Brendan Dawes
The Art of Form and Code

That Was The Week That Was — 20th October 2019

This latest work is almost done, except now I'm trying to wrestle with these new colours that need to be incorporated somehow. My initial attempt seemed OK at first but then I quickly began to hate it, realising I had gone too far with the new colours. I needed to step away for a while and rethink things through again and try to get back to the beauty of the original versions.

This was a good week for stepping back as on Wednesday I would travel to Sheffield to meet Patrick Thomas and his visiting students, then travel to London on the Thursday ready for my keynote at Mind The Product on the Friday afternoon.

Patrick Thomas was heading-up a trip he called Trains not Planes, taking his students all the way from Germany up through the UK, ending up in Scotland. Pam Bowman — head of graphics at Sheffield Hallam University, asked if I could come over when they were visiting and do a little talk. There was mention of the best chip butty in Sheffield so I said I come come over the day before I head to London.

The chip butty was indeed good, as was meeting Patrick — such brilliant work — and his students. I did the talk, we chatted and I wished them well on their continuing journey.

On the Thursday myself and Lisa headed for London. Today was my Birthday, so with the Mind The Product conference I was speaking at happening on the 18th, we made a few nights of it in London at our favourite hotel in South Kensington.

On the day of the conference I set off for the Barbican, whilst Lisa would join me later; listening to talks about product management wasn't really her thing. The place was rammed — over seventeen hundred people made this a sell-out event. I'd be last on the giant stage. For some reason I was more nervous about this talk than any other I care to remember in recent times. I just wanted it to be good and make sure everybody could take something away from it, even though product management is not my thing. As the time ticked away for me to take to the stage I tried to soak up all the atmosphere and get a feel for the audience as they watched all of the strong, well crafted, talks.

Fortunately it all went well. The audience were very generous with their attention and their feedback.

The next day we had tickets for the Mary Quant exhibition at the V&A. Quant was a true innovator, not just in fashion but in brand and graphic design. The beautifully curated show was very inspirational, especially in respect of my future thoughts for Produced for Use.