Thoughts on Art & Fashion Festival

Art & Fashion Festival has reached volume 6, under the title A Fine Romance. I have been a huge fan of the festival and its Open University – a two-day ‘weekend school’ with visiting speakers from Poland and abroad, discussing various aspects of art and fashion. This year I had my eye on three presentations.

Hatalska spoke on Fashion and New Technologies, focusing on wearable computers. If you think it is a distant future scenario, think again. In 2013 global sales of wearable computers is predicted to reach 6 billion dollars! Technology and fashion seem to have skipped the romance stage and indulged in a very heated affair. Examples of that you will find in hatalska’s presentation, already available on her website.

I was really looking forward to Lida Hujic’ The First to Know but, sadly, I was disappointed. What meant to be An insight into Trend-setters, turned out to be a random collection of thoughts and images, with no underlying theme, practical insight, or conclusions. Lida’s presentation was all over the place and she herself seemed to have been caught in time. And that time was definitely not the present. I felt for the translator, Mr Skowroński (who used to be my professor) – he must have been struggling, trying to put the message across in a digestible way. And you must know that this is the man who interpreted during the official visits of the American presidents, Dalai Lama and Queen Elisabeth II. It could have been an inspiring talk but it so wasn’t…

The Man Who Saved the Day was Scott Schuman. Basia Metelska, the festival’s curator, tried three years to bring him over. She got third time lucky, and Scott finally agreed to set his foot in the streets of Poznań. Click here to read about the tips Mr Sartorialist was happy to share with us. I was happy to be there. I was happy to get inspired.

The festival is a great initiative. I know it requires a whole year of preparation and logistics, so the organizers have probably already started working on the seventh edition. Since 7 is a lucky number, we might get lucky to have even more exciting speakers next year. Place your bets now!


10 tips from Mr Sartorialist

I waited for this meeting with a little apprehension. When you watch someone’s work from afar and really like it, and then have a chance to meet that someone in person, there is always that question in your head – will he or will he not …? Scott Schuman is. I warmed up to him instantly. He was calm, informative, inspiring and made us feel like we can make it too. Just what you need from an established name in the industry.

Scott Schuman aka The Sartorialist signing his book Closer

Here is a collection of tips for bloggers I noted down during Scott’s presentation at Art & Fashion Festival in Poznan:

1. KNOW what you want to achieve. Scott said he knew he was famous, just nobody else did. So he did everything it took to get where he wanted to be. He kept adjusting, he kept pursuing, he was being consistent.

2. LEARN how to learn. Teaching yourself is one of the greatest things that can help you in your career. He taught himself photography and the rest is … 1.5 million unique visitors a month. Impressive, huh?

3.  TAKE advantage of every opportunity that is given to you. So often we forget that some things will not happen twice.

4. HAVE something to say. Scott believes the original bloggers started to blog, as they had a point of view and they wanted to share that point of view with other people. Just because some people have something to say, it doesn’t mean it’s interesting. True.

5. SIT on the ground, if there is no seat for you in the front row or the angle is not right and you’d get a better view from somewhere else. Be humble. It’s not all about the first row…

6. RESPECT your readers. Don’t talk down on them and don’t come from a high, intimidating place. Find a common ground for communicating with your followers.

7. PUSH. That is indeed a difference between us, Europeans, and the Americans. A lot of people are afraid of failing. Scott says – drop the fear. Don’t be afraid and don’t think about what others will say. Just do your thing.

8. STAY true to yourself. We learned that Mr Sartorialist looks at very few other blogs. He claims that if there is anything interesting happening, other people will let him know about it. I bet they will!

9. RELATE to others. It was reassuring to learn that Scott believed in his success from the start, based on the emotional response he was getting from his readers. If your emotions are sincere, people will buy into you.

10. CREATE something people want to be part of. Just like he gets inspired by the photographs he just wants to be in, he strives to create a photography others just want to be in

Simple? Yes. Doable? Definitely. So, shall we give it a go?

Tribute to The Sartorialist. 
On the Street ….. Magda & Trent, Poznań, Poland

Scott’s pictures from Poznań: On the Street…..Agata. Serene and elegant, Agata Bieleń is a talented Polish jewellery designer – here is a link to her website. Another street shot: Two girls and a blue bike (that’s my title) and the vintagey On the Street….Kasia.