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147: Live From Podcamp 2023: Break All the Rules

Updated: Dec 13, 2023

It was a really neat experience getting to speak at PodCamp 2023. I respect this small-in-size, large-in-stature, annual meeting of the minds for a lot of reasons, one of which is its grassroots, and no nonsense approach to being an ‘un-conference’. If someone is attending a session and they don’t feel it’s right for them, they are encouraged to (politely) get up and head to another session where they may find more value. I also appreciate the democratized approach to submitting a session idea and the niche community members it attracts.

Years before I started Talk Paper Scissors in 2019, I attended PodCamp with the inkling that I may want to one-day start a podcast of my own and then the year after that, I presented at PodCamp about logo design fundamentals.

Coming back a number of years later and having the chance to speak about my podcast and my process has been such a neat full circle moment. My talk was entitled Break All the Rules, and in it I shared the ways I am decidedly non-strategic about how I exist in, produce and market Talk Paper Scissors… and why this is my magic formula. The description reads as follows: “In 2019, Diana dove into the world of podcasting, launching Talk Paper Scissors – a podcast about creativity in graphic communications. (Featured as part of the 2021 Hot Docs Podcast Festival Opening Act in partnership with CBC Podcasts.) By day, Diana teaches students within The Creative School at TMU to know their audience and create compelling visual content. By night, Diana does the exact opposite: she creates podcast content for herself more than for her audience — with no set production schedule, no set show format, no set episode length, no less! — in a decidedly non-visual format. And it’s the best thing she’s ever done. Learn the way Diana uses podcasting as a creative outlet (that sometimes interweaves with her day job), allowing her to explore new topics, speak with interesting people and create a body of work that’s opened doors she didn’t know existed. Be inspired to create your own podcast that breaks all the rules and is uniquely you.”

One more thing I want to say before getting into the session recording is that I spoke a lot about my audience (you!) and the fact that I don’t always take your needs into consideration when I create episodes. This is mostly true but I want to assure you creating content not targeted at you is decidedly different than not caring about you. I care about you DEEPLY. I care that you’re here. I care that you listen. I care that you care about these topics and this podcast and our asynchronous, arms length, yet very real, relationship.

Finally, you can find my presentation within the show notes. Let’s do it! Here’s Break All the Rules, recorded live at PodCamp 2023.

After the episode...

After my talk I went out into the hallway and continued the conversation with a couple of like-minded creatives, and I’d like to share a quick story about one of those conversations. He is a multi-passionate creative director who is brimming with ideas but is having trouble committing where to focus his creative energy. As we spoke, he insightfully summarized my approach to creative work far better than I ever had. He articulated that when I have a creative idea, it appears as though I can put down my extraneous idea baggage (referring to off-loading my ideas from my brain into a written document I can come back to later, which I spoke about in the talk), allowing a single idea to take flight because I’m traveling light, with only a carry on. I love this! I took it one step further and countered that, even if I were to lose the change of clothing in my carry-on bag (for example, I somehow left my shoes on the plane), the creative constraint of figuring out how to fashion my shirt into my pants, makes the journey all that much more fun and interesting. It is incredible conversations and spontaneous moments of shared creative exploration like this are the very reason that I love this podcast and this space. Interesting projects with interesting people. I hope that we can all set down our idea baggage, instead focusing on the play, experimentation and finding joy in the journey,

Until next time (hopefully!) at Podcamp 2024!

Music: Beatboxin' Whistlin' and Clickin' - John Bartmann licensed under a CC0 1.0 Universal License.

Talk Paper Scissors Theme Music: Retro Quirky Upbeat Funk by Lewis Sound Production via Audio Jungle

Boat Origami Photo: Boat Origami Photo by Alex on Unsplash

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