A loooooooooong time has passed until I finally make this long overdue OnTour report!
It’s not that I wouldn’t have enough to talk about, the sheer number of pictures I took during the trip was just too much to handle. After the trip I got right back into the the daily grind again, but here it is – finally!
Well, some of you might know that I went to the UK for the first time ever, on top of that, alone.
It was a very important trip for me, because with this I would tackle some stuff which I thought about since January 2015, actually:
- I need to DO more things instead of dreaming about them
- I want to rekindle my passion for art
- I want to challenge myself to try new things
- I don’t want to wait for others, or the “right” time to do stuff
- I need to feel okay when being alone
I often felt to insecure (Ha! PAST tense. I’ve made it!) to do stuff on my own, or to be alone for some time. It was an uneccessary – and quite frankly – childish behaviour, that I needed to get rid of. For myself.
So I came up with this:
- Take part in the ReasonsToBeCreative festival in Brighton (Organize everything yourself! Be alone for a week! Know no one! Go to a country you never went before)
- Visit the Harry Potter Movie Studios in London
- Join a LARP all by yourself and alone (Will be another blogpost)
- and many other, smaller stuff
So, without further ado, here my impressions from the trip!
The flight itself was convinently short, but – as so often – flying downwards makes me a bit sick in my stomach and I haven’t been eating so much. I first thought I would take trains from London Heathrow to Brighton, but an info guy told me it would be easier by bus. So I ran towards the bus station and happened to catch it in time!
In the bus I felt a bit nauseous, but nothing to worry about. I knew that after 2+ hours it would be over. Ha… ha… After a bus trip that felt like 5 hours I was just happy to breath some fresh air right next to the sea in Brighton. The bus stop was not too far away from the Hotel I was staying in, so I could just walk with my luggage along the sea side and get that wonderful view on the sea ❤
I booked a “design” Hotel on purpose, because I wanted to immerse myself as much as I could with the feeling of being surrounded by art. The room itself was über small, but for UK standards I guess it was alright. I didn’t need more, so no room for complaints here (Ba-dum-tss!)
The staff was friendly, as well as the other guests. I’ve met some people from China, some people from the UK (one couple lives near the London Harry Potter Studios even) and a lovely lady from Spain who worked as a nurse in UK for many years now. Breakfast was okay, not too many options for me than oatmeal and soymilk, but that shouldn’t bother me, since Brighton has a big, vegan community, as we will see later on.
So, I was heading out to get my tickets for the Reasons to be Creative event start next day, and to get fooood. I was starving then.
Walking along the Royal Palace Garden, I checked out the “vegan street” as I would call it, because many shops offer vegan options or are 100% vegan. I got some indian inspired dish I can’t remember now, but the green soup was delicious!
I also walked past by this more or less newly installed Ferris wheel near the beahc. The sight from this perspective was a bit surreal at first. I’m glad I snatched a picture back then.
(I made sure to carefully align the cars and lanterns in one row :p)
After coming back to the hotel I had my tickets and some Omiyage (Stuff you buy a s a gift from distant places) for my colleagues back home. I also got a closer look on the pictures hanging in my room.
Afterwards I went out to walk along the shore and get some impressions from the Brighton Beach and went out to eat dinner. Please bear in mind that I ordered one plate of fires, not two, but that seems to be the standard size. I also had to laugh about the “Britain’s Got Talent”/”Star Wars by the Sea” advertisements.
I was groggy and soon went to bed, waiting for the next day when the event should begin!
(I don’t know exactly the chronological order anymore, so sorry if I switch timelines)
Reasons To be Creative is an annual talk festival in the UK, where creative people of all kinds talk about their work, experiences and interact with the audience.
There were many cool and interesting talks, I’ll just show my absolute favourites here:
Annie Atkins: “How to avoid getting on the IMDB Goofs page”
She works as a graphic designer for film making and introduced the audience to the many different approaches on designing graphics for film. She tries to create as close to the techniques used in the respective time period as possible. She also talked about the struggles of the job, to create a piece up to 64 times EXACTLY like all the others, just to see it torn up to shreds in the movie. Or that she made a spelling mistake and they had to alter everything digitally. (HA! I saw this in the movie and the space between the letters on the bakery boxes drove me nuts. Now I know!)
