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The Wonderush Spotlight: Shorts on Tap

Shorts on Tap is a great company. Through their themed screening nights which show a selection of short films, they’re giving Londoners the opportunity to find out more about an art form we might otherwise never really hear much about. After all, they’re not exactly regularly screening shorts at the local multiplex. At least, not where we live. In the spirit of discovering new things, we sat down with Filippo, who started Shorts on Tap, and asked him loads of questions because we have no chill:

How did you get into what you do?

Shorts On Tap started in late 2013 in a small basement venue called Juno, in Shoreditch, East London. I needed a place to screen a sci-fi short of mine called Time&Space and ended up screening 10 works from other filmmakers instead. The demand for more nights was so high I simply kept organising more screenings.

How would you describe your nights?

Our events are quite eclectic: the films take the central stage, of course, but we’ve also got live performances, crowdfunding campaigns, panel discussions, special guests. It all rotates around a central theme which changes from night to night. The vibe is incredibly friendly and relaxed, it definitely facilitates dialogue and great Q&As and discussions after the screenings. We usually keep in touch with most filmmakers we meet at the events: a great platform for networking, too.

How do you choose the films that you show? Why would you recommend your activity?

We constantly accept film submissions and we watch all the films we receive. We then sort the them into different categories and pick the best ones for the screenings. There’s a lot of filtering involved as each night needs a certain balance, a certain ‘colour palette’ to be conveyed. We curate our nights in collaboration with other filmmakers and people from the film industry. Our selection is usually made up of 5 to 7 films per night and the quality of the work presented is breathtaking. The talent out there is incredible and we’d like to give exposure to as many filmmakers as possible. The end result is a top quality event, this is how we’ve built our following and reputation.

Can you tell us something surprising about yourself?

Despite the name of the event ‘Shorts ON TAP’, I hardly ever drink during a screening night.

What’s your favourite thing to do when you’re not at work?

Meeting creative people, spending time with friends or simply walking and getting lost in the vastness of London. Did I mention watching shorts? 😉

What’s your favourite part of London? Any places you’d recommend there?

I have recently moved to Streatham Hill, this area’s got a great vibe about it: not too pretentious or arty, not too busy or overcrowded, yet full of great cafes, parks and juice bars! A few minutes and you’re in Brixton or Balham or Clapham. It can’t get any better than this. South of the river is THE place to be.

If you could try any experience in the world, what would it be, and why?

I’d go on a road trip across South America.. months travelling, Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Argentina.. the places, the faces, the people.. that’d be my #1 experience.

If you can’t wait to get down to a Shorts on Tap event (and, frankly, who could blame you?), their next event is now available to book here. We’ll see you there!

Break Your Routine, Live More Awesome, Popular, Spotlight, Things To Do, Try Something New

The Wonderush Review of Reviews: Part 1

We love our partners. We really do. And, as it turns out, you guys do too. We’ve been struck recently by the number of positive reviews you’ve been giving out, so we decided it was high time to showcase some of your favourites and an example of some of the love they’re getting. You can find all of these guys running a whole range of awesome sessions, from tea tasting and art classes, to pole dancing and pottery.

Tea Studio

tea brewing

Tea Studio run activities from tea tasting to Alice in Wonderland-themed afternoon teas, and everything in between. Basically, if you like tea, you need to pay them a visit.

“Amazing little place, lovely atmosphere and the owner is very passionate about tea. I really enjoyed the experience and I’ll be going there for more!” – Natalia

“Lovely guy and very knowledgeable. If you like your tea, don’t miss his events!” – Penelope

To and TO

Drink and Draw

ToandTO run the ever-popular Drink and Draw, which is fairly self-explanatory. During the course of a really relaxed and creative evening you’ll meet loads of new people as you show off your artistic ability (or lack thereof – there’s no pressure here.)

“What a brilliant concept! Dragged a friend thinking it would be less awkward to meet absolut strangers that way, but what a fantastic casual way to mingle and meet cool people, and best of all, forget about the stresses of daily life by getting creative and sketching! Will definitely recommend to friends and go back, with or without them! P.S. You get to keep the sketchbooks and I’m gonna be framing one of the portraits!” -Sahar

“Very fun experience even if you can’t draw at all! :)” -Kate

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Break Your Routine, Live More Awesome, Spotlight, Things To Do, Try Something New

The Wonderush Spotlight: Gabriela Szulman

Gabriela Szulman teaches brilliant decoupage workshops. We know they’re brilliant because the reviews for her sessions on Wonderush are overwhelmingly positive, and our members are a discerning bunch. So, given the fact that she’s so popular, we decided it was high time to catch up with Gabriela to find out more about her:

How did you get into decoupage?

My work is all about the reassembling and layering of images through a combination of media including collage, but I got into decoupage in a big way a couple of years ago when one of my sisters showed me how to upcycle an old pair of boots with just paper and glue. Soon I was hooked and started decoupaging trays, picture frames, chairs and even old suitcases which I use for display at craft fairs and other selling events. I recently finished decoupaging a wall with an old French dictionary, my biggest project so far.

How would you describe your teaching style?

I know what works and feel it’s important that people get the basics of decoupage right, so quite directive, at least initially. At the same time, I’m passionate about bringing out creativity in everyone that comes to one of my workshops which means I also encourage experimentation and play once participants get to grips with the technique.

Why would you recommend your activity?

Decoupage is a very affordable and easy way to upcycle and personalise anything from a pair of shoes to a wall: anybody can do this at home with just paper, brushes and glue. No special set-up or tools are required, which gives it a great advantage over other crafts: the two main things you need in order to succeed at decoupage are time and patience. There is a meditative quality to this kind of work, and the end result is often very satisfying.

Can you tell us something surprising about yourself?

Aged 11, I was almost expelled from primary school for writing an essay criticising the teachers. Not many people know that…

What’s your favourite thing to do when you’re not at work?

I’m a film addict so I go to the cinema as often as I can – a couple of times a week and even a couple of times a day during the London Film Festival.

What’s your favourite part of London? Any places you’d recommend there?

I love South London where I have lived for a long time. Brixi, Circus, and Diverse are fabulous independent shops in Brixton. My favourite local food haunts include The Camberwell Arms, Shrub & Shutter and Peckham Bazaar, and I can’t resist bread from The Hill Bakery.

If you could try any experience in the world, what would it be, and why?

I’d love to visit Nek Chand’s Chandigarh Rock Garden in Northern India: Chand was a road inspector with no formal education who spent two decades creating a sculpture garden in secret, using rubble collected from the city’s building sites. A real pioneer who saw art and beauty where others saw junk, something which is very current now but not in in the 1950s when he started his amazing project!

We can’t wait to get down to another on of Gabriela’s sessions. Tickets can be found here. We’ll see you there!

Break Your Routine, Live More Awesome, Things To Do, Try Something New

24 Thoughts we might have had during life drawing class

Team Wonderush are huge fans of life drawing. We’re such big fans that we recently brought a burlsketch (life drawing mixed with Burlesque) class to London’s commuters. We topped up our skills a couple of weeks ago with a visit to a life drawing class. Here are some of the thoughts we had during our most recent escapade:

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Live More Awesome, Spotlight

Making of “Something New. Everyday.”

We’re really proud of our landing page image. So proud, in fact that we put together a slide show to demonstrate exactly how it was created. After all, we didn’t make Content Lead Sid sit down and painstakingly paint the thing for, like, 24 straight hours for nothing. So here’s what it looked like in all of its incomplete-but-still-pretty-cool glory.