Speaking gig at NIDA – Panel members required!

So we’re about 6 weeks from opening night for my next theatrical venture, SET the play which premieres at NIDA! Sam Atwell and I submiited the treatment for the play to the NIDA Independent Program and we were dleighted when we were one of four productions to be chosen.
Rehearsals start on Wednesday and the Marketing will hit the streets the week after.

SET is a new murder mystery that will go behind the scenes of an Australian TV soap opera with a satirical look at the glamorous world of celebrity and the cogs of the machine that makes it turn.
Its gonna be a lotta fun with a lot of audience involvement!

NIDA run a monthly Creative Forum and April’s event is on Audience Participation on Sunday 21st April. NIDA have asked me to be moderate the session and I will be joined by film and theatre practitioners to discuss how new technology is changing the audience experience.
Panel members are still being sourced so any ideas welcome!

Event details and registration process here

NIDA Creative Forum Screenshot

Motion Graphics / Multimedia / Green Screen Examples

A collection of green screen / animation or multimedia projects I have been involved in.

Altium (starring me!)

Altium (also starring me!)


A dozen more videos in the campaign are available at their Youtube channel

Sword Ciboodle
Be Swift – Next Best Offer Action

Be Swift – end to end campaigns:

Be Swift – Complaints

Salesforce.com: with another ten videos in the campaign available at the YouTube channel.


Telstra Super
Market Volatility Videos
Screen shot 2013-05-13 at 9.53.01 AM

Homesick for London

I have a love hate relationship with London. From the age of 15-22, I visited it regularly for gigs, parties, shopping, sporting events etc. In 1995, post Uni, I moved there and lived in Docklands for four years. I found living in London very hard work, and eventually the sunny shores of Sydney got too hard to resist and I emigrated. But I love going back to London, and particularly enjoy being there during the day in the working week, indulging in the shops, museums, landmarks and an afternoon pint or two. Since I left, the city has been transformed, such as the ability to walk the length of The Thames, and the architecture of the new landmark buildings is really world class, one of which is The Shard. This piece of interactive media appealed to me greatly courtesy of The Guardian.

To mark the opening of the Shard, The Guardian have produced a 360-degree, augmented-reality panorama of London’s newest view, from the building’s public observation deck.
Read Antony Gormley, Tony Benn, Diana Athill and other famous Londoners on their favourite places, find the capital’s landmarks, listen in to the sounds of the city and gain a new perspective from the viewing platform of the EU’s tallest building.

Check it out here

Guardian Shard interactive

Welcome to the AppVillage

My Feverpitch co-founder Steve Fanale launched his first app in The AppVillage on Valentines Day.

Talking Bear Hugs is now live in the app store

AppVillage Talking Bearhugs

Introducing “Wafer” the talking bear who loves to laugh and give hugs! Touch the screen to poke and tickle Wafer or ask him to give you and your phone a big hug.

Record your personalized message and have Wafer say it in his own gruff and loveable voice. Save it as a video or share it via email and Facebook.

Perfect for Valentines Day, send someone you love a Talking Bear Hug.

About The AppVillage
The AppVillage mission is to build a community of innovators, designers, developers, project managers, marketers, investors and AppLovers who work together to produce, market and enjoy game-changing apps.
Our aim is to not only foster new ideas but to produce and market apps so that they are successful and all parties involved can reap the rewards.

Short film on future of technology and education

Published in Fast Co-exist
We’re still teaching our kids using a 20th-century paradigm, but many visionaries–like the ones in
this video–have plans to take our advances in computing and technology and use them to explode the idea of what education can be.

Video on online piracy by The Research Engine

Do follow The Research Engine on YouTube. They produce short and sharp informational videos, comprising piece to cmrea with kick ass infographics. This snapshot looks at the issue of Online Piracy

This episode of The Research Engine focuses on Online Piracy.
See the startling statistics and facts behind the world of piracy.
From Napster, to Megaupload and in-depth studies of how the world has evolved in the last 15 years because of piracy.

