Man this weekend has been rad. Siobhan, Tim and I travelled down to Bristol for their first WordCamp – and it was great! We were representing 34SP.com as usual and I did some speaking. Here’s what we got up to!
So this weekend it was WordCamp London! Woohoo! Usually the biggest of the Wordcamps we go to. Here’s some of the super fun stuff myself and the 34SPeeps got up to.
We drove down on Friday morning, with the raddest playlist consisting of songs from Disney’s Frozen, the Trolls movie and Sing. Surprisingly this was Tim’s daughter’s playlist and not my own. But that kid has some rad tuneage. We did a lot of happy sing-songing and by the time we rolled over to London we had changed to a 90’s playlist. So needless to say spirits were high!
We met up with the rest of the gang and went to a local pub for some nibbles and a drink after the long drive. We were already showing the brand price as we made our company’s logo out of pistachio’s.
After the drinks we had a lovely meal booked at Fabrizio – the guy who was serving us – Nico, was really fun and despite our full bellies totally wanted us to have Nutella crepes. Really nice noms.
We hung out around the area in another bar playing pool and listening to jukebox tunes before calling it a (kind of) early night as we wanted to be pumped for the first day of WordCamp tomorrow.
There was a minor issue where some of our stand’s stuff wasn’t there on time, luckily we were able to retrieve it. I was super proud of the team when, in the interim whilst things were looking shaky, those of us who were there were flying about, coming up with creative ‘Plan B’ ideas, Phil spent a good hour coming up with a quiz page if we needed it, remind me to buy him a drink for being such a bro. As I say, everything turned out fine with the stuff, but it’s good to know we’re resourceful in times like that.
This year our stand was pretty unique in the sense that we didn’t go for a table – instead we just had an ‘area’ you walked in to and there was an awesome photo booth where people could take silly pictures with props with us. Here’s an awesome one of the team we took:
I know, I know. We look amazing. As well as the photo booth we were giving away swag bags with Haribo, hosting information, pads, pens and a crossword competition to win some Amazon vouchers. The crossword was kinda hard, so people quite enjoyed it! We had a couple of temporary team members who helped with the photo booth – who were so amazing and likeable I’m actually sad we couldn’t just pack them up with our things and bring them home.
I went to a few talks, I really enjoyed Owen Cujatar’s talk on malware – what it is and how we can protect ourselves from it. I might have over-dramatised on Twitter about being scared at the prospect of malware and Owen thought I was legit emotional. Only half true – hacked sites are pretty scary!
There was also a great talk that a few people did as part of a panel on how they approach theme building differently which was really interesting. There were a lot of similar practises so it gave you a good idea of what they found useful as a whole. Note to self to learn SASS.
The catering was ace, similar to last year with the buffet lunch and pie meal for dinner. Seriously the amount of work that goes in to these things is amazing, everything was awesome.
At the after party there was a bit of a situation where the Rockband guitars ran out of batteries so rather than playing the instruments half the room turned it into a karaoke room where everyone just sang along. I’ll spare the embarrassing videos – what happens at WordCamp stays at WordCamp.
Man my photos suck, remind me to ask Siobhan to take extra photos for my blog LOL.
The second day was shorter, but still held some pretty ace talks. A highlight for me was Dave Walker’s talk on how he uses WordPress as a cartoonist/creative type. It was fun and relatable for myself and to be honest he gave me some super inspiration for improving my last talk for when I submit it to another WordCamp. More on that later!
Our own Tizzle Nizzle Tim Nash did a talk too. ‘Who’s Afraid of The Big Bad Host’ where he talked about what to think about when selecting a hosting prover – managed vs unmanaged and some jargon busting. It was useful talk for everyone. Tim was sadly a little disappointed with his talk. But one of the great things about Tim is that he holds himself to a really high standard and, even though everyone enjoyed his talk, he knows what he wants to say and achieve, Kay is sad he felt like this wasn’t one of the times he achieved this. To be honest, if I ever have a super ‘ahh this isn’t going well’ moment during a talk if I handle it half as well as he does I’d be proud of myself. I’m sure he’ll rock the next one hard!
We managed to give out all of our goodie bags at the 34SP.com stall and people were really pleased with the sweets, stickers and I had people even tweeting me for crossword answers. I always feel the team love loads after these events.
I came home with half the team that evening, some of us stayed for the Monday but there was work to be done back home for myself. I had a really great weekend, learned some stuff, gained inspiration and got to hang out with some awesome people in the community I don’t get to see very often. Thanks everyone!
So I’m feeling pretty restless after that episode of The Walking Dead so why not blog about the awesome weekend I had? This weekend the 34SPeeps went to WordCamp Manchester, and boy did we do it full force!