Guess who’s back?
Hey honey, we’re home. Yeah, we know you missed us. But the wait is over – Make Honey blogs are back – bringing you updates from the edge of disruptive technology, PR, social content creation and all the ideas that make our creative team tick.
Read on to be dazzled, inspired, educated and entertained, and don’t forget to follow us on LinkedIn and Instagram @make.honey
Austin is a city that haunts the liminal. The heart of Texas, it’s home to cowboys and creatives, oddballs and opulent cuisine alike. Even it’s addresses are inspiring: “Meet on Sixth and Congress” is the most evocative address ever. Renowned for its live music scene – Austin is the beating, billowing, bloody heart of eccentricity in the South, an iconic location for those who like to swim upstream.
It makes sense then, that the South by Southwest (SXSW) festival pitched up in Austin in 1980, dropped it’s silver spurs and never left. For 10 days from 11- 20 March each year, the festival transforms this Southern bohemia into a behemoth of disruptive tech talks, music, comedy, art, installations, experiences, networks and all the more in between.
Here at Honey, we can’t get enough of this near-spiritual fever dream. We’ve been devotees of SXSW since 2016, falling into VR, AR, MR dancing robots and spending late nights in bars with infamous musicians, the odd movie star, and some guy who claimed to be a spy from British Intelligence?
So far we’ve had a damn good time, and with SXSW looming we’re about to get our claws back in. We want you along for the ride, so why not follow us on LinkedIn and Instagram @make.honey for all the fun.
Here’s a couple of our highlights.
The Order of Chattering Nuns
In 2019, the entire universe was bubbling with anticipation around Amazon’s TV adaptation of the seminal book by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, Good Omens. That SXSW, Neil took to the stage to talk about bringing he and Terry’s passion-project to life, writing, and how the iconic collaboration made literary history.
Mid-way through, however, the talk went amok.
The house lights up, flashes of black and white crashed this corner of SXSW, with frenzied babbling, revealing…Nuns? But Gaiman didn’t miss a beat, recognizing The Chattering Order of St. Beryl from Good Omens itself. It was them, this order of Satanic Nuns hellbent on raising the antichrist, made flesh.
Thankfully, SXSW is no place for a baby, and instead the charismatic Neil allowed his order to grace the room with unholy acapella explaining the plot of the book. At the end, the audience erupted in cheers – a heavenly storytelling moment Honey will never forget.
To be honest, we were also a bit relieved. We knew we weren’t tripping when we’d seen otherworldly fallen angels, occasional demons, a hot headed fire breather and the garden of eden when wondering about earlier. SXSW is an endurance test, and we absolutely didn’t fancy our coffee with acid.
When NASA admitted it was after aliens
It’s the stuff of sci-fi, alien life. But at SXSW in 2018 NASA aimed to answer the question, “Are we alone?”, by sending a panel of top tier propulsion scientists to explain exactly how possible it is that life, as we know it, exists beyond the Earth.
Lamenting the loss of Pluto, the scientists took us through some homes that might harbour E.T. – inside our solar systems and out. Europa, Enceladus and even more were mentioned as the place for potential new life. Turns out, not only does NASA believe, it’s actively building missions to icy moons and planets outside our solar system.
What Honey found inspirational was how NASA sparked interest in these newly discovered planets. The ones with the most potential also have a problem – they can’t be photographed. Robert Hurt, from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) talked passionately about NASA’s need to engage and inform – transforming the stats and spreadsheets into content that would readily engage your mates down the pub.
It left us with one question – how do we create out-of-this-world content that’d integrate even Alien worlds?
Honey in the house
At Honey, we’re a family. We believe our best output comes from the content we create together, with input from as many audiences we can harness.
It’s probably a given then, we love the houses SXSW hosts – small pop up installations scattered across the city. Stumble across one of these industry snapshots, and walk into an unknown world – will it be a music venue, an art installation, an interactive funhouse, a freakshow or a food court with the perfect espresso martini?
What’s universal, however, is the impact of the inspiration – the ability to connect with an audience in a fun, fresh, disruptive way that’ll always have us whispering ‘what the f**k?’.
We’re inspired by these houses, as they harness the potential of the unknown. How are we going to progress, if we don’t push out of our comfort zone?
Our impactful moments from the SXSW Houses so far? Bashing buttons with Playstation, rocking out with Spotify, learning the power of people with Patreon, and cuddling cats with Mashable.
Impressed? Yeah we were too, and who knows what mischief we’ll get ourselves into this time?
If you want to find out, follow us on LinkedIn and Instagram @make.honey . We’ll bring you updates from the forefront of SXSW, with a focus on what really rattles our cage.