Vancouver Design Week - CMVan At Night

May 10, 6:00pm - 7:00pm PDT. Hosted at HCMA Architecture + Design

part of a series on Commitment


About the speaker

Pat Christie is an industrial designer, entrepreneur, social innovator, and occasional cookie baker who believes that imagination and play are fundamental to a healthy process of creation and problem solving. His education and personal philosophies have expanded beyond the core principles of Industrial Design to include practices of connection, exploration, and support. Simply put, he seeks to work alongside people who believe in the difference that considered results can have in creating sustained cultural value.

How do you define creativity and apply it in your life and career? Creativity for me is about how you go about doing something, though making choices and connections in the context of the people, places and the things around you. It’s about navigation and exploration where you are the guide and there is no map, planned route or clear way forward. Creativity is not something that I choose to apply, but is always on. it’s embedded in the way I see and the actions I take as I engage with the challenges and opportunities I’m met with in life.

Where do you find your best creative inspiration or energy? Creative inspiration or energy comes for me primarily in two circumstances. One is when I am ENGADGED in producing and practice such as being on the tools and working with materials. The other when I am DISENGAGED with producing and practice such as walking through an alleyway on my way to the store and observing the way moss is growing up the side of a concrete wall. Both of these are examples of being informed about things through noticing and each gives you insight on the way something “could be”. It’s not “what is” at that current moment, but what is observed becomes a building block in the eventual creation of a future idea.

NOT FROM THE INTERNET!!!!!

What’s one piece of creative advice or a tip you wish you’d known as a young person? The way you’re doing it is the right way to do it, regardless of what anyone says or what you see others doing. Keep doing it your way fearlessly and it will turn into something great and people will notice it. Be open, seek advice and listen to others, but don’t let what they say change how you do things, or how you associate yourself with the world around you.

Who (living or dead) would you most enjoy hearing speak at CreativeMornings? Donato di Niccolò di Betto Bardi, Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino, Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni, Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci

How would you describe what you do in a single sentence to a stranger? I build cool things from wood apparently and sometimes from other materials too.

What myths about creativity would you like to set straight? It’s not like the force where you have it or you don’t have it. Its fundamental to who we are as humans, but other mechanisms in our world have shaped the word “creativity” into something that it’s not and in turn divides people.

Who has been the biggest influence on your life? What lessons did that person teach you? My Grandfather Bob Daly. The lessons I learned from him are the intangible ones in which I find difficult to desired in words, and what I only can describe as “being” in the world. Grandbob as we called him along with Sheila Daly and my Mom and Dad provided me time, space and materials to explore the ideas that I had in my own mind, but did not push me towards outcomes. We celebrated the incremental results and discoveries that were achieved throughout the process of doing and I was acknowledged for the hard work that I put into the things that I loved.

If you could do anything now, what would you do? Go to Japan and work with masters of their craft.

What was the best advice you were ever given? When designing, design something that is part of a system or a system of parts. It has longevity on both a consumer end and the production end. This is what makes a successful design. - Peter and Charlotte Fiell.

Ender (just Ender) has worked across the globe as a digital nomad - a sort of traveling cyberpunk - consulting on human interactions with technology. His discipline is the development of innovative projects. Believing in creating experiences at the intersection of culture, technology, storymaking, and lifestyle. He affirms that design can be implemented in any form; from dust to pixels, and creates creative concepts that he calls “cool shit!” He consults on the advance, design and application of applied human compatible technology and experience, scaled in a variety of formats and media across the globe. Having recently gone back to school to study technical apparel design, he hopes to focus his energies on innovations applied the fashion industry next.

“My process is the development of a single moment, with the aim that it becomes an integral part of people’s lives” -ender

How do you define creativity and apply it in your life and career? The urge to create is for me a virus… a cancer… a constant gnawing away at the back of my skull demanding attention and response. I do the things I do to treat this condition; this uncontainable trauma that cannot be forced down. Seeing an idea through to reality is purely medicinal, without it madness takes the helm.

Where do you find your best creative inspiration or energy? Every moment of life is an analysis of the world around me. Constantly asking “why is this like this? and why is it not like that?”

What’s one piece of creative advice or a tip you wish you’d known as a young person? I wish someone had told me that all the careers that I looked up to, looked forward to, would all be on fire or in ashes by the time I was able to participate. You have to create your own role, your own path, your own title. It’s up to you to take good advice and understand how it’s not relevant to you, because you are doing something different. At the end of the day if your dream has a title then there’s someone out there right now trying to create software/machines/tools/etc to remove you from the system entirely.

