Brighton Heroes

Nine By Nine Are Supporting Upcoming Artists And We Love Them!

You might have noticed that PLATF9RM’s walls have been glowing a little more than usual. For the last two months we’ve been been showing prints from Nine By Nine and we love showcasing them.

Nine by Nine is a local company that releases nine limited edition prints per month for (very) affordable prices. Each print is a one-off, limited edition piece from one of the planet’s most exciting new artists. We are 1000% behind this concept. Artists need all possible help to get their work on walls and earning money. A company like Nine by Nine can be an invaluable pipeline for them

Nine by Nine was started this year by Corryn Boyes and Adam Oldfield. We sat down with them to get all info about their new business baby.

Hey guys! Can you tell us a little about how Nine by Nine started?

We moved house last October. We’d rented until then so had never had much art but we now wanted to find affordable art to put on our walls. There’s a lot of sites selling prints but we often found them samey and generic, and in huge 10,000 print runs. So we wanted to provide an alternative.

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How limited are your prints?**

We only sell two sizes of each print and they’re 50 of each. We introduce nine new prints per month. The artists then get the spotlight for that month

Brighton must be a great town to find people. The town is full of illo nerds!

Absolutely. It’s one of the most creative cities in the UK.

And there’s loads of print shops!

Exactly. Places like Tidy Print are great.

Are you in cahoots or competition?

Ha. We check them out a lot but everyone has their own style so it’s not too competitive. We’ve all got a place in the ecosystem. I think we're trying to make art accessible at a price point that is a collector item at a good price. Ours are £40 or £60.

Universities must be a great breeding ground of talent for you?

Yes. We don't work with one particular university, but have worked with a number of graduate designers from Arts University Bournemouth. We're always on the lookout for young designers who have a great style and an ambition to get their work recognised.

Something like this must be so important, as it provides artists exposure whilst generating some income?

Definitely. it’s about creating a platform. The artists are creating great work but maybe don’t have that platform. We help with marketing and talk to influencers and people like PLATF9RM to promote the work itself.

Are there any local artists you’ve used that we should know about?

We’ve worked with Sam Williams, with more in the works to contribute in upcoming editions. But it’s not just local people we’ve used – we’ve use artists from Europe and South America

What’s the best way for aspiring artists to get on your radar?

We have a page on our website where artists can submit their portfolio and we welcome any artists!

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Some of your typography pieces – like ‘Fear Less’ – are very striking and you can imagine on working other mediums. Do you foresee moving out of just prints?

For sure. T-shirts, stationary. Things like ‘Fear Less’ and the typography stuff could do really well and would be another way to get it out to people

Are they any prints that you really wish had sold better?

We’ve run some science fiction pieces which Adam really loves. We’re still trying to find their audience!

What is your current market?

Our audience is primarily women and we have a lot of young mums. We worked with some female influencers and mum bloggers so their followers started following us. We’ve got a very bespoke target audience at the moment but we’re trying to broaden out

So we need more guys to start buying and sharing your Nine by Nine prints?

Exactly! 90% of our sales come through Instagram so when people post about the pictures it really creates a buzz. One of our big ambitions is to widen the market. There’s so many amazing artists out there and they deserve to be discovered.

Last of all: Why do you think PLATF9RM and NXN are perfect partners?

Our fondness for the number 9 of course! We're both communities, bringing together creative talent and providing a podium for celebrating their work.

Keep up with nine x nine via Instagram,  Twitter and Facebook
 

Free The Nipple Organiser, Bee Nicholls, Interviewed: “Going Topless Is Exhilarating.”

Free The Nipple started in 2012, when documentary maker Lina Esco make a film of herself running topless through the streets of New York. Since then, the movement’s gathered pace across the world as women have marched topless to highlight one of society’s grossest double-standards: that men can bare their chests in public whilst women can’t. Just as pertinently, they march to say their bodies are not shameful and to reject the intense sexualisation of breasts perpetuated by an image-obsessed media and society.