This video has been created under the creative commons act. Please share-alike.

For more information, further research and future episodes, please follow us at https://www.facebook.com/TheResearchEngine

Category: Film Animation
License: Creative Commons Attribution license (reuse allowed)

Lessons learnt from my first crowdfunding campaign

The project:
I experimented with crowdfunding for my latest theatre show The Interview. Why? Well you don’t get involved in independent theatre to make money. Breaking even is considered a success. So the ability to raise a few dollars was irresistible.

The implementation and strategy:
We used the Pozible system which was very intuitive and easy to use.
We created a little lo-fi video explaining the project, and set up a number of rewards

Check out the Pozible page here.

We promoted the campaign primarily via email and social media updating, along with updates to the Pozible page and our website for the theatre show.

The rewards:
A list of the rewards can be seen here

The results:
We reached the first $1000 (a third of the target) in the first three days – this is easy we thought! Closer analysis showed that the vast majority came from two people.
We reached $2000 by the end of week two, largely due to an Executive Producer pledge from Alison’s mum Marie McGirr
We reached our target with ten days to go, thanks to a few large pledgers in other family members and two very close friends.
We finished up at $3,935, nearly 25% over target, which was very pleasing, reaching our target with ten days to go.

Lessons (in no particular order)
1/ Target your pledgers
The majority of the revenue came from a small number of people, who were either family friends or had been contacted directly by one of the producers. Blanket emails and social media updates generated a few pledges but none of the big ones, which all came via a direct request. So lesson learnt here is to be more direct with your target list of pledgers

2/ Time and effort.
As the main producer on the show, on top of running a busy production company, I underestimated the time required to manage the campaign. I wish I had been more disciplined and planned half an hour every morning of time to enhance the campaign effectiveness.

3/ Marketing and strategy required
More content was needed to provide something new to talk about. Lucikliy we had lots of blog entries and video diaries to keep the meesage fresh and new. also as we has success early, so we never came across as desperate for cash. Potential pledgers saw that our campaign was on track, and felt part of something achievable.

4/ Reduce the number of rewards
In retrospect I do feel we had a few too many rewards. Anecdotally, friends mentioned that they just got a bit daunted by the number of rewards, so definitely simplify it.

5/ Be thankful and open.
I was very keen to be in contact with the pledgers as much as possible, and to thank them as much in all our marketing and advertising material. This was well received and made them feel part of our journey and adventure. It was lovely meeting them all at the theatre and thanking them personally.

L-R Sam Atwell, Alison McGirr, Marie McGirr, Nick Bolton, Tom McGirr

6/ The Pozible network.
None of our pledgers came via the Pozible network.
We were never featured on their home page as one to watch? So we didnt get any viral effect by being attracted to new audiences.
This isn’t me having a go at Posible by the way. I appreciate there is limited real estate on the home page, and many projects were higher profile than ours.

7/ USP or Celebrity attachment
Our project wasn’t anything spectacularly new, nor did it involve anyone with a name. I do feel that having something different, or someone famous attached to the project would give credibility to the potential pledgers.

8/ Crowdfunding saturation
I was nervous about crowdfunding due to the ubiquity of campaigns these days. Every creative project seems to run a campaign, and it has become saturated. So I was very very pleased that our campaign was a success.

9/ Scale
We are all quite well networked but in terms of taking the campaign to more people was very hard. Our campaign didn’t go viral at all.

So, would I do it again – Yes, but did find the effort required grater than expected.
But I would plan the campaign a bit better, and even allocate the campaign to a Producer to manage totally.
I would have the communication campaign scheduled and create a targeted list of potential pledgers.

Online Video Soars – Neilsen

Article appeared in B&T Magazine “Online video audiences soar”
Lucy Clark
31st October 2012

More than three-quarters of online Aussies are watching video content through the internet, research by Nielsen has revealed.

There is also a big gender gap, with males dominating online video consumption – they watched 63% of all video streams.

Matt Bruce, managing director of Nielsen’s media group, said: “With marketers looking to quantify the efficiency of their online advertising investments, our new online video measurement tool, Nielsen VideoCensus, offers powerful insights into the reach of this engaged market.”