Who (living or dead) would you most enjoy hearing speak at CreativeMornings? I like to see the creative director of Expo 1986 Ron Woodall. I feel that he could share some truly luminous perspective on the creative intentions behind Expo86 in Vancouver and how the possibility was stripped away from the city in place of commercial profits.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done? That’s a long list… possibly learning to BASE jump by throwing myself off a cliff with a new chute? maybe that time I cut off one of those “do-not-remove” tags on a pillowcase?

What did you learn from your most memorable creative failure? Priorities.

What’s your one guilty creative indulgence? I’m probably guilty of all of them to be honest… is there a list I can check somewhere?

What are you reading these days? I just re-read one of my favorite sci-fi novels called Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie.

What fact about you would surprise people? I taste colour.

How does your life and career compare to what you envisioned for your future when you were a sixth grader? Looking back to the sixth grade, I think it would surprise me to find out that none of the people I knew then are still in my life, and unfortunately many of those friends have now passed away. There’s simply no comparing intentions than to the actuality of today.

How would you describe what you do in a single sentence to a stranger? “How much time you got?”

What’s the most recent thing you learned (big or small)? I figured out something pretty big recently… I’m really fucking happy with the possibility of life right now.

If I could open a door and go anywhere where would that be? Another planet. Any one will do. Space is my ultimate ambition. To stand on the surface of another planet and look up at an unfamiliar sky is the ultimate win.

What keeps you awake at night? That creative virus I spoke of earlier… it’s rare that I get a solid nights sleep because some new thing always seems to have my mind obsessing.

What myths about creativity would you like to set straight? The only myths surrounding creativity are in the industry behind it. Creativity at its very foundation is all about making myths real.

Who has been the biggest influence on your life? What lessons did that person teach you? I can’t use their name, but they gave me the situation that taught me to never stop fighting for what you want.

What are you proudest of in your life? I’m still here, I’m still hungry, and I want it more.

If you could interview anyone living or dead, but not a celebrity, who would it be and why? I’d like to do LSD alongside surrealist painters like Dali, Magritte, and Kahlo… because there’s no way that wouldn’t be interesting.

If you could do anything now, what would you do? I’m doing it and I don’t understand why anyone would do anything but what they want most. If you don’t wake up completely stoked to do your craft… then you need to be working somewhere else.

Where was the last place you traveled? That’s a complicated question…

What music are you listening to these days?Slashcollective Worldwide on Soundcloud is the only thing playing in the studio lately.

What was the best surprise you’ve experienced so far in life? That’s still yet to come.

Where is your favorite place to escape? SPACE on Clark Dr.

What was the best advice you were ever given? It’s up to you to take good advice and understand how it’s not relevant to you, because you are doing something different.

What books made a difference in your life and why? I love to read, and I’m constantly digesting some kind of science fiction… this has been a passion of mine since a very young age. I like to think that my whole self has been heavily defined by this addiction for spicy sci-fi.

What practices, rituals or habits contribute to your creative work? I don’t remember that last time I wasn’t working!

When you get stuck creatively, what is the first thing you do to get unstuck? I like to keep several ongoing passion projects with no timelines on my plate at all times. This way when the work gets overwhelming I can quickly switch gears for a period to another project without losing pace.

If you had fifteen extra minutes each day, what would you do with them? Work fifteen minutes longer.

What has been one of your biggest Aha! moments in life? Realizing that there are no “aha!” moments… only “oh fuck!” moments

What object would you put in a time capsule that best represents who you are today? My Pfaff sewing machine with the placard “this machine kills fascists” on the front.

What is the one movie or book every creative must see/read? The Art of Deception by Kevin Mitnick and the 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene

What is the one question we haven’t asked that you want to answer? I’m a little surprised you never asked about my hair… I spent all morning at the salon. It’s nice to be noticed is all I’m saying.

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Additional details

THIS IS A SPECIAL VDW EDITION OF CMVAN

Instead of breakfast and coffee, join the CMVan community for drinks and canapés on Thursday, May 10th from 6–7pm and hear from two rising local design stars, Ender and Pat Christie, co-founders of SPACE, in a co-presentation about creativity through the lenses of commitment and craft. As part of Vancouver Design Week, this special evening edition of CreativeMornings/Vancouver will be hosted by HCMA Architecture + Design in their Vancouver headquarters.

As usual, Tickets are free, but tickets will be issued with priority to Vancouver Design Week attendees. Any remaining seats will be chosen randomly from the waitlist on Monday, May 7th with confirmation sent via email.

Link for tickets via Vancouver Design Week to be announced shortly.