Brighton has seen two Free The Nipple marches and is run by a dedicated, creative team of people that believe in the realness of the cause. This year it’s taking place on 7th July. It will start at Old Steine Gardens and make its joyful, glitter-strewn way down the seafront, before a party with local party starters Tramfrau keeps everyone bouncing (pun not intended) until dawn. The chief organizer dude is Bee Nicholls, so we got her on the phone to chat all things FTN.2018.


Hey Bee! What are your big hopes with Free The Nipple this year?

The noise we make is a lot louder online, as you’d probably expect. This is still important – it means people are having the debate – but I’d love to see the amount of people engaging online reflected in the turnout.

So the message is: get away from your screens and come down and support on the day?

Absolutely!

For a lot of women, getting topless in public is still a pretty big hurdle to cross, isn’t it?

 All photos by Mickey F Photography

All photos by Mickey F Photography

100%. And it’s totally understandable. People still have massive hang-ups about topless women, even ones who are breastfeeding.The mental and physical image of a topless women is still so heavily sexualized it can be hugely uncomfortable.

Do you personally find going topless hard?

Definitely. I’m 27 and have been involved with Free The Nipple for three years but that’s 24 years where I’ve still grown up in this society and had these messages that my body is shameful. That it’s unsightly to see breasts. That if breasts don’t look a certain way they’re disgusting or somehow wrong. I am a product of that conditioning as much as anyone else and it’s not something that’s easy to shed. But going topless is exhilarating. To feel the fear and do it anyway.

Can people come support the march and not go topless?

Of course. It’s great just to get your support. Add your voice to the noise! It’s a very positive experience. People can come with families and kids and it’s a very wholesome experience; Free The Nipple isn’t about nudism or exhibitionism. it’s highlighting double-standards that exist across all levels of society. It’s about the fact that women and trans folk don’t yet have full autonomy over their own their bodies.

What was one of your biggest take-homes from last year’s march?

All the different types of people and bodies! The sizes. The shapes. The colours. The varieties.

There’s so much beauty in that variety and realising the way we are is fine. Just going along to the march reminds you that you’re fine. You’re normal.

What about guys. Are they welcome?

We try to make it really clear that the march is not predominantly for men and that the issues we’re promoting affect women and trans people. But men are very welcome to come and support. My boyfriend came and had a great time!

Have you had opposition to the march?

We’ve had trolls online. Last year, The Argus covered it and they were some really hilarious comments underneath. People saying stuff like, “Why don’t these women get jobs?” We’ve all got successful careers! But, on the other end, we had some blokes turn up and made an anti-march video and that had some really sinister comments underneath when it posted online. It all just highlights misogyny we’re fighting against. It’s the reason we have to do this.

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Is now the right time for a movement like Free The Nipple? People are more politicized than ever.

There’s a growing momentum of people standing up to injustice.  Taking part in a bit of fun and light-hearted activism can help people feel positive and it helps to deal with all the stressful and horrendous things that are going on around us. Feminist issues are gaining wider support which is great to see. We had a lot of men on the march and they’re good allies. It’s not easy for guys either! So much about masculinity is built around a normalized version of heterosexuality and it’s not necessarily guys’ fault that they act in a certain way. They should be given the chance to change.

Finally, what can we expect from the afterparty?

We partner with Tramfrau, and they put on amazing immersive club-nights. They’re a kind-of queer and intellectual alternative playground. It’s very arty. Very cool. It’s going to be at Rialto Theatre and is a space for everyone – straight, homosexual, trans, whatever – to act how they want. It’s going to be amazing!

We bet! Thanks Bee!

Keep up with Free The Nipple 2018 via Twitter and Facebook

And check our previous entries in our ‘We ❤️ Brighton Heroes’ series
 

Father’s Day Is Coming So PLATF9RM Members Told Us How Their Dads Inspired Them (Warning: Contains Cute Pictures)

You know who’s great? Dads. We think they’re so rad that we’ve asked five PLATF9RM members to write about how their Pop inspired them. It’s Father’s Day this weekend so get on the phone and tell yours why he is, quite literally, the man.


Kerri Lush

Earlier this year, my Dad was falsely diagnosed with lung cancer and given 3 months to live. I'm not sure what most folk would do with such a diagnosis, but he remained calm and maintained his composure. He carried on going to work, learning and improving, all whilst bearing the burdens of life, almost in opposition to his adversity. Whilst his loved ones prepared for the worst, my father set about putting his life in order far sooner than he had planned.

