Alternative creative awards for Birmingham

Created in Birmingham Awards have been mooted in the past, with the recent mini-fuss over the Creative City Awards churning up support for the idea along with some good suggestions.

I’ve never been keen on attaching CiB’s name to any awards. If things change when I move on then that’s cool and I’d support that, just not on my watch.

That said, I have to admit there are appealing aspects to the idea of some kind of alternative awards. There’s a ‘putting your money where your mouth is’ side of things, as there was with Film Dash. I’ve given the Creative City Awards a bit of a kicking and I much prefer the idea of doing something positive to carping from the sidelines.

So, I’ve said I might (help to) organise something. I think there’d be a few provisos to that:

  • Importantly, that enough people want to see this happen. At least as many people as attended the Creative City Awards (400 people?)
  • No judging panel of appointed experts – nominations and judging to be by public vote
  • An event with free entry, no special guests and no dress code
  • Everyone involved in producing something gets paid something for their work. That means funding/sponsorship

That last one includes me if I’m putting things together. I did Film Dash for the love of it – that wouldn’t be the case here. I wouldn’t take the proverbial though. I guess costings for the organiser’s time, a venue, website, design, etc would be needed.

Anyway, those are some thoughts off the top of my head. Feel free to chuck your suggestions or support in the comments. Negative comments gratefully received too – I’m well up for being talked out of this.

Published by Chris Unitt

I work at One Further, doing digital projects with cultural organisations. Follow @ChrisUnitt or find me on LinkedIn.

11 replies on “Alternative creative awards for Birmingham”

  1. Like it. I love an awards ceremony. I like the lights and suspense and of course the gold envelopes. However, I’m very drawn to your idea. I’ve been thinking that the Creative City banner suggests to me that the winners will be the people who others say are the most creative in Brum. So that could be the question used to seek nominations. Who do you think has been the most creative indivudal or team in the city or this year or in theatre or in design or however the categories best make sense…
    So, I’m with Julia – 398 to go 😉

  2. You can certainly count Type in on this, as new-comers to the city we were more than baffled by the Creative City Awards – which had nothing to do with the creative city we have experienced thus far.

  3. A thought.

    What about having some little competitions to run alongside the sort of awards already talked about? I’m most certinaly not talking competitions to design a logo or anything – we know how well that sort of thing is received …

    No, I mean more like ‘Describe Birmingham – in haiku’, ‘Photograph your favourite bit of Brum – at eye level (none of these fancypants angles)’, ‘Show us Birmingham on film, in 2 minutes – and in 1 take’ etc.

    Just thought it might be a positive thing to encourage people to try their hands at creative disciplines that they might not have a go at otherwise. Film Dash style!

    It might also encourage people who aren’t professional creatives, or those more ‘behind the scenes’ in creative companies (account handlers, accountants, printers …) to get involved and feel part of the city’s creativity. Makes it more open, kinda thing.

    That might be a rubbish idea. Should probably sleep on it but … no, submit!

  4. This idea sounds good. I quite like some of the approaches used by The Crunchies:

    …such as the open nomination process and the emphasis on the nominees using their own communities to garner votes. They do, however, have a committee influencing the outcome which, I agree, shouldn’t play a part. It should be a public vote.

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