We sent two of our designers, Lyndsey Hein and Lyndsay Wasko, to take in the CAMP Festival last week. Consisting of two full days of industry professionals, artists and expert speakers from across the globe discussing topics in cutting-edge digital, creative technology, art and design — attended by like minded professionals and students in the creative industry. Their mission: to educate, challenge and inspire. Did it work? Well, we interviewed the girls to find out the most memorable parts of the two days. Here is what we found out:

FAVOURITE SPEAKERS?

Joshua Davis mesmerized us all with his mind blowing work of code generated shapes, forms and textures. When combined with audio data, Davis is able to create unique visual arrangements by using sound as a digital canvas. A highlight of his presentation was getting a peek into his creative process. Seeing how one simple image can be manipulated so far that it turns into something completely new, or embracing little mistakes that can change the composition entirely.

Danny Yount came to us as a Hollywood title artist, which was impressive in itself, but what we enjoyed most was his humble hardworking approach to design that came from a genuine love for film. He showed a list of all 38 jobs he had before getting to where he is now, detailing his childhood as a first generation Californian who loved comic books and Star Wars, and left us with rapid-fire advice on how to be a better person and a better creator. His advice: start anywhere, be humble, deliver on time, be original, surround yourself with talented passionate people, and know when to quit.

Danny Yount’s main titles show reel from last year.

Hydro74 gave us a glimpse of what it means to be defiant by opening up and sharing his dark, impactful past. While on his journey, he was able to find success through selling his drawings. Now he is a world renowned illustrator – reminding us all that our past doesn’t define us. He wrapped up his presentation with the advice to be confident in your work, stay humble and remember that if you want your life to change, you need to make the shift because no one else cares, and no one else will do it for you.

BIGGEST TAKEAWAYS?

The importance of actually finishing projects, or at least prototyping them, because a tangible bad thing is always better than a seemingly perfect idea. Not only that, but a lot of procrastination is rooted in the fear of imperfection. The video game industry has the right idea when they emphasize the importance of testing prototypes and making your idea testable as soon as possible. Danny Yount said to “start anywhere” and to not be afraid of making a lot of bad work, as it’s the only way you’ll eventually start making good work.

Fear and knowledge was the theme of ‘Contraptionist’ Brett Doar‘s talk, and it resonated strongly with us. If “knowledge equals power” then people will feel powerless against technology that they don’t understand. He mentioned how when he was young he was incredibly fearful of nuclear bombs, so he took the time to understand how they worked and it gave him some ease. As tech gets smaller and more complex even our smartphones become “strangers” that we carry around in our pockets and depend on everyday. In contrast to invisible and silent tech, he aims to have perceptible moving parts in his contraptions that tell a story we can understand.

Brett Doar developed the Rube Goldberg machine used in OK Go’s “This Too Shall Pass” music video.

Virtual reality (VR) emerged as a major theme this year. We really didn’t come in expecting to learn as much about VR as we did. It would seem that we’re on the cusp of VR becoming affordable and widely adopted. Elbert Perez likened our current level of VR know-how to website development circa 1995. There’s a lot of ugly because we are only just learning the rules, but it’s coming and it’s going to be huge.

Our eyes were opened to the myriad of ways that designers could make the world better. Whether that’s through donated design services, joining hack-a-thons, or just being more aware of how we can design better to help people in need. Clarissa Peterson left us inspired that what we do can actually make a difference in the world.

Now in it’s third year, CAMP has emerged as the premier event on Calgary’s creative calendar. FLIPP has attended all three years, and every time we come back with our heads full of knowledge and inspiration to share. Here’s to another great festival, we’re already looking forward to next year’s edition!