BROWSE_feat Amanda Reynolds

It's been a while, and BROWSEast is coming back with a very interesting perspective on possible changes for the public realm in and around Shoreditch by urban designer and local resident Amanda Reynolds.

Amanda looks at the uses of the streets, which is mainly passers-by, cyclists and mothers with children/prams and offers her point of view and possible solutions for urban flow.

Watch her video shot with Video Specs

If you too have a comment you would like to make, please contact us: browse[@]
Bye for now.

Designing OurSpace

After working with individuals in the local community, we took BROWSE to a new depth by working with groups to consult them on subjects regarding them. Creative City developed a workshop for Art Against Knives looking at gathering young people's feedback on urban planning, and understanding factors that affect (promote or eliminate) safety. Since young people seem to be the ones that we look upon for delinquency, it would make sense to consult them on how to improve the situation for them and for all.

The workshops

For a week during half term in October, Creative City led workshops with young people aged 11 - 19 years-old.

The first workshop took place at Art Against Knives HQ in Bloomsbury. We first highlighted all factors/elements that one would consider impacting or being part of urban design and the public realm. Lighting, plants, pavements, but also signage and the retail mix. What came apparent is that from this workshop, young people put as much emphasis on the physical aspects, as the emotional ones : people's attitudes and civic manners. Then participants went off with Video Specs to comment on these factors in situ.

Akeine Bennett's video is funny, watch it.

The second workshop was hosted by the BlueHut Youth Centre. Young people mapped out their local neighbourhood. This gave us a pretty good idea of facilities young people used and what their daily horizon is, how far it stretched.

The maps also served to plan the route to take with Video Specs. Once we studied the area and its facilities a little, young people set out to document their opinions themselves.

Upon their return, we debriefed and looked at the footage, before the third workshop which was editing the footage together. Herein follows the videos made by the young people, and editing by the young people. They contain their honest views on what improvements they would like to see in the local neighbourhood.

BROWSE feat_Akeine Bennett

Akeine donned BROWSE Video Specs and wandered around Tottenham Court Road as part of the 'Designing OurSpace' programme run by ArtAgainstKnives.

BROWSE Video Specs works with young people, enabling them to comment on the state and safety of their local area, and on how to improve the living environment. In this video, we follow Akeine on his search for a corner shop or chicken shop amongst the big name brands.

Look out for an post on the Creative City blog for more information about the workshops that BROWSE delivered in as part of ArtAgainstKnives' Designing OurSpace programme.

BROWSE feat_coffee roasting

Cappucino? Flat white? Americano? Latte? Every coffee lover has their tried & true favourite. But sometimes it's fun to mix things up a little bit, and try something new...

Up until now, BROWSEast has focused on the perspective of individual people who dwell - whether permanently or temporarily - in the East London area. We thought we'd try a different approach by looking at various crafts within the area. After all, there is a rich history of craftsmanship here. For example, nearby Weaver's Fields is so named because of Victorian silk weavers who lived in the area.

In AllPress, a local coffee shop, the craft of roasting coffee can be observed by customers as there is no wall (only a counter) dividing the roasting area & cafe area. We wanted to get a little closer to the magic, so Richard donned a pair of Video Specs to give us all an idea of the roasting process from the other side! It's fascinating understanding how coffee is roasted.

BROWSE_feat. Richard
from Creat1ve City on Vimeo

How are coffee beans roasted?

The coffee beans are not but are green in colour before roasting. They go into the drum roaster, which has been warmed up by small burner to 210ÂșC . Exact measurements are integral to the art of roasting, so a temperature probe is used to measure the temperature.

Every coffee is roasted differently, depending on the inherent characteristics of the beans.

The coffee beans are now dark brown. They fall into the cooling tray - the metal container with holes that whisk the beans to cool them quickly enough to stop the roasting process.

The beans must rest a minimum of 24 hours for the flavour to develop. It takes a minimum of 4 days to make an espresso. You'll be glad to know that roasted beans remain fresh for at least 2 weeks. Drink up!

The coarseness of the grind needs to be adapted to the coffee drinking method, depending on the length of contact with hot water, i.e.:
  • fine for espresso.
  • medium for filter.
  • coarse for cafetiere.

& there's your caffeine fix!

Thank you to Allpress Espresso coffee roasters for giving BROWSE to have a peek at the process. Now we know why good coffee tastes so good - it is all about measuring roasting temperature and exact timing not to burn the beans.

Browse_feat. Sarah F

Sarah was a volunteer at St Hilda's East in the past, and now back from university, she is working there in an internship in marketing and fundraising.

She has an interesting view as she was here 8 years ago, and the changes to the area are very noticeable. Find out what she thinks about the changing face of the local people and architecture by watching this video.

Sarah has also posted her comment on wearing Video Specs on the Creative City blog

Tag: marketing, internship, local, train, gallery, monolithic,

If you want to try Video Specs to BROWSE, contact browse[at]

Browse_feat. Carole

When Sienna was working with BROWSE, she went to speak to a local tailor called Carole. Carole has been a resident of the area for 12 years and has seen the changes to Spittafield Market. Here, she takes BROWSE Video Specs to discover a special event, which to her represents the cultural vibrancy of the area.
See what she sees by watching the video.

Tags: tailor, Spittafield, market, dance

We are looking to ask a lot of members of the community to wear Video Specs and show us what in their eyes and opinion gives this area its character.

Swap & Share Picnic at Arnold Circus

On 17th July, Browse took 3 pairs of Video Specs to the Friends of Arnold Circus 'Swap & Share Picnic' as we'd been invited by the curator Alice Herrick. We asked people who came to the picnic but also participants to wear the Video Specs for a bit and record their experience. The idea was to make a little video to show how wonderful the event was but also how great a community there is in & around Arnold Circus, thanks to the great effort of the Friends.

The music was curated by End of the Road festival and Rough Trade Shops and the whole day was wonderful! Spit cherries to make tunes, eat pani puris with St Hilda's, have your portrait taken and also painted... Lots lots going on. The video will tell you more, just watch it!

Filmed and narrated by:
Alex Djao, Asma, Beatrice, Daniele Di Pede, Gillian Burton, H, Ho Ruin, Imyaz, Jaida, Joh, K, Karen Janody, Livvy, Mahmuda, Marine Shah, Martha, Megan Charnley, Oona, Pam, Q, Rebecca Collings, Richard, Rohima, Sonia, and Steve la Jolie.

To find out what next's year OlymPicnic has on offer, follow them here and read about it on the FOAC website

Tags: Friends of Arnold Circus, swap, share, London, picnic, family, community, music.