Brunch #7 – 3 September 2016

London   Saturday 3rd September 2016 was a beautiful day – to be inside the retreat that is The Delaunay. It was not quite the end of summer 2016, but a grey blustery day. We had a lovely corner table, and the avocado toast and coffee flowed. Definitely going to do 7 people again – to get that beautiful big table.

7 ladies, 2.5 hours – headings and heavy editing the only way this won’t turn into a 5 page epic, when it’s meant to be a simple way to stop us reaching for our phones every five minutes to take notes.

For some reason, which I cannot for the life of me remember now, we kicked things off with talk of Wu-Tang Clan’s Gravel Pit. The video is well worth a watch – I would give my last hobnob to have been in those pre-production meetings!

Round the table, representing TV/documentary, VR, innovation, UX, film students and video production, we were and God willing, still are, Rachel, Kerilyn, Carmen, Jill, Marg, Emily and Sian.

Looking forward to the next brunch already – to be inspired and delighted again.


After much chat about everything including Carmen’s famous Wiener dog, Jill mentioned Proximity London and we were off. Such a big subject, so many applications.

The advertising/media world falling over itself in pursuit of customer insight – some say that Google is just a giant media company, and Facebook a data holding company. Who knows what the future holds. Personally, I just love the viz.

Marg mentioned John Underkoffler later on by oh my days – this is boss.

We’re seeing more and more awareness of the value of our own data, and people expecting things in exchange. Marg is working on a mobile phone app/product and research showed that young people have a preference for sharing ‘it’ – for a credit. We’re regularly seeing discounts offered in exchange for data (i.e. newsletter subscription).

Data collection can also be pretty scary. We’ve all had that “dress that follows you around the internet”. I may have understood this wrong, but there are a couple of mega databases – once you have one unique identifier for a person, a world of data opens up. C4 audience research now includes what people buy on Tesco Club Cards, I kid you not. I wonder if there is one place all the loyalty card data goes to…

On the philosophical, ‘where to’ end of the spectrum, there’s “data-ism”, and books like “Who Owns the Future” and “Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow”.

Kerilyn our innovation guru raised the burgeoning area of Predictive Analytics. This is something are wise to be wary of, but how nice would it be for smart machines to understand you so that front line staff can give you what you want instead of you having to wade through tonnes of irrelevance. has its dangers but ladies, think about all the time it would save. I for one would welcome never having to traipse around a supermarket again, or never to look at another pair of skinny jeans that will never fit. We shall see!


It was a privilege to listen to the behind the scenes of a recent ITV 90-minuter that Rach produced, that got 3.5million viewers. The Murder of Sadie Hartley – ultimate scorned lover story. Whilst working on an obs doc six-parter following Lancashire constabulary Rach got to know them pretty well, and went was with the team the day before the murder happened, and as she’s such a lovely people person who respects and gets to know stories, had incredible access.

I’d never thought about it, but Rach also shared how the creation of documentaries is moving towards “box setting” telling a long story over a series, kind of like Serial, only in pictures. And mobile movies stitched together to make long form. Can’t even think what that is – can’t wait for it to evolve.

Jill mentioned Staircase, a French documentary like Serial. This is a 3-parter called Staircase on SundanceNow Doc Club’s vimeo, but it’s not French. Ah, but the filmmaker is – Jean-Xavier de Lestrade.

Think North Carolina? Think amazing documentary festival – Full Frame.

VR (and AR)

Since we had our brunch, I’ve written a guide to VR & AR for work (that’s Virtual and Augmented Reality), which is just getting to grips with fast-changing headset tech, and gathering together case studies. It’s an exciting arena that’s for sure, and although there is a lot more hype than mass adoption right now, I feel that it cannot be the flim flam gimmick that 3D was, because a) it’s useful to so many industries and b) a huge range of players from Deloitte to Dreamworks are involved and a lot of money sloshing about.

Carmen is our resident expert’s take is that everybody talks about VR but AR is more exciting as you don’t need the headset. You can walk around 3D objects in the room. Like hologram but more tangible. It feels like the future. Opening up the world, making it very global.”

VR – Story of Jesus

AR – Magic Leap’s whale in gym

AR – NASA/Microsoft Mars research

Sleep no more theatre piece – like Punch Drunk theatre, it’s breaking the 4th wall – or is it not even sure where the 4th wall is located.

In terms of storytelling, VR is re-writing all filmmaking rules, and being compared to the first films ever made.


No shoe or hair tips this time – we spoke instead of their enablers, money.

This is courtesy of Jill, with a very good reminder that that financial independence is giving yourself the freedom to have good work, to do good work. Hear hear – who needs another ‘job’?

I’ve been thinking of these links every day since, but haven’t had a chance to dive in. The Mad Fientist and Mr Money Mustache.

More money chat followed post brunch…

Revolut card and app – easy to use global money card, helps keep track too

If you work as a limited company, or run a small business, Xero is a wonderful tool to keep track of invoices. Does it work if you’re a freelancer I wonder…

Such a difference between expenses apps you can use in the USA and UK, because of regulation. But not for long. PSD2 sounds incredibly dull but will bring revolution in banking coming out way. Banks will lose the monopoly on how we make payments. So you may being paying bills through Google or Facebook. Those walled gardens of the internet…

And a sneaky PS.  Marg and I have been talking sound and these two gems need tagging under S for…


Sound driven video from Optrex from James Caddick (is he the recordist? Filmmaker?)

And sound design wonderfulness from Berlin in the form of Studio Kamp – there’s more to explore but that page is unmissable.

And that is that!

A delight as always ladies, see you next time xx


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