Hothouse Talk: Craig Oldham

Hothouse Talks, Visual Research

A Great “Fucking” Talk

The Hothouse talks are a bit hit and miss with me and I tend to only ever get around to blogging about the ones I enjoy because they are the most memorable. Last Friday’s talk with Craig Oldham was very memorable not just because of his overuse of the word “Fuck” but because he took an interesting approach to how he talked to us, not by showing many of his different projects but just one, one that was very personal to him.

Favourite Highlights

Asides from the profanity which was amusing, I really enjoyed the way Craig picked apart what it means to be creative and how anyone can be creative but as designers we exercise that muscle more therefore it allows us to reach solutions quicker.

One of the most poignant things he pointed out was:

“If you have nothing to say… design will not save you”

I felt as though this made me think a lot about how I want my work to exist in the world and what i’m truly saying with my illustrations. What is my philosophy? My driving force? Yes, I’m obsessed with nature and how people understand its coexistence in our world but what am I really trying to explore? Having nice looking illustrations on their own isn’t enough to sustain my work therefore this is something I will keep in mind as I continue my illustrative journey.


The witty warning screen that was up before the talk began



Overall the only downside to the presentation was some of the slides in the presentation couldn’t be seen properly because of the dark background he chose, but all in all I enjoyed the talk because the presentation didn’t feel scripted or rehearsed which meant the delivery was smooth and it actually felt as though he was directing his talk at the audience as intended.



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