I get called "stupid" quite a lot.
I'm pretty sure this isn't anything against me personally, but nevertheless, I seem to be getting it a lot more these days.
Last week I went down to London for the weekend to go to StickAID; a charity event hosted by Myles Dyer and a whole cast of other YouTubers to raise money for Unicef. Now, being from the North, it would be conventionally a bit silly to travel on a whim a few hundred miles to give out some posters and meet some people I had only ever spoken to via Skype before. Nevertheless, I went anyway.
The summer before this one, me and a friend travelled up to Edinburgh to meet John Green. Even though I wasn't even guaranteed I would even meet him. Even so we hopped in the car and went to Scotland for the day.
And even last year I hopped on a plane and went to Vancouver to participate in a week long summer intensive at the film school. I didn't end up going for the full semester, but I went anyway.
I offer to do do artwork for people for next to nothing in return, just for the fun, dedicate a hefty percentage of my week making Doctor Who posters, and I love giving away freebies to pretty much anyone who asks nicely.
And I love it.
Not a lot of people would understand really why I would just hop on a train for the weekend and spend time with people I had never met before. I could have sat and watched StickAID from the comfort of my desk right here and sent some posters to give away. But thats the thing, I would just be sat here, in the same desk week in week out. The nature of my work is that I spend a lot of time sat in front of this computer screen. So naturally I would feel the need to get out a bit.
But every time I have gone somewhere spur of the moment or totally different, it has always lead to something unexpectedly awesome.
At StickAID I met Liam Dryden for the second time, and handed over 4 poster that he auctioned off there and then for his section of the show. I also met up with someone I went to uni with and enjoyed the Sunday London sun on the riverbank and had a nice catch up.
In Edinburgh I did meet John, but I also met a whole slew of other Nerdfighters, including Paul Turner, who I am doing album artwork for right now, which should be finished soon.
And in Vancouver I experienced a whole new city. Learned SO much from the tutors there and gave me a lot more focus on what I wanted to do with my work. And made some excellent contacts there which I wouldn't otherwise have gained. I also picked up my first copy of Scott Pilgrim while I was there too. Which turned out to be brilliant.
Whether its things like this, or gestures of goodwill or freebies or whatever, I just love networking with people. And (as long as I can afford it), I will keep on just doing these apparently "stupid" spur of the moment things. Because they will always lead to something awesome.
As Steve Jobs said in his 2005 Stanford Speech: "You can only connect the dots looking back"