2021 Electives

Below are all of  the elective options for 2021. Participants will have an opportuntity to select to attend one talk on each day and will select their choices ahead of the programme start date. 

Tuesday 7 September 2021,

Discovering Your Model

Aqsa Arif: Running a Cooperative

SaltSpace is a new creative co-operative based in Glasgow which aims to provide a supportive platform for new graduates and early year creatives as a stepping-stone into their artistic career. The organisation runs as a co-op which is an organisation owned and controlled by its members, for the benefit of its members, who may be customers, artists, workers, suppliers or the wider community and has primarily social objectives whose surpluses are principally reinvested for that purpose in the community, rather than being driven by the need to maximise profit for shareholders and owners. Join co-founder, Aqsa Arif, to learn more about running this kind of space.

Gabriella Marcella: Balancing a Commercial Business and Professional Practice

RISOTTO is Scotland’s leading risograph print specialist, and stationery co. led by designer, Gabriella Marcella. Set up in 2012, RISOTTO produces creative print for a range of clients – from leading art organisations to bands and brands, quickly and sustainably. But Gabriella also has a hugely successful professional practice that she juggles alongside running Risotto. How does she manage huge private commission, commerical print runs and product lines? Find out this and more during this session.

Arabella Page Croft: Managing a Small Company

Black Camel Pictures is a leading film, television and content creation company based in Glasgow. Founded by Arabella Page Croft and Kieran Parker, it is one of Scotland’s leading drama production companies, but regardless of their success, running a small company often means wearing many hats whilst spinning many plates. Get an honest insight into the intricacies and challenges of running a small company with Arabella Page Croft.

Julia Taudevin: Freelancing for Organisations

Julia Taudevin is an award winning actor, playwright, screenwriter, director and co-artistic director of the Glasgow based theatre company, Disaster Plan. Because of her wide breadth of skills, Julia works both on her own projects as well as partnering with and freelancing for a range of organisations. As a wearer of many hats Julia, in addition to her creative roles, Julia is also tasked with sourcing funding for some of her projects. Find out what it’s like to juggle working for yourself and other organisations simultaneously during this informative session.



Jamie Munn: Running a Charity

Nevis Ensemble is a Registered Scottish Charity aiming to make ‘music for everyone, everywhere’. The orchestra enables Scots from all walks of life to experience fun, interactive and high-quality performances in community venues and public spaces, taking music to people who otherwise would not be able to access live performances. But organising amazing performances in unexpected places is only part of the fun of running a charity. Uncover the benefits and challenges of setting up as a charity with Chief Executive Jamie Munn.

Kate Robertson: Running a Community Interest Company (Social Enterprise)

Sculpture Placement Group are a registered Community Interest Company with four directors and a mission to prolong the life-span of sculptures, bring sculptural joy into people’s lives and offer economic/ practical solutions for artists. In this session co-founder Kate Robertson will explore the benefits and challenges of running a CIC model business.

Natalie Wilson: Managing Projects Remotely

Natalie Wilson is a theatre director and facilitator whose work explores the relationship between art, activism and agency. Since the pandemic Natalie has been forced to work collaboratively with multiple partners, teams and organisations via Zoom to realise projects. During this session she’ll discuss some of the surprising, positive outcomes of managing creative projects remotely and the more challenging hurdles she’s had to overcome during this process.

Wednesday 8 September 2021

Nailing the Practicalities

Emma Hislop: Good Habits for Freelancers

Though Emma Hislop works primarily as an artist she views herself as shape-shifter, as she often works to briefs for other artists who commission her to fabricate their work, or elements of it. Her freelance work includes project-managing events, advising organisations, guest lecturing and much more. In order to thrive whilst working across multiple projects, Emma has established several habits. A key one of which is to continuously reassess the terms ‘value’ and ‘legacy’ and how she uses these in her practice, reviewing opportunities to monetise her skills and work as an artist without compromising her practice and its principles.

Jen Stewart: Costing and Pricing Products

NMARRA was established in 2017 by designer and long-time earring aficionado Jen Stewart. Intrigued by the possibilities of working with brass and developing drawings into wearable designs, the experimentation began and NMARRA came to life. Jen now produces a large selection of designs and sells to customers all over the world, but in order to get to where she is now, Jen had to master the art of costing and pricing her products to cover her time and materials, whilst still appealing to her audience to realise a profitable business. Learn her tricks and tips in this honest and insightful session.

Matthew Whiteside: Releasing Your Own Music

Matthew Whiteside is a cerebral composer and sound designer based between Glasgow and Belfast. His work is wide-ranging working collaboratively, fulfilling commissions and realising his own creative projects. Each has their own benefits and challenges, but realising your own music means owning every element of the project, the good, the bad and the ugly. Find out why Matthew has chosen this route and what the autonomy affords him during this session.

Claire McKenzie & Scott Gilmour: Pitching to Clients

Noisemaker is the award-winning writing partnership of writer/actor, Scott Gilmour, and composer/musical director, Claire McKenzie. Both graduates of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, the pair work throughout the UK and internationally creating innovative, original work to challenge the expectations of musical theatre. But before they can get to work, the pair need to pitch to theatres, funders and partners and convince folk to work with them to realise their fabulous projects. Find out how Claire and Scott honed their priceless pitching and client relations skills during this hugely helpful session.

