Live Bloggin' XOXO II

Woke up with an odd mix of You Got What I Need and La Vie En Rose going through my head thanks to Jean & John & Jessie & Hari. (They should make one of those shirts.) They closed down XOXO Day 3 (9?) with some hard-hitting deconstruction of Biz Markie lyrics. The lies needed to be exposed.


Here are some other quick thoughts I took away from Day 2 (12?):
  • Open Mike Eagle talked about complexity in art (among much more) and his thoughts about people being complex and needing art that speaks to that spoke to me.
  • The Reductress headlines were hilarious and are a way of finding a voice for things people aren't talking about.
  • Ravine is a fun cooperative game where everyone is working together against the game rather than competing against each other. It has some fun mechanics that I haven't seen in other games. It's not turn-based but it's also not complete chaos. Great balance!
  • I'm a big fan of the Criminal podcast so it was great to see Phoebe Judge and put a face with her voice. I wasn't sure how they'd be able to do a documentary episode live, but it worked well by mixing live narration with recorded interviews and adding some visual illustration.
Heading home now so I won't make it to XOXO Day 15, but it was amazing fuel for thought as usual. I also realize I need to make an effort to see my geographically distributed friends in real life—they are amazing too.
XOXO stage

Live Bloggin' XOXO

I'm in Portland for XOXO 2018—a fun conference that pulls together indie artists to show their work and talk about their process. It's also a way for a bunch of people (like me!) who appreciate the weird web to get together and be socially awkward together.

This year XOXO got together with Chicago's LevelEater D&D events to ask this confluence of nerds to raise money for charity by playing Dungeons & Dragons. How do you raise money by playing D&D? It's a simple process: 1.) You get a space to play. 2.) You get some celebrity DMs. 3.) You get maybe a dozen volunteer DMs. 4.) You get someone to write a custom adventure for the event, along with fabricated props. 5.) You get people pay to play at tables of six and buy imaginary magic items to use in the adventure. 6.) And then everyone rolls some dice and goofs around for a few hours.

That's not easy to pull off if you didn't catch the sarcasm. I did this yesterday and it was a great time! I got to play with a personal hero of mine Patrick Rothfuss (site still rockin' ASP!) and give money to MyMusicRx in the process. The venue was an amazing music studio in Portland run by Decemberists guitarist Chris Funk who was there manning the front door, grabbing drinks for folks, and showing people around. The place was decked out in full fantasy regalia—here are a few pics.

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I'm really happy XOXO collaborated on this. It was epic fun!

The conference continued that night and I saw some fantastic film & animation projects I hadn't seen before. Graham Annable's Grickle is dark and hilarious if you're a pessimist like me. Do not miss Principal Skeleton. By the way, the venue is HUGE this year:


I also saw some fun card games, video games, and heard an inspiring talk from CSS artist Diana Smith. Her purecss-francine is a herculean effort.

It's a lot to take in! I'm glad XOXO is back advocating for indie work, creating amazing personal experiences, and being a good ambassador for Portland. Thanks Andys!
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don't don't don't don't you...
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Playing TinderBox
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Projected Guitar
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Bunk Sandwiches
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Night Trucks
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XOXO Photowalkers
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Field Notes
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