For several weeks, my Dad walked the line between order and chaos. It felt like he had been to the abyss and (thankfully) survived to tell the tale. His bravery in the face of an unexpected death sentence was incredibly inspiring. I hope that I will be ready to face my own mortality as bravely and courageously as he has when the time comes.

 

Kerry Lockwood - PLATF9RM Location Manager

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Growing up people always remarked on how much I resembled my Mum, especially those who had known her as a child. We’re alarmingly similar. However it’s in more recent years that I have attributed more and more of myself to my Dad (not just my forehead!).

My Dad is naturally introverted, one of life’s great observers, and maybe because of this his quick wit and cheekiness are all the more enjoyable. I think men of my Dads generation had no option but to be grafters, and I know that my work ethic derives from his influence ~ report cards from school were always judged on my effort over my grades.

My Dad was predominately raised by women, and perhaps as such has always been an empathetic and kind presence. Though his teasing (particular of my teenage dress sense) has always been relentless, my dads belief in me is boundless, and though he’s not a verbally loving man, he shows it to no end in his actions and small, considered gestures. In a family of non-stop talkers, I love my Dad the listener, sat taking it all in.

 

David Hillier - David Hillier Writes

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My brother once told me that my twenties were a “gap decade”. For this period of extended post-pubescence my Dad (ably supported by my Mum) gave me constant encouragement as I strolled through a number of questionable career and life choices. Bear in mind my Dad is a man who ran his own business for over 40 years, considered 12 hour days normal, and for whom a day off involved carting me to football on a fuming February Sunday afternoon to watch my team get habitually thrashed 8-0 before I sulked all the way home.

As I rounded the corner into my 30s I finally got a grip and managed to carve out a career doing the one thing I’d always wanted to do. I feel so blessed to do a job I love and, weirdly, I’ve become a workaholic with a drive to succeed that still surprises me. I wonder who inspired that…

 

Myles Lucas - Myles Lucas Studio

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My dad is probably the most driven person I know. He has raced competitively for the same running club since he was 25, been running for Team GB veterans since he was 40, and has a world record for the men's over 45s at 4x400m relay. He is now close to 70 and still going. He is always focused on getting faster and fitter, which usually involves going training about 4 or 5 times a week. He managed to keep this up the whole time he was a deputy headteacher, until he retired five years ago. I’ve always felt that if I’m able to be 50% as focused on my hobbies and career as he has been, I’ll be on a good path for the future...

 

Tess Agnew - The FitBits

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My Dad is my hero. Strong, caring and the hardest worker I know. As well as teaching me the value of money, how to work hard and be nice to people, he gave me the greatest gift in life and taught me how to ride a bike. This has led me to so many new and exciting adventures; not just for play but for work too. He let me be who I wanted to be growing up, and encouraged me to follow my heart and not my head. To do what makes me happy. He’s the only person I listen to when I really need advice, and even though we don’t see each other much, when I need him, he’s right there. My Dad’s mega.

 

Matt Miller - PLATF9RM Front of House


Since I was a little fella,

There was this crazy old bloke,

He was a fire place seller,

That dealt with old women and unidentified smoke.


From day one he was a wonder,

A mere sight to behold,

Kept me safe from thunder,

Kept me warm when I was cold.


People say we look the same,

I share his looks and overly feminine persona,

Luckily the belly never came (not yet),

And with him as my best mate, I’m never a loner.


But that’s enough of the soppy,

These days he prefers humour,

His dad jokes he claims I copy,

But that’s just a vicious rumour.


However, I leave you with this…


What is the difference,

Between a blind archer and a constipated owl,

One can shoot but not hit,

The other can hoot but not sh**.


I’ll leave you to decide the creator.

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We ❤️ Brighton Heroes: Charlotte Bray

The Hanover Community Notice Board (HCNB) is embedded into Brighton culture. For the 14,700 members of this uniquely crackers Facebook group, it offers a peek behind the curtains of a Hanover community that’s one of the most socially diverse in the city. From heated debates about feminism to student noise complaints to the perpetual threads about parking permits and defecating dogs, it’s a wonderland of tubthumping liberalism and passive aggressive bickering.

