It is the end of March and I am already half way through the Crafts Council's Hothouse scheme! It is a brilliant professional development programme and I am learning such a lot - I have many things to put into action over the next few months. Last week was the Peer Networking Day, this was the first time all the cohorts had come together since the Induction day at the beginning of February. The venue was the lovely Toynbee Hall in East London. The day started with a talk from Sarah Hewett from Etsy UK, covering images, PR and working with the press. Sarah has a huge amount of experience in the craft sector and spoke with bubbly enthusiasm. We also had Anna Collect Hunt, a previous Hothouse participant, talk about her work and her experience of the buddying and mentoring that are part of the programme. Running throughout the day was photography with Tas Kyprianou - each of us had a professional photo taken by Tas with our work. I am not very good at relaxing in front of a camera, but Tas was very friendly and had some great tips which I'll be using again in the future. We get our photos in a couple of weeks time so I'll share them then!
One of the main tasks of the day was to network with our peers and this happened informally throughout the day - there was a constant buzz of chatting when nothing official was happening! We did have one formal task and this was to work in pairs, listen to each other talk about our work and then do a one minute presentation on our partners work to everyone else. I worked with Jessica Thorn who is a designer/maker with a focus on ceramics. It was really interesting to hear about her inspiration and processes and then to share this with everyone else! It was a brilliant day :-)
Thank you for reading!