Today Sam and I are introducing Design+Banter: a get-together for designers. Every month, a group of talented web designers will gather in London to trade stories, share ideas, drink beer, bowl and play table tennis.
When I moved to London 3 years ago, starting in a new city, I found it hard to build up a group of designers who could be friends, advisors and helpful critics. I'm a friendly guy, I get along with people, but the problem was that there was nowhere in particular in London that these elusive design unicorns gathered.
I wanted to go somewhere to discuss what I was working on with other designers, to get feedback and ideas, but I couldn't find that place.
"I wanted to go somewhere to discuss what I was working on with other designers, to get feedback and ideas, but I couldn't find that place."
Working in a startup, I was the only designer in an office with engineering, sales and marketing guys. They were great people, but sometimes I just wanted to grab a beer and talk shit about fonts, or floats, or flat design. This didn't sound like their ideal evening.
Unsurprisingly, when I explained all this to other designers I have bumped into over the years, they often have had the same experience. One described it was wanting a Dribble but in the real world, with actually useful feedback and maybe some beers.
So that's exactly what we're going to do.
The first Design+Banter will be on June 3rd. You can find all the details here. The format is simple. There will be four talks, seven minutes each: two talks explaining a concept, idea or technique and two show'n'tells. Each talk will contain at least 2 minutes for questions and feedback.
If the speaker asks we will institute a "no tweet, "no Instagram" agreement for show'n'tells of work in progress.
We're feeling our way a bit with this first event, so any suggestions on format, location and speakers for the next event are greatly appreciated — just drop me a line.
Finally, none of this would have been possible without the support of Henry and Alex the founders of Event.ly who have helped with the logistics of the event and are also buying you all the first round of beers on the night.