Stepping Up Creative Networks

Creative Summit is a network based in the north of Sweden, just south of the Arctic Circle with a long history of storytelling. Companies in our network are working with global brands, all over the world. We firmly believe that bringing people together is vital for sharing knowledge, inspiration and ideas and by creating environments where people from all over the world can meet, regardless of industry or background, is vital to that.

I used to travel to a small place called Annagry in Donegal every summer with my parents. Back then my great grandmother didn't have a TV in the house, the younger ones reading this won’t understand, but it used to be about inventing your own fun during the day and listening to the stories from the adults at night. What I’m trying to emphasise is that you have to create your own experiences. I moved to Northern Sweden nearly ten years ago and it's not dislike places I've visited in Donegal. We're remote and there is a strong spirit of community and because of that also creativity. The closest town to my village is 50 miles away and it's called Skellefteå and it’s known in Sweden as the story telling town. The further north, or maybe even more remote you get, people have to think of new ideas or new ways of doing things and I'm a strong believer in looking close to home for creativity, especially now when I live in a place that is not too dissimilar to Annagry.

And every time I look, I'm not disappointed, which was why it was so refreshing to not be disappointed with the Creative Steps programme and why, after meeting several people from Donegal last week, I felt compelled to write this post. You could feel the buzz coming from everyone that visited us from Donegal. It was like they were feeding off this event that we have each year and that for me, as one of the people who help organise it, is what it's all about. These days you can map a process for most things and we can spend a lot of time working on that, but before all of that there has to be passion and a desire to make something happen and even though it has been many years since I walked in the morning, what felt like several miles to get the milk, I still know that creativity is rife in Donegal and I want to help ignite that bonfire of creativity.

One day I'll make the visit back to Donegal and I'll take my first legal pint of Guinness in Sharkeys Bar. It's not as there aren’t some of the most creative companies on this planet in Ireland, so maybe what we need is something to show that off and I can’ think of a better place than Donegal ­ the only country in the world with it’s most Northern point in the South!

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