Behind all this, though, it serves a key purpose as community fulcrum. Whether users are looking for an electrician, trying to sell a sofa, or drumming up support for a homeless person in need, it's helped thousands of people connect with someone that can aid them. It was founded over four years ago by Charlotte Bray and she – aided by a team of admins – keeps everything in check and ensures HCNB remains a tolerant group with a purpose.

We called Charlotte to chat insane notifications, Suki the shark and provocative members.

 

Hey Charlotte! First thing first: how many hours a day do you reckon you spend looking after the Hanover board?

I would say three hours on average. If you asked my husband, he’d definitely say I have a problem!

That's over 1000 hours a year! So how much does the board actually get used?

In the last 28 days we’ve had 74,600 posts, comments and reactions.

Woah. Your notifications must be insane.

 All photos by Alexis Maryon

All photos by Alexis Maryon

I probably get 100-150 a day but I switched off notifications six month ago! So I have to go into Facebook and open it. I also moved it to the third page of my phone so I’m a bit more mindful. I’m currently halfway through a book called How To Break Up With Your Phone: make of that what you will!

When you set the group up, did you mean to create something this size?

Ha. Not al all. I set it up when I first moved to Brighton and invited 25 local people. These were the days before WhatsApp and I thought it would be useful to have a way to ask for plumber recommendations, or someone to lay tiles. Within three weeks there was about 100 people on it and within a year it was ridiculous. I was quite active on it at first but now it’s become its own creature and we just moderate it.

Do you feel a responsibility for what happens on there?

I do, yeah. But over the last year the group has got very good at self-policing.

Why do you think it has grown the way it has?

I think it’s to do with the mix; there are so many types of people and its socially and economically diverse. There’s the students, then the DFLs [Down From Londoners], the born and bred-ers. There’s also a lot of people in Hanover that are struggling from day to day, or in social isolation, or experiencing physical struggles in general. Sometimes this produces high levels of conflict but it also produces high levels of tolerance.

Do you have any favourite threads?

Ask any long-time users and they’ll know about Suki the shark.That spat went on for days but it was all humour and that’s the board at its best. I also love the posts with positive outcomes. A few months ago a women posted that she was alone and struggling and there was a flood of reactions: people directing her to services, offering to go for coffee or come and sit with her. I was just crying all the way through. Social media gets a bad press for a lot of reasons but I like to think our board can be a force for good. I don’t think i’d carry on if I didn’t.

What are you thinking and doing when threads kick off, like the debate about the price of wine at The Greys last year?

It can be alarming, hysterical and entertaining. I have a family, a job and a life outside the Hanover board – believe it or not –  and you can come into it a bit late. By which time it’s taken off and you think, ‘Shit, what am i going to do?’ It develops into a mini hysteria, part of which is fueled by humour. Part it is a culture of people taking things very personally.

You have some infamously provocative members who shall remain nameless. Do they wind you up?

Well there's one particular firebrand who loves to stir the pot. He’s provocative but I think he’s slightly misunderstood. I've met him and he is alright. He’s really alright but he can’t help himself. There's a couple like that and I reckon they'll read this and know exactly who they are!

Do you ever worry about arguments or bickering moving from online to IRL?

It doesn’t particularly worry me. You do get 2am aggro sometimes and you just think, ‘Put your phone down and go to bed, mate’.

Finally… why does everyone hate the cereal cafe?

Well, if you read that thread I actually don’t think most people do. Obviously, the cereal cafe in Shoreditch was made a scapegoat for gentrification but I don’t think that’s what the majority of posters on the Hanover board think. I read it more as a massive collective eye-roll. I mean, it’s a bit silly to charge £3.80 for a bowl of cereal but it’s a independent, quirky business and most people would rather that than another Starbuck’s or Costa.

We agree. Thanks so much for your time, Charlotte!

When she’s not managing the board (plus raising a family and working full-time) Charlotte runs the Dine at 39 supperclub. Get along to one from this link.

And check our previous entries in our ‘We ❤️ Brighton Heroes’ series