Saturday morning, I threw a load of comics and paper and pens into a wheely case and kissed the kids goodbye, and then leapt onto a London-bound train. When I got off the DLR at Shadwell, the sun was beaming down, everyone had washing on their lines, and I had to follow signs that said “Pirate Ship”. All the omens were good.
WIRED Next Generation was in Tobacco Dock, a huge and intriguing space which did not disappoint on the pirate ship front.
I met up with Alison Gazzard and we checked out the show, which included drones, awkward ipad virtual presence bot things on wheels, X-wing made of bike parts, 3D printing, South Africa in virtual reality, and my personal favourite GIANT COLLABORATIVE TETRIS!!! me and Alison had a go, and it was so hard. I was in charge of left/right and Allie was in charge of rotate/drop. The pressure was *enormous*.
We waited outside our workshop room, and chatted to the man who made the X-wing out of bicycle frames ( https://twitter.com/HeavyPetalUK)while the group inside made musical instruments out of fruit and veg.
When we were allowed to enter we watched them unplug and dissemble the various devices, which had electrodes jabbed in lemons, potatoes and notably, a small aubergine.
Feeling not at all intimidated by all of that, we set to work putting out all the hi-tech equipment we were going to need…
We put out some quality comics to inspire them, and then quickly put away again all the ones I realised had swears in… o_O
First we were scared nobody would come and we’d sit there with only crickets chirping.
Then the crowds started to gather, and we became scared everyone would come.
In the end we had all 20 of the kids who had booked, and then five or six extras we couldn’t bear to turn away.
We gave them some plot ideas, in the form of clippings which I’d chopped out of New Scientist the night before.
The idea was to say that ideas can come from anywhere, and its totally legit to find inspiration in everyday places, but I think it just meant they all thought I was a loony.
Anyhow, they all got going thinking up ideas.
Their ideas were AWESOME.
This was the one inspired by an article which said a huge subterranean ocean has been discovered beneath the Earth’s crust.
This was one from an article about using things creatures really do in nature to inspire inventions.
When he gets angry he becomes magnetic. Hilarious and disturbing events follow…
This table had two clippings, one about 12.5 fingers being the optimum amount, and one about brain probing which causes people to be back in places they once were.
This was the awesome work of one attendee who has a bright future ahead of him I think!
This was all from a story about trousers (really, I gave them quality material to work with…) and I have to say the results were…amazing.
I really want to read comics about Dr. Disproportionate and Mr Dubstep.
Note the infographic at the bottom which clearly demonstrates the difference between trouser crabs and crab trousers.
I want this on a T-shirt please…
This was a story I really wanted to see more of, a sci-fi epic by Finnbar Wilson.
Finnbar Wilson, creator of the World’s Scariest Thing. I want to work with Mr Wilson some day when he can fit me in. @_@
So that was our workshop!
We did attempt to skew it toward ways of doing the comics if you were reading it on a ipad, (aided by Alison’s awesome paper cut out iPads) but in the end, talking about the ideas and the characters was too fun, and we got cut off short before we could properly finish and say goodbye.
I ran away and into a taxi, and got home at ten that night.
thank you for having us WIREDNG! we’d love to come back next year if you’ll have us?
HUGE thanks to all our attendees, without whom we’d have just been two crazy ladies in a room on our own. If you attended and want your name up next to your work, drop me a line using the Contact page, or tweet at me @electricomics or say hi on Facebook.
I have two email addresses already, and if any more of you get in touch, I will set you guys up as beta testers when we are at that point. You were so awesome thankyou!
Apologies for the hideous quality of the pictures, I took them on my iPad, on the floor this morning. It shows, I know.