The talk was very informative and of course I can’t remember it all, but I highly recommend diving more into the topic if you’re into design. This talk opened my eyes for the incredible work graphic designers (have to) achieve *cough* (Sorry I was an idiot before.)
Another highlight was of course Noma Bar, who does very minimalistic and to-the-point-work mainly in illustration. He’s genius in my opinion and sees exactly the essence of what he wants to portray. His style is also very playful in regards to combining, so that you will see layers upon layers in his work, although it seems so minimalistic at first.
I met some lovely people during the conferences and also during lunch time. In the evening, a group of strangers went Karaoke singing! ( I only say one thing: Queen.)
The next day, I spent some time sightseeing, Brighton is a very playful, colorful and creative city and you feel it just everywhere. ❤
The next panel was my main reason to join the conference festival: Yuko Shimizu. She is a Japanese illustrator living in New York and did the covers for “The Unwritten” comic series, to which I instantly gravitated towards to, once I picked it up at my local comic store. I followed her on Facebook for quite some time now, and because of her, I got the info about the whole festival.
She spoke about her own path towards becoming an illustrator. She worked in an office for a long time before deciding (also thanking her mean boss for stressing her out so much,) to become an illustrator. This talk was very inspiring for me, since you CAN make it if you put your heart and soul to it.
I got to thank her in the evening and talked to her just a bit. I was a bit fangirling, but hey, she WAS the reason after all why I traveled there.
Another favourite talk of mine was from Lizzy Mary Cullen, an adorable and funny person! She talked about her own personal struggles with the “fame game” on facebook and how all artists in her family were destined to kill themselves due to depression etc. She could handle this hard topic with so much positive energy, I admire her. She is really easy to talk to and handed out little notes for people, with positive reaffirmations.
Another talk I enjoyed very much was from Danny Yount, who worked on countless movies, he specializes in the opening and ending credit scenes. Without knowing, I was a fan of his work since I loved ALL the openings he did so far on various movies I’ve encountered.
He also had advice for aspiring artists: (I should write them down and hang it up my walls for inspiration!
That’s a wrap from the Reasons To be Creative Festival!
The last day in Brighton I strolled around some more. Saw this Teddy and I asked myself who he is waiting for. The little girl chasing/playing with a squirrel was a delight of a whole different nature, but very entertaining and cute!
In the meantime I got to London, the architecture was surely different from Brighton’s, I met an older couple and talked with them for quite some time.
One reason I wanted to go to London was the Harry Potter Studios Tour of course! Waiting in line, I overheard two German speaking girls and we clicked instantly! So we went there all together and had tons of fun!
The gift shop of your HP dreams:
The Cupboard under the Stairs – Waiting Line – Entrance and Dining Hall
Behind the Scenes – Screenwriting and Props
Outfits and Make Up
One of my favs: Snape’s Classroom – Gryffindor House –
Dumbledore’s office – Hagrid’s Hut and Quidditch
The Horcruxes – Malfoy Mansion Scene – Dementors
The Pink Office of Fluffy Horrors
Prop Valley (and a potential Album cover for Irish Folklore Music)
Concept Art ❤
White Card Models *_*
Every HP Member who worked on the films have their names on those!
Short London Sightseeing trip!
The next Day – Buckingham Palace
War Memorial and Squirrels
Change of the Guards
Big Ben and leaving London
Well, this was a huge post and a wonderful trip! Thanks for making it this far!
I really hold these memories close, it was such a great time, more than I could have asked for. I made new friends, awesome new experiences, and had a blast! I’m so happy I took loads of pictures to show you and to remember :3! (Actually, I’m quite proud of some of them.)
I hope I can travel more in the future, writing this post got me some huge case of Fernweh.