Elliot Jay Stocks is a designer, speaker, and author. He is the Creative Director of Adobe Typekit, the founder of typography magazine 8 Faces, one half of Viewport Industries, and an electronic musician.

You should come to ConfShop

Posted on 10 May 2013 No comments yet

Article illustration for You should come to ConfShop

On Friday 5th July, Keir and I are hosting a brand new event in London called Insites: ConfShop. Does the web industry really need another event? Well, we believe that ConfShop is different. Here’s why:

  • It takes the best parts of a conference (the social stuff, the ‘big picture’ lessons) and combines them with the best parts of a workshop (the small small groups, the ease of participation).
  • Drawing influence from last year’s Insites: The Xmas Special — which turned into a sort of intimate self-help group for webbies — and from grassroots events run by our friends like Brooklyn Beta and Greenville Grok, the key word of the day is inclusivity. Everyone on the same level. No silly speaker-audience divisions.
  • The format of the day consists of four groups of around 25 people, discussing four main areas (see below), with each session led by a ‘curator’. As the day goes on, each group will move between the sessions, and we’ll all reconvene at the end to draw some conclusions.

We might be biased, but we’d like think that we’re trying something new. There’s been a lot of snarkiness in the web industry of late — especially from the British web community, it has to be said — and we’re trying to dispel this misconception about ‘web celebrities’. Yes, we have well-known people leading the sessions (see below), but they’re not acting as speakers: they’re helping us curate the groups and keep everyone on track.

The topics we’ll be covering are:

  • Client work and products (how can we move from client focused-businesses to product-focused companies) — curated by Rachel Andrew and Drew McLellan.
  • Business issues (VAT, tax, accounting, pitching, contracts, finding work and beyond) — curated by Alex Hunter.
  • Working in the industry (work / life balance, keeping up, learning and more) — curated by Sarah Parmenter.
  • Side projects (how to find the time and create income streams) — curated by me and Keir.

Yes, this is a paid event, but we’ve made it as affordable as possible. Securing a large-enough space in London isn’t cheap, sadly! But we do have an incredible venue: Altitude 360 is right at the very top of the Millbank Tower and the views across the city are amazing!

So, if that sounds like your cup of tea, please come along — we only have 125 spaces. And if you’re a hater who’s been vocal about ‘web celebrity’ culture of late, you should definitely come along. This is the place to vent! And it’s also the place to collectively come up with solutions to our industry’s problems. Don’t be shy!

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