Building Community – Vancouver and Victoria Visual Practitioners Meetup
In April, Sam Bradd (Vancouver) and Tanya Gadsby (Victoria) co-hosted an social evening for graphic facilitators and visual practitioners. Thank you to everyone who came – from 6+ cities and by car, ferries and even a plane – to network and talk shop.
You know you’re in the right space for a visual practitioners meetup when someone else has already drawn on the walls. We rented CityStudio, a creative collaboration space for urban planning: there’s a giant blackboard wall, picnic tables, and an affinity map of post-it notes connecting City challenges with students eager to solve them.
We all felt right at home! (Need a similar venue? Try using the “Airbnb of space rentals”, ThisOpenSpace.com.)
The Vancouver community hosts quarterly meetups, and we usually alternate between something social and a skillshare. This was our first Vancouver/Victoria collaboration – it was great to build more bridges with colleagues in other cities. And of course thanks to Neuland for the ambassador gifts – they were a huge hit!
Tips for other hosts:
⁃Keep it simple, and don’t over program the night. Let people move around and meet each other. We had a 15-minute introduction activity, including drawing and “what’s your superpower?”
⁃Alternate socials with more hands-on demos/ topics to attract different people
⁃Host at a roomy, public venue (not someone’s house) once in a while so new folks will feel welcome / safe attending
⁃Keep in touch: use a social media platform or email list so people can RSVP or plan for the next one
⁃ A light potluck on a work night is always a hit, it feels like we all know not to bring chips for dinner by now.
Regional meetups are great to connect practitioners for sharing skills, opportunities, and building a supportive community in between IFVP conferences, and to attract people to join the IFVP for an even stronger network.
Speaking of IFVP, both Tanya and Sam will see you at Montclair!
Stay in touch:
– Victoria: Tanya Gadsby of The Fuselight