The average online video viewer watched five hours and 23 minutes of video streaming in September. Nielsen’s research also revealed that almost 12 million Australians watch videos online.

Those aged 18 to 24 spent the most time viewing content (an average of more than 11 hours in September), despite making up only 13% of the overall audience. The over 50s made up the biggest audience segment at 31%, but they watched the least amount of content (an average of two-and-a-half hours).

Paul Fisher, chief executive of IAB Australia, said: “Online video consumption in Australia is booming and the release of this data is very timely as media planners and their clients look to maximise their video investment across broadcast and online in the lead to the busiest retail period of the year.

“If the old advertising adage ‘the dollars follow the eyeballs’ is true, then this data will accelerate the investment in online video advertising.”

Fisher added: “The IAB will continue to work with Nielsen to endorse VideoCensus. Our goal is to provide the Australian media industry with the most accurate suite of online video consumption data and standardised metrics, which will take us a significant step closer to true cross media audience measurement.”

Speaking: Australian Council for the Arts – Fast Moves on Fast Wires

Jennifer Wilson from The Project Factory and Claudia Sagripanti asked me to be a mentor at the Fast Moves on Fast wires all day conference they were asked to develop and facilitate by the Australia Council for the Arts.
Over 80 managers from australian Performing Arts companies attended what was a stimulating day bridging high quality broadband, new technologies and creative ideas to maintain and develop new audiences.

Performing Arts and the Impact of Fast Ubiquitous Broadband
19 October 2012
The Mint, Macquarie Street, Sydney

09.00 Registration

09.45 Welcome from the Chair
Jennifer Wilson, Director, The Project Factory

09.50 Welcome and Introductions
Tony Grybowski, Executive Director Arts Organisations, Australia Council for the Arts


10.00 Where is the world going? Life in a fast broadband world
We wonder when the future is going to get here, while often not noticing the major changes that have already happened. When you think that five years ago, MySpace was smaller than Facebook; and Twitter was pretty irrelevant – the pace of change is actually phenomenal.

Fast, ubiquitous broadband is seen as a massive enabler to connect people, share information and change business. It will have a profound impact on how we create, conceive and collaborate on artistic endeavours; on how we promote and market our events to reach audiences; and on how we operate as companies, our internal running even hiring.
In this session, digital visionary Austin Bryan will imagine a fast broadband world, see where this is going and posit some possible futures for us.

The session should be mind -xpanding is the best possible way, getting us think of a world without boundaries. How will we engage with performing arts? Will live remain important and how does this fit into our connected life?
Austin Bryan, Global Head of Digital Communities & Eco-Systems, SingTel Optus

10.20 Pockets of brilliance
William Gibson said in 1993 “The future is already here — it’s just not very evenly distributed”. In this session, we’ll hear about some ‘pockets of brilliance’ from our unevenly distributed future.

Even without ubiquitous fast broadband, performing arts groups are still using connected digital technology in unique and surprising ways. Pushing boundaries, reaching new audiences and learning new ways of collaborating and creating – not waiting for the future, but dreaming it and making it.

Louise O’Donnell will talk about the YouTube Symphony Orchestra, how this came together, what the intent was, what is achieved and what is delivered for the performing arts companies involved in the production.
Louise O’Donnell, Director, SeedProduction

10.40 Group Discussion:
Each table discusses the issues raised by the prior speakers. One person at the table will report back on the discussion to allow the thoughts and views of the participants to be captured. At each of the two group discussion sessions, different questions relating to the sessions will be posed.
• What do you think will be the biggest impact of fast ubiquitous broadband?
• Are there thinks you would like to be doing now in the connected digital world?
• What do you see as the main opportunities/threats from fast broadband?
(Feedback from each table will be taken)

11.00 Feedback presented

11.15 Life in the fast lane – how connection changes how we work
From an operational standpoint, getting connected can be straightforward or really complex. We can upload faster, but what does this offer us. What are the main issues in getting connected? What does ubiquitous fast broadband mean at the practical level? There are costs involved in this but the benefits are significantly greater.
This practical session looks at some of the nuts and bolts about getting connected.
Colin Griffith, Director, Australian Centre for Broadband Innovation (ACBI), CSIRO

11.35 BREAK

11.55 The changing consumer landscape
There have been reports from just about every consulting group on how digital is shaking up audiences and businesses alike.

