Launch of the Collective: Building a Creative Community in South Wales

On 19th September, creatives of Cardiff Capital Region came together for the launch of Creative Collective, an initiative that promises to transform the landscape of the creative sector in South Wales. Hosted at BBC Cymru Wales, this event marked the beginning of an exciting journey for creative freelancers and businesses. Part of the Media Cymru project, Creative Collective isn’t just an idea; it’s a dynamic community with a mission to empower and elevate creative professionals, offering them the resources and opportunities they need to thrive.

The evening kicked off with a vibrant networking session, bringing together a diverse group of creatives, entrepreneurs, and visionaries under one roof. The energy in the room was palpable as individuals from various corners of the creative sector connected, shared ideas, and forged new collaborations. This aspect of the event embodied the core philosophy of The Collective: fostering a collaborative atmosphere.

Attendees had the chance to exchange experiences, insights, and contact details, all while enjoying refreshments and live tech demos by Robin Moore from SHWSH. The Collective is already creating a supportive and nurturing environment for creative professionals to flourish.

In the BBC’s Innovation Lounge we had three demos showing how different Artificial Intelligence tools are likely to change the way we produce and interact with live content. You could interact with a 3D animated character on a holographic display, which can converse with you in real time via the wonders of ChatGPT.

There was also a demonstration of how Unreal Engine and AI motion capture can be used to create a hybrid production environment, which aligned content in the real and virtual world. You could hold and control focus and zoom on a camera in the real world to film a character in the virtual world. Or alternatively, play the part of the character and move your body in the real world to see your movements replicated virtually.

Finally, the most popular photo opportunity of the night was deep fakes. You could choose a celebrity and step in front of the webcam to see their face in place of yours and mirroring all your facial expressions. Wowed by the creative opportunity but also scared by how easy it was to use these tools this was a clear example of why creatives need to engage with these new technologies, consider the ethics and shape how they are used.

The highlight of the event was the panel of visionary speakers who shared their remarkable journeys in the creative industry. These industry experts imparted invaluable insights, practical advice, and inspiring anecdotes to guide those in attendance on their own creative journeys.

The panel featured professional freelance Avid editor Rahim Mustafa, freelance creative producer Shane Nickels and public speaking coach and director Charlotte Lewis

Discussing their journey with the creative industry, how they got into their careers and the support they would have benefited from, their collective stories emphasised the importance of innovation and the power of community in achieving success in the creative sector.

The final segment of the event explored the heart of The Collective—the community itself. Cluster Manager, Adam Sparkes and CEO of TownSq Gareth Jones shared how this initiative would serve as a driving force behind building a strong, supportive community for creative professionals in Wales. Creative Collective aims to provide not only a platform for showcasing talent but also practical resources and opportunities for growth.

Through workshops, StartUp Club’s, and cutting-edge tech demos, Creative Collective is set to empower creatives to not only survive but thrive in their creative pursuits, all while building lasting connections.

The launch of the Creative Collective at BBC Cymru Wales was a resounding success, with over 100 people in attendance. This initiative promises to be for creatives built by creatives, to provide the necessary resources to enhance productivity and profitability.

The future of the creative sector in Wales looks brighter than ever, fostering a collaborative and supportive community for creative professionals.