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« HIV/AIDS Video to Screen at APHA Conference | Main | PopTech & The City Resilient »

PopTech Sparks of Brilliance

This year's conference focused on creativity as an important ingredient for community and survival.

“Creativity is the essence of our humanity, the great enricher of our lived experience, and the key to our shared resilience.”

During the event, I will be posted some behind-the-scenes photos and video for those of you interested in the gear and techniques I use to create paintings and posters live during each presenter’s talk, ranging in length from 5 - 20 minutes each.

There are upwards of 30 presentations in 2 days, so this is my annual creativity marathon.

More on our Facebook Page (like us, puleez!): https://www.facebook.com/ChimpLearnGood

Digital archive of PopTech Art: http://www.alphachimp.com/poptech-art/

On the airplane from Nashville to Maine, I realized that this is the one consistent annual thing I have participated in over the last decade.

I have spent every other major holiday and birthday in a different place around the world, but every third weekend in October, I have been here in Camden, Maine.


So I asked myself, why do I return each year?

The answer: This is my tribe.

And it is damn important to have one of those.

Find A Tribe, Save Your Sanity

As an artsy kid growing up in a part of the world obsessed with college football (Knoxville, Tennessee) I felt kind of out-of-place.

As an artist working in the corporate world and healthcare, I was usually singled out as “One of Those Creative Types”.

But here at PopTech, I am in a crowd of, what Andrew Zolli describes as “passionate weirdos”.

I spent a week before the conference with some of the emerging leaders in the field of Passionate Weirdism, known as the PopTech Fellows.

As an example, here are the job descriptions of some of the folks sitting at my lunch table…

— a synthetic biologist/artist
— a social learning tech guru
— a conservationist architect
— a war crimes investigator (and employee of George Clooney)
— two solar power gearheads
— a primatologist psychologist studying morality, and...
— a neuroscientist watching creativity happen inside the brain.

Brilliant. Amazing. And very human. All of them.

So, who is your tribe? What group challenges you, supports you, gives you energy and gives you rest from the grind of dailiness?

I sincerely hope you get with your tribe soon and get recharged.

After all, being connected with passionate weirdos and doing good work with good people, well... it is what ignites the sparks of brilliance within us!

~ Peter Durand

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