By Edward Boatman
A week and a half ago Matt and I had the pleasure of representing The Noun Project at the fabulous XOXO festival in Portland, Oregon. We had a really simple idea and a not so simple booth installation (my thumb still hurts from pushing the 110 tacks into the wooden ceiling beams). We definitely want to give a huge thanks to all the people that helped us glue the floating icon cubes together, create the drawings, and to the Andys for organizing an amazing festival!
At the booth we simply asked our fellow XOXO’ers how they would visually communicate their XOXO festival experience through the universal language of iconography. The design process was kept very loose, the only tools available were notecards, a sketchpad, and Sharpie Markers.
The drawings people created serve as further proof that XOXO is not just another web conference, but instead a celebration of creativity, independence, community, and most importantly having fun!. All the drawings can be seen here.
A perfect example of some “fun” is this drawing of a zombie chasing a human. Max Temkin one of the founders of Cards Against Humanity talked about how his experience of playing the game of Humans vs. Zombies taught him the importance of having values. Once you have values, Max went on to say, they will shape your strategies and tactics. We think the icon below does a great job capturing the essence of the game!
Another drawing we thought was amazing was this Poutine designed by Tucky Aalto. For those of you who don’t know what Poutine is (Don’t worry we had no clue what Poutine was either) it’s an exotic dish from Canada consisting of a base layer of french fries topped with brown gravy and cheese curds. Tucky drew this icon because she ran into some fellow Canadians at the festival and they ventured out into Portland together to forge their new friendships over some Poutine! This icon speaks to the sense of diversity and community experienced at the festival, and of course Portland’s amazing food scene.
Finally, here’s a symbol that does a great job representing the essence of the entire festival: a network of independent creators that love what they do!
All the icons can be downloaded for free here!