It’s all very well to think about what the organisations are doing, but is the audience along for the ride? This session will look at the research to see if this can point the way to what is happening at a consumer level to prepare us for the new audience in the for the changing landscape ahead.
Megan Brownlow, Executive Director, Media & Entertainment, PwC Australia

12.15 New world, new business models, new forms of funding
From a marketing and business perspective, threats are often just opportunities in disguise. If we can find a way to leverage our fears, they can become our biggest strength. Right now, in this highly media saturated world, brands are struggling for connection; while content (including arts) is struggling for reach.

This panel session focusses on digital innovators to hear about some of the new ways of doing business in a fragmented world. Concentrating on new business models, new partnerships and new ways of collaborating, our panel will talk about branding funding, collaboration and what the performing arts can learn from advertising.
Moderator: Jennifer Wilson, Director, The Project Factory

Lisa Colley, Director, Creative Industries Innovation Centre
Greg Logan, ECD, Moon Communications and Executive Producer, Hatch Entertainment
Kieran Ots
Charles Clapshaw, President, TBWA\DIGITAL ARTS NETWORK

12.45 Group discussion
Questions relating to this session are:
• How do you think the changes in audience or expectations are relevant to you?
• What have been your experiences of trialling new business models?
• Are your sponsors either partners or just funders? How could this change?
• Would stronger brand funding compromise your artistic integrity? Why?
(Feedback from each table will be taken)

13.05 Feedback

13.20 LUNCH

Session 2: Mentor sessions

14.20 Round 1
These two sessions are designed to give you some in-depth learning with highly experienced mentors. The mentors will collect the questions and major issues of concern from the participants at their table and will answer both specific questions as well as talk to some of the more general issues.

There will be two sessions of 45 minutes each. Participants should book in with the mentor they are interested in meeting with. Acceptance will be on a ‘first come first served’ basis, with no more than eight people at each mentor session to ensure that highly focussed conversations can happen.

Topics and mentors:
1. Rights issues: Katherine Sainty
2. Video production: Nick Bolton
3. Video production/platforms: Rachel Dixon
4. Business models: Billy Tucker (TBC)
5. Business models: Jennifer Wilson
6. Brand partnerships: Chris Clapshaw
7. Strategy and operational issues: Lisa Colley
8. Strategy and operational issues Louise O’Donnell
9. Artistic Collaboration: Julian Knowles

15.05 Change tables for Round 2

15.50 BREAK

Session 3: Hypothetical

16.10 Performing Like It’s 2022… (A hypothetical view of the future)
Designed to be entertaining, uplifting, future visioning and positive: we imagine a life ten years on and try to create the impossible: an engaging live performance on stage in front of your very eyes.

It’s 2022. Fast broadband is ubiquitous. It connects our buildings, our open spaces and our wearable devices. We can engage with content anywhere – with every wall a potential screen. The urban landscape is performance art – and we’re all part of it.
What is the world like for performing arts and what role do the arts play generally?

This drama will be moderated and directed by Sandy George and will include :
• Megan Brownlow: where are the audiences and what are they doing?
• Austin Bryan (Colin Griffith): How did we get here?
• Rachel Healy: How does the urban landscapes fit into this?
• and what new awesome things are we engaging with?
• Greg Logan: where are brands in this – what role do they play?:
• Victoria Doidge: And what about performing arts – have they escaped?
• Billy Tucker (TBC): What new start-ups have been created and what do they offer?

17.10 Wrap for day
A brief summary of the top ten things of the day, some of the key learnings and take-aways.
A brief look at what might be next.

17.30 Finish