I’ve been asked a few times in the past what going to an E3C meet-up was all about and have addressed concerns about “not having anything to talk about” – so this month I decided to attend the meeting like a regular member instead of a part of the steering committee to report how it went.
This month’s meet-up was hosted at the Humani-T cafe off of Spring Garden on South Park street and it was one of the best yet, based on location alone. Lots of new faces of people who tracked us down on twitter to join the fun, as well as a couple new people who tagged along with friends.
The set up at the coffee shop was perfect; we were on the upper part of the Humani-T cafe and had a few reserved signs kindly put down for us so that people would know where to go. Surprisingly most of the people started showing up at 7pm sharp, compared to when we host at a bar-setting where people normally start coming around 8pm. I got there a little late, but was greeted promptly upon entering by the ever-present, ever-happy Alison Knott (fearless leader of the steering committee) who took my $2 donation and gave me a name tag which showed that I’m an NSCC student who’s into Hand-lettering and design.
While touring around the clusters of conversations, I got to sit in and learn a lot of different things while hiding behind my camera. I’m an introverted person, so for me it’s a lot easier to sit on the edge of conversations and wait until I feel comfortable to talk. With this many creative people around, there is always an even mix of people so I never feel pressured to speak or put on the spot.
After getting my stuff settled and tucking into my Lawrence town Latte (aka a london fog), I sat in on a conversation with my mentor – Alison Knott – and a classmate named Brennan discussing their favourite designers and associated eras. Alison is the best person to speak to when you come to your first meet up because she always seems to know what questions to ask to make you feel comfortable. You’ll often find her near the box of name tags with lots of seating nearby.
Another great person to sit with at the meet-ups is Mike Tanner. The first time I wandered over in the evening, he was having an in-depth conversation with NSCC student Sarah about writing novels and later with another student Victoria about blogging. Mike is a published author with a wealth of knowledge to share about blogging, writing and parenting. He keeps our twitter going and always has a sassy comment or two to make your day. If you’re feeling nervous, stick with him and you’ll be laughing and learning in no time.
I caught up with Sylvie for a few minutes as well at this meet-up; She’s a local designer in Halifax and encouraged me to try out the incredible Soy Oreo Ice cream on the Menu at Humani-T cafe. Conversations in this corner ranged from design work all the way to “how to tell when your car battery is dying”. There was also Simon sitting in the same area, who could be coaxed into talking about how to make your own armour if you were interested in getting involved in the local SCA group. I’m always fascinated by how diverse the groups who show up for the Coffee-related meet-ups end up being!
Midway through the evening, I brought Alison over to meet some of my fellow students and delighted in listening to her talk about how we should be preparing our portfolios, when to consider doing free work and how to avoid being taken advantage of. She went over her process for taking work from sketches to thumbnails to the computer. I would not be the first to say that it was a lot like listening to our teacher Crystal. It was at this point that we decided to make the next ‘Get Sh!t Done’ event into a critique event for everyone who is looking to have their work from the whole year looked at by local designers.
Later on in the evening, I ended up caught up in a conversation with Dan Rogers and Ms. Tipsy Sips talking about a live streamed game they host on Saturdays and the artwork they have had done by a local artist for the project, next to another group discussing their favourite television show. There was also Doug who is one of the writers contributing to the blog in attendance, but there were so many people that I didn’t get to sit down with him this time around.
Overall, it was an awesome night with some really inspiring people. If you haven’t checked out any of the events for yourself then there is no time like the present to make new friends and ‘Get sh!t done’ so if you’re free then hopefully we’ll see you out at the next event.