Emergence Creative Festival wrap-up
Art Director Cameron Jones took some time out to attend the Emergence Festival in Margaret River. It’s an event which attracts creative professionals from around the world, keen on exploring how to better make use of creativity in their work and lives.
The organisers also used some of Cameron’s illustrations throughout the event, which are included below.
What is Emergence?
It’s a conference that really doesn’t have too many comparisons. Sitting somewhere between a holiday, a marathon of TEDx talks, a festival and a wine tour, it is set among some of the most welcoming and picturesque wineries, breweries and cafés the Margaret River region has to offer.
Each year the conference attracts a wide range of professionals from music, film, advertising, digital and the visual arts who share recent developments in their disciplines, as well as emerging trends in a series of workshops and talks.
Giving an accurate account of all the great ideas, concepts and workshops from the conference would be like trying to condense the entire history of the East India Trade Company onto the back of a box of tea-bags. So instead, this is a focus on some of the important and recurring themes that became the centre of conversation.
If you’re a fan of Star Wars, Harry Potter or Marvel then you may be familiar with the concept. Taking numerous stories and mediums to create not just a story, but a world filled with stories. This approach isn’t just for the big entertainment giants, other industries are wising up to strategy. Magazines aren’t magazines anymore, they’re media channels. They run behind the scenes videos, short and long articles for different distribution channels, apps, online quizzes, features on their team, photographers or illustrators, and include numerous ways their audience can interact. The future isn’t one product, but many iterations of the brand which meet consumers where they are and draw them into their world.
Creativity is Across Industries
Being a creative event, it wasn’t a surprise to find photographers, advertisers, directors, producers, musicians, artists, designers, writers, illustrators and the like in attendance. What was a surprise was meeting baristas, journalists, bar owners managing directors, business development managers and even a fund manager. With such a diverse range of attendees in such a social setting, there was a risk that very little would actually get done! In fact, the event was a catalyst for new connections, fresh ideas and in-depth industry insights.
Disruption. It’s not a new word, but it’s certainly one of the most popular at the moment. Broadly it refers to what happens when a new business model displaces the previous standard way of doing things.
How we deal with disruption (and how we instigate it) were popular themes at the festival. There was much discussion about the management of some people’s instinctive suspicion of the new, but equally we recognised the clear benefits of fresh methods and technology to bring about different solutions. Creativity sits well in this debate because the communication of change is an area where creative solutions have real value. As long as there is change, there will always be a business need for creativity.
If you would like to venture more into what Emergence explored, then I have a few resources on the speakers below.
Illustrations by the author.