Amy Allan: Working with a Brief

Amy Allen is an Edinburgh based Costume Professional with extensive and diverse experience within the performing arts industries, in the UK and abroad. Amy graduated from Queen Margaret University in 2015 with a degree in Costume Design and Construction and has been working in the theatre, film and TV industries since. Because of the nature of her work, Amy is often presented with a brief to respond to and learning to understand and deliver a brief is a priceless skill. Doing it well can help build a good reputation and lead to being hired repeatedly.

Christine Cooper: Working Internationally

As a Project Manager and Producer, Christine Cooper has collaborated on, or led projects in the United Kingdom, Austria, Italy, The Netherlands, Germany, Ascension Island, and Mexico. An expert in realising a range of arts, communication and educational activities globally, Christine has experience establishing and managing partnerships, raising funds, overseeing complicated logistics and marketing projects to new audiences. Whilst realising projects outwith your local community can offer you access to large audiences and partnerships with brilliant organisations, they can also come with a lot of red-tape and complicated hurdles. If you’re looking to work across borders you won’t want to miss Christine’s tips and hard-learned advice.

Helen Swan: Staying Resilient & Finding New Opportunities

Helen Swan is the Creative Director of Lucid Creates a design and fabrication studio specialising in creating extraordinary sustainable environments, but with festivals on hold indefinitely in 2019, her company was on the brink of disaster. After holding an emergency meeting with her partner to look at their options, they decided that rather than furloughing everyone and closing-up shop to wait out the storm, they would find another solution. They investigated which aspects of what they did could be packaged differently and marketed to new audiences and made an educated pivot into creating public installations, funded by councils and private companies. Their ability to be resilient and creative in the face of a dire situation is the secret to their success. Join Helen as she shares how she managed to hold her nerve and pivot seamlessly.

Thursday 9 September 2021

Telling Your Story

Andrew Dobbie: Finding Your Voice

As founder and CEO of MadeBrave – a Strategic Branding Agency based in Glasgow – Andrew Dobbie and his team spend most of their time helping the clients they work with discover and establish their voices. Let an expert like Andrew help you find your voice and teach you how to harness it to build your brand and grow your reach.

Eamonn Maxwell: Presenting Your Practice Digitally

Eamonn Maxwell is a contemporary art curator, advisor, and mentor. Having spent 20 years working within the visual arts, with collectors and organisations, he knows what it takes to present oneself in an appealing way to your audience. Get tips and advice on how best to present your practice digitally, stand out for the right reasons and grow your reach with this practical session.

Zoe Seaton: Diversifying Your Business Using New Platforms

Zoe Seaton is the Artistic Director and co-founder of the Big Telly Theatre, Northern Ireland’s longest-running theatre company, with a small team that has an international reach. Never one to be slowed, during the pandemic Zoe realised a new virtual theatre experience, Operation Elsewhere; a game-theatre experience, guaranteed to transport you to new worlds, without you leaving your living room. Learn how to embrace digital, even when it’s not an obvious fit for your business, with this compelling session.

Mhairi Anderson: Embracing Your Community

Creative Strathaven is a community arts organisation for artists and makers living in Strathaven and the surrounding area. Founded in 2017 by Mhairi Anderson, the organisation aims to encourage and improve access to arts and creative activities by bringing such opportunities to the town. Through their shop and a range of events, workshops and exhibitions, the team are able to get people together to meet other creatives, establish connections and have the potential to lead to collaborations. Join Mhairi for this session and get her insight into the plusses and minuses of building a location-centric business.

Iona Fyfe: Being Your Own Promoter

Promoting oneself is one of the hardest things for creatives to do. They could sell their pal all day long, but ask them to pitch themselves and they could melt on the spot. But not Aberdeenshire singer, Iona Fyfe. This rising star singer has mastered the art of self-promotion. From marketing her albums and merchandise, to positioning herself for presenting gigs and raising her profile as a campaigner and even successfully recruting Patreon members, Iona knows how to promote herself and create opportunities. Learn her tips and tricks during this session.

Rhia Cook: Diversifying Your Practice

Rhia Cook graduated with a degree in Textile Design (specialising in knitwear), from DJCAD in Dundee. She now runs, edits and designs Potluck Zine, an online and print publication all about cooking, eating and sharing food, as well as co-owning an online craft supply shop called Snowday Spinning, selling hand-dyed wool fibre for spinning and felting projects. In her spare time she also works as a Creative Assistant for small businesses locally, managing their websites and social media accounts. Rhia is a great example of a creative who capitalises not only on what she studied as her speciality focus, but has also diversified her practice to not limit herself. In a turbulent world full of unknowns, discovering options within your practice means you’ll always find opportunities and ways of selling your skills.

Keir Stewart: Prioritising & Time Management

Keir Siewert is a Scottish/American independent Filmmaker and Photographer with over 100 music videos and film projects under his belt. Keir is used to juggling multiple projects and roles at any one time. Second only to his creativity is his ability to balance clients and projects, managing his time and energy. Being organised and prioritising his workload are key skills that every creative must master to be successful. Hear from Keir about how he manages to stay the course in music and film sectors, despite the chaos.