's OK folks, perhaps they've gone…

Originally posted on Lloyd’s posterous


Some random notes on what to do with the stuff that I want to keep but don’t want to take with me.  The biggest single item is my bed frame (and mattress) and then I’ve kitchen stuff, some clothes, books, records and a computer or two.  I’ve slimmed down a lot.

I’d like to keep it all in one place I think – having stuff spread over several attics, box rooms and garages is probably more cost-effective and doubtless more interesting artistically, but a pain in the bum that I don’t really need.

So I think the questions are:

To store in Central London or not? and whereabouts anyway?

What “visiting rights” do I need?

How much does it cost roughly? 

Any recommendations for good service?

Those big storage places are weird aren’t they? The other day, talking to Nick, we came up with the idea of a documentary just asking people as they went in what they were storing and why, so many interesting stories, I’m sure.

btw that photo is from when I moved into Dolphin Square nearly 5 years ago…

Originally posted on Lloyd’s posterous

Clearing up. Let’s Fight!

I’ve moved out and moved on many times but some things seem to stick around in boxes no matter what.  One of those things is my notebook from Drama School.  Yes I had just one – I don’t seem to remember there being a lot to write down…

This though is the first page of several directions for the basic stage fighting exam that we did.  I think it was the only subject I did an external exam for while there (although I also did the advanced one).  It was great fun – if you want to try it out you’ll need to know that the V column is the Villain and H is for Hero.  Then T=Thrust, Py=Parry, S=Sword and D=Dagger and you’ll need to dig out a couple of rapiers and daggers.

Oh, and take extreme caution “I’ve seen an eyeball on the end of one of these” 

Here’s me practicing at home…

Originally posted on Lloyd’s posterous