4 Films and a Nude

Yesterday’s TedxBrighton event was incredible. 12 superb speakers on everything from finding Utopia to Open Data Cites and most other points in between. While the footage from the event itself will be uploaded in the next few weeks, I wanted to share four films from Ted.Com that the Tedx team curated for our pleasure, and talk about nudes.

Four Films…

1) Hans Rosling
With simply one of the best data visualisations I’ve ever seen, Hans Rosling talks global health, GDP and how data shows that some of our assumptions may be wrong. Oh yeah, and that chimps are on a par with professors.

2) VS Ramachandran

How civilisation was shaped, along with helpful information about how to ease phantom limb pain… Mirror neurons have got a lot to answer for…

3) Derek Sivers

One of my more unexpected take-aways from the day: while we’re all told to be leaders, actually being the first follower is more valuable. Because it’s the first follower who turns a lone nutter into a leader…

4) Jill Bolte Taylor

Jill Bolte Taylor and her now near-legendary presentation about watching a stroke from the inside out needs no introduction from me.

During TedxBrighton, technology played up only during Jill’s film, freezing twice. The first time got a reboot and things seemed to settle, but when it froze again, the decision was taken to press on with the last of the day’s agenda. At this point, I overheard the following snippet of conversation behind me:

Man 1: Thank goodness for that.
Man 2: What do you mean?
Man 1: I’m nearly in tears here. I don’t think I could face watching the ending…

So, if you haven’t seen it, watch it. Now.

And so to nudes.

Without spoiling anything, Jake Spicer gave a talk on how, as we get older, we lose our visual literacy and our spoken literacy improves (wait for the talk to be uploaded, it’s worth it).

Now, I “can’t” draw. I’ve never really been able to make what’s on the paper look like what’s in my head or what’s in front of me.

So imagine my dread at a life drawing exercise. We’re all told to pick up pencil and paper. Out comes the model. Off we go.

Mostly, I draw stick people if I have to draw at all. But this, in an atmosphere where there was no judging, no criticism, no need to rate the work, is what came out:

Maybe I can draw… And I can’t tell you how profound and powerful that realisation was. I’m no portrait painter, but at least you can tell – roughly – it’s meant to be. There’s something there, fore me. A new piece of communication, of literacy, that needs to be explorered…

In one go, a “can’t” changed to a “can”… What a thing to take away from the day…

Note: The picture has been run through Photoshop to darken the edges and make some of the lines visible by means of the ‘Sharpen’ tool. No other process or tool has been applied. What you see is what I drew. And I’m probably as surprised as you are…

6 thoughts on “4 Films and a Nude

  1. I’m working on an article about TEDxBrighton as well on my blog.
    In the meantime, reading this article was good for refreshing my mind after the packed day we had yesterday !

  2. Pingback: What I learned from TEDxBrighton |

  3. Pingback: TEDxBrighton Review | iTibZ: blog

  4. Pingback: TEDxBrighton Review | iTibz

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