Your monthly shot of inspiration is here... six things that grabbed our attention, imaginations and hearts and held on tight over the past four weeks or so. And, we’ve got a lovely ‘big smile’ at the end, plucked from masses of social media posts. Can we call finishing with that a tradition yet, as this is only our second Shake 6? You bet we can!
Just a Card, Indie Week
If you’ve had a nosey at our blog during November, you might’ve heard my chat with Just a Card founder, Sarah Hamilton. Sarah wanted to do something to encourage people to buy from indie makers and businesses. She had a light bulb moment and the grassroots movement Just a Card was born, letting everyone know that buying ‘just a card’ (or any little gift) from a small business makes all the difference to their survival and prosperity.
Sarah also created Indie Week, as an antidote to Black Friday. The 5-day celebration of indie makers, artists and shops at the end of November was brilliant again this year, with so many more people getting involved and sharing the community love.
You might know that as well as Shake, I also champion Somerset places, people and experiences at Somerset cool and as part of celebrating Indie Week, I created a blog showcasing over 60 Somerset indies. You can find it here if you fancy that, and it’s been so inspiring seeing how many people are using it as a ‘shop small’ Christmas gift guide. Small really is beautiful, eh?
The antidote to mass consumerism rolls on, because as soon as we saw this bright green skip transformed into a huge shopping basket, we knew it had to feature.
I love art in unusual places and ‘Tipping Point’, which sees Margate-based artist Hayden Kays collaborating with SKIP Gallery, launched on Black Friday. It’s an interactive piece, a commentary on our throwaway culture and encourages anyone to throw their rubbish into it to get the point across.
It’s one of Baker and Borowski’s intriguing “artistic interventions” and you can discover more about this brilliant duo, right here.
Photo: Joel Knight
Luna Park, Tankus the Henge
From art to music next, although it has to be said that both melt together in very few bands as well as they do in Tankus. If you’ve not checked the guys out yet, where’ve you been hiding? Live, they’re an epic roller coaster ride of joy, sweat, and funk-fuelled rock tunes (with a horn section to lift you from happy to full-on festival ecstatic in seconds).
Photo: Ghandi! Photography
Of course, the endless touring’s been put on hold this year, so we’ve been dipping into their stories online and they’ve been sharing more than a sneak peek into the creation of their next album, Luna Park, when you sign up to their mailing list. We’ve discovered more about the birth of the songs, as well as the stories that go along with them and the chapters pop into your inbox like a password protected torch in the dark!
You’re guided through the awesome artwork of Green Bow Tie Works too and it’s got us chomping at the bit for our vinyl to be delivered very soon.
How's this sound? Launch some new trainers, get them made out of cake at the same time (of course), send the cake ones out in the trainer box alongside a pair of the real ones and see who can tell the difference. Well, they fooled footy legend and pundit Ian Wright, alright, and we love this PR idea from Adidas! I was reminded of their recent campaign because I’m doing some work with the cake sculptor who created them. I’ve been filming some online tutorials for Zoe Burmester’s Sugar Street Studios Cake Academy – the first one of is all about creating PR, so of course I couldn’t resist weaving a pair of cake trainers into the lesson plan!
A very big US Election mix up
Talking of lessons, a few were learnt during the US Election. One was don’t expect the results in a hurry... we might’ve been glued to background CNN for 5 days!. Another was make sure you always check whether you’ve really booked The Four Seasons hotel for an impromptu press conference, or it’s almost namesake in Philly, Four Seasons Total Landscaping!
Of course, the memory of this mix up and seeing Rudy Giuliani addressing the media in front of a dirty old garage door is now the stuff of legend... but one of the most beautiful things to come out of it all was Michael Spicer's spoof Four Seasons Total Landscaping advert. Our sides still hurt just thinking about it and as we know, laughter is the best medicine for pretty much anything.
A social gem
And from side-splitting laughter to a different kind of happiness.
Listener, Ruth, contacted BBC Somerset to say she painted this advent calendar for her sister who is isolating.
Guess what’s behind each door? Well, it’s a photo of one of her family or friends which is a lovely idea in itself... but that’s not all. Ruth has arranged for the person behind each door to call her sister on the day their little cardboard square is opened! Now come on... how lovely is that? Restores the faith and is definitely worthy